Educational Leadership, ASCD's flagship  journal, is intended for everyone interested in preK–12 education  issues, including curriculum, instruction, supervision, and leadership.  Each issue contains articles written by educators for educators. We  particularly look for articles that inspire improved teaching and  learning.

Educational Leadership is known for its theme  issues. The more appropriate an article is for a theme issue, the more  likely it is that we will be able to publish it. We also accept articles on non-theme-related topics if the subject is compelling and timely.

The EL editorial staff makes all decisions regarding publication. ASCD reserves the right to reject material, whether solicited or otherwise, if it lacks quality or timeliness. ASCD offers no remuneration for articles.

 

What We Look For

The best way to determine what kinds of articles we publish is to read the magazine.

Most published articles are between 1,500 and 2,500 words, are written in a conversational style, and cover topics that are useful for preK–12 educators. These are some of the qualities we look  for:

  •  Articles describing research-based solutions to current problems in education
     
  •  Reasoned debate on controversial subjects
     
  •  Opinion pieces that interweave experiences and ideas
     
  •  Program descriptions (school, district, or state)
     
  •  Practical examples that illustrate key points
     
  •  An emphasis on explaining and interpreting research results rather than on methodology
     
  •  International contributions

We are not looking for term papers or reviews of literature, and we rarely publish conventional research reports. We cannot review drafts and usually do not find query letters helpful; we prefer to read the manuscript. We do not publish articles that have been previously published, in print or electronic form. While your article is under review with us, we ask that you not submit it to another publication or post it on a website or blog—not even your own.

Please submit your manuscript under the appropriate upcoming theme category. If your manuscript does not fit any of our upcoming themes, please submit it under the Special Topic category. Please do not submit the same manuscript under multiple categories--duplications will be withdrawn from consideration. 

For more information about the submission and editing process, please visit our web site.

Innovative Lesson Planning

This digital-only issue will explore how to plan well-designed, innovative lessons that can boost student engagement and learning retention—whether you are teaching in the classroom or through a computer screen. Special attention will be paid to the changing context and priorities for lesson development and delivery in light of the pandemic, including technology issues and potential learning gaps. Key topics to be addressed include planning methods and structures; deeper learning; cultural relevancy; differentiation; and personalization. The issue will also look at methods for evaluating lesson materials and ideas and the role school leaders can play in powerful lesson planning.

Submissions Deadline: March 1, 2021


How to Prepare Your Manuscript

  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 



        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Education’s New Era

The COVID-19 pandemic—along with concurrent societal tensions and inequities—has had profound and likely lasting implications for schools. This issue will explore what comes next for K–12 education, examining how schools are recovering and building on lessons learned. Topics to be addressed include equity and inclusion; learning loss and instructional priorities; technological and school structural changes; crisis management and leadership strategy; school cultural change; and whole child and whole educator needs. What gaps has the pandemic exposed in education? What possibilities and new pathways has it opened up?

Submissions Deadline: April 1, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript

  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Compassionate Discipline

“My humanity is bound up in yours, for we can only be human together,” said Nobel Peace Prize winner Desmond Tutu. What does it look like to take a human-centered, whole child approach to classroom management? To emphasize care over control, skill-building over finger-pointing, and prevention over emotional reactivity? Key areas of emphasis in this issue will be proactive approaches to social-emotional learning and strategies to get to the root of—and respond to—challenging behaviors. The goal is to highlight classroom management strategies and programs that promote positive relationships, support learning, and help educators improve overall effectiveness.

Submissions Deadline: May 3, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript

  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Cultivating Educator Efficacy

Educator efficacy is a self-fulfilling prophecy: The more a teacher believes in his or her ability to positively impact student learning, the more he or she will do so and feel a sense of thriving in the profession. This issue will explore how schools can strengthen educators’ and leaders’ sense of efficacy—through instructional improvement initiatives, coaching, collaborative professional learning approaches, data collection, cultural competence, and culture-building strategies. A central emphasis will be on developing collective efficacy in schools—researcher John Hattie’s number one factor for improving student learning—as a way of empowering educators.

Submissions Deadline: June 1, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript


  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Engage and Motivate!

When students are engaged in learning, they reap many benefits, including deeper learning, higher achievement, and greater self-efficacy. This issue will highlight evidence-based techniques and strategies to increase motivation and engagement in today’s classrooms. Topics covered will include lesson planning; choice- and passion-based learning; creating equitable learning conditions; uses of technology; relationship building and social-emotional learning approaches; cultural competence; and high-leverage curriculum and instructional strategies for deeper learning. This issue will also speak to the effects that the pandemic and remote learning have had on student motivation.

Submissions Deadline: July 1, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript



  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Equity Every Day

Teaching—and leading—for equity is an ongoing process: There is no “mountaintop” to reach, no flag to plant. Equity isn’t just an initiative; it’s a way of being and leading. This issue will seek to unpack how racism, sexism, ablism, classism, and other marginalizing ideologies can be woven into the fabric of classrooms, schools, and districts and, conversely, how schools can extricate themselves from these patterns through conscious actions and systemic changes. A key focus will be on envisioning school improvement and instructional practice through an antiracist lens. The goal will be to help school leaders and educators learn how to detect—and most importantly, disrupt—systems of oppression and unfairness in their daily structures and ensure that all students get the care and opportunities they need to realize their full potential.

Submissions Deadline: September 1, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript




  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

The Adaptive Leader

Change and challenge are constants in education. School leaders today need to be agile and ready for anything. This issue will look at the mindsets and traits of adaptive school leaders, those who are best able to lead through change. How do these leaders make decisions, communicate with stakeholders, and ensure the primacy of effective teaching and learning? What support systems and training do they need? We seek stories of leaders who have led effectively in times of transition or high risk, and examples of strategies for leading through change (including as part of social justice and equity initiatives) while maintaining relationships and morale.

Submissions Deadline: October 1, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript





  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Feedback for Impact

As the late Grant Wiggins wrote, “less teaching plus more feedback is the key to achieving greater learning.” This is as true for educators as it is for the students we work with. In this issue, we will explore the key characteristics of effective, actionable feedback—whether provided in the classroom, following a teacher observation, or during a coaching conversation—and how schools can create cultures of effective feedback and make the most of feedback for growth. Articles will look at feedback protocols and routines; evidence-based formative assessment strategies; best practices for differentiating and delivering feedback; and how to make feedback stick.

Submissions Deadline: November 1, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript






  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Ready for the Real World?

College and career readiness has long been an aspirational focus of schools. But with so much variability in students’ postsecondary options and pathways, that preparation can be a tall and continually shifting task. This issue will examine how educators can better support students in navigating a multilayered system of postsecondary choices and directions, including through college preparation; career and technical education (including STEM-focused programs); apprenticeships and internships; and financial and vocational information programs. Although focused on secondary education, this issue will also look at P–16 or P–20 models. In what ways does education need to change to prepare young people today for their futures?

Submissions Deadline: December 1, 2021



How to Prepare Your Manuscript







  • Double-space all copy and number all pages.
     
  • Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  • Include your name, address, phone number, and email address at the top of the manuscript. Also include names and email addresses of any coauthors.
     
  • Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript. 




        We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references.


        Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.



 

Please use this category to submit articles that may not fit any of our upcoming themes.

Note: While we do occasionally publish special topic articles of an exceptional nature, submissions that do not fit into an upcoming EL theme have a much smaller chance of publication. Response times on Special Topics submissions may also be longer. Thank you for your patience. 


How to Prepare Your Manuscript

  •  Double-space all copy and leave generous margins.
     
  •  Number all pages.
     
  •  Indicate the number of words in the manuscript, including references and figures.
     
  •  Include your name, address, phone number, and email address on the cover sheet.
     
  •  Include a two- or three-sentence bio for each author at the end of the manuscript.
     

We use the reference style outlined by the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association.  Cite references in the text like this (Jones, 2000) and list them in a  bibliography at the end of the article. Please do not use footnotes or  endnotes for the references. For other matters of style, refer to The Chicago Manual of Style and Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary (11th ed.).

Authors bear full responsibility for the accuracy of citations, quotations, figures, and facts.




Write for ASCD Express

ASCD Express is ASCD's free email newsletter. Published twice a month, Express provides practical, actionable strategies from teachers, school leaders, and education researchers around the world—straight to your inbox. We develop each themed issue with an eye for relevance to the real experiences of working educators.

We seek articles for each issue's topic from classroom teachers, leaders, researchers, and specialists. Submissions typically range from 600 to 1,200 words and have actionable takeaways. We welcome research-based strategies and solutions, examples from your own classroom, and advice about how to overcome specific challenges. 

In your submission, please include your name, a brief professional bio, links to any sources, and the issue theme. If you have specific questions about your submission or suggestions for Express, please email us at express [at] ascd.org. Because of the volume of submissions we receive, we ask that you wait one month after the submission deadline to send any inquiries regarding publication status.

We look forward to reading your work!


2020-21 Call for Submissions 


Ongoing: Respond and Reimagine 

On a rolling basis, we are accepting submissions for a recurring monthly issue that will address the challenges educators are facing for the 2020–21 school year related to COVID-19, distance and hybrid learning, health and safety, and equity, as well as the promising practices that will help re-envision teaching and learning post-pandemic. Note: Any submissions submitted under the “Ready for the Restart” theme will automatically be considered.


October 22: Trauma-Sensitive Schools

Trauma and adverse childhood experiences are increasingly common for today's students—and awareness is growing about how they can affect a young person's life, outlook, and ability to learn. This reality can be heart-wrenching for educators and presents significant challenges for schools. How can educators be more responsive to the needs of students suffering from trauma? This issue will highlight new research and findings on developmental trauma and learning, explore approaches for accommodating and supporting affected students (in instruction, discipline, relationship-building, and assessment), and call attention to common practices and policies that exacerbate problems. We'll also look at self-care steps for teachers working with these students.

Submissions due: September 15, 2020


November 12: Understanding Students Who Learn Differently

In the United States, one in five people learn and think differently, and one in four adults have some type of disability. But the world, including our schools, are often not built for differences like dyslexia, dyscalculia, and ADHD. How can educators make sure learners have the support and resources they need to learn, grow, meet challenges, and thrive? With the added complications and uncertainty of distance and hybrid learning, how must teaching change to connect with these students at a distance? In partnership with Understood, this issue will explore how to make classrooms—in person and remote—more accommodating to students with all types of disabilities.

Submissions due: October 1, 2020


November 25: The Early Grades

Is it true that everything you needed to know about life you learned in kindergarten? Maybe not, but research indicates that a high-quality education in the first few years of school can increase children's success in reading, writing, and math; close achievement gaps; and set the foundation for healthy and engaged citizenship. This issue will delve into best practices and new ideas for supporting early elementary students (K–3) in developing the academic and social-emotional skills they'll need to thrive in later grades—and in their lives.

Submissions due: October 15, 2020


January 28, 2021: Mental Health for Educators

The majority of U.S. teachers report that their work is "always" or "often" stressful. Many are also vulnerable to secondhand trauma and compassion fatigue. Recognizing these as urgent issues in K–12 education, this issue will highlight ideas and programs for promoting teacher well-being and mental health and explore ways schools can provide better supports to help stave off burnout, depression, and anxiety. Educator mental health need not be the "elephant in the classroom" any longer.

Submissions due: December 15, 2020


February 25, 2021: Making PD Stick

Educators have no shortage of professional development offerings, but do they always have a lasting effect in the classroom or on school leadership? This issue will explore how and why effective PD works, highlighting successful programs as well as the science of adult learning and knowledge transfer. It will also provide tips and ideas for creating and facilitating effective PD sessions and look at how school leaders can build thriving cultures of professional learning.

Submissions due: January 15, 2021


March 25: Equity in Action

Maya Angelou once said, "Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better." We know what the data say about inequities in education—now we need to do better. But how do educators actually change their practices to be more equitable? This issue will unpack how biases and legacy policies can shape everything from pedagogy to curriculum to assessments to relationships and expectations—and offer real and practical ways to take action at the school and classroom level. A central focus will be on identifying strategic steps to improving learning opportunities and support for all students.

Submissions due: February 15, 2021


April 22: The Empowered Principal

If it's true, as Simon Sinek says, that leadership is a way of thinking and a way of acting, what do effective school principals look like in action—and how do they get that way? What training, system supports, and school structures help principals feel empowered, capable of leading schoolwide instruction, and equipped to create thriving learning environments? This issue will look at ways to strengthen school leadership pipelines, build capacity, and support principals at all career stages. We welcome stories about or by successful school leaders describing their development and their professional needs.

Submissions due: March 15, 2021


May 27: From Research to Practice

Everyone wants to see evidence-based practices in schools. But how can educators and scholars do a better job of translating research findings into classroom instruction and school decision making? This issue will highlight effective ways to bridge education research and practice, exploring promising models and opportunities to address knowledge gaps, identify relevant findings, and integrate best practices in schools. Possible topics to be explored include teacher research, professional development initiatives, school and higher education partnerships, and technology-based solutions to the gap between research and practice.

Submissions due: April 15, 2021

Educational Leadership