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Author Guidelines



The policy of Journal of Virtual Exchange is to be minimally prescriptive about the format of submitted manuscripts, so that authors can dedicate more time to matters of content. As many authors find it useful to work within formatting guidelines, a Word template for submissions is available for authors who wish to use it.

The following are the submission requirements for written contributions of all kinds:

  • Members of UniCollaboration must supply their membership number with their submission in order to avoid the application of article processing charges (APCs).
  • Submit an original contribution neither previously published nor under consideration elsewhere.
  • If you are contemplating a submission in a language other than English, French, or German, contact the editors-in-chief before proceeding.
  • Keep within the word-count limits for the contribution category:
    • Keynotes: 6,000 to 8,000 words (excluding references)
    • Research articles: 6,000 to 8,000 words (excluding references)
    • Practice reports: 3,000 to 4,000 words (excluding references)
  • Provide tables (if any) in editable format, not as a screenshot.
  • Supplementary materials (if any) should be placed in a separate file, one per item. It may be hosted either by the journal or the author – authors should communicate their preference –  and referenced in the text with the appropriate filename, which will be replaced with the URL in the published version.
  • Follow APA style for in-text citations and the list of references.
  • The list of references must include only sources explicitly cited.
  • Include an acknowledgment section (if needed) to credit the work of any non-author contributors, and/or funding agency.
  • Include a 50-word biographical note for each author.
  • Include affiliation, city, country, e-mail, UniCollaboration membership number where applicable, and, if possible, ORCID URL for each author.
  • Include permissions to reproduce any copyrighted materials.


Keynote contributions have wide latitude as to their form, style, and content. The key requirement is that they should have a broader, synthesising focus than regular research papers or practice reports. Appropriate formats include, but are not limited to: state-of-the-art articles, meta-analyses, innovative theoretical perspectives, and programmatic essays.


Research papers should report on empirical research into virtual exchange. They must be clearly situated within a critical review of existing literature, and must make explicit their theoretical framework and research methodology. The journal welcomes submissions from any established or persuasively defended theoretical and methodological orientation.


A practice report provides a detailed, critical account of the design, running and evaluation an innovative virtual exchange project. The project should not be simply a replication of projects reported elsewhere in the literature: it should be original or, if closely based on an existing project or design, incorporate significant adaptations (e.g., to design or to context of application). A practice report should be between 3,000 and 4,000 words in length.

Practice Report Format

Reports will typically include the following elements:


An Abstract of 100-150 words should be provided.


Five keywords (or key phrases) should be supplied, to include at least the subject(s) taught (e.g., German, French, intercultural communication, business communication) and any recognised virtual exchange formats or functions (e.g., tandem, pre-mobility exchange).


The Introduction should orient the reader to the project and its context, and preview key points from the following sections.


The Context section should provide at least the following details:

  • Participating institutions (names and types – e.g., university, secondary teacher-training college, vocational college, secondary school…)
  • Students – Which details are most relevant and informative will be influenced by the local context, but may include, for example,
          - Courses of study, and stage of study (e.g., final-year students of German and Business)
          - Native and target languages
          - Proficiency levels
          - Class size
  • Staff: e.g., number and roles of staff involved with the project, including authors’ role


The Objectives section should set out the rationale for the virtual exchange project, its aims, and how they relate to the aims of any associated study programmes or courses.

Project Design

A Project Design section is likely to include discussion of the following:

  • Planning:
    • Is the project based on an existing type or design? If so, what modifications have been made, and why?
    • Rationale for design choices: why this model, in this context?
    • How was the partnership established?
  • Implementation:
    • Length, schedule: how many weeks, how many hours per week?
    • Status in relationship to studies: elective / compulsory, stand-alone, blended, complementary to existing modules…
    • Activity sequence, including details of modes, platforms, etc.
    • Student learning assessment

Evaluation / Discussion of outcomes

A project evaluation section should give details of the formal evaluation methodology and findings, and may also discuss other relevant details, such as participation rates, challenges and solutions, evidence of student engagement and motivation.

[Data analysis]

Data analysis is not a requirement for a practice report, but plans for such research may be included, such as theoretical framework envisaged, methodology, and data analysis.

Conclusions and implication

The Conclusions section should include lessons learned and questions arising for future research or practice.

List of References

This is likely to be considerably shorter than for a typical research article.


Journal of Virtual Exchange will also consider submissions in non-traditional formats: video, audio, hypertext, multimedia, and so on. Such submissions will be assessed by the editors for their scholarly interest to the journal’s readership, but also for the creativity with which they exploit the affordances of the online environment. Content that might be suitable for such formats includes, but is not limited to, interviews, book reviews, and software reviews.

Submissions in non-traditional formats should be first proposed in an email to the editors-in-chief. If the editors wish to pursue the proposal further, details of the appropriate submission format will be negotiated with the proposer.


Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

  1. The submission has not been previously published, nor is it before another journal for consideration (or an explanation has been provided in Comments to the Editor).
  2. The submission file is in OpenOffice, Microsoft Word, RTF, or WordPerfect document file format.
  3. Where available, URLs for the references have been provided.
  4. The text is single-spaced; uses a 12-point font; employs italics, rather than underlining (except with URL addresses); and all illustrations, figures, and tables are placed within the text at the appropriate points, rather than at the end.
  5. The text adheres to the stylistic and bibliographic requirements outlined in the Author Guidelines, which is found in About the Journal.
  6. If submitting to a peer-reviewed section of the journal, the instructions in Ensuring a Blind Review have been followed.

Copyright Notice

JVE adopts the copyright policy of the publisher,, which is as follows:

“All our authors now retain their copyright and all rights associated to their work, and what we ask in return is a mere non-exclusive right to publish their work in print and electronically. This means that authors are free to do whatever they want with their article, even republish it elsewhere, as long as the original creation is properly credited.

“Each accepted article is published under a Creative Commons licence. Although we apply a CC BY licence by default to all individual articles, we believe it is fair-minded to let authors decide the level of restriction of their licence should they wish so; see our Licence policy for additional information.”


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