write for us

Writing in the park by Roey Ahram | flickr ccbyncnd2 licence

We are looking to sustain the development of infed through contributions from a range of different writers. Our aim is to provide a space for people to explore education, pedagogy, learning and change.

The site is run on a not-for-profit basis. We are part of the British Library archiving project and a number of the pages are included on the UNESCO/NCVER voced database and on SOSIG (the Social Science Information Gateway).

If you have something that you want to write or submit, or wish to select something to work on from our wish list, we’d like to hear from you. It is best to contact us before you get a long way into it – there may be someone else also working on a similar subject area. As you will have probably gathered we run the page on a shoestring – so any work has to be done for love.

Below we have set out some guidelines for contributors. We operate a refereeing system – so you will get feedback on your contribution.

Guidelines for contributors

Audience. At the moment our pages are accessed around two million times a year. Visitors come from all over the world. The following figures date from November 2020 and show visitors from the previous three months.

Visitors - three months to 11/11/2020

The main users fall into three camps:

  • students. From our correspondence etc. it would appear that they are often involved in programmes in work with young people, community development, social pedagogy and social work, teaching and schooling, and lifelong learning and adult education.
  • academics with a professionals interest in the area.
  • practitioners working in work with children and young people (including schooling, social pedagogy and social work), human relations, museum education, lifelong learning and community development. They are often engaged in the development of new initiatives e.g. in higher education, community education, libraries and museums.

Writing style. We like writing that is direct and accessible. You need to write short sentences and to avoid the overuse of long words and technical terms. A good working rule here might be to imagine your readers as interested colleagues, who perhaps don’t have access to the same specialist language as yourselves. Thus, you will need to explain some terms but must avoid talking down to readers.

Length. Our pages tend to be between 1000 and 5000 words – although this varies according to the type of page (see below).

Forms of contribution. We are on the lookout for four main types of contribution. Pieces on key:

  • themes – such as developments in community schooling or in project work.
  • thinkers. We have a lot of gaps and are constantly open to suggestions for inclusion.
  • ideas
  • issues and talking points

The pieces on key thinkers tend to have the same format:

  • introduction
  • a biographical sketch
  • key ideas and themes
  • assessment of their contribution
  • conclusion with some discussion of continuing relevance etc.

Referencing. The referencing system we use involves putting the writer’s name, date, and if required, page numbers in brackets in the text i.e. (Jones 1979: 63). Then the full reference is put at the end. Basically APA!

Where the quotation is substantial, say over five lines, it should be indented. In this case, the full stop comes at the end of the text, and the reference after that (Jones 1979: 63)

References should be listed alphabetically by the writer and then chronologically for more than one work by the same writer.

Books: Assensoh, A. B. (1998). African Political Leadership: Jomo Kenyatta, Kwame Nkrumah, and Julius K. Nyerere. New York: Krieger Publishing Co.

Chapters: Samoff, J. (1990). “Modernizing” a socialist vision: education in Tanzania in M. Carnoy and J. Samoff (eds.) Education and Social Transition in the Third World. Princeton NJ: Princeton University Press.

Articles: Humphries, B. (1988). Adult learning in social work education: towards liberation or domestication,  Critical Social Policy No. 23 pp. 4-21.

Reports: Department for Education and Employment (1999). Learning to Succeed. A new framework for post 16 learning. London: The Stationery Office (Cm 4392). (If the report is known by its chair please put in brackets after the title).

Internet materials: Boje, D. M. and Rosile, G. A. (2001). Where’s the Power in Empowerment? Answers from Follett and Clegg, Journal of Applied Behavioral Science, Vol. 37(1): 90-117. [http://cbae.nmsu.edu/~dboje//CleggFollett4_index.html. Retrieved: January 23, 2003].

Racist and sexist language etc. Please avoid gender-specific language, except where applicable to a particular individual, and anything that might be construed as sexist. We try to avoid the use of s/he and her/his which can be somewhat repetitive and ugly. The best way around this, we feel, is to use the plural – they, people, educators etc. Likewise, please avoid all language and connotations that might be construed as racist. Also, consider the extent to which your contribution might be considered as being ethnocentric.

Copyright. Please could you follow the normal publishing conventions re the use of copyright material i.e. short extracts etc.

We place your name as the copyright holder but give permission for the piece to be reproduced for educational and training purposes (copyright @ the informal education homepage).

We are also happy if you want to use the material elsewhere.

Manuscript. If possible we would like the manuscript to be e-mailed. The five main formats we can deal with are:

  • plain text (ASCII)
  • Rich Text Format (RTF)
  • HTML
  • PDF
  • Word

If not, just send material to us on single-sided paper, with a fairly large print face and double-spaced if possible.

Pictures. Relevant copyright-free pictures to illustrate your piece would also be welcome.

Contact us

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Acknowledgement: Picture sourced from Flickr and reproduced under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 2.0 Generic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0) licence. http://www.flickr.com/photos/roeyahram/6659760491/.