Chronicle of Higher Education

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Publication analysis

About the publication

Title: The Chronicle of Higher Education

ISSN: 0009-5982(Print) and 1931-1362 (Online)1


Purpose, objective, or mission: The Chronicle provides information on all facets of higher education in the United States, with international coverage, as well. Along with the general articles, book reviews, and editorials, there are features dealing with the job market as well as extensive classified ads.2

Target audience: Higher education faculty and administration.3

Publisher: Chronicle of Higher Education, Inc.4

Peer reviewed? No.5

Type: Civilian; though it does sometimes carry articles of interest to or authored by librarians, it is mainly for the general administration and faculty.6

Medium: Print and online.7

Content: The website contains news, featured stories, opinion pieces, advice columns, job listings, and career-building tools such as online CV management and salary databases. The print magazine features two sections: the first contains news and jobs, while the second is a magazine of the arts.8

Because of its eclectic content, others working in academe will also find something interesting in The Chronicle of Higher Education. While this publication is definitely written for those with careers in higher education, LIS authors with an interest in teaching will find something of interest here as well.

Frequency of publication: The website is updated every weekday, while the print magazine is published weekly during the academic year and less frequently May through August and December, with a total of 43 issues a year.9

About the publication’s submission guidelines

Location of submission guidelines: Submission guidelines.

Types of contributions accepted: Essays; reviews; opinion pieces; reporting; advice columns; and contributions to the “What I’m Reading” feature that answer the question: what have you read lately that is insightful and useful to you as you think about higher education?10 The Chronicle also accepts news pitches, the guidelines of which can be found here.11

Submission and review process: Unsolicited submissions are considered. The decision to accept or reject a manuscript rarely takes more than a week. All accepted essays and articles are rigorously edited and fact-checked. Authors have the opportunity to review and approve a manuscript before it’s published. The editors of The Review will decide where and when the piece is published, with some articles appearing only online.12 Review the submission guide carefully, as different sections have different guidelines.

Editorial tone: Journalistic and conversational.13

Style guide used: None specified. Articles should be written in a clear, informal style free of jargon. Do not use footnotes or citations.14

Conclusion: Evaluation of publication’s potential for LIS authors

Because of the publication frequency and the audience that this newspaper serves, this is a good place for the new author to publish. You don’t necessarily have to work in academe, but it helps. Academic librarians, along with information professionals with an interest in education or pedagogy, would be welcomed here. This publication is an informal counterpart to academic journals, a sort of cocktail hour where academics can mull over or vent about relevant issues within and outside of their field. Interested authors will be intelligent, educated and independent thinkers with something interesting to say.

Also, the wide variety of pieces found in the The Chronicle makes it very easy to find something to write about that, if written in a clear prose style, has a decent chance of being published. Book reviews are a natural, but the longer commentary pieces on some topical tempest occurring in the academy are always a good bet. Because so many write under pen names, the odds of a new author being accepted seem high.


Audience analysis

About the publication’s readers

Publication circulation: From the website: The Chronicle‘s is seen by more than 2 million unique visitors a month. “650 organizations across the country make our journalism available to every one of their employees and students.”15

Audience location and language or cultural considerations: Though The Chronicle claims to be the main source of the goings on in higher education, it does tend to concentrate on the English-speaking world of the United States and sometimes Canada and the United Kingdom.16

The audience is well educated and mostly well informed about current events within and outside of academia, but the normal caution of defining extremely specialized or locally used jargon is applicable.17

Other than that, everything seems to go as long as it relates to academe in some way or another. The cosmopolitan affectations of the majority of the readers would allow a more eclectic use of language than would be found in a more mainstream newspaper.

Reader characteristics: As this is a lay publication, the makeup of its readership is somewhat important, but because it is a specialized publication the readership still has many common traits. The average reader tends to be either administration or faculty at a college or university, they can either be relatively new in their profession or at the midpoint, and though once predominately male the percentage of females is on the increase and will probably overtake the male percentage in the next few years. The readers are well educated and very interested in their profession and the culture of academe as a whole.18 Writing for The Chronicle would be an excellent way to increase understanding of library issues (such as information literacy) and market the library’s relevance to other professions. Intellectual and academic freedom, new issues in purchasing and providing content such as e-journals, information literacy, and services to disadvantaged groups would be other issues that would resonate with this readership.

Knowledge of LIS subject matter: Over all, the readership is oblivious of the complexities of the LIS profession and is most concerned with those processes that touch them in their own professions such as collection development. Of course, the readership would more than likely not fully understand the meaning of “collection development,” so such technical phrases would have to be defined.

Conclusion: Analysis of reader characteristics and their potential impact on authors

An LIS professional writing for this audience would not have much additional work to do, so long as he or she has something interesting and informed to write about. This is a publication for opinion pieces and reviews, and readers pick up The Chronicle to be entertained and informed. While this is not the place for scholarly work, readers do enjoy learning about new research or reading critiques of articles they’ve read in an entertaining format. They want to read shop talk, stay informed in their field, and feel connected to issues in the larger world.

This would be a good place to write an opinion piece about an LIS issue that touches on education, society or academe, or review a work that touches on these same issues. Todd Gilman, Librarian for Literature in English at Yale University and a Lecturer at San Jose State University, has published articles about distance education, special collections, research skills and information literacy, and other topics that connect libraries and academe in The Chronicle.

Last updated: September 25, 2018


Show 18 footnotes

  1.  The Chronicle of Higher Education, Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory, accessed March 24, 2018,
  2. “The Chronicle of Higher Education,”, accessed September 18, 2016,
  3. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  4. “The Chronicle of Higher Education,” Wikipedia, accessed September 20, 2016,
  5. “Submissions,”, accessed September 19, 2016,
  6. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  7. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  8. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  9. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  10. Submissions.”
  11. “How to Pitch Us,”, accessed September 20, 2016,
  12. Submissions.”
  13. Submissions.”
  14. Submissions.”
  15. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  16. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  17. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
  18. The Chronicle of Higher Education.”
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