Conclusions

The process followed for collecting submissions, reviewing and selecting papers to publish, distributing the finished product, and archiving was quite effective at meeting the goals of electronic publication for the IEEE Transactions on Education. Use of a standard, widely accessible platform was one of the keys to success. The review process was streamlined by making exclusive use of paperless communication between associate editors and reviewers. Authors were able to make speedy revisions and corrections throughout the review process. Both the Web and CD-ROM distribution channels allowed media-rich presentations of the paper contents in a format most useful for adaptation and adoption by the engineering-education community. Availability of those materials offers the possibility of fundamental improvements in educational effectiveness.

There is still some resistance to electronic publication. One author indicated that e-mail notice of the results of the review process was not acceptable for his tenure and promotion files. He needed notification on official letterhead with an original signature. Others have commented that their peers view electronic publication as lesser than traditional formats. One author explained that the rapid review and increased volume of papers published was a sign to his colleagues that the CD-ROM papers had not received the same careful scrutiny as the others. It may take time for the community to gain enough experience with electronic publication to alleviate those concerns. Participation in the process as authors, reviewers, and/or readers may be the best (and only) way to achieve this.