Journal of School Psychology 53 (2015) 1–6

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The state of the Journal of School Psychology: Promoting science

I am honored to be writing this editorial for the first issue during my editorship at the Journal of School Psychology (JSP). I wanted to take this opportunity to share my vision for the journal. As I prepared to write this editorial, I spent time thinking about the current “state of the journal” and its future potential. In preparing, I reread the history of the journal by Fagan and Jack (2012) and Randy Floyd's prior editorials (Floyd, 2012, 2013, 2014) and reflected on the objective of the journal. I also reread many of the prior published articles over the past couple of years including the qualitative study by McIntosh, Martinez, Ty, and McClain (2013) that focused on the state of scientific research in the field of school psychology by surveying leading researchers in the field. In my opinion, the current state of the journal is strong because the prior leadership and the content of the journal have been focused on one major objective: promoting science. The state of the journal: promoting science When I was being interviewed for the editor position, two questions posed to me by the search committee were, “What is science? And how would you advance science as the editor of JSP?” Albeit daunting during an interview, what great questions to ask of a potential future editor of a scientific journal! How does one quickly define science? I gave an answer to the search committee that I thought might be a bit simplistic. From my recollection, I conveyed that science is using theory and/or prior research to pose research questions and predictions/hypotheses. Good science then uses well-developed methodology (with reliable and valid measurement) and solid statistical analyses to answer those questions. The results are interpreted with prior theory and research in mind with acknowledgments of the research limitations and needed future research. Basically, I was attempting to define “the” scientific method. According to Lilienfeld, Ammirati, and David (2012), the fact that individuals even talk about “the” scientific method may be considered a myth of science because there are probably many different scientific methods used to answer numerous different scientific questions. Upon reflection, “the” scientific method is not what defines good science — the scientific method needs to be upheld to rigorous standards to truly advance science. Upholding rigorous scientific standards is what JSP does best! The Oxford Dictionary (2014) defines science and the scientific method much more eloquently than I did in my interview. Science is, “The intellectual and practical activity encompassing the systematic study of the structure and behavior of the physical and natural world through observation and experiment and the scientific method.” The Oxford Dictionary (2014) defines the scientific method as, “A method of procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.” Simply because a paper is published by a peer-reviewed journal does not indicate that the science is strong (Lilienfeld et al., 2012). My goal as the Editor of JSP is to promote science via upholding rigorous standards for research published in the pages of the journal. Below are some ways the current JSP editorial team and I will continue to promote science at JSP: 1. We will require manuscripts published at JSP to thoroughly review the relevant literature and theory related to their respective area of study. An advantage JSP has over many journals is that there are no page limits to submissions. Thus, authors can and are expected to provide comprehensive reviews of the relevant literature and theory in their study. Although JSP does not publish many unsolicited review manuscripts, I welcome review papers if they are systematic, thorough, and advance science or theory in their respective area. For example, a recent systematic review of recommendations and research surrounding curriculum-based measurement of oral reading fluency decision rules was published in JSP by Ardoin, Christ, Morena, Cormier, and Klingbeil (2013). I believe this review paper will guide many researchers in future studies regarding CBM. In addition, I encourage the submission of meta-analytic reviews as they are excellent resource to systematically summarize and advance research. A recent example of a meta-analysis published by JSP focused on the oral reading CBM diagnostic accuracy supporting use for universal screening (Kilgus, Methe, Maggin, & Tomasula, 2014). 0022-4405/© 2014 Published by Elsevier Ltd. on behalf of Society for the Study of School Psychology.



2. We will require solid methodological designs to answer research questions. Method sections should be detailed and utilize measures that are reliable and valid. JSP has high standards for measurement tools that possess strong evidence of reliability and validity. Typically, JSP publishes quantitative research studies but high quality qualitative studies are encouraged if they are upheld to rigorous standards of qualitative research designs. Qualitative studies by Moy et al. (2014) and McIntosh et al. (2013) are two exemplary qualitative articles published in JSP. Recent examples of quality methodological designs published recently in JSP include the use of (a) randomized controlled trials (Abry, Rimm-Kaufman, Larsen, & Brewer, 2013; Britton et al., 2014; Hutchings, Martin-Forbes, Daley, & Williams, 2013; Leflot, van Lier, Onghena, & Colpin, 2013; Sheridan, Ryoo, Garbacz, Kunz, & Chumney, 2013); (b) longitudinal research designs (Bergsmann, Van De Schoot, Schober, Finsterwald, & Spiel, 2013; Darney, Reinke, Herman, Stormont, & Ialongo, 2013); and (c) multi-level modeling (Galla et al., 2014; McCormick, O'Connor, Cappella, & McClowry, 2013). 3. We will promote research using advanced analytic techniques that are well suited to answer the proposed research questions. For example, for several years JSP has been promoting more advanced methods to handle missing data and multi-level data. It is my goal that JSP continues to promote best practices in analytic techniques. I believe that one of the greatest strengths at JSP is our Statistical and Methodological Advisors (SMAs). The SMA's involvement in reviewing manuscripts helps ensure that the journal is using best-practice and cutting-edge statistical techniques. An advantage to authors is the constructive feedback they receive from one of our SMAs. I encourage the submission of manuscripts that are focused solely on analytical techniques. JSP is an excellent source for manuscripts focused on the “how-to” of methodological and statistical techniques that are being used by researchers. Occasionally, these papers stand on their own as general manuscripts such as the following recently published articles focused on (a) mean phase differences and generalized least squares for analyzing single-case design (Manolov & Solanas, 2013); (b) reliability of multi-category ratings scales (Parker, Vannest, & Davis, 2013); (c) single-case effect size calculation (Ross & Begeny, 2014); and (d) a practical guide to generalizability theory (Briesch, Swaminathan, Welsh, & Chafouleas, 2014). As an author, if you are considering submitting a paper focused on methodological and statistical techniques, please feel free to contact me to discuss your idea. Another way JSP advances methodological and statistical techniques is through special issues. Historically, JSP has not published many special issues. However, in 2014 a special issue was published on analysis and meta-analysis of single-case design (SCD) with leading researchers in this area to guide and advance single-case design research (Shadish, 2014). Currently, another special issue is being developed for publication in 2015 focused on methodological and statistical techniques. 4. We encourage content that advances the science of school psychology. In the sections that follow, I have summarized recent topics that have been published in the journal across the past several years and addressed areas of future research. Recent work published in JSP has focused on broad topics that influence the field of school psychology. I scanned the prior couple of years of articles and came up with nine broad categories of work JSP has published. This list is not exhaustive or mutually exclusive, but in general, JSP has published significant work in the following areas: a. empirically-validating academic interventions, including reading, vocabulary, spelling, writing, and math (Clemens, Oslund, Simmons, & Simmons, 2014; Hindman & Wasik, 2013; Nelson, Burns, Kanive, & Ysseldyke, 2013; Peterson et al., 2014; Sullivan & Field, 2013; Truckenmiller, Eckert, Codding, & Petscher, 2014); b. empirically-validating behavioral interventions (Blaze, Olmi, Mercer, Dufrene, & Tingstom, 2014; Briesch, Chafouleas, Neugebauer, & Riley-Tillman, 2013; Chafouleas et al., 2013; Folino, Ducharme, & Greenwald, 2014; Fosco, Frank, Stormshank, & Dishion, 2013; Imeraj et al., 2013); c. advancing the science of curriculum-based measurement (Ardoin et al., 2013; Christ, Zopluoglu, Monaghen, & Van Norman, 2013; Cummings, Biancarosa, Schaper, & Reed, 2014; Kettler & Albers, 2013; Nese et al., 2013; Shapiro, 2013); d. investigating the importance of teacher–student relationships (Chan et al., 2013; Hughes, Im, & Wehrly, 2014; McCormick et al., 2013; Roorda, Koomen, Spilt, Thijs, & Oort, 2013; Roorda, Verschueren, Vancraeyveldt, Van Craeyevelt, & Colpin, 2014; Rudasill, Niehaus, Buhs, & White, 2013; Zee, Koomen, & Van der Veen, 2013); e. understanding and reducing bullying and victimization (Batanova, Espelage, & Rao, 2014; Goldweber, Waasdorp, & Bradshaw, 2013; Haataja et al., 2014; Pronk, Goossens, Olthof, De Mey, & Willemen, 2013; Saarento, Kärnä, Hodges, & Salmivalli, 2013; Valiente, Swanson, Lemery-Chalfant, & Berger, 2014); f. understanding how school/class climate and instructional practices impact students (Benner, 2013; Bottiani, Bradshaw, & Mendelson, 2014; Curby, Rimm-Kaufman, & Abry, 2013; Mitchell & Bradshaw, 2013; Reddy, Fabiano, Dudek, & Hsu, 2013); g. advancing the science of assessment (Kilgus, Riley-Tillman, Chafouleas, Christ, & Welsh, 2014; McDermott, Watkins, Rovine, & Rikoon, 2013; Norwalk, DiPerna, & Lei, 2014; Reynolds, Keith, Flanagan, & Alfonso, 2013; Wiesner & Schanding, 2013); h. validating the roles of parents and peers in social and academic competence (Anthony, DiPerna, & Amato, 2014; Goldberg & Smith, 2014; Moorman-Kim, Sheridan, Kwon, & Koziol, 2013; Ogg, McMahan, Dedrick, & Mendez, 2013; Rispoli, McGoey, Koziol, & Schreiber, 2013; Zhang et al., 2014); and i. data-based decision-making on grade retention, school absenteeism, and drop out (Burton, Marshal, & Chisolm, 2014; Goos, Van Damme, Onghena, Petry, & de Bilde, 2013; Im, Hughes, Kwok, Puckett, & Cerda, 2013; Kieffer, Marinell, & Neugebauer, 2014; Lynch, Kistner, & Allan, 2014; Reschly & Christenson, 2013). I encourage authors to continue submitting work that falls in these broad categories of school psychology where JSP is actively contributing. I also want to promote future research in the areas identified by leaders in the field of school psychology. The qualitative



study by McIntosh et al. (2013) revealed five themes of important future research directions that I would like to promote at JSP: (1) data-informed practices and their implementation, including evidence-based interventions and implementation science; (2) theory development, including research that advances theories in the field of school psychology; (3) the changing roles of school psychologists, including indirect service delivery and multidisciplinary research; (4) biological bases of behavior, including neuropsychological, genetic, and epigenetic influences; and (5) advances in research methodology and psychometrics. Besides publishing more typical content in the field, I also want to be sure that JSP focuses on new issues and current topics in the field. Furthermore, I want JSP to be viewed as a journal that is inclusive in the topics of articles published. Recently, I was influenced by a poster presentation I saw at the National Association of School Psychology (NASP) Conference that demonstrated a lack of published articles focused on youth who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or questioning (LGBTQ) in school psychology and other educational journals. Seeing this need and wanting to publish work in JSP that is relevant to the lives of all children and adolescents, I have commissioned 3 upcoming manuscripts for 2015 focused on students who are LGBTQ. The state of the journal: quantity and quality As Randy noted in his final editorial (Floyd, 2014), JSP is receiving more manuscript submissions each year—with current submission rates at approximately four times that of a decade ago. See Table 1 for a graph of the growth in submissions over the past 11 years. As the Editor, I will pay close attention to the growth of the journal to ensure that JSP continues to provide high-quality and timely reviews to authors. I plan to uphold the commitment to provide authors with feedback within 8 weeks of submission of their manuscripts. As started by Randy Floyd in 2011, I plan to continue publishing Annual Journal Operation Reports to promote transparency in the publication process at JSP. In addition, the journal has maintained an impact factor over the past 6 years above 2.0. See Table 2 for a graphic representation of the 2-year impact factor from 2004 to 2013. The 2013 5-year impact factor is 3.470 indicating that articles published in JSP from 2008 to 2012 were each cited approximately three and a half times in 2013. These impact factors are the results of the hard work of prior editors, especially recent editors, including Robert Pianta, Ed Daly, and Randy Floyd, and their respective editorial teams. My goal for JSP is to continue publishing science that is highly useful and cited by other researchers in the future. The state of the journal: people I am honored to be following in the footsteps of Randy Floyd who, too, was dedicated to advancing science as the Editor of JSP. I worked with Randy for 4 years as an Associate Editor and 1 year as Editor-Elect. There is no better mentor I could have asked for during this transition. Randy will be staying on the editorial board in a new role, Editorial Consultant, and I look forward to utilizing his passion and expertise to further the science of the journal in coming years. Randy, thank you! Randy was influential in forming the Council of Journal Editors in School Psychology (CJESP) as a way for editors from the major school psychology journals to forward and improve the publication process in school psychology. I plan to continue Randy's excellent work to further this relatively new initiative to improve the collective science in the field and to collaborate and learn from other editors. I also look forward to working with Ruthie Hewitt, Journal Manager, and our new Associate Publisher, Adam Fraser. Adam has some new and exciting ideas for the journal. An initial change that will be happening is that JSP has moved to article-based publishing (ABP). ABP means that as each article is accepted it is published online in the final form (i.e., with journal page numbers, a DOI number) and does not have to wait for the issue to be finalized. This allows articles to be fully citable sooner. Table 1 Number of manuscripts submitted to JSP from 2004 to 2014.

Note. Data from 2006 are missing. The number of manuscripts submitted in 2014 manuscripts was based on the number submitted at the time of this editorial, December 4, 2014 (N = 320).



Table 2 Impact factors for JSP from 2004 to 2013.

The incoming Editorial Board has been finalized for service from July 1, 2014 through December 2016. I have an excellent team of Associate Editors (AE) that work diligently on every manuscript to ensure that each article promotes science in the field of school psychology. I am fully aware of the hard work and dedication it takes to be an Associate Editor. The new team started handling all initially submitted manuscripts on July 1, 2014. The new editorial board includes several returning associate editors: Craig Albers (University of Wisconsin, Madison), Sterett Mercer (University of British Columbia), Kathy Moritz Rudasill (University of Nebraska, Lincoln), and Jina Yoon (Wayne State University). In addition, new Associate Editors include Amy Briesch (Northeastern University), Andy Garbacz (University of Oregon), Scott Graves (Duquesne University), Sherrie Proctor (Queens College, City University of New York), and Lisa Sanetti (University of Connecticut). The AEs at JSP go above and beyond in their work to provide specific, helpful feedback to further each author's scientific endeavors even if the manuscript is not going to be published at JSP. They are truly dedicated individuals, and I look forward to continuing my work with them. As noted earlier I believe one of the greatest strengths of JSP is our Statistical and Methodological Advisors (SMAs), and I am looking forward to working with the team of SMAs during my editorship. I added some additional SMAs to the board to be sure we have enough coverage for our AEs and a wide variety of expertise. We now have 14 SMAs on the board. We have six returning SMAs: Bridget Dever (Lehigh University), John Ferron (University of South Florida), Brian French (Washington State University), Matt Fritz (University of Nebraska—Lincoln), Wen Luo (Texas A&M University), and James Peugh (Cincinnati Children's Hospital and Medical Center). We also have eight new SMAs on the board: Tony Albano (University of Nebraska — Lincoln), Bethany Bell (University of South Carolina), Eun Sook Kim (University of South Florida), Ehri Ryu (Boston College), Alecia Santuzzi (Northern Illinois University), Russell Warne (Utah Valley University), and Jerry Wu (National Chiao Tung University — Taiwan). Our SMAs possess a wide variety of expertise in methodology and statistical analyses to keep the journal at the cutting edge of statistics. In addition, the new editorial board consists of 11 Senior Science and Editorial Consultants and 87 Editorial Board Members. I am thankful to the Senior Scientists who are willing to provide their expertise and consultation to the journal and me. I am especially thankful for the Editorial Board Members who are willing to provide their time and expertise to review the manuscripts submitted to JSP and ultimately promote the rigorous scientific standards of the journal. References Abry, T., Rimm-Kaufman, S. E., Larsen, R. A., & Brewer, A. J. (2013). The influence of fidelity of implementation on teacher–student interaction quality in the context of a randomized controlled trial of the responsive classroom approach. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 437–453. Anthony, C. J., DiPerna, J. C., & Amato, P. R. (2014). Divorce, approaches to learning, and children's academic achievement: A longitudinal analysis of mediated and moderated effects. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 249–261. Ardoin, S. P., Christ, T. J., Morena, L. S., Cormier, D. C., & Klingbeil, D. A. (2013). A systematic review and summarization of the recommendations and research surrounding curriculum-based measurement of oral reading fluency (CBM-R) decision rules. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 1–18. Batanova, M., Espelage, D. L., & Rao, M. A. (2014). Early adolescents' willingness to intervene: What roles do attributions, affect, coping, and self-reported victimization play? Journal of School Psychology, 52, 279–293. Benner, A. D. (2013). Exit examinations, peer academic climate, and adolescents' developmental outcomes. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 67–80. Bergsmann, E. M., Van De Schoot, R., Schober, B., Finsterwald, M., & Spiel, C. (2013). The effect of classroom structure on verbal and physical aggression among peers: A short-term longitudinal study. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 159–174. Blaze, J. T., Olmi, D. J., Mercer, S. H., Dufrene, B., & Tingstom, D. H. (2014). Loud versus quiet praise: A direct behavioral comparison in secondary classrooms. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 349–360. Bottiani, J. H., Bradshaw, C. P., & Mendelson, T. (2014). Promoting an equitable and supportive school climate in high schools: The role of school organizational health and staff burnout. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 567–582. Briesch, A. M., Chafouleas, S. M., Neugebauer, S. R., & Riley-Tillman, T. C. (2013). Assessing influences on intervention implementation revision of the usage rating profile-intervention. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 81–96.



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(2013). Pathways of influenced in school-based mentoring: The mediating role of parent and teacher relationships. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 129–142. Christ, T. J., Zopluoglu, C., Monaghen, B. D., & Van Norman, E. R. (2013). Curriculum-based measurement of oral reading: Multi-study evaluation of schedule, duration, and dataset quality on progress monitoring outcomes. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 19–57. Clemens, N. H., Oslund, E. L., Simmons, L. E., & Simmons, D. (2014). Assessing spelling in kindergarten: Further comparison of scoring metrics and their relation to reading skills. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 49–61. Cummings, K. D., Biancarosa, G., Schaper, A., & Reed, D. K. (2014). Examiner error in curriculum-based measurement of oral reading. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 361–375. Curby, T. W., Rimm-Kaufman, S. E., & Abry, T. (2013). Do emotional support and classroom organization earlier in the year set the stage for higher quality instruction? 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M., & Greenwald, N. (2014). Temporal effects of antecedent exercise on students' disruptive behaviors: An exploratory study. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 447–462. Fosco, G. M., Frank, J. L., Stormshank, E. A., & Dishion, T. J. (2013). Opening the “black box”: Family check-up intervention effects on self-regulation that prevents growth in problem behavior and substance use. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 455–468. Galla, B. M., Wood, J. J., Tsukayama, E., Har, K., Chiu, A. W., & Langer, D. A. (2014). A longitudinal multilevel model analysis of the within-person and between-person effect of effortful engagement and academic self-efficacy on academic performance. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 295–308. Goldberg, A. E., & Smith, J. Z. (2014). Predictors of school engagement among same-sex and heterosexual adoptive parents of kindergarteners. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 463–478. Goldweber, A., Waasdorp, T. E., & Bradshaw, C. P. (2013). Examining the link between forms of bullying behaviors and perceptions of safety and belonging among secondary school students. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 469–485. Goos, M., Van Damme, J. V., Onghena, P., Petry, K., & de Bilde, J. (2013). First-grade retention in the Flemish educational context: Effects on children's academic growth, psychosocial growth, and school career throughout primary education. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 323–347. Haataja, A., Voeten, M., Boulton, A. J., Ahtola, A., Poskiparta, E., & Salmivalli, C. (2014). The KiVa antibullying curriculum and outcome: Does fidelity matter? Journal of School Psychology, 52, 479–493. Hindman, A. H., & Wasik, B. A. (2013). Vocabulary learning in head start: Nature and extent of classroom instruction and its contributions to children's learning. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 387–405. Hughes, J. N., Im, M. H., & Wehrly, S. E. (2014). Effect of peer nominations of teacher–student support at individual and classroom levels on social and academic outcomes. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 309–322. Hutchings, J., Martin-Forbes, P., Daley, D., & Williams, M. E. (2013). A randomized controlled trial of the impact of a teacher classroom management program on the classroom behavior of children with and without behavior problems. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 571–585. Im, M. H., Hughes, J. N., Kwok, O., Puckett, S., & Cerda, C. A. (2013). Effect of retention in elementary grades on transition to middle school. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 349–365. Imeraj, L., Antrop, I., Sonuga-Barke, E., Deboutte, D., Deschepper, E., Bal, S., et al. (2013). The impact of instructional context on classroom on-task behavior: A matched comparison of children with ADHD and non-ADHD classmates. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 487–498. Kettler, R. J., & Albers, C. A. (2013). Predictive validity of curriculum-based measurement and teacher ratings of academic achievement. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 499–515. Kieffer, M. J., Marinell, W. H., & Neugebauer, S. R. (2014). Navigating into, through, and beyond the middle grades: The role of middle grades attendance in staying on track for high school graduation. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 549–565. Kilgus, S. P., Methe, S. A., Maggin, D. M., & Tomasula, J. L. (2014). Curriculum-based measurement of oral reading (R-CBM): A diagnostic test accuracy meta-analysis of evidence supporting use in universal screening. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 377–405. Kilgus, S. P., Riley-Tillman, T. C., Chafouleas, S. M., Christ, T. J., & Welsh, M. E. (2014). Direct behavior rating as a school-based behavior universal screener: Replication across sites. Journal of School Psychology, 52, 63–82. Leflot, G., van Lier, P. A. C., Onghena, P., & Colpin, H. (2013). 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Nese, J. F. T., Biancarosa, G., Cummings, K., Kennedy, P., Alonzo, J., & Tindal, G. (2013). In search of average growth: Describing within-year oral reading fluency growth across Grades 1–8. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 625–642. Norwalk, K. E., DiPerna, J. C., & Lei, P. (2014). Confirmatory factor analysis of the early arithmetic, reading, and learning indicators (EARLI). Journal of School Psychology, 52, 83–96. Ogg, J., McMahan, M. M., Dedrick, R. F., & Mendez, L. R. (2013). Middle school students' willingness to engage in activities with peers with ADHD symptoms: A multiple indicators multiple causes model. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 407–420. Oxford Dictionary (2014)., scientific method (accessed November 30, 2014). Parker, R. I., Vannest, K. J., & Davis, J. L. (2013). Reliability of multi-category rating scales. Journal of School Psychology, 51, 175–185. Peterson, M., Brandes, D., Kunkel, A., Wilson, J., Rahn, N. L., Egan, A., et al. (2014). 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Michelle K. Demaray Northern Illinois University, United States

The state of the Journal of School Psychology: promoting science.

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