About the Journal
The IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication is a peer-reviewed, quarterly journal devoted to applied research on professional communication, including–but not limited to–technical and business communication.
It is the peer-reviewed journal of the Professional Communication Society (PCS) of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), which has published the journal since 1957.
This section describes these aspects of the journal:
- What do we publish?
- What about tutorials, teaching cases, case studies, and book reviews?
- Which research methodologies do we consider to be empirical?
- Who are our readers?
What do we publish?
The Transactions publishes original, empirical research. This research typically addresses one of these contexts:
- The communication practices of technical professionals, such as engineers and scientists
- The practices of professional communicators who work in technical or business environments
- Research-based methods for teaching and practicing professional communication
Topics of the research include (but are not limited to):
- Communications technologies and their impact on the workplace, such as the impacts of content management systems, social media, electronic books, intelligent agents and similar technologies
- Design, techniques and readability of communication materials in various media, such as the design of web-based materials, online help, printed and electronic books, user interfaces, and live presentations
- Design, techniques, and impact of communications materials in various genres, such as technical reports, user assistance, proposals, public relations materials, slide decks for presentations, and engineering specifications
- Management of groups that produce professional and technical communication materials
- Social impact of communications and related technology to engineering efforts
- Reports on the effectiveness and limitations of research methodologies used to study these issues
What about tutorials, teaching cases, case studies, and book reviews?
In addition to research articles, the Transactions publishes three sections that address particular types of research:
- Teaching cases and tutorials, which provide empirically-validated methods for teaching professional communication in general as well as particular aspects of communication
- Case studies, which are provide empirically-rooted, detailed descriptions of specific projects
- Book reviews of recent publications in the field
Which research methodologies do we consider to be empirical?
Because our authors come from a variety of disciplines, each with its own research tradition, we publish articles that use a wide variety of methodologies.
Specific methodologies include:
- Quantitative methodologies, including experimental and survey-based studies
- Qualitative methodologies, including action research, design research, ethnographies, case studies, interview-based studies, and usability test results
- Critical methodologies, including discourse analysis and integrated literature reviews
What unites all of them is full disclosure of methodology and related choices, including:
- Clearly stated research questions
- Explanation of the choice of method (in other words, if you chose a qualitative methodology, why was this an appropriate choice?)
- Explanation of the selection of participants or cases (dDisclose not only who they are, but the criteria used to choose them (this is required even for critically-rooted research)
- Methodology, including a description of the procedure start-to-finish, how you entered the environment studied, and how data was recorded)
- Explanation of how you ensured the credibility and trustworthiness (qualitative and critical studies) or reliability and validity (quantitative studies) of the results.
- Identification of limitations of the study.
Who are our readers?
The Transactions has a global readership that includes both researchers and practicing professionals.
Primary readers include:
- Professional and technical communicators, including corporate communicators, editors, linguists, technical writers, translation specialists, and visual communicators (graphic designers and illustrators)
- Engineers, scientists and other technical professionals who communicate as part of their job, such as consulting engineers, technical authors, and technology-transfer specialists
- University instructors who include professional communication as part or all of their courses
Learn how to submit an article to the Transactions.