December 2018 // Volume 56 // Number 7 // Editorial // 7ED1
Classroom Use of JOE Author Resources and Content and December JOE Highlights
Building on a topic from the October 2018 Editor's Page, I provide ideas for implementing JOE author materials, as well as JOE articles, with university students in the section "Classroom Use of JOE Author Resources and Content." "December JOE Highlights" focuses on articles that bolster Extension's contributions to solving weighty societal issues and articles emphasizing methods for intensifying or expanding Extension's impact.
Classroom Use of JOE Author Resources and Content
In the previous JOE Editor's Page, I suggested a four-step system prospective authors can apply to maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of using JOE author materials. However, JOE author materials and the content of the journal itself can be put to good use by another audience: Extension faculty teaching university courses.
Although geared toward JOE, materials linked to from the For Authors page on the JOE website and guidance provided in the Editor's Page of most issues can be foundational for teaching students how to write for refereed journals. In fact, an Extension faculty member teaching a graduate-level agricultural leadership/administration course has emphasized the real-world requirements of scholarly publishing by sharing the JOE Manuscript Submission Checklist and Editor's Page content with students. He also has pointed non-Extension colleagues to these materials for use with their students. Additionally, the steps presented in the aforementioned October 2018 Editor's Page can be generalized as best practices for developing and submitting manuscripts for publication.
The journal's content itself is a valuable educational resource too. JOE articles offer a trove of information on wide-ranging topics of interest to university students taught by Extension faculty. For example, another faculty member expects students to read JOE to spark ideas and find peer-reviewed support as they plan and conduct research projects.
Additionally, the JOE author materials and JOE content can serve as springboards for in-depth classroom discussions about either academic writing or Extension-related concepts. Assisting today's students in learning to write effectively in general and think critically about key issues underlying contemporary Extension work secures the success of tomorrow's Extension professionals and the organization as a whole.
December JOE Highlights
2018 ends, as years do, with crucial problems in play but optimism that they will be solved through determination, scientifically gained knowledge, and ingenuity. As always, Extension dwells at the intersection of these two concepts. The year also closes with a craving for balanced perspective, another realm within which Extension resides. Both Commentaries in this issue—"Developing a Socio-Ecological Approach to Extension Natural Resources Programming" and "Ensuring Food Safety as Demand for Improved Food System Efficiency Increases"—address fundamental problems that Extension professionals will tackle with determination, knowledge, and ingenuity, and the authors of both Commentaries offer counsel for proceeding on a balanced course.
Throughout this issue, the Commentary topics of "the human–environment conundrum" and the riskiness of ignoring "food safety trade-offs" are repeated and are addressed side by side with other weighty concerns, such as gender inequality, suicidal ideation in teens, and science literacy deficiencies. Relevant articles include the Features "Improving Climate Literacy within Extension by Understanding Diverse Climate-Related Informational Needs" and "Women Leaders in Agriculture: Data-Driven Recommendations for Action and Perspectives on Furthering the Conversation," the Research in Brief article "Determining What Growers Need to Comply with the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule," the Ideas at Work entry "Teaching Suicide Prevention Is Positive Youth Development," and the Tools of the Trade offering "Small Science: A Tool and Tips for Converting Food Science Demonstrations into Public Inquiry Experiences."
Other articles explore fresh approaches to intensifying or expanding Extension's impact. For example, the authors of the Feature "Promoting Transformative Learning: Extension Partnerships Focused on an Ethic of Caring" explain a type of collaboration that allows Extension professionals to focus on providing quality education while personnel from a partner organization supply program supports to ensure transformative learning. The authors of "Collaborative Community Engagement: Experiential Learning Opportunities for College Students via Extension," in the Ideas at Work category, describe a mutually beneficial project based on "knowledge that Extension, as the most engaged mission of the land-grant university system, has much to offer in terms of experiential and service learning opportunities for university students." Yet another Ideas at Work contribution, "Role of Extension in Improving the School Food Environment," delineates tasks Extension teams can perform to assist schools in making policy, systems, and environmental changes.
The remainder of the issue is replete with descriptions of findings, methods, and tools to aid JOE readers in carrying out the research and practical applications that characterize their work.