Permanent Call for Narrative Reflections on Practice, Practicum Education, Teaching & Learning, and Research


Permanent Call for Narrative Reflections on Practice, Field Education, Teaching & Learning, and Research

Reflections: Narratives of Professional Helping is a double-blind peer reviewed, open-access, multidisciplinary journal that has been published since 1995. We are carried online by both Proquest Research Library and EBSCO SocIndex.

Reflections authors and readers familiar with the mission of the journal are welcome to submit narratives that fit with the journal’s purpose. We welcome narrative reflections that engage helping professionals through lived experiences both personal and professional to our sections on Practice, Practicum Education, Teaching & Learning, and Research.

Narratives are valuable because they reflect on the feelings, insights, and "aha" moments in which authors gained wisdom and self-awareness from their work with clients, colleagues, students, and others. They also contribute to empirical knowledge about the nature of practice in the helping professions. Finally, they often make important conceptual contributions that address unresolved theoretical problems. 

Types of Narratives

Reflections welcomes the submission of narratives which have not appeared nor are under consideration to appear in a refereed publication:

  • A first-hand account of one or more authors’ experiences
  • An interview that highlights another person’s experiences
  • A review of one or more books in which their relevancy for the helping professions are integrated into a narrative of the author’s experiences

Guidelines for Authors

These guidelines will be used by reviewers to evaluate your manuscript:

  • Narrative: The author conveys interpersonal interactions, witnessed events, and felt experiences in a narrative format and is clear about the author(s)’ role (e.g. practitioner, recipient of service, teacher, field instructor, student, researcher, other).
  • Story: The author places the narrative within the context of a well-told story that helps readers discover new ways of thinking about the personal, the professional, and the political in our lives.
  • Portrayals: The author roots the narrative in the rich and detailed portrayal of key moments, examples, and vignettes that fully portray the interaction taking place between and among the people involved.
  • Context: The author places the reflection within an historical context, focusing on the present, and considering the implications of the narrative for the future.
  • References: The author uses references that might draw connections between the content and the published literature or that might assist the reader in understanding conceptual or theoretical conclusions about the nature of professional practice.
  • Conclusions: The author draws conclusions about the need for qualitative or quantitative research related to the issues arising from the narrative.

As you finalize your manuscript, use these guidelines to assess readiness for submission. For more information about the narrative form, see Kanary, J. (2014). "Show and Tell."

If the work being submitted to Reflections has been made public in any way, it is the submitter's responsibility to share that information and the reference with editor upon submission.

Section Descriptions

Practice Section (Drs. Patricia Gray and Joan Blakey, Co-Editors) - The process of being a practitioner or becoming a recipient of service can stimulate valuable narratives. For example, these narratives give voice to practitioners who work and advocate with individuals, couples, families, groups, organizations and communities; participate in social justice and civic engagement work; or become recipients of service in the very systems in which they have practiced.

Practicum Education Section (Dr. Beth Lewis, Editor) - The process of practicum advisement and instruction, as well as the experience of being a student in a practicum, can stimulate valuable narratives. For example, consider building narratives around insights gained from process recordings and verbatims or from supervisory relationships or other practicum experiences in which co-learning occurred. 

Teaching & Learning Section (Dr. Arlene Reilly-Sandoval, Editor) - The process of teaching, or being a student, continues the journal's practice of publishing narrative accounts about education and training. For example, classroom experiences, teaching innovations, university-community partnerships, continuing education, and other formal learning opportunities offer valuable insight.

Research Section (Dr. D. Crystal Coles, Editor) - Although Reflections does not publish research results or literature reviews, the journal has a long history of publishing narratives of the personal and/or interpersonal aspects of the research process. Some examples of research narratives could be sharing the author's experience of collaboration during the research experience, engaging in the research project, or sharing lessons learned from the research process.


Submissions (1,200-8,000 words) from short narratives focused on a single vignette to longer stories with multiple portrayals of interaction and references to the literature are welcome. 

To submit a narrative you must first "Register" with Reflections on our home page ( and follow the email instructions to activate your account. After registering, "Login," “View Profile,” and fill in the details requested in the various tabs. Most importantly, click “Author” in the “Roles” tab so the “make a new submission” link will be available under the “Submissions” tab on the home page when you are logged in. Once registered, you can "Login" and "make a new submission" at any time. Be sure to select the Section in which you would like to have your submission considered. For full instructions see Instructions for Authors.

For more information on submitting narratives, please contact us at and you will be put in contact with one of our Editors. 

We look forward to hearing from you!!

The Editorial Leadership Team

Editor-in-Chief: Darlyne Bailey, PhD, LISW (Bryn Mawr Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research)

Associate Editors: Monica Leisey, PhD (Salem State University); F. Ellen Netting, PhD (Virginia Commonwealth University)

Assistant Editor: Kelly McNally Koney, MSSA (The Kyla Alliance)