Rapp Discusses Role as Journal Editor

Rapp Discusses Role as Journal Editor

David RappDavid Rapp

As editor-in-chief of the journal Discourse Processes, Northwestern University psychologist and learning scientist David Rapp works to offer readers “critically reviewed, contemporary research that pushes the boundaries of our understandings,” according to a recent interview in Editor Resources.

What you won’t find in the multidisciplinary journal, the official publication of the Society for Text & Discourse, are “business–as-usual papers that offer only modest extension to models” and a lack of critical debate, said Rapp, who took over the role in 2015.

Discourse Processes brings together a diverse group of researchers with a common interest in how people produce and understand language, whether it’s spoken or written.

Their work explores everything from prose comprehension and recall to computer simulations of natural language, text grammar construction and more.

Rapp, who has been named a fellow of the Society for Text and Discourse for his contributions to the field, studies misinformation and why people fall victim to inaccurate statements. His most recent research looks at the consequences of reading inaccurate information such as fake news, and how to encourage people to read more critically.

Under Rapp, the journal has grown increasingly popular according to internal ratings assessing impact; some of the most-read articles have looked at gender differences in language and whether the use of a metaphor is a fundamental part of human thought.

Serving as editor “gives me the opportunity to network with others in related and complementary fields and help me identify critical debates and research questions that drive some of my projects,” said Rapp, the Charles Deering McCormick Professor of Teaching Excellence at the School of Education and Social Policy.

Each year, Rapp encourages his students to join the Society and attend the annual conference.

“I’ve been incredibly impressed by the presentations, but even more struck by the supportive interactions and collegiality of society members,” he said. “New attendees are welcomed with open arms.”

Read the full interview here. 

By Julie Deardorff
Last Modified: 8/24/17