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Research Problem: Investigate the match between content published by the Transactions and content sought by its readers. Research Questions: What content does the IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication publish? How does that compare to the content published by other journals in the field? And what content do readers of the Transactions want to read? Literature Review: Researchers in most fields occasionally analyze the entire body of literature within a discipline to assess the current state of the literature, identify leading works, assess the state of the literature, provide a basis for changing the direction of a journal, and assess alignment among parts of the literature. Methodology: To identify what journals published, researchers used the STC Body of Knowledge schema and a list of categories of research methods that classify all peer-reviewed articles published between January 2006 and December 2010 in the Transactions, Journal of Business and Technical Communication, Technical Communication, and Technical Communication Quarterly. To identify reader preferences of the Transactions, researchers surveyed members of the IEEE Professional Communication Society about their preferences for content and types of research. Results and Discussion: In terms of the topics covered, the three most widely covered topics in the Transactions were: (1) Deliverables, (2) Information Design and Development, and (3) Academic Programs. Readers prefer (1) About Technical and Professional Communication, (2) Information Design and Development, and (3) Research Theory, and Practice. The three least-covered topics were (1) Business Knowledge, (2) About Technical Communication, and (3) Technical Communication Standards. Of least interest to participants were: (1) Deliverables, (2) Quality Assurance, (3) Management, and (4) Technical Communication Standards. The Transactions primarily publishes experiments, surveys, and tutorials while readers prefer case studies, literature rev- - iews, and tutorials.
Date of Publication: Dec. 2011