There are some law reviews who allow authors to submit optional demographic information when submitting articles through Scholastica. Demographic information can be a sensitive subject, and we’ve seen misinformation on the web about how demographic information came into being and how it is used, so we wanted to give more details on how optional demographic information works on Scholastica.

The ability to allow authors to submit optional demographic information was requested by law reviews

Scholastica builds features once we know that they will be used, based on conversations with editors, authors and reviewers. Conversations with law review editors led to developing functionality that allows authors to submit optional demographic information.

The optional demographic information questions are turned off by default

Individual journals decide to allow authors to submit optional demographic information by updating their journal settings. All journals collecting optional author demographic information choose to turn on the configuration option – Scholastica never forces journals to use optional functionality.

When journals turn on this feature, the author demographic information is entirely optional and is not required to submit an article

When submitting to a journal with demographic questions turned on, the author can choose to leave some or all of the demographic information blank and the submission will go through just fine.

Only journals that are configured to allow authors to submit optional demographic information have access to these data

If an author submits to 10 law reviews and only one of those law reviews is configured to allow authors to submit optional demographic information, the other 9 journals will not have access to the demographic information.

To make all of the above points even clearer, we recently released an improvement to how demographic information questions are shown

In the original version, the demographic questions always showed, but clicking the “Learn more” link clearly stated which journals allowed authors to submit this information. It also stated that journals not configured to collect this information would never see it. To make everything clearer, we recently updated the optional author demographic information form fields to only appear if one of the selected law reviews allows authors to submit optional demographic information, and we list exactly which journals have access to demographic data.

Scholastica is proud to provide journals the features they want to run their journal as the editors think best. We love adding new, experimental options for journals but would never force editors to use these features. Editors can configure their settings to fit their particular goals and workflow. If you have any ideas for new functionality, let us know at info [at] scholasticahq.com.