TLT Policy on Reuse

When preparing a manuscript for submission to the IEEE Transactions for Learning Technologies, authors with previously published conference papers in the same subject area may want to know the extent to which the manuscript must be different from their conference papers, and the extent to which text from the conference papers can be reused. Guidelines for acceptable conference paper use are addressed in this document.


Existing IEEE policies provide a framework for those adopted by the IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies (TLT). Relevant portions of the IEEE Publication Services and Products Board Operations Manual can be found at the Author Information Page on Originality of Content web page:⧉.

To be published in TLT, a manuscript must offer a contribution not already made in the published literature. Conference papers are considered to be published, archival literature, as conference proceedings are often published, archived, indexed, and available through the World Wide Web. When considering the originality of a manuscript’s contribution, conference literature must be considered.

Content overlap between any manuscript submitted to an IEEE publication and published documents is analyzed through CrossCheck (⧉). The Peer Review Support Specialist for TLT flags any manuscript with a content overlap greater than 30%. These manuscripts are reviewed in detail by the Editor‐in‐Chief to understand the nature and extent of content overlap. Further, the entire Originality Report is made available to the authors for their review. If the review process determines that content overlap is excessive, the manuscript may be rejected.

Policy – IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies

Policy Statement: The IEEE Transactions on Learning Technologies (TLT) follows the general IEEE rule requiring at least 30% of new content for journal papers that are revised and/or expanded versions of published conference papers, and adds its own, stronger and more rigorous criteria to ensure that the new content adds critical value to the paper. Typically, expanded papers add around 50% new content, but more important is that the intended contributions of the version submitted to TLT differ substantively from contributions of the conference version, broadening the significance of the research and/or increasing its usefulness and relevance for practitioners. Authors are required to cite their published work and identify the new contribution of the submission to TLT. The submission must be accompanied by a copy of the conference version, along with a cover letter summarizing the differences between the two versions and explaining how the expanded version makes substantively different contributions that warrant separate publication. These materials are supplied to the reviewers for them to take into account in their assessment.

Examples of substantively different contributions include, but are not limited to: new research questions, new technical design, new application context, new/updated results and findings, new assessment/evaluation data, and different analyses of data. It would not, however, be considered a substantive difference if an author were to add further descriptive detail than that already available in a conference paper for a technological tool/system/application or learning intervention. “Padding out” the literature review on its own also does not constitute a substantively different contribution. Furthermore, the version submitted to TLT should contain elaborations and additional examples/illustrations of the key ideas presented in the conference version.

The conference paper must also be appropriately (a) cited and referenced; and (b) attributed in an Acknowledgments section immediately before the reference list, with a statement to the effect of "This paper is an expanded version of a paper that was presented at …" and/or "… that was published in the proceedings of …. ."

Authors of best papers from any IEEE sponsored and technically co‐sponsored conferences who consider expanding their work for publication in TLT should expect their manuscripts to be reviewed according to the guidelines in this policy document. Authors who have received best paper awards should not expect that embedding extensive previously published work (e.g., entire manuscript sections, multiple paragraphs, tables, figures) in a manuscript together with minimal new material will constitute a publishable contribution.