As the official journal of the National Rural Education Association, the mission of The Rural Educator serves as a forum for the exchange of ideas among the rural education community. The journal aims to provide a greater understanding of the strengths and needs of rural education and to provide rural educators with resources that support their work. Four types of articles are published in The Rural Educator. Research Articles are reports of empirical research that address problems of practice in rural education.  Promising Practice Articles provide in-depth descriptions of educational practices that have shown promise to support teaching and learning in rural education. Reviews of Research synthesize and summarize existing research related to a specific topics within one of the 10 Research Priorities in the National Rural Education Association Research Agenda. Reviews of research should summarize, synthesize and identify gaps in the research as they relate to rural education contexts. In addition, the journal publishes Policy Briefs consisting updates on national and state policy of importance to rural educators written by the editors and/or invited guest columnists.  Learn more about each type of manuscript at the "For Authors" link at the right.

The Rural Educator seeks manuscripts that contribute to our understanding of educational issues in rural contexts at all levels of rural education, including early childhood, p-12 education, post-secondary education, and out-of-school education contexts. Submissions must explicitly address rural education by defining rural and/or by extensively describing the unique rural setting. Submissions should explicitly explain the relationship between rural education and either research methods and findings or the promising practice being presented.  Manuscripts that do not explicitly and extensively address rural education will not be considered for publication.

 All manuscripts should follow submission guidelines. Authors should consider submission purpose and review criteria for each type of submission. Manuscripts submitted to The Rural Educator should be original and should not have been published elsewhere, including online.  The journal does not allow simultaneous submission.

Submissions to The Rural Educator will undergo double-blind peer review. After initial screening by the editors, those manuscripts that meet specifications will be sent to at least two peer reviewers. Manuscripts that do not adhere to guidelines may not be forwarded for peer for review, and authors will be notified of this decision. Manuscripts are subject to review by journal reviewers, the editorial advisory board, and editors.  Authors will be notified of editorial decisions.

Archives and Indexing

The Rural Educator is indexed by ERIC at the Institute for Education Sciences. Past issues of The Rural Educator dating back to 2004 can be found at the journal's website under the archives tab. Previous issues of The Rural Educator as well as other publication of the National Rural Education Association including The Country Teacher, dating back to the early 1900s are archived and can be found at The Hathi Trust in the NREA Collection.

Open Access Policy

The Rural Educator provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge. Members of the National Rural Education Association are eligible to receive print copies of The Rural Educator.

Copyright Statement

The Rural Educator applies the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license to articles and other works we publish. If you submit your paper for publication by The Rural Educator, you agree to have the CC BY license applied to your work. Under this Open Access license, you as the author agree that anyone can reuse your article in whole or part for any purpose, for free, even for commercial purposes. Anyone may copy, distribute, or reuse the content as long as the author and original source are properly cited. This facilitates freedom in re-use and also ensures that The Rural Educator content can be mined without barriers for the needs of research.