Focus and Scope

The mission of HS Dialog: The Research-to-Practice Journal for the Early Childhood Field is to: a) offer a quality outlet for research results to the Head Start and broader early childhood community, b) ensure that research results are effectively translated for practice and policy, and c) that provides a forum for two-way communication between researchers and practitioners.

HS Dialog is specifically interested in research papers that highlight innovative and/or evidence-based practices of early childhood programs to improve the well-being of young children and their low-income families. Areas of consideration include: child health and mental health; normative child development; community issues such as neighborhood violence and homelessness; family support and self-sufficiency; multicultural issues; new measures, methods, and analytic strategies; parenting and parent involvement and engagement; quality issues in early childhood education; transitions from home to school; and programmatic and policy issues related to service delivery.

Commentary from both researchers and practitioners will be an integral part of the journal. Thus, other researchers and practitioners will respond to accepted papers in order to open and facilitate dialogue essential to the mission of the journal. We are soliciting papers from research built on meaningful partnerships that may include the joint development of research questions, design, methods, measures, and implementation. The research should focus on applications to practice and policy and be clearly delineated. Manuscripts are welcomed from the fields of education, psychology, sociology, pediatrics, family medicine, public health, psychiatry, nursing, social work, dentistry, anthropology, law, epidemiology, public policy, and allied health.

Papers should report original research findings or provide a critical review of a research study, program evaluation, or policy perspective. They will be considered in accordance with the journal' regular editorial review process.

Authors of peer-reviewed manuscripts accepted for publication will be asked to create a separate, brief, research-to-practice article summarizing the research findings from the article as they relates to implications for practitioners. This article will be published in the same HS Dialog: The Research-to-Practice Journal for the Early Childhood Field issue as the peer-reviewed research article. This article should include a short abstract. Authors do not need to submit this manuscript with the peer-reviewed manuscript, but they will be expected to complete this second article for publication along with the research manuscript.

Peer Review Process

All research articles in this journal have undergone rigorous peer review, based on initial editor screening and anonymous refereeing by at least two anonymous referees. All other articles underwent at least editorial review.

Proposed Publication Frequency

Winter, Issue I - Production Deadline: January 1, Release Date: February 15

Spring, Issue II - Production Deadline: April 1, Release Date: May 15

Summer, Issue III - Production Deadline: July 1, Release Date: August 15

Fall, Issue IV - Production Deadline: October 1, Release Date: November 15

Open Access Policy

This journal 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.


Center for Educational Measurement and Evaluation

College of Education, UNC Charlotte

Journal History

Greg Powell, as director of the Research and Evaluation Division of the National Head Start Association (NHSA), started and edited NHSA Research Quarterly. After several  years, NHSA Research Quarterly was renamed the NHSA Dialog: A Research-to-Practice Journal for the Early Intervention Field.  Greg Powell served as the first Editor. After a few years, Gregg recruited Faith Lamb-Parker who was then at Columbia University to serve as the journal’s second editor.  In August 2002, Ben Allen succeeded Greg Powell as the Research and Evaluation Director at NHSA. Barbara Burns of the University of Kentucky succeeded Faith Lamb-Parker as its editor and served until 2007. Up until 2005, the journal was largely an in-house production, but Ben Allen, upon the advice of Dr. Edward Zigler at Yale University, sought out a major publisher for the journal to reduce productions costs and broaden its readership domestically and internationally.  Under the sponsorship of NHSA, Ben Allen concluded a multi-year publication agreement with Taylor & Francis, LLC in 2006.  Richard Lambert of UNC Charlotte has served as editor since 2008. NHSA sponsored the journal until 2012, Volume 15.  Starting with Volume 16, Issue 1, 2013, the journal has become an open access online journal.