Contributing to The Academic Minute

The Academic Minute features research conducted by professors and teaching faculty from institutions across the globe.

Please submit a pitch here.  A pitch should include your name, full title, your institution and a short paragraph summary of the research to be presented.

After topic approval by The Academic Minute team, the first step is to write your essay and submit it when it’s done.

The overall goal is an audio essay that runs 1:40 (100 seconds) when read aloud in a natural speaking voice.

Because the The Academic Minute is an outlet for research, please avoid any language that makes the segment sound like personal commentary, an op-ed piece, or biased in any way. Many topics have the potential to stray in that direction, but as long as only data/research is presented, and there are no active calls for policy changes or overt political language, most segments are acceptable.

We also ask that you do not mention the names of funders, the school, books, or published articles in your essay. Our host will introduce you and the school, and your essay will close with a tag that credits you and your institution again.

Remember, you’re the expert. The listener gets one chance to hear what you’re saying, so try to speak on a level that everyone can understand. The goal is for a non-specialist audience to learn something.

Once your essay is submitted and approved, we can record the audio.

Practice makes perfect, so time yourself reading your script to get very comfortable with the wording and to determine if you should add or cut content.

Audio Standards and Recording Processes

For the recording we ask for three full readings of the script so we can get a clean cut of each line.  The timing should be between 1:40 – 1:50 for each take.  A few seconds here or there is okay but that’s the timeframe we shoot for.  We can’t accept anything under 1:35 or over 1:55.  Speak with a natural pace and practice a few times before the recording.   Also it is very important to read the script as agreed upon during each reading.  If there are changes it can make it difficult or impossible to cut and paste a clean final cut from the various reading of the script.   If changes are needed, please send an updated final script along with the recording.

Please say your name at the beginning of the recording so our host can pronounce your name correctly during the introduction.

To avoid having to re-record:

Make sure to use the same audio settings on each take.  If the readings sound different we will be unable to make a clean cut of the script and the script will need to be re-recorded.

We can edit the recording on our end, but if it is edited prior to being sent to us, please leave the breaths in between sentences for a more natural recording.  Otherwise my executive producer will flag it for re-recording.

We use NPR standards – 44.1k, 16 bit, mono or stereo and WAV file format.

The best way to get it us is via WeTransfer, Box, Dropbox or other cloud service as our e-mail server will reject large files without notifying us.   Thank you!

Deadlines for Submissions and Scheduling

We know that creating this type of content takes time. Thus, The Academic Minute does not have any rigid deadlines or operate under any specific time restrictions. Rather, we try to work as far in advance as possible in order to afford our contributors the necessary time to submit the highest quality script and audio essay.

With that in mind, the sooner we receive your script, the sooner we can approve it – and the sooner we compile the remaining materials, the sooner we can queue your segment for broadcast.

When all the additional materials have been amassed and an audio file meets our standards for submission, we schedule the airdate and accompanying post.

Additional Materials

Each segment is posted to and

In order to make each segment’s online entry as thorough and accurate as possible, please provide:

  • A short biography
  • Your full faculty title
  • A suggested title for your segment
  • A phonetic pronunciation of your name (if necessary)
  • Photos (a headshot, and/or an action shot in the field)
  • Any pertinent media (graphics, video, accompanying charts etc.)
  • Any pertinent links that you’d like included on the post