Online Learning Consortium and MERLOT Merge Scholarly Journals

The merged journal, ‘Online Learning,’ aims to expand scholarly research in the field of online education; the merger represents an extension of an existing collaboration between the two organizations.

NEWBURYPORT, Mass. and LONG BEACH, Calif. (April 21, 2015) – The Online Learning Consortium (OLC) and the Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching (MERLOT) community of the California State University are pleased to announce that they will combine efforts to expand scholarly research in the field of online education, with the merger of the journal Online Learning (formerly JALN) and the Journal of Online Learning and Teaching (JOLT)

Currently OLC and MERLOT jointly sponsor the annual Emerging Technologies for Online Learning International Symposium (ET4Online). The planned merger of the two journals will broaden the cooperative efforts between the two organizations. 

“We are delighted to be able to continue to grow our collaboration with MERLOT through this merger,” said Kathleen Ives, chief executive officer, OLC. “The merger of these two highly respected journals will draw upon the synergy of our missions and enable us to fulfill the needs and expectations of our readers with an enhanced depth, diligence and efficiency.”  

Noting the opportunities, Peter Shea, editor-in-chief of Online Learning stated, “The journals have similar scopes and follow the same conventions of blind peer review to promote the development and dissemination of research to understand and improve online education. It’s a natural fit to join forces in this way.” 

“We have had a great deal of success working with OLC on the ET4Online Conference, and we see this opportunity to extend our collaboration to the area of scholarship and publication as a very positive step for advancing innovations in higher education informed by high quality research,” said Gerry Hanley, executive director for MERLOT.

The new journal will retain the editorial staff and the name Online Learning. Reviewers from JOLT will be invited to join OLC’s Online Learning editorial review team. It is anticipated that the combined efforts will extend reach, improve quality, and result in increased efficiencies for both OLC and MERLOT.


Online Learning is the official journal of the Online Learning Consortium and MERLOT, promotes the use of Open Educational Resources and the development and dissemination of new knowledge at the intersection of pedagogy, emerging technology, policy, and practice in online environments. This journal brings together the editorial resources and objectives of two of online learning’s most respected scholarly journals – MERLOT’s Journal of Online Learning and Teaching (JOLT) and OLC’s Online Learning, which has been in publication for almost two decades (previously under the name of JALN, the Journal of Asynchronous Learning). 


The Multimedia Educational Resource for Learning and Online Teaching (MERLOT) is an international cooperative formed for the purpose of aggregating and making freely accessible high quality online resources to improve learning and teaching within higher education. The cooperative, a project of the California State University connects systems, consortiums, and institutions of higher education, professional organizations of academic disciplines, and individual members to form a community of people who strive to enrich the teaching and learning experience. Visit for more information. 


The Online Learning Consortium (OLC), formerly The Sloan Consortium, is the leading professional organization devoted to advancing the quality of online learning worldwide. The member-sustained organization offers an extensive set of resources for professional development and institutional advancement of online learning, including, original research, leading-edge instruction, best-practice publications, community-driven conferences and expert guidance. OLC members include educators, administrators, trainers and other online learning professionals, as well as educational institutions, professional societies and corporate enterprises. Visit for more information.