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eCPD Partner One Day Workshop: Outlook Productivity Essentials

12 December 2018
 
Getting The Right Things Done – Easier, Faster, Better
 
You arrive with your Outlook.  You leave being able to use it as one of your most important business productivity tools.
Join an intensive and interactive hands-on-the-keyboard one day workshop to help you increase your personal productivity. You will be working on your own Outlook and implement improvements in real time. By the time you leave, your new system will be up and running.

Course teacher: Gerrit Cloete from The Productivity Pitstop

Book your slot here.
Read the course outline here.

Cape Town Workshop Information:

Johannesburg Workshop Information:
General Information:

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Call for Papers: South African Journal of Industrial Psychology (SAJIP) Special Issue 2019

12 December 2018
The South African Journal of Industrial Psychology (SAJIP) invites original scientific articles, reports, position papers and reviews that will bring new knowledge on insights into and conversation around mental health research in African organisations that advance theory and practice.
 
Within a South African context, mental health research appears to be fragmented, yet there is an acknowledgement of its importance and the role of a sustained empirical focus on this issue. Notably, there is an absence of empirical attention on understanding mental health within the confines of the African organisation. 
 
The proposed special issue on Mental Health Research in African Organisations: Advancing Theory & Practice to be published in the South African Journal of Industrial Psychology envisages three main benefits. Firstly, to bridge the chasm that exists between theory and practice concerning mental health research in African organisations. Secondly, the special issue seeks to propose ways in which individual and organisational capabilities can be harnessed to address mental health issues affecting African organisations. Finally, to ignite and create a platform for a sustained dialogue around mental health research from the lens of the African organisation.

Timelines: 
• Special issue release date: 15 December 2018
• Deadline for submission:  20 March 2019. Submit on the journal website.
• Review of results: 31 May 2019
• Deadline for revisions: 24 June 2019
• Notification of final decision: 31 July 2019
• Publication date: 10 October 2019 (World Mental Health Day)

Guest Editor: 
Prof. Willie Tafadzwa Chinyamurindi 
Associate Professor
University of Fort Hare
wchinyamurindi@ufh.ac.za
043 704 7621
 
Background: 
The above reflects a need for research and the sharing of best practices amongst academics and practitioners concerning mental health issues in the African work environment. We, therefore, encourage submissions of empirical papers that address (but are not limited to) the following topics:

Manuscript Information: 
Manuscript contributions may consist of the following:

Preparation of manuscripts:

References: 
1. Pillay, A.L. & Kriel, A.J. (2006). Mental health problems in women attending district-level services in South Africa. Social Science & Medicine, 63, 587-592.

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Upcoming Release: Productivity Breakthrough eCPD Personal Online Course

28 November 2018
eCPD is launching its first personal development course soon. The aim of this online course is to provide you with a practical, principle-based methodology to achieve improved productivity, happiness and fulfillment in all areas of your life. 

COURSE INFORMATION
LENGTH: 8 Modules with 51 on-demand videos
TOTAL COURSE TIME: 5h 30m 
PRICE: R 1500 incl. VAT
LANGUAGE: English
CONTENT PARTNER: Productivity Pit Stop
AUTHOR: Gerrit Cloete
ACCESSIBILITY: Mobile and Desktop
ACCREDITATION: None
CERTIFICATE: Receive a certificate of completion
REQUIREMENTS: No Prior qualifications required

EDUCATIONAL OUTCOMES
Upon completion of this course you should be able to:
  1. Create and maintain a calm mind.
  2. Identify negative beliefs (mindsets) and change it to more productive beliefs.
  3. Process chaotic input into order with the objectives and actions of your work clearly visible.
  4. Set priorities and do only those things that will help you to work towards achieving your priorities.
  5. Prevent rework by doing things the appropriate pace and slow down to speed up.
  6. Maintain focus.  Minimise interruptions and distractions and stop “multitasking”.
  7. Be flexible and adapt to change focus when the frame (context) has changed.
  8. Identify and minimise patterns of procrastination and perfectionism, thereby achieving closure and finish what you have started.
  9. Review and learn from today to make tomorrow better.

SUBSCRIBE TO BE NOTIFIED WHEN LAUNCHED
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Moodle LMS Introduction Course by AOSIS eLearning on 30 Nov 2018

16 November 2018
Join the Moodle LMS Introduction Course by AOSIS eLearning

Fri 30 November 2018 09:00-16:00 (SAST), AOSIS, 15 Oxford Street, Durbanville, Cape Town, South Africa, 7550

Are you an educator wanting to understand the basics of the Moodle LMS? Not convinced about Moodle as your LMS? Join our introduction to Moodle administration and course creation one-day course.
Buy your ticket at http://qkt.io/aosis-moodle-intro

What makes this course unique?

This course is for people with little or no experience of the Moodle LMS. It gives a good overview of the system without going into the amount of detail needed by those who administer the system or create courses on the platform. We have more advanced courses available for them! 

As we are South Africa's only Certified Moodle Partner, we received Moodle HQ's stamp of approval; you know you will receive the right training! For more information on this course, please contact Giovanni +27 21 975 2602. You can learn more about us at aosis.co.za/elearning.

What you will learn:

Basic best practice in Moodle administration: Basic best practice in Moodle course creation:
Included:
Please bring:
We are looking forward to hosting you!

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The new Journal of Local Government Research and Innovation (JOLGRI) is open for submissions

2 November 2018
AOSIS is pleased to announce that the new Journal of Local Government Research and Innovation (JOLGRI) have joined our open access journal collection and is open for submissions. Editor-in-Chief: Prof. E.O. Ijeoma. View the international editorial team.

The Journal of Local Government Research and Innovation (JOLGRI) focuses on improving the system of local governance and to proffer local government as the major stakeholder for development in South Africa and the globe. The journal is supported by the University of Fort Hare, the South African Local Government Association (SALGA)  and the Forum for Africans in Academia. Until further notice, no Article Processing Charges (APC) will be charged to publish in the journal. The following types of articles are welcomed: Book Reviews, Case Studies, Opinion Papers, Original Research Articles and Review Articles.

The journal will start publishing in January 2019. Please visit and register on the journal website at jolgri.org and contact us should you have any questions on the submission guidelines and procedures.

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2019 Theme of the new African Journal of Career Development (AJCD)

25 October 2018
2019 Theme: Career Development in Developing Country Contexts: A Conduit to Facilitate Sustainable Decent Work for All
Editor-in-Chief: Jacobus Gideon (Kobus) Maree. View the international editorial team.

AOSIS is pleased to announce that the African Journal of Career Development (AJCD) has joined our open access journal collection and is open for submissions. The journal will start publishing in January 2019. Please visit and register on the journal website at ajcd.africa and contact us should you have any questions on the submission guidelines and procedures.

Fundamental shifts in the workplace oblige career counsellors to continually rethink the theory and practice of career counselling (Duarte, 2017; Guichard, 2013; Hartung, 2015; Maree, 2018; Savickas, 2015). While acknowledging the role of new technologies in creating new jobs – and welcoming advances brought about by, for instance, the Fourth Industrial Revolution – people and their best interests should always lie at the heart of any technological advancement. In response to the fundamental changes in the world of work over the past 100 years or so, career counselling research and practice have been guided consecutively by the following triad of paradigms: vocational guidance, career development, and life designing. A current occupational phenomenon requiring serious attention is the fact that few workers today will spend their entire working lives in the employ of one employer: workers across the world will in future work for numerous employers during their work-lives. Attendant challenges include merging work and life roles, remaining employable, and staying relevant in the world of work. This new work scenario will require changes in the contracts or arrangements between employees and employers.
 
The sweeping changes in the occupational world are at the same time causing uncertainty among the unemployed as well as current and prospective workers and, consequently, making long-term career decisions increasingly problematic. According to Doyle (2017, p. 1), ‘upgrading one’s employment status has become an ongoing process’, while Wolfe (2017) maintains that including workers’ lives and careers in one concept is no longer possible. Enhancing people’s employability (instead of short-sightedly focusing merely on helping them find work) is, therefore, the new imperative (Savickas & Porfeli, 2012). Career counselling today is aimed at enhancing people’s ability to adapt to rapidly changing work contexts to become more adaptive in general. The emphasis has shifted from ‘matching’ people to jobs to improving their capacity to deal with change and its impact. The need for career development (helping people navigate different life phases and strengthening their attitudes, beliefs, and competencies (ABCs) to enable them to execute a wide array of career-life roles) has never been greater (Hartung, 2011).
 
People have to be assisted to develop their career adaptability, that is, their career concern, career control, career curiosity, and career confidence (Di Fabio, 2017; Hartung, 2011; Rossier, Ginevra, Bollmann & Nauta, 2017; Savickas, 2015; Savickas & Porfeli, 2012). Career adaptability refers to the mastering of career-related developmental tasks to contend with repeated occupational crossroads and associated changes in people’s career-lives. Wolfe (2017) stresses the need to help workers develop competencies that cannot easily be replaced by robots and artificial intelligence. People should, therefore, strive to develop and apply the five critical skills (Cs) of critical thinking, curiosity, creativity, collaboration, and communication. As these skills are currently beyond the capability of robots and artificial intelligence, workers who can master them will be more (career) adaptable, employable, career resilient, and more secure in occupational contexts characterised by rapid change.
 
We, as career counsellors, have to respond to such change and its impact on our clients. We do this by reflecting continually and critically on our theory and practice in light of the major developments taking place, particularly in information communication technology (ICT), which is closely associated with the Fifth Information Wave (the digital revolution), in general, and the Fourth Industrial Revolution, in particular. A basic standpoint of this particular call for manuscripts is that the right to work is a fundamental human right, yet more and more people do not enjoy this right. The dramatic increase in the global population (in developing countries in particular) means that fewer people, relatively speaking, can find employment. Also, owing to advances in the field of ICT (propelled by Work 4.0), many workers are being replaced by artificial intelligence and robots – for the most part in the interests of cost minimisation and profit maximisation. This situation negatively impacts on workers’ sense of meaning-making in the workplace. Blustein (2015) maintains that ‘[w]hen work is going reasonably well, we have a sense of purpose in life. It makes people feel part of something bigger’. Work is a crucial strand in the social fabric as, without work, people tend to lose hope in themselves and in society at large. Without work, people cannot support themselves, their families and their communities financially and emotionally. Their sense of self and identity is undermined, and it is usually very difficult to restore their self-image and confidence. Society at large needs to note the gravity of the situation and to strive towards facilitating sustainable decent work for all across the diversity continuum. While unemployment may well be an unpalatable fact of economic life in the postmodern era, it remains morally indefensible and poses a serious threat to global peace.
 
The challenge facing us as career-counselling researchers, theorists, and practitioners in the early part of the 21st century is how to join hands, collectively and individually, to promote sustainable decent work for all. We need to maintain our dialogue until the challenge has been met fully and resolved successfully. Accordingly, the main aim of this special issue is to promote and sustain such dialogue.
 
Types of manuscripts we are looking for
We welcome proposals for innovative micro-, meso- and macro-interventions that use career development as a vehicle for promoting decent work for all who are willing and able to work.

Typical questions requiring answers are the following:

We welcome thought-provoking, constructive contributions from across the spectrum of research methodologies – manuscripts that deal with theoretical and practical issues and that report on research from a quantitative, a qualitative, a mixed-methods, or an integrative qualitative-quantitative perspective (Hartung & Santili, 2018; Maree, 2013). For the purposes of the current guest issue, contributing authors are requested to consider the term ‘career development’ as including associated constructs such as information provision, placement, coaching, vocational guidance, career education, psychological counselling, career guidance, career advice, career counselling, as well as life designing and healing (Savickas, 2015).
 
List of References

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Video launch of the African Journal of Psychological Assessment

17 September 2018
Dr Pierre de Villiers, Managing Director of AOSIS, announces the new open access journal, the African Journal of Psychological Assessment, also abbreviated as AJOPA, which will start publishing in January 2019 in this 4-minute video. We are very excited to welcome this new journal to our collection, which has grown to over 40 journals. This journal focusses on psychometrics and psychological assessment relevant to the African context and we believe will be of value both locally and internationally. Visit the journal website at ajopa.org.

 

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Podcast interview with Dr Lara Skelly, from the University of Stellenbosch Business School, which is the owner of the open access South African Journal of Business Management

28 August 2018
Find out why the South African Journal of Business Management transitioned to an open access this year, after having being a toll access journal since 1979. Dr Lara Skelly, Research Manager at the University of Stellenbosch Business School, which is the owner of the journal will give some tips to authors on what to expect when publishing in an open access journal. Listen to the 4-minute podcast here.
 
Transitioning to open access
Dr Skelly explains that as with books, journals used to be a prized commodity and people had to buy them. However, now more than ever research is publicly funded. When authors publish in a closed journal with subscription fees, the public pays twice: for the article to be published in the journal and then to read it. Open access makes it easier for researchers to access the research which increases its potential impact. The more the authors have access to research, the more they can refer to it and build on it for new research. When the public has access to research they can make informed decisions based on quality research findings. Academics worldwide have a responsibility and duty to make their knowledge available and free for anyone to read. It is for these reasons that the journal changed to open access; it is available to all.
 
Tips for authors publishing in open access
Dr Skelly provides the following practical guidelines for authors new to publishing in open access journals:
 
Submission overview
When you submit an article to the journal, you will be able to track and participate in all the activities related to the processing of it, such as, the review process, copy editing, layout editing and proofing of manuscripts, which are all managed on the electronic platform. 
 
Please visit the journal website, sajbm.org, and contact us should you have any questions about the submission guidelines and procedures

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Podcast interview with Prof Bob Mash, Editor-in-Chief of the African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine

3 August 2018
Find out the key milestones for the African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine, the issues to be addressed and its new goals from its Editor-in-Chief, Prof. Bob Mash, in this 11-minute podcast interview. Listen to the podcast here. 
 
Key milestones
The journal grew out of the Primafamed network of departments of family medicine in Sub-Saharan Africa and provides a unique platform for the discipline in the region to start publishing its research.
 
In 2016, PubMed Central (PMC) registered the journal, creating greater visibility outside Africa (read press release).
 
This year (2018), the journal was endorsed by the World Organization of Family Doctors (WONCA) as its official journal.
 
The journal’s editorial team now includes assistant editors from other African countries, increasing its capacity to publish more diverse submissions:

Issues to be addressed
Primary healthcare is an essential component of African health systems. Unfortunately, primary healthcare systems and family medicine are underdeveloped in Africa. In our efforts to improve health and reduce inequity and achieve the sustainable development goals, we need to strengthen primary healthcare in Africa. One of the ways to do so is through the journal which provides a shared platform for primary care and family medicine research.

We encourage submissions on the three key areas that the Primafamed network recently identified that need to be addressed:

Goals for the journal
Prof. Bob Mash’s four goals are:

Submission overview
When you submit an article to the journal, you will be able to track and participate in all the activities related to the processing of it, such as, the review process, copy editing, layout editing and proofing of manuscripts, which are all managed on the electronic platform. 
 
Please visit the journal website and contact us should you have any questions about the submission guidelines and proceduresWebsite address: phcfm.org.

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South African Journal of Childhood Education: Special theme call for papers

18 July 2018
Submissions deadline: 30 August 2018
Online submissions: sajce.co.za
Submission enquiries: submissions@sajce.co.za 
Theme: Teacher education for the primary school and the perennial problem of practice
 
The South African Journal of Childhood Education (SAJCE) editorial team invites research that highlights student teachers’ pre-service education in schools. Participants in the Primary Teacher Education (PrimTEd) project of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) in South Africa may find this call attractive.
 
The journal is particularly interested in the work of new researchers who collaborate with their mentors and supervisors and who co-author with leaders in the field of primary school teacher education.
 
The guest editors for this issue are:
 
Submission information:
 
The South African Journal of Childhood Education is DHET accredited (read more) and listed on several indexing services (read more). 
 
We look forward to receiving your manuscripts.
 
Elizabeth Henning
Editor-in-Chief, South African Journal of Childhood Education
South Africa Research Chair
University of Johannesburg

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Now included in PubMed Central: Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies

2 July 2018
AOSIS is proud to announce that the Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies is now included in PubMed Central® (PMC)

PubMed Central® (PMC) is a free full-text archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature at the U.S. National Institutes of Health's National Library of Medicine (NIH/NLM). As an archive, PMC is designed to provide permanent access to all of its content, even as technology evolves and current digital literature formats potentially become obsolete. 

Jàmbá: Journal of Disaster Risk Studies is an influential, frequently cited, accredited, peer reviewed and Open Access journal published since 2006. Jàmbá (meaning disaster in Yoruba) is a journal in the field of disaster reduction, aimed at serving as a platform for discussion and debate in this relatively new field of study. 

When you publish your research in an open access journal, you retain the non-exclusive right to do anything you wish with the published article(s), provided you cite the details of the original publication in the relevant journal, as set out in the official citation of the article published in the journal. The retained right specifically includes the right to post the article on the authors’ or their institution’s websites or in institutional repositories. 

You are able to track and participate in all the activities related to the processing of your manuscript, such as the review process, copy editing, layout editing and proofing of manuscripts, which are all managed on the electronic platform. 

Please visit the journal website and contact us should you have any questions on submission guidelines and procedures.

View Jàmbá’s PMC profile.

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Call for Papers: AJLM Special Issue on The Future of Diagnostics

2 July 2018
Submissions deadline: 31 December 2018
Approximate publication date: July 2019
Submissions on website: ajlmonline.org
Pre-submission inquiries about appropriateness or fit: editor@ajlmonline.org

In 2019, the African Journal of Laboratory Medicine (AJLM), ajlmonline.org will publish a special issue devoted to The Future of Diagnostics. This special issue will be co-edited by Professors Timothy Amukele (Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine), Ilesh Jani (Instituto Nacional de Saúde, Maputo, Mozambique) and Rosanna Peeling (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine). The issue aims to highlight recent advances in technology and the landscape for diagnostic innovation. It will emphasise diagnostics for high burden, emerging and neglected communicable and non-communicable diseases, particularly those that threaten or are endemic to the African continent.

AJLM invites submissions to The Future of Diagnostics that will document the promise of diagnostic development and push its boundaries. Suitable papers will include, but are not limited to, articles focused on:
AJLM is the African Society for Laboratory Medicine’s peer-review journal. It is open access and does not charge publication fees.

Submission guidelines
Journal article categories and submission guidelines are outlined in the Submission Guidelines. When submitting, authors should select the special issue in the Journal Section drop-down box and note the intended article type e.g. Original Research, Brief Report, in the Comments for the Editor box and in their cover letter.

We look forward to receiving your submissions.

Editor-in-Chief
Iruka N. Okeke

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The African Journal of Laboratory Medicine is now included in Scopus

6 June 2018
AOSIS is proud to announce the inclusion of the African Journal of Laboratory Medicine (AJLM) in Scopus

About Scopus
Scopus is the largest abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature: scientific journals, books and conference proceedings. It delivers a comprehensive overview of world research output in the fields of science, technology, medicine, social sciences, and arts and humanities, and has tools to track, analyse and visualise research. Watch video here.

Department of Higher Education (DHET) accreditation
By being included in Scopus, the African Journal of Laboratory Medicine appears on three of the Department of Higher Education (DHET) lists for accreditation. AJLM also qualifies for the DHET SA List and SciELO SA.

Scopus journal metrics for 2017 View more citation-based measurements here

About the journal
The African Journal of Laboratory Medicine, the official journal of the African Society for Laboratory Medicine (ASLM), focuses on the role of the laboratory and its professionals in the clinical and public healthcare sectors and is specifically based on an African frame of reference. Read more.

View the journal Scopus profile.

Visit the journal website.

Subscribe to the journal mailing list.

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Podcast interview with Prof. Petro du Preez, Editor-in-Chief of Transformation in Higher Education journal

1 June 2018
Find out the critical issues the Transformation in Higher Education journal addresses, how and why it came into being, its theme for this year and how it appeals to a broad interdisciplinary readership.

Listen to Prof. Petro du Preez, editor-in-chief of the Transformation in Higher Education journal, in this five-minute podcast interview. 

Open Access TRANSFORMATION IN HIGHER EDUCATION journal addresses matters of critical transformation in higher education 

In 2016, AOSIS and its editor-in-chief, Prof. Petro Du Preez, launched the double-blind peer review, open access Transformation in Higher Education journal. The journal creates a platform for academics, PhD students and people with an interest in higher education and related topics to address matters of critical transformation in higher education. The topics should focus on higher education and cover its political, economic, and cultural aspects. The topic of doctoral education as a field of study within higher education can also be included. Conceptual, philosophical, and empirical works addressing matters that could lead to the intellectual advancement in higher education as a discipline are welcomed. Learn more

Addressed issues 
The higher education landscape in South African and abroad is changing rapidly in terms of who can access higher education institutions and what the impact of the commercialisation and internationalisation of education is on higher education institutions. Accordingly, there is a need to address ongoing transformation and to challenge the previous static idea of higher education. Also, there is a need to focus on the link between human rights as a transformative drive and its intersection with higher education discourses. 

Readership value
The journal has a wide interdisciplinary readership that is of interest not only to people in the fields of education and higher education but also includes leading researchers with a wide range of professional associations with higher education and students who engage in higher education contexts. 

Research contributions    
Esteemed scholars from around the world have contributed 14 original research articles to our prestigious Transformation in Higher Education Journal. One article that has been downloaded 19 637 times is Decolonisation of higher education: Dismantling epistemic violence and Eurocentrism in South Africa by Savo Heleta. Another article recently published this year, has already been downloaded 492 times. The article by Jacques Rothmann addresses issues of LGBTIQ+ in A social constructionist approach to resilience for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, intersex, queer and/or questioning academics and students in South African universities. A contested concept that is continually addressed, due to its changing nature, is what transformation in higher education means. 

AOSIS is reaching out to you for another unique contribution which addresses matters of critical transformation in higher education. Browse the journal issues

Theme for 2018 
This year’s theme for the journal is: New frontiers for transformation in higher education: contestations and contradictions. Globally, the higher education landscape has undergone a certain amount of transformation. Although there has been a certain level of progress as a result of this changing landscape, the question remains: what future contestations and contradictions will higher education face? This topic requires interdisciplinary, critical, deconstructive and material discursive engagement with new frontiers for transformation in higher education. 

Submission overview 
When you submit an article for the journal, you will be able to track and participate in all the activities related to the processing of it, such as the review process, copy editing, layout editing and proofing of manuscripts, which are all managed on the electronic platform. 

Please visit the journal website and contact us should you have any questions on submission guidelines and procedures.

Authors receive the Publication of the Year Award: 2017 
Our esteemed authors, Melanie K. Smith and Vilmos Vass, received the Publication of the Year Award: 2017 from the Budapest Metropolitan University for their article: The relationship between internationalisation, creativity and transformation: A case study of higher education in Hungary published on 18 September 2017. To date the article has had 546 downloads. 
 
It is indeed an honour to receive articles from such esteemed authors, and we look forward to receiving many more such contributions to the journal from scholars around the world. 

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Podcast interview with Prof Raymond P. Abratt, Editor-in-Chief of the SA Journal of Oncology

17 May 2018
Podcast interview with Prof Raymond P. Abratt, Editor-in-Chief of the SA Journal of Oncology 

Find out the critical issues the SA Journal of Oncology is addressing, its background and the vision behind it, and who can benefit from it by listening to Prof. Raymond P. Abratt, editor-in-chief of the SA Journal of Oncology, in this six-minute podcast interview.
 
Open access SA Journal of Oncology covers all aspects of oncology in middle-income countries.
 
The SA Journal of Oncology (SAJO) was proudly launched as a double-blind peer review, open access journal in 2017 by its editors and publisher, AOSIS. The journal aims to increase the global knowledge of oncology by broadening its base and adding additional perspectives, especially those of oncologists in middle-income countries where they practise. In particular, the journal hopes to empower those who care for patients with cancer in middle-income countries through regionally relevant scientific research. The journal actively supports a multidisciplinary approach to cancer care and research as well as translational research in oncology.  
 
Having seen the value of presenting research to others, the journal’s editor-in-chief, Prof. Raymond Abratt, was moved to be part of the founding of the journal. He saw how researchers can contribute internationally and identified the need to assist oncologists in middle-income countries achieve recognition for their work. 
 
The societies affiliated to the journal are South African Society for Clinical and Radiation Oncologists (SASCRO), South African Children's Study Cancer Group (SACCSG), South African Association of Physicists in Medicine and Biology (SAAMBP) and South African Clinical Haematology Society (SACHaS) and their networks in other countries. 
 
The journal addresses two issues: 
  1. Cancer is a major health problem in middle-income countries. As the population in these countries age, the incidence of cancer increases. The journal investigates how cancer presents itself and how it is treated in different regions of the world, especially in middle-income countries. New drugs are expensive and difficult to access so oncologists must use them optimally. 
  2. The journal provides support to all oncology researchers, helping them build their expertise in analysing and publishing their work. Knowledge development benefits from openness but requires the maintenance of high standards.

Esteemed scholars from around the world contribute to the journal and it aims to publish a minimum of 12 articles a year. All articles are heavily downloaded, for example, the case study by Goedhals, Haupt, Jafta, Chronic lymphocytic leukaemia with concomitant plasmablastic lymphoma, has been downloaded 4738 times since March 2017. Now, we are reaching out to you for another unique contribution to SAJO which covers an aspect of oncology in middle-income countries.
 
Submission overview
When you submit an article for the journal, you will be able to track and participate in all the activities related to the processing of it, such as the review process, copy editing, layout editing and proofing of manuscripts, which are all managed on the electronic platform. 
 
Please visit the journal website and contact us should you have any questions on submission guidelines and procedures.
 

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Invitation to attend AOSIS MD’s public lecture on scholarly books at North-West University on 14 May 2018

9 May 2018
Prof. Refilwe Phaswana-Mafuya, Deputy Vice-Chancellor of Research and Innovation at the North-West University (NWU), cordially invites you to attend a public lecture by Dr Pierre de Villiers, Managing Director of AOSIS to share his views on the new frontier of scholarly books as open access and digital publishing presents new possibilities for academic institutions and researchers to deepen the impacts of their research and also to obtain and increase new funding for future research.

TITLE: The New Frontier For Scholarly Books
DATE: 14 May 2018
VENUE: NWU Potchefstroom Campus, Building C1, Conference Room 135
TIME: 14:00-16:00
RSVP: Show your interest to join on our Facebook event

WANT TO ATTEND BUT DON’T WANT TO TRAVEL? 
To join the lecture and watch the live video on your desktop, phone or iPad just access the university's online video application, Vidyo, at https://nwu-vc.tenet.ac.za/join/QBVs2tZWbm. Alternatively, phone +27 (0) 21 673 6771 or +27 (0) 21 180 4992, followed by extension 44994625.

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The South African Journal of Business Management is now open access and published by AOSIS

26 April 2018
AOSIS is pleased to announce that the South African Journal of Business Management, a research journal of the University of Stellenbosch Business School, has joined our collection of open access journals. 

As an open access journal, readers now have unrestricted access to all the journal articles. Studies have shown that open access articles are twice as likely to be cited as their non-open access counterparts (source). They increase the readership and the impact of an article, particularly in developing countries (source), and there is a 77% economic advantage to publishing in open access (source). AOSIS supports the statement made by the National Research Foundation, in March 2015, requiring all publicly funded research to be made available in open access. We believe that open access is the way forward to move research from obscurity into the public domain — where it can be of most use (source).

When you publish your research in an open access journal, you retain the non-exclusive right to do anything you wish with the published article(s), provided you cite the details of the original publication in the relevant journal, as set out in the official citation of the article published in the journal. The retained right specifically includes the right to post the article on the authors’ or their institution’s websites or in institutional repositories.

The South African Journal of Business Management continues to publish articles that are important for management theory and practice, and covers all aspects of managerial theory and management practice. Read more about the journal focus and scope.

When you write for the journal, the new website allows you to track and participate in all the activities related to the processing of your manuscript, such as the review process, copy editing, layout editing and proofing of manuscripts, which are all managed on the electronic platform. 

Please visit the journal website and contact us should you have any questions on the submission guidelines and procedures.

Register and Submit now.

Subscribe to the journal mailing list and receive call for papers and press releases.
 

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Change of Editor-in-Chief of Bothalia: African Biodiversity & Conservation

11 April 2018
Bothalia: African Biodiversity & Conservation, published by AOSIS, has served the botanical community since 1922. Initially, it was a hardcopy journal produced by the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI). Now, it is an open access, online model, with limited hardcopies covering broad scope biodiversity. Prof. Michelle Hamer has been its Editor-in-Chief since 2013. 

As with any major change, there were some initial challenges. However, the journal is now thriving and receives a large number of manuscripts from outside SANBI and from other African countries. Two special issues were published and a third one is planned for 2018. After five years at the helm of the journal, Prof. Hamer has assumed new responsibilities as the lead for the Natural Science Collections Facility, funded by the Department of Science and Technology and hosted by SANBI. The project aims to establish a virtual facility that links the institutions holding natural science collections. Given her new role, Prof. Hamer will no longer be the Editor-in-Chief of Bothalia: African Biodiversity & Conservation. 

On 1 April 2018, Dr Colleen Seymour of SANBI took over as the Editor-in-Chief. Dr Seymour is an established community ecologist, involved in research on ecosystem services and associated potential climate change impacts. We are confident that she will continue to build and strengthen Bothalia: African Biodiversity & Conservation with the support of the Associate Editors and the staff of AOSIS.

View the editorial board of the Bothalia: African Biodiversity & Conservation here.
 
Subscribe to the journal mailing list here.

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Be part of the first MoodleMoot Africa 2018 with us!

10 April 2018
We are pleased to announce that Moodle HQ is hosting the first ever MoodleMoot Africa 2018 from 11 – 12 October at the Cape Town International Convention Centre, South Africa.
 
Join us for two days of learning, collaborating, sharing ideas and networking.
 
Let’s get together!
 
As well as sharing new experiences and results through presentations to each other, MoodleMoots are about networking, connecting with other Moodlers like yourself and discovering people you can keep in touch with all year round. There are plenty of social events throughout the conference, and especially a big Moodle Party on the last day, after two full days of learning! 
 
What is a MoodleMoot?
 
A MoodleMoot is a conference dedicated to users, developers and administrators of the very popular open-source course management system called Moodle.

Learn here how to get involved at the MoodleMoot 2018.

AOSIS is South Africa's only Certified Moodle Partner™. Learn more here.

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Now included in PubMed Central: Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine

9 April 2018
AOSIS is proud to announce that the Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine is now included in PubMed Central® (PMC). 

PubMed Central® (PMC) is a free full-text archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature at the U.S. National Institutes of Health's National Library of Medicine (NIH/NLM). As an archive, PMC is designed to provide permanent access to all of its content, even as technology evolves and current digital literature formats potentially become obsolete. 

The Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine is open access and published on behalf of the Southern African HIV Clinicians Society. The journal is focused on HIV/AIDS treatment, prevention and related topics relevant to clinical and public health practice. The purpose of the journal is to disseminate original research results and to support high-level learning related to HIV Medicine. It publishes original research articles, editorials, case reports/case series, reviews of state-of-the-art clinical practice, and correspondence. 

When you publish your research in an open access journal, you retain the non-exclusive right to do anything you wish with the published article(s), provided you cite the details of the original publication in the relevant journal, as set out in the official citation of the article published in the journal. The retained right specifically includes the right to post the article on the authors’ or their institution’s websites or in institutional repositories. 

You are able to track and participate in all the activities related to the processing of your manuscript, such as the review process, copy editing, layout editing and proofing of manuscripts, which are all managed on the electronic platform. 

Please visit the journal website and contact us should you have any questions on submission guidelines and procedures.

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eCPD® complies with the new HPCSA CPD guidelines. What has changed?

28 February 2018
The HPCSA released the new Continuing Professional Development (CPD) guidelines for health practitioners in July 2017, after the institution of their new CPD council.
 
What has changed?
  1. There are now only two levels of CPD activity classifications. All Level 1 online CPD short courses with ten Multiple Choice Questionnaires (MCQ’s) for evaluation with a pass rate of 70% are now worth two CEU per one hour. Online CPD short courses with twenty MCQ’s for evaluation with a pass rate of 70% are now worth three CEUs per one hour. 
  2. The number of clinical and ethics CEUs that must be accumulated over 12 months by health practitioners was adjusted for some professions. We advise HPCSA members to make sure they read pages 8-11 of the guidelines to view the new amount of CEUs required for their profession. 
  3. Workshops, lectures, and seminars on ethics are now worth one CEU per hour.
  4. The non-compliance policy was amended slightly. 
     
What did eCPD change to comply with these guidelines? 
From 1 January 2018, eCPD courses (clinical and ethics) with 10 MCQ’s that currently should take one hour to complete will earn two CEU’s. Those with 20 MCQ’s will earn three CEU’s. eCPD has updated the course CEU values to reflect the CEU (irrespective of whether it is a clinical or an ethics courses). The implication is that health practitioners may need to do more online courses to obtain the required CEUs which stay valid for 24 months, depending on the amount of CEUs needed for each profession. Clients who already earned certificates in January will be contacted and emailed an updated CPD certificate with the correct CEU value. All CPD manager report will reflect correctly. Visit www.healthcare-ecpd.co.za.
 
The new HPCSA CPD guidelines on eCPD affect your time — not your pocket 
Our eCPD annual membership and credit bundles prices are not impacted by the guidelines.  Health practitioners still pay per credit for credit bundles or a yearly fee for the annual membership to access unlimited signature courses. 

By choosing eCPD as your CPD provider, you know your CPD portfolio will be accepted by the HPCSA when audited. Please refer to page 21 of the guidelines.

​Any questions or complaints regarding the new CPD guidelines should be emailed to the HPCSA CPD department at cpd@hpcsa.co.za
For support on using the eCPD system, please contact us at health.admin@ecpd.co.za.

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AOSIS Book Launch 2017

14 December 2017
On the 29th of November 2017 AOSIS celebrated with its book editors and authors the 20 books published over 2016 and 2017 at the University of Pretoria Merensky II Library.

The event was presented in two separate sessions. In the first session AOSIS announced the newly published books of 2016 and 2017, and handed out honorary gifts to the authors and editors. In the second session Prof J.S Krüger presented his latest book in an insightful book symposium. 

View the photo and videos here: ​www.events.aosis.co.za

 

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Journal of Economic and Financial Sciences (JEF) joins the AOSIS stable

15 December 2017
AOSIS is pleased to announce that the Journal of Economic and Financial Sciences (JEF), has joined our stable of journals.

The journal publishes theoretical and empirical research in the field of Economic and Financial Sciences. Manuscripts published in JEF fall mostly into the areas of auditing, corporate finance, corporate governance, economics, econometrics, financial accounting, financial management, financial planning, investment management, management accounting and taxation in the emerging market. 

AOSIS is honored to now be able to contribute to the continuing success of the journal and look forward to receiving your contributions.

Visit the new journal website: ​www.jefjournal.org.za

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Health SA Gesondheid, Journal of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences, joins the AOSIS stable

7 November 2017
AOSIS is pleased to announce that Health SA Gesondheid - Journal of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences, has joined our stable of journals.

The journal is an open access, peer-reviewed interdisciplinary and interprofessional scholarly journal that aims to promote communication, collaboration and teamwork between professions and disciplines within the health sciences to address problems that cross and affect disciplinary boundaries. 

Original articles on issues related to public health, including implications for practical applications and service delivery that are of concern and relevance to Africa and other developing countries will be considered for publication. It facilitates the gathering and critical testing of insights and viewpoints on knowledge from different disciplines involved in health service delivery. 

The journal offers the breadth of outlook required to promote health science education, research and professional practice.

The Health SA Gesondheid - Journal of Interdisciplinary Health Sciences has a strong regional focus (South Africa) with abstracts published in English. It offers a nurturing environment for young and novice researchers to showcase their work whilst upholding the standards of health science education, research and professional practice. 

The journal with its interdisciplinary scope attracts interest from a wide audience of scientists and health professionals working in the areas of health care management, health care economics, policy making, nursing, psychology, sociology, ethics and education. 

AOSIS is honored to now be able to contribute to the continuing success of the journal and looks forward to receiving your submission.

Visit the new journal website:  www.hsag.co.za

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Open in order to …. empower Africa's people through access to knowledge

19 October 2017
This year’s theme for the 10th International Open Access Week, celebrated on 23-29 October 2017, is “Open in order to…”. This is a prompt to talk about what openness enables and the actions needed to realise its benefits. 

AOSIS has been publishing open access scholarly journals since 2008, and we currently publish 38 scholarly journals. Every year we welcome new journals to our stable. View the AOSIS journal portfolio here.

After the statement of the National Research Foundation in 2015 which required all publicly funded research to be made available by open access, AOSIS responded by introducing an open access option for the publication of scholarly books, with emphasis on quality and peer review, and retention of copyright by the author. Read AOSIS’s comments on the NRF statement here

AOSIS published its first open access scholarly book on the international OAPEN platform in December 2015. During 2016 AOSIS published 9 open access books, and we will be publishing 11 books in 2017. View the AOSIS book catalogue here

It is AOSIS’s vision to empower Africa’s people through access to knowledge. We do this by publishing the latest African scholarly research in journals and books, while ensuring free access to all through open access publishing.

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AOSIS MD presents keynote speech on publication and peer review of scholarly books in South Africa at 2017 Society for Medicinal Plants and Economic Development conference

2 October 2017
On August 28th, 2017 Dr PJT de Villiers, MD of AOSIS, was the keynote speaker at the 2nd International Conference of the Society for Medicinal Plants and Economic Development (SOMPED). He addressed delegates on the publication and peer review of scholarly books in South Africa, saying that recognition of the importance of scholarly books has increased since the ASSAf Scholarly Books Report in 2009. Since then the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) has increased the subsidy unit value of scholarly books, and placed greater importance on quality and peer review.

He added that in 2015 the National Research Foundation issued an open access mandate for all of the research that it funds: “Open access offers many benefits to scholars and universities, such as increased citation and improved impact of research. AOSIS introduced an open access option for the publication of scholarly books, with emphasis on quality and peer review and retention of copyright by the author.” 

He outlined further facts about open access publication of scholarly books: “Peer review is conducted in two stages by an independent panel, and books are published in open access on an international platform. Publication costs are covered by funding, supported by the DHET subsidy income. Hardcopy books sales are no longer required, which removes the business imperative to select books based merely on ‘popularity’, allowing one to rather focus on quality and substance. ”

“The publication of research in scholarly books presents a new opportunity for scholars and universities to disseminate their research, improve impact and strengthen the funding stream for research.” 

To learn more about AOSIS Scholarly Books, please visit www.books.aosis.co.za.

Since the beginning of 2017 AOSIS has also published the journal of the Society for Medicinal Plants and Economic Development: the Journal of Medicinal Plants For Economic Development (JOMPED), which to date has published six articles. 

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Now included in PubMed Central® (PMC): African Journal of Disability

25 July 2017
AOSIS is proud to announce that the African Journal of Disability is now included in PubMed Central® (PMC). 

PMC is a free full-text archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature at the U.S. National Institutes of Health's National Library of Medicine (NIH/NLM). 

The African Journal of Disability, the official journal of CRS, AfriNEAD and CEDRES, is published for the purpose of advancing scholarship in disability studies and rehabilitation sciences in a uniquely African context. 

The current edition of the journal, as well as archives dating back to 2012, can be found at PMC. Visit the PMC profile.

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African Evaluation Journal now accredited with DHET - 2017

1 March 2017
It is our pleasure to announce that the African Evaluation Journal has been accredited by DHET with effect 1 January 2017. All articles published from this date shall qualify for subsidy by the DHET.  The journal has also achieved indexing in Scopus (Elsevier). View the indexing services where the journal is listed here: http://www.aejonline.org/index.php/aej/pages/view/about#7  
 
The DHET panel noted in particular the participation of international authors in this journal, and we would like to take this opportunity to thank all of the authors who faithfully contribute valuable research to the African Evaluation Journal.

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South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences has joined AOSIS

22 December 2016
AOSIS now publishes South African Journal of Economic and Management Sciences on behalf of the University of Pretoria

The journal is a leading South African-based publication for interdisciplinary research in the economic and management sciences. The journal publishes and disseminates high-quality academic articles that contribute to the better understanding of the interaction between economic, environmental and social perspectives as applicable to the broader management sciences in an African environment. 

The editorial board therefore invites authors to submit their research from areas such as economics, finance, accounting, human capital, marketing and other related disciplines that break down common intellectual silos and prepares a new path for debate on the operation and development of sustainable markets and organisations as relevant to the broader African context.

AOSIS is honoured to now be able to contribute to the continuing success of the journal, and looks forward to receiving your submission. Visit the journal website at http://www.sajems.org/index.php/sajems.

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Africa’s Public Service Delivery and Performance Review (APSDPR) has joined AOSIS

20 December 2016
AOSIS now publishes Africa’s Public Service Delivery and Performance Review (APSDPR) on behalf of the Institute for Development Assistance Management in collaboration with the Forum for Africans in Academia. 

APSDPR is a peer-reviewed journal aimed at the promotion and sharing of knowledge, skills and innovations in government and the wider public sector environment in South Africa and abroad. With a multidisciplinary outlook, the journal will stimulate service delivery and scholarly debate with a view to addressing the myriad of service delivery and performance challenges being faced by government. 

It aims at providing an innovative approach to monitoring and evaluation scholarship through independent monitoring of implementable interventions around public service delivery and its expected outcomes. It thus envisages a role towards attaining the turning-point in bridging the gaps that exist between public service delivery and the envisaged ‘trickle-down effects’ on the targeted beneficiaries.

Articles are invited on three broad themes: Public Policy, Planning, and Performance Monitoring Evaluation; Africa's Development Cooperation; and Regional Economic Integration. 

AOSIS is honoured to now be able to contribute to the continuing success of the journal, and looks forward to receiving your submission. Visit the journal website at www.apsdpr.org.

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AOSIS is pleased to announce the launch of the Journal of Medicinal Plants for Economic Development

21 November 2016
We are pleased to announce the launch of the Journal of Medicinal Plants for Economic Development, the official publication of SOMPED, the Society for Medicinal Plants and Economic Development.

The journal is dedicated to the dissemination of research information on the use of plants and plant products for economic and social development especially in the developing world. 

It welcomes original research papers, critical reviews and communications on the latest developments in phytomedicine with strong emphasis on originality and scientific quality. 

Research findings in phytopharmacognosy, natural product research, herbal technology, phytochemistry, metagenomics of medicinal plants and toxicology that highlight economic development are considered for publication following critical and constructive review process.

The journal accepts manuscript submissions and will start publishing online in January 2017. 

Visit the journal wesbite at www.jomped.org. We look forward to receiving your submission.

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Launch of SA Journal of Oncology

5 October 2016

We are pleased to announce the launch of the SA Journal of Oncology (SAJO), an initiative of SASCRO (the South African Society for Clinical and Radiation Oncology). The journal accepts manuscript submissions and will start publishing online in January 2017. 

The journal is a peer-reviewed on-line journal which publishes high quality articles on all aspects of oncology.  The Editorial Board strongly supports a multidisciplinary approach to cancer care and research as well as translational research in oncology.  This will be reflected in its publications.

The journal will publish research which is particularly relevant to oncology knowledge and practice in countries with mixed income based economies.  Scientific studies from these countries will make an important contribution to global oncology knowledge. 

The journal will feature original research, reviews, practice guidelines, editorials, case studies, scientific letters and conference reports.

We welcome new partnerships with professionals / institutions. If interested, please contact the Editor Raymond P. Abratt at raymond.abratt@uct.ac.za.

​Visit the journal website: http://sajo.org.za/

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Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie / South African Journal of Science and Technology: Uitnodiging vir bydraes / Call for papers

23 September 2016

Lê u manuskrip voor aan die Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie, met die spesiale tema: ‘Die aard van wetenskap en wetenskaplike ondersoek’. Ons doen dus ’n beroep op u om ʼn bydrae voor te lê wat die toepassing van wetenskaplike ondersoek in die praktyk sal vertoon, maar wat ook aan lesers ʼn oorsig sal bied van heersende neigings en praktyke. Voorleggingspertyd: 30 April 1917. Lees die beroep op u om bydraes aanlyn: http://www.satnt.ac.za/index.php/satnt/pages/view/call-for-papers-2017


We are calling on researchers to submit contributions to the South African Journal of Science and Technology, with the special theme: ‘The nature of science and scientific inquiry’. This call for papers seeks contributions not only to showcase the application of inquiry in practice, but also to provide readers with an overview of current trends and practices. Submission deadline: 30 April 2017. Read the call for papers online: http://www.satnt.ac.za/index.php/satnt/pages/view/call-for-papers-2017

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African Evaluation Journal: Special Edition

27 September 2016
Call for papers for the Special Edition on Evaluation Capacity Development: Strategies, Designs, Procedures & Methods Made in Africa. 
 
This Special Edition will investigate the different ways being used to support systems and institutions to create greater evaluation capacity across a variety of sectors and actors. This could be anything from tools used to work with civil rights groups to build their abilities to effectively advocate within oversight structures, to how a piece of work used innovative methods to build high-level leadership in a metropolitan system. To this end, we’d like to invite you to submit a contribution for the journal for consideration by a review team.

Read more: http://www.aejonline.org/index.php/aej/pages/view/2017-special-issue.

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Journal of Insulin Resistance published its first article

28 July 2016
About the journal

The Journal of Insulin Resistance, launched this year, is a peer-reviewed, open access clinically oriented journal published by AOSIS which covers advances in disorders of insulin resistance. Articles will focus on clinical care and advancing therapy for patients with insulin resistance-related disorders, such as obesity, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, non-alcoholic steatohepatitis, Alzheimer’s dementia and sexual dysfunction. Insulin resistance includes pathophysiology, management, patient education and treatment considerations for different patient populations.

Visit the journal.

About the article

The first article to be published in this new journal is ‘Added sugars drive chronic kidney disease and its consequences: A comprehensive review’, which discusses how consumption of added sugars (e.g. sucrose [table sugar] and high-fructose corn syrup) over the last 200 years has increased exponentially, paralleled by increased prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Data for animals and humans suggest that consumption of added sugars leads to kidney damage and related metabolic derangements that increase cardiovascular risk. 

Importantly, consumption of added sugars has been found to induce insulin resistance and increase uric acid in humans, both of which increase conversion of glucose to fructose (i.e. fructogenesis) via the polyol pathway. The polyol pathway has recently been implicated in contributing to and progression of kidney damage, suggesting that even glucose can be toxic to the kidney via its endogenous transformation into fructose in the proximal tubule. 

Consuming added fructose has been shown to induce insulin resistance, which can lead to hyperglycaemia, oxidative stress, inflammation and activation of the immune system, all of which can synergistically contribute to kidney damage. CKD guidelines should stress a reduction in consumption of added sugars as a means to prevent and treat CKD as well as reduce CKD–related morbidity and mortality. 

Read the full article.

About the author

The author of this first article is Dr James J. DiNicolantonio, a Cardiovascular Research Scientist at Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City, Missouri, USA. Dr DiNicolantonio’s research interests focus on cardiovascular health and disease, including topics such as diabetes, obesity, hypertension, insulin resistance, lipids, antithrombotics, anticoagulants, as well as nutrition (with particular focus on refined sugars and salt) and nutritional supplements. He is author or co-author of over 175 medical publications, and serves as Associate Editor of British Medical Journal’s (BMJ) Open Heart, which is published in partnership with the British Cardiovascular Society. Dr DiNicolantonio also serves as a frequent reviewer for several medical journals, and is on the editorial advisory board of a number of medical journals including the International Journal of Clinical Pharmacology & Toxicology (IJCPT), CIP Journal of Cardiology, and Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases.

WebpageResearchgate profileTwitter profile.

About AOSIS Publishing

AOSIS Publishing provides comprehensive and personal publishing services for scholarly journals, scholarly books and conference proceedings. As an open access publisher it offers high-quality scholarly publications and is committed to disseminate peer-reviewed research across a range of academic disciplines.

Learn more here.

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AOSIS is pleased to announce The South African Journal of Childhood Education (SAJCE) has joined our stable of journals.

15 April 2016
AOSIS is pleased to announce that the South African Journal of Childhood Education (SAJCE) has joined our stable of journals. 

The SAJCE is a peer-reviewed journal that provides a forum for the dissemination of research on childhood learning and development and the care and education of children from birth to 12 years of age. The journal is interdisciplinary in scope and seeks to stimulate the exchange of ideas on a variety of subjects, contexts, and issues in childhood education and child care.

The Editor-in-Chief is Prof. Elizabeth Henning of the University of Johannesburg, South Africa. The Associate Editors are Prof. Hasina Ebrahim (University of the Free State, South Africa), Prof. Ronel Ferreira (University of Pretoria, South Africa), Dr Chris Pascal (Centre for Research in Early Childhood, Birmingham, United Kingdom) and Prof. Nadine Felicity Petersen (University of Johannesburg, South Africa). 

The SAJCE meets the criteria of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DoHET) (see list of approved South African journals as maintained by the DoHET), and is therefore accredited and approved for inclusion in the subsidy system as a research publication for South Africa. 

The journal is indexed in databases that include Thompson Reuters (ISI Web of Science) and Scielo SA. It carries ISSN numbers 2223-7674. 

Submit your next manuscript to the SAJCE at www.sajce.co.za.

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The Southern African Journal of Entrepreneurs and Small Business Management (SAJESBM) has joined our stable of journals.

15 April 2016
AOSIS is pleased to announce that The Southern African Journal of Entrepreneurs and Small Business Management (SAJESBM) has joined our stable of journals.

SAJESBM is aimed at providing practical guidance and empirical evidence to researchers and practitioners specialising in the entrepreneurial and business management field. It provides a communication forum to advance entrepreneurship, innovation, small business management and family business theory, as well as the application thereof in practice. Its aim is the improvement and further development of these fields and it is designed to appeal to both practitioners and academics.

The Editor-in-Chief is Prof. A.J. Antonites from the University of Pretoria, South Africa. 

SAJCE meets the criteria of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DoHET) (see list of approved South African journals as maintained by the DoHET) and is therefore accredited and approved for inclusion in the subsidy system as a research publication for South Africa. 

Submit your next manuscript to SAJESBM at www.sajesbm.co.za.

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The online journal Transformation in Higher Education (THE) has joined our stable of journals.

15 April 2016
AOSIS is pleased to announce that the online journal Transformation in Higher Education (THE) has joined our stable of journals. 

THE aims to disseminate high-impact evidence-based research across disciplines in higher education that could ultimately support high-level learning, teaching, research and community engagement. The journal gives preference to transdisciplinary engagements that address contemporary issues in higher education contexts. 

The Editor-in-Chief of THE is Prof. Petro du Preez from North-West University, South Africa. The Associate Editors are Dr Shan Simmonds and Prof. Anné H. Verhoef, both from North-West University, South Africa. 

THE meets the criteria of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DoHET) (see list of approved South African journals as maintained by the DoHET) and is therefore accredited and approved for inclusion in the subsidy system as a research publication for South Africa. 

The journal is new and has therefore not been indexed yet. 

Submissions in English (full article) will be considered for publication.

Submit your next manuscript to THE online at www.thejournal.org.za.

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The Journal for Transdisciplinary Research in Southern Africa (Td) has joined our stable of journals.

15 April 2016
AOSIS is pleased to announce that The Journal for Transdisciplinary Research in Southern Africa (Td) has joined our stable of journals. 

Td is dedicated to promoting transdisciplinary research by creating knowledge through collaboration between the formal sectors of the natural and human sciences. The journal also aims to focus on grassroots-level knowledge as the groundwork for future learnings that are not confined to a fixed, formal discipline. 

The Editor-in-Chief of Td is Prof. Johann Tempelhoff of North-West University, South Africa. Editorial Board members are Prof. Joan Kroeze of the University of South Africa, Prof. Christo van Wyk, Prof. Linda Theron, Prof. Phillip Pretorius and Ms Rillette Swanepoel (all from North-West University).

Td meets the criteria of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DoHET) (see list of approved South African journals as maintained by the DoHET) and is therefore accredited and approved for inclusion in the subsidy system as a research publication for South Africa. 

Td is indexed in Norwegian List with ISSN numbers 1817-4434 (print). 

Submit your next manuscript to Td online at www.td-sa.net

Submissions in English (full article) will be considered for publication. 
    

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African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine (PHCFM) now included in Pubmed Central

18 February 2016
AOSIS is proud to announce that its journal, the African Journal of Primary Health Care & Family Medicine (PHCFM), is now included in PubMed Central (PMC). PMC is a free digital repository of almost 3 million full-text research articles on Biomedicine and Life Sciences, and a major database for the US National Center for Biotechnology Information.

​PHCFM publishes cutting-edge peer-reviewed research in primary health care and family medicine and remains an indispensable resource for primary health care practitioners in both the developing and developed worlds. The current edition of PHCFM, as well as archives dating back to 2009, can be found at http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/journals/2761.

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AOSIS Publishing partners with CrossMark® and ORCID for publishing excellence

12 April 2016
In pursuit of the highest standards of publishing excellence, AOSIS Publishing has started using CrossMark® and ORCID in its online publications.

CrossMark® helps readers and researchers to access the most up-to-date versions of published research. As careful as authors, reviewers and publishers are in the publication process, article corrections, updates, errata, retractions and withdrawals are sometimes necessary. To use CrossMark® readers simply click on the CrossMark® icon attached to PDFs or HTML documents and a status box tells them if their document is current.

ORCID allows scholars and researchers to create their own online identifier that links all their research and publication activities in one registry. This resolves the challenge of having to enter these details in multiple information systems that cross disciplines, institutions and geographical borders. With ORCID a single ID allows a researcher to manage their full record of activities through the ORCID Registry, with APIs that support system-to-system communication and authentication.

​Both CrossMark® and ORCID are not-for-profit tools that complement AOSIS Publishing’s open source philosophy.

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Oproep om bydraes: Spesiale uitgawe van die Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie

29 January 2016
Sperdatum vir aanlynvoorlegging: 30 April 2016

Gasredakteur: Prof. Dr. B.A. Senekal

Die snelle ontwikkeling van tegnologie die afgelope twee dekades het die samelewing onherroeplik verander, insluitend natuurlik die akademikus se beroep. In die navorsingskomponent van die akademikus se beroep speel tegnologie toenemend ʼn groot rol, met ontwikkelinge in rekenaarprogrammatuur wat nuwe soorte ontleding met behulp van groter datastelle bemiddel, dataversameling self op ʼn groter skaal kan laat plaasvind, bevindinge op nuwe maniere met behulp van visualisering kan laat oordra en die ontwikkeling van apparatuur met behulp van nuwe navorsing kan bemiddel. Bronmateriaal word ook vinniger opgespoor deur van digitale databasisse en Google Scholar gebruik te maak. Die beskikbaarheid van groter datastelle en die vermoë om hierdie datastelle te ontleed lei volgens sommige kommentators daartoe dat ons tans op die rand van ʼn paradigmaskuif in die wetenskap staan, wat beteken dat tegnologie ook ʼn impak op wetenskapsfilosofie het.

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South African Journal of Psychiatry (SAJP) joins the AOSIS stable

15 December 2015
AOSIS is pleased to announce that the South African Journal of Psychiatry (SAJP), the official journal of the South African Society of Psychiatrists, has joined our stable of journals. 

The SAJP is the leading psychiatric journal in Africa, publishing continuously on-line followed by printed issues. It provides open-access scholarly reading for psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and all with an interest in mental health. It carries empirical and conceptual research articles, reviews, editorials, and scientific letters related to psychiatry. It publishes work from various places in the world, and makes special provision for the interests of Africa. It seeks to serve its readership and researchers with the most topical content in psychiatry for clinical practice and academic pursuits, including work in the subspecialty areas of psychiatry.

Editor-in-Chief of SAJP is C.W. (Werdie) van Staden of the University of Pretoria, and the Deputy Editors are Liezl Koen and Soraya Seedat of the University of Stellenbosch and Bernard B. Janse van Rensburg of the University of the Witwatersrand. Archives from 2002 are available to read online on the journal website at www.sajp.org.za.

SAJP meets the criteria of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DoHET) (see List of approved South African journals as maintained by the DoHET). It is therefore accredited and approved by the DoHET for its inclusion in the subsidy system for being a research publication for South Africa. 

The journal is indexed in databases that include Thompson Reuters (ISI Web of Science), the Science Citation Index as well as the Expanded Index, Scopus, Scielo SA and Google Scholar. Its Thompson Reuters Impact Factor is 0.521 (2014) and it carries ISSN numbers 1608-9685 (print) and 2078-6786 (online).    

Submit your next manuscript to SAJP online at www.sajp.org.za. Submissions in English (full article) will be considered for publication.

Call upon authors who made submissions to SAJP between July 2015 and November 2015
Authors who made submissions to SAJP between July and November 2015, and whose submissions do not reflect on the new website (www.sajp.org.za) are requested to contact the editor at cwvanstaden@icon.co.za please.
 

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Upgrade to Moodle 3.0 in 2016

8 December 2015
We are pleased to announce that Moodle HQ has launched Moodle 3.0 in November, introducing new features to its quiz, forum and assignment modules together with functionality improvements for user, teacher and administration control. 

We encourage all Moodle users to upgrade to Moodle 3.0 in 2016, which should be quite simple from any previous version of Moodle, and receive the benefits of its many improvements and new features.

Some highlights include:
For full details of the new features in Moodle 3.0, please click here.

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AOSIS publishes its first open access scholarly book on OAPEN

4 December 2015
AOSIS Publishing is pleased to announce the publication of its first open access scholarly book, JM Vorster’s Christelike etiek in ‘n sekulariserende samelewing, that is listed on OAPEN. 

Professor Vorster’s research is an important contribution to Christian ethics both in South Africa and globally. It will be especially useful to specialists in systematic theology and contextual ministry. 

Read more about the book here.

About OAPEN
The OAPEN Library is a European open access publishing platform designed to give global impact to peer-reviewed research. Like AOSIS Publishing, OAPEN believes in the advantages of open access; it offers: a wider audience for authors’ work; direct access to critical knowledge for researchers;  unrestricted access to research results for research funders; and a wider access to scholarly information for libraries. Publications listed on OAPEN are also indexed by Google Scholar and those that are “free to share” are also available on the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB). Learn more here.

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AOSIS becomes a member of publication ethics organisation COPE

4 December 2015
AOSIS is proud to become a member of the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE), confirming its commitment to the highest standards of publication ethics.

Being a member of COPE signifies that all our journals uphold the highest ethical standards and that we follow COPE’s Code of Conduct and will take appropriate action in cases of possible misconduct.

About COPE
COPE promotes publishing ethics and transparent business practices around the world through a set of stringent criteria that all members must subscribe to. These criteria include having a peer review process, a governing body and a specialised editorial team, as well as being transparent about author fees, revenue sources, and journal ownership. This helps authors and reviewers to judge the legitimacy of the journals they work with.

Because AOSIS is now a member of COPE, all editors of our published journals have access to the following benefits:  We encourage the public to access the resources on COPE’s website, which is available to both members and non-members, relating to COPE’s Code of Conduct, Guidelines, useful sample letters and flowcharts. You can peruse this here.

Find more information about COPE here

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Call for papers for a Special Issue of Literator on Themes in Southern African Linguistics

3 December 2015
Submission deadline: 31 January 2016

The LSSA/SAALA/SAALT Joint Annual Conference 2015 was organised by the School of Languages, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University. By way of supplementing and thus documenting this landmark Joint Annual Conference the editorial board of Literator is soliciting contributions for a special issue on 'Themes in Southern African Linguistics'. Contributions will be welcomed in the fields of Applied Linguistics, Language Practice, Language teaching, Linguistilitcs and Sign Language, from presenters and attendees of the LSSA/SAALA/SAALT Joint Annual Conference 2015 as well as from members of the three major linguistic societies.

Contributions may be written in any of the three conference languages, viz. English, Afrikaans and Tswana. In line with the editorial policy of Literator, contributions in Dutch, German and French will also be welcomed. 
There will only be space for 16 articles. The first target date for submission is 15 January 2016 and the final date for submission is, as indicated in the call for papers, 31 January 2016.   

Based on the topics presented at this year's conference we are expecting contributions on themes of multilingualism, language politics, language teaching and especially language policy.

Deadlines:
Guest editors:

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South African Journal of Physiotherapy calls for Editorial Board members

11 September 2015
Nominations Deadline: 14 September 2015.

The South African Journal of Physiotherapy dedicates its efforts to the advancement of physiotherapy through sound research and scholarly work. This year we continue our efforts in the field, including the arenas of science, clinical applications, education of practitioners, management of services and policy.

We are now inviting interested academics to apply for inclusion on our advisory board, or to nominate suitable colleagues.
All applications and nominations should include a CV, be directed to publishing@aosis.co.za and reach our offices by the 14 September 2015 [extended deadline].

Advisory Editorial Board members’ key responsibilities include:
Advisory Editorial Board candidates should be established academics with a clear publication record demonstrating their expertise in their research field. They may be research group leaders or professors, as well as senior academics. Naturally, board candidates should be able to maintain the high ethical standards expected of academics overseeing aspects of peer review.

The post of Advisory Editorial Board Member is a voluntary, part-time position.

Thank you for your continuing interest in our work.

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Call for papers: Special Issue - South African Journal of Information Management

9 September 2015
Special Issue Theme:
Forging Partnerships in the Knowledge Ecosystem to serve Competitive Intelligence

Submission Deadline: 30 November 2015 


The intelligence-producing knowledge ecosystem is an active, dynamic environment that values quality, efficiency and effectiveness while promoting a culture of organisational learning; it is also an open system that is shaped by exogenous forces. Internal leadership decisions guide the growth of the knowledge ecosystem as it adapts according to external forces. These leadership decisions are based on the collective knowledge within the ecosystem regarding its ability to compete in the current and future business environment.

Knowledge ecosystems foster interactions between entities within complex adaptive systems, which improve decision-making and innovation through networks of collaboration. An example of such a complex adaptive system is the competitive environment within which contemporary enterprises operate. Within this context, a multidisciplinary approach should be applied when identifying actionable intelligence from the abundance of available information used to support efficient decision making. By refining inputs, throughputs and outputs, knowledge ecosystems cultivate open exchange relationships that in turn sustain interlinked knowledge resources, databases, experts, and artificial knowledge agents, which collectively provide the multidisciplinary view that is required for resourceful decision making.

The editors of this special edition invite contributions focused on how knowledge ecosystems can best serve the competitive intelligence (CI) community in gathering intelligence for actionable insights. Contributions should showcase recent trends and research that clarifies the requirements and demands from the CI community, or that reflects contributions that knowledge ecosystems are making towards fostering effective CI results.

Read the full description on the South African Journal of Information Management website: www.sajim.co.za

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Call for papers: Special Issue for Reading & Writing 2016

8 September 2015
Special Issue Theme:
Imagination and Literacy: Theory and practice

Submission Deadline: 14 September 2015


This special edition of this peer-reviewed and DHET-accredited journal focuses on the relationship between imagination and literacy. Standard national curricula tend to have a strong focus on cognitive development, and draw on orthodoxies about sequencing of learning from simple to complex, and concrete to abstract, from perception-dominated thinking to conceptual freedom and so on. The aim of this issue is to interrogate and ‘reimagine’ the role of the imagination in relation to literacy learning. We invite contributions which examine the relationship between the imagination and the intellect, how imagination is produced and expressed in and through literacy, and the relationship between imagination, affect and emotion in learning, amongst others. The issue will also engage with collaborative and dialogical work (for example, between academics and students) and multivocal and multimodal forms of representation. 

Double-blind peer-reviewed, approved articles are published on the journal’s website as soon as ready for publication, and the journal is accredited by the South African Department of Higher Education and Training.

Read more on the Reading & Writing website here: www.rw.org.za

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Our new website, logo and vision are live!

17 August 2015
We’re excited to announce the launch of our new website and logo, as well as a new vision and set of values that reflect our passion for empowering the people of Africa through access to knowledge. Everything we do is measured by these guiding values: passion, integrity, servant leadership, and fairness. 

We believe that knowledge has the means to empower Africa when applied wisely. For this reason we’ve committed ourselves to disseminating high-quality knowledge through the most appropriate technologies in Africa. We fulfil this commitment through our three business divisions – Publishing, eLearning and eCPD® – each one perfectly complementing the others.

“We’re so proud to showcase the enormous growth of all the divisions of AOSIS through a new look and feel, and a clearly defined vision,” says AOSIS MD, Dr Pierre de Villiers. “We feel privileged to be able to contribute to the improvement of so many people’s lives in Africa through access to knowledge.”

eLearning
As South Africa’s only certified Moodle Partner since 2006, we’ve now simplified our name from AOSIS Ituta® eLearning to AOSIS eLearning, making us more memorable in the marketplace. Although we’ve changed our name, our roots still lie in the word ituta, derived from the Sesotho ithuta, which means to study or learn. Studying and learning are deeply entrenched in our corporate culture, motivating us to offer this service. 

Over the years we have accumulated technical expertise and an understanding of the eLearning market. We bring that to our clients by developing customised eLearning platforms for schools and businesses, using techniques that are proven to enhance knowledge retention and learner interaction. 

Publishing 
Since 2005 we’ve been at the forefront of enabling open access knowledge for academics, researchers and authors through AOSIS OpenJournals® in sub-Saharan Africa. Today we have renamed this division AOSIS Publishing as we are expanding our offering to include the publishing of scholarly books. Together with broadening our focus to publish in other mediums, we are even more determined to offer high-quality, open access publications across many academic disciplines.

We pride ourselves in unlocking Africa’s rich knowledge resources to the world for the empowerment of Africa.

eCPD®
Since 1999 we have offered fully accredited, high-quality, online Continuous Professional Development (CPD) courses through eCPD®, enabling healthcare professionals to keep up with the latest knowledge in their fields. eCPD® has grown over the past 16 years to include courses for science, engineering and technology, accountancy and financial services professionals.

It is our goal to make our online courses as relevant and engaging as possible to help professionals improve their knowledge in their chosen field, so that in return they can serve Africa’s people well.

We’d love your feedback
Tell us what you think of our new look and feel at info[AT]aosis.co.za. We always love hearing from our clients and friends. 

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AOSIS’ MD appointed to the Editorial Board of Learned Publishing journal

9 July 2015
Dr Pierre de Villiers​AOSIS is pleased to announce that our Managing Director, Dr Pierre de Villiers, has been appointed to the Editorial Board of the Learned Publishing journal, headed by Editor in Chief Pippa Smart and North American Editor Judy Luther.

Pierre de Villiers is medically trained and a Fellow of the Colleges of Medicine of South Africa. He has a doctorate in Community Health and was the founding professor and head of the Department of Family Medicine and Primary Care at Stellenbosch University. He is the former Editor-in-Chief of the South African Family Practice journal, and the current Managing Editor of the African Journal of Primary Health Care and Family Medicine. He currently serves as Director of the South African Academy of Family Physicians.

Learned Publishing is the journal of the Association of Learned and Professional Society Publishers, and is published in collaboration with the Society for Scholarly Publishing.

Learned Publishing is a major international journal, packed with the latest ideas and informed opinion to help you maximise new opportunities. The journal publishes 6-7 informed, topical articles in each issue plus reports on major initiatives and developments in the industry from around the world. Editorials, peer-reviewed research and other articles, personal views and book reviews cover all the major issues facing the world of academic publishing today.

The journal is published quarterly in January, April, July and October; ISSN 0953-1513 (Print), 1741-4857 (Online). It is the successor to the Bulletin of ALPSP, founded 1977, ISSN 0260-9428.

Visit the journal here to learn more.

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Congratulations to Professor Andries van Aarde on his selection to CSPiSA

28 May 2015
AOSIS congratulates Emeritus Professor Andries van Aarde on his selection as a member of the Committee on Scholarly Publishing in South Africa (CSPiSA).

CSPiSA is a Standing Committee of the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf), whose mandate is, among other things, to help foster the next generation of leading scientists and science scholars in South Africa. The Committee oversees ASSAf’s Scholarly Publishing Programme.

Professor van Aarde is also Editor-in-chief of HTS Theological Studies/Teologiese Studies (HTS), an influential and internationally accredited open-access journal published proudly by AOSIS at www.hts.org.za.

Besides overseeing HTS and ASSAF’s Scholarly Publishing Programme, Professor Van Aarde is also an NRF rated scholar and active member of two National Scholarly Editors’ Forums for journals and books.

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AOSIS comments on the Research Outputs Policy, 2015

18 May 2015
The Minister of Higher Education and Training published an update of the Policy for Measurement of Research Outputs of Public Higher Education Institutions (2003), now called the Research Outputs Policy, 2015 on 11 March 2015.

The purpose of the new policy update is to renew and regulate the system whereby the government, through its Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) subsidises the research output of public higher education institutions in South Africa.

It is our intention with these comments to both alert interested parties to important changes to the 2003 policy and its implications, and to give a personal perspective on the new policies from the viewpoint of a scholarly publisher in South Africa. After all, the first step of learning starts with the sharing of ideas.

GENERAL COMMENTS
Note: The numbers between brackets generally refers to the clauses in the new policy.
  1. The Research Outputs Policy, 2015, will be implemented from 01 January 2016. The 2015 output will already be assessed on the new policy, but certain aspects of the new policy, such as the new requirements to remain on the DHET list for South African Journals, will be applied leniently to allow South African journals to adapt to the new policy. From the 2016 output onwards the full policy requirements will apply (DHET personal communication).
  2. Overall, great emphasis is placed on “pre-publication” peer review (“refereeing by independent experts in the field”) as the proxy measure of quality. The Department may however in future introduce new quality measurements such as “bibliometric data, discipline specific panels of experts and post-publication peer reviews” (2.4).
  3. Although all journal outputs (eg, local and international) are currently subsidised on the same level, a warning signal is sounded that in future the Department may introduce a differentiated subsidy system putting more weight, for instance, on publication in “high impact” journals, or journals listed in certain indexes (2.7).
  4. The Department subsidises institutions and not individuals. The point is made that institutions should be careful not to incentivise individuals as this may act as a perverse incentive (3.1). Some institutions are providing monetary incentives to authors directly linked to DHET subsidy income, sometimes even using a differentiating system, with more rewards for Web of Science (ISI) listed journal articles. Transitioning the environment to a non-incentive rich climate will rest with the institution. This should be seen as an opportunity to level the playing field of all types of research, allowing institutions to recognise and reward scholars on the quality of the research output rather than the place of a listed publication. 
  5. The subsidy follows the institutional affiliation of the authors, assuming that that is where the research was “carried out”. There is no proportionality with regard to contribution, and all authors are subsidised equally (3.2). Furthermore, “Author affiliation should reflect the institution where research was conducted, supported and funded” (4.3). This clarifies the question of affiliation, which was needed.
  6. Greater clarity is also provided regarding the situation when authors move to another institution (3.3), and the position of “visiting scholars, fellows and retired academics” (3.4).
  7. A new requirement for institutions is to “verify, by assessing peer review reports, that all their outputs have undergone a rigorous (pre-publication) peer review process” (8.2e). This can prove very problematic, since peer review reports are regarded as confidential documents by journals and publishers in order to ensure reviewers give uninhibited reports.

JOURNALS
  1. The DHET subsidises only articles published in “approved scholarly journals”, meaning journals listed in “lists of accredited journals and indices”, which will be published on or before 31 January each year. This is a major change, as the names of specific indices are now omitted in the policy, leaving the door open for the introduction of new indices from time to time. Currently the Web of Science (formerly ISI) and the International Bibliography of Social Sciences (IBSS) are the approved indices. The DHET has indicated before at the National Scholarly Editor’s Forum (NSEF) that Scopus (found at http://www.scimagojr.com), ScieloSA (http://www.scielo.org.za) and the Norwegian Register for Scientific Journals, Series and Publishers (https://dbh.nsd.uib.no/publiseringskanaler/) could be additional indices, but these are uncertain. It is therefore of great concern that the applicable indices for 2016 will only be made known in January 2016, which is too late for scholars and institutions to take advantage of listed journals. The new indices will be announced soon, although they will only be applied in 2016 to assist authors in deciding where to submit their 2016 output manuscripts (DHET personal communication). 
  2. In addition to the approved indices, the DHET will as before maintain a list of approved/accredited South African journals (DHET List) that are not listed on any of the approved indices. It is now made clear that it is the responsibility of the Editors-in-chief to apply to DHET for the inclusion of their journals on the DHET list. The criteria for inclusion on the DHET List (5.10) contains a few important changes, eg (5.10 c) “No more than 25% of the published articles may originate from a single institution”; (5.10 f) “No more than 33% of members of the editorial board may originate from a single institution”; and (5.11 e)” New journals must also have a publication history of at least three years.” These changes were probably introduced to prevent institutions from publishing “in house” journals with the purpose of taking advantage of the subsidy system, but the 25% limit for articles from a single institution may prove to be very difficult for many journals, particularly single faculty journals, eg veterinary science. These criteria also make it much more difficult to start new journals in emerging disciplines. 
  3. It is important to note that the DHET List criteria (5.10) will only apply to DHET List journals, and not to journals on approved indices (DHET personal communication).
  4. Journals not meeting the DHET List criteria (5.10) will be removed from the DHET list and may only re-apply after two years. A loss of accreditation will be disastrous for the journal and the affected South African higher education institutions. It is also important for journals not listed in approved indices to adhere to the criteria in 5.10, to ensure the viability of the relevant research discipline in the South African context, as loss of accreditation will probably result in significantly less submissions from South African scholars. 
  5. What constitutes a “South African” journal (one which can remain/apply to be on the DHET List)? The current definition applied by the Academy of Science of South Africa (ASSAf) is that the owner of the journal (usually a higher education institution or a scholarly society) and the “workflow” of publishing must both be based in South Africa (ASSAf personal communication). This was confirmed by the DHET also indicating that DHET would like to support publishing skills and capacity building in South Africa (DHET personal communication). The implication is that only journals meeting the above definition of a South African journal will be included/remain on the DHET list. South African journals not listed in approved indices and migrating to international publishers must be aware of this.
  6. A welcoming statement is that any changes to the “editor, title, frequency, ISSN or publication format (print/online)” will not impact a journal’s accreditation status (5.16). In the past, fear of losing accreditation hindered many journals from adapting to new publishing technology.
  7. It is stated that the DHET supports the development of local language journals (5.18). There are very few non-English journals in South Africa, and it has to be seen if new ones will emerge. At least this provides some comfort for the ones that do exist – they will remain subsidised as long as they meet the DHET List criteria (5.10). 

BOOKS AND CHAPTERS IN BOOKS
  1. A much improved and expanded definition of what constitutes a “scholarly book” is provided in (6.1). There is ample provision made for single-author and multi-author books, original research and/or exposition of the available literature.
  2. An important change to the criteria for book subsidies is that it must be peer reviewed prior to publication (6.2 b). This brings books in line with journals, but will have definite implications for publishers and increase the cost of publishing books, as the cost of peer review for books are much higher than for journals.
  3. Additions to the types of books that will not be subsidised are: “Reference books, Dictionaries and Encyclopedias” and “Introductions and Conclusions, unless the entire book, as a unit is being submitted for subsidy claim” (6.3 c).
  4. Probably the most important departure from the old policy is the increased number of subsidy units allocated for scholarly books. As indicated before, the new unit allocations will already be applied to the 2015 output (DHET personal communication). A book may now be subsidised to a maximum of 10 units, on a sliding scale based on the number of pages (6.4). This is an important development giving recognition to research in the Humanities and Social Sciences, and should restore the book to its former importance in these fields of study. It should however be noted that the page count excludes the “references, bibliography, index and appendices” (6.2e), and it also applies to the sliding scale in (6.4) (DHET personal communication). It is a pity that the policy did not rather make use of word counts, as page size and type font may have a significant effect on page numbers, and in e-books page numbers has become redundant.
  5. A new feature in the policy regarding books is the establishment of an independent “Research Output Evaluation Panel (and field-specific sub-panels)” to evaluate all books and conference proceedings (6.6). In the past there has been much criticism of the DHET for the non-transparent manner in which books were evaluated. These panels have been piloted in 2014 and by all accounts it is a much improved process. 
  6. “Clear and unambiguous” evidence of pre-publication peer review must be provided with the book for the evaluation process (6.8). It is not clear, however, what the minimum requirements would be. Presumably a declaration by the publisher/editor in the book would be sufficient as peer-reviewer identities and reports are regarded as confidential. Publishers will probably be well advised to formulate official peer review policies for books (as they indeed have for journals). In (6.9) it is also hinted that DHET may in future “develop a list of reputable publishers”. 
  7. Another new requirement is “a written justification (maximum 500 words) signed by the author of the book or the general editor explaining the contribution that the book makes to scholarship.” The full requirements for the “justification” are described in 6.10 – 6.11. Presumably this can also be published in the book itself.
  8. The opportunity is also created for later editions (6.12) of presumably previously subsidised books, and Dissertations and Theses (specifically excluded for subsidy in 6.3 a) to be subsidised if at least 50% new research has been added or “reworked” (6.13). Evidence must be provided for the new content/reworking.

CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS
The dispensation for conference proceedings is also substantially amended and improved. Its model is a mixture of the journal and book models, with approved indices for conference proceedings and evaluation and approval of individual proceedings (meeting certain criteria).
  1. “Approved conference lists or other indices” for conference proceedings will be published by DHET before 31 January each year (7.2). Mention is made of a consultation process to determine which indices would be approved, but this may prove to be an onerous process.
  2. The criteria for subsidising a conference proceeding is much expanded (7.4). Most importantly it is now made clear that only full articles and not abstracts will be subsidised, and pre-publication peer review is now a requirement (7.4 b). Another new criterion is that more than 60% of contributions in the proceeding must be from multiple institutions (7.4 f), and that the conference must have an editorial board with a “significant majority” (undefined) of members beyond a single institution.
  3. The principle that a conference proceeding article published in an accredited journal will be treated (and therefore subsidised) as a journal article, ie, one unit, is maintained (7.5), as opposed to the subsidy value of 0.5 units per article in a conference proceeding (7.6). It is clear that DHET prefers journal articles over proceeding articles, probably because journals are more structured, particularly with regard to peer review, with a better chance of maintaining a better quality.
  4. The DHET will also establish a list of South African approved conference proceedings, which will be compiled from the normal submission of proceedings for subsidy purposes (7.9). Although not explicitly stated, it is assumed that this South African list will also be published before the end of January each year.
  5. Evidence of “clear and unambiguous…pre-publication peer review” must be provided with every application for subsidy. It is not clear in what form this must be, perhaps a policy approved by the editorial board and a declaration by the conference editor that it was adhered to?

CONCLUSION
The new policy has brought many clarifications, and introduced a few important changes, particularly with regard to the accreditation of scholarly journals and the subsidy unit value of scholarly books. DHET seems focused on rewarding quality research. The dispensation for scholarly books in particular is much improved, and it should stimulate the proliferation of research publication in books. The quality requirements for scholarly journals were made harder to attain and these will probably hamper the development of new journals, which will perhaps be an unintended consequence of these amendments.
 
Pierre JT de Villiers
Managing Director, AOSIS

Disclaimer: AOSIS (Pty) Ltd disclaims all liability for any loss, damage, injury or expense however caused, arising from the use of or reliance upon, in any manner, the information provided through this news item and does not warrant the truth, accuracy or completeness of the information provided.

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The Southern African Journal of HIV Medicine celebrates its 15th year of publication by joining AOSIS in 2015

13 March 2015
We welcome all to visit the journal at www.sajhivmed.org.za, and invite authors to submit original research and reviews on HIV/AIDS treatment, prevention and related topics relevant to clinical and public health practice.

To ease you into contributing to the journal, view the instructions for authors. Other relevant information about the journal’s policies and review process can be found under the about section.

We are also pleased to announce that eCPD healthcare, www.healthcare.ecpd.co.za, will now host all of the journals’ CPD activities, making these courses available to all Southern African HIV Clinicians Society members at no extra charge. You will receive an email from eCPD Healthcare with your login details. After login, please update your eCPD profile to ensure your personal information is correct. For your convenience we have uploaded the SAJHIVMED Vol 15(3) and Vol 15(4) activities as well. Should you require any further information, please contact the AOSIS eCPD administrator at info@ecpd.co.za.

Happy learning and researching!

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What ‘open source’ really means

11 March 2015
AOSIS would like to contribute to Open Education Week (9-13 March) by offering some clarity on open-source software for e-learning. Andries Jansen, eLearning Manager at AOSIS, explains what an open-source LMS is – and what it isn’t.

Learning management system (LMS): A software application for the administration, documentation, tracking, reporting and delivery of electronic educational technology (also called e-learning) education courses or training programmes.

What open source is NOT: What open source IS: The main advantage of an open-source LMS is the fact that it can be customised to suit your needs. Every learning environment is unique, and there is no one cookie-cutter solution for all.

Open-source does not restrict you as to how you use your LMS or how many users you may have. On the other hand, when using a ‘closed source’ you can’t (for example) develop your own plugins or change how your students interact with the system yourself – you have to contact a partner, reseller or the original developers, which is both costly and time-consuming.

AOSIS eLearning is owned and managed by AOSIS, and is the Certified Moodle Partner for South Africa. In the 8th Annual Survey of Learning Tools, the Moodle LMS ranked top on the list (or best of breed) in the educational category, for course management. See the list of the Top 100 Tools for Learning 2014 here: http://c4lpt.co.uk/top100tools/best-of-breed/. Make mine a Moodle!

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South African Journal of Physiotherapy now published by AOSIS

20 February 2015
The South African Journal of Physiotherapy celebrates its 71st year of publication by joining AOSIS in 2015.

We welcome all to visit the journal at www.sajp.co.za, and invite authors to submit original research and reviews covering diverse topics concerned with but not limited to the scientific basis and clinical application of physiotherapy, education of practitioners, management of services and policy.

To ease you into contributing to the journal, view the instructions for authors . Other relevant information about the journal’s policies and review process can be found under the about section.

Happy researching!

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AOSIS supports statement by National Research Foundation requiring all publicly funded research to be made available by open access

18 February 2015
The National Research Foundation (NRF) promotes and supports research in South Africa, with a view to generating knowledge and promoting high-level research capacity within the National System of Innovation. Publication of NRF-funded research outputs contributes to the knowledge base of the country, growing the knowledge economy, promoting innovation and stimulating development.

The NRF has now released a statement on open access (OA), which attests that research outputs resulting from public funds must be made freely accessible. From 1 March 2015 authors of research papers generated from research either fully or partially funded by the NRF, when submitting and publishing in academic journals, should deposit their final peer-reviewed manuscripts into the administering institution repository, with an embargo period of no more than 12 months. Earlier OA is possible, should this be allowed by the relevant publisher. If the paper is published in an OA journal or the publisher allows the deposit of the published version in PDF format, this should be deposited into the administering institutional repository and OA provided as soon as possible. In addition, data supporting the publication should be deposited in an accredited OA repository, with provision of a Digital Object Identifier (doi number) for future citation and referencing.

AOSIS Publishing, formally AOSIS OpenJournals, the largest OA specialist academic publisher in South Africa, welcomes this decision by the NRF. Said Prof. Pierre de Villers, MD of AOSIS: “I am delighted about this decision, which further bolsters the importance of OA publishing in South Africa and globally. Since publication of the first online OA journals in the late 1980s, scholarly OA publishing has accelerated and grown by leaps and bounds, with almost 10,000 OA journals currently listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals, of which 67 are from South Africa (the second highest number for an African country). In South Africa at least 50% of scholarly journals already publish in OA. It is the way forward for getting research out of obscurity and into the public domain and where it can be of most use. Since it is the public that pays for the research done by the NRF, it makes sense that research outputs are made available to the public and other users through OA as swiftly as possible.”

The NRF is a signatory to the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Science and Humanities. The issue of OA has also gained impetus over the past few years with international funding agencies such as the Global Research Council (of which the NRF is a member). NRF’s statement on OA brings it into line with other international funding agencies.

The NRF also requires its relevant business units and national research facilities to actively collaborate with relevant governmental departments and public higher education and research institutions to facilitate OA of publications generated from publicly funded research. In addition, the NRF requires its stakeholder community to actively seek collaboration with the international scientific community to facilitate OA of publications generated from publicly funded research across the world.

For more information, read the NRF statement and their responses to questions issued on 19 January 2015.

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Open Access Scholarly Publishing in South Africa - 2014

15 October 2014
Africa is a very large continent, the whole of North America and Western Europe combined can easily fit within its continental borders, but compared to those continents, Africa’s scholarly output in the form of scientific articles has been very poor.

Read the full article online here, updated on our latest letterhead.

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Our new eCPD Healthcare website was launched this month!

11 September 2014
Improvements include our new fresh look, easier navigation, a shopping cart facility and improved search functionality. Read more here.

Take advantage of our 15% discount on all eCPD credits, currently running until 30 September 2014. T&C apply. Go to our course pricing page.

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The Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie offers the full journal archives online

27 March 2014
AOSIS has completed the processing and uploading of all archived content for the Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie (www.satnt.ac.za), from 1982 to 1989 (Volumes 1 to 8) concluding the full-text of the archives of the Journal. It is now available online on the journal site.

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SA Journal of Radiology joins AOSIS

6 March 2014
The SA Journal of Radiology is the official journal of the Radiological Society of South Africa and the Professional Association of Radiologists in South Africa and Namibia.

The SA Journal of Radiology is a general diagnostic radiological journal. It carries research articles and letters, editorials, radiological practice and other radiological articles and personal opinions, South African health-related news, obituaries and general correspondence.The Journal joined AOSIS in March 2014.

Visit the journal website at www.sajr.org.za.

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South African Journal of Communication Disorders joins AOSIS

4 March 2014
The South African Journal of Communication Disorders is concerned with research and critically evaluative theoretical, philosophical and conceptual issues dealing with aspects of human communication and its disorders, dysphagia, service provision, training and policy.

This journal joined AOSIS in February 2014; visit the journal website at www.sajcd.org.za.

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Literator translated into Afrikaans

4 March 2014
Literator offers readers the opportunity to choose one of the other official South African languages to interact with the journal website, namely Afrikaans.

We invite you to enjoy the reading benefits that come with the additional language by visiting the website here, www.literator.org.za.

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Bothalia - African Biodiversity & Conservation joins AOSIS

4 March 2014
Bothalia, which has served the South African botanical community since its inception in 1921, is changing its name. The new subtitle, African Biodiversity & Conservation, reflects the expanded mandate of the South African National Biodiversity Institute (SANBI) in the biodiversity sciences.

Bothalia's rich scientific history of covering South Africa's fauna and flora will henceforth include content on African biodiversity under the Bothalia - African Biodiversity & Conservation umbrella. We welcome Bothalia – African Biodiversity & Conservation to AOSIS.

To visit the website click the link, www.abcjournal.org.

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Department of Higher Education and Training includes three new titles from AOSIS for 2014

1 November 2013
AOSIS is proud to announce that three of its journal titles have been newly included in the Department of Higher Education and Training (DoHET) Approved List of South African journals.

These journals are: These journals are therefore accredited and approved by the DoHET for inclusion in the subsidy system for research publications in South Africa, effective from 01 January 2014.
We congratulate the editors, reviewers and authors on this remarkable achievement.

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Using Open Access content in eLearning

26 September 2013
Open Access refers to free and unrestricted access via the Internet to articles published in scholarly journals, book chapters or monographs. Using Open Access articles in online courses is something that seems to be very inviting to course creators, as there is nothing less expensive than free.

If you want to go this route, you have to carefully observe the licence under which an article is published, and take all relevant steps to obtain permission to use the article.Usage rights are usually defined in the applicable usage licence attached to the article. Just because an article is Open Access does not mean copyright is not involved – it just means that the article is free to access.

Authors usually do not mind their articles being used as long as they are properly referenced, since their articles get more exposure in this way.

Examples of successful implementations:
Although Open Access articles are free to access, there may still be certain usage limitations applicable. It may also be a challenge to find Open Access material that complements your course outcomes.

In support of Open Access Week 2013 (21 – 27 October 2013), a global week providing academic and research communities with the opportunity to learn more about the benefits of Open Access resources and to share what they have learned with colleagues and peers, we are holding a free webinar.

Learn more about the Open Access licence and the advantages and challenges it holds when using Open Access content in your eLearning courses, and see examples of effective implementations in our 30-minute online webinar on 23 October 2013 at 4:00 PM - 04:30 PM, GMT +2. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER.

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AOSIS introduces South Africa’s first multilingual journal website

20 September 2013
This month we introduce die Suid-AfrikaanseTydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie (SATNT), www.satnt.ac.za, as a multilingual journal website. It can be read online in both Afrikaans and English.

Presenting the journal as a multilingual journal website improves access and the personalised online experience for a broader South African market. We aim to introduce more multilingual journal websites in the coming months, and trust that that this improvement will contribute to the dissemination of academic research within our country.

In the coming years one could envision providing this wonderful feature in all African languages on our journal websites.

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Social media in eLearning

22 August 2013
In support of Women’s Day on 9 August, a South African public holiday that pays homage to the women of our nation, we are focusing this month on integrating social media with your eLearning platform.

According to online studies, women use social media much more than men: in fact, 71% of women use social media compared to 62% of men. Women are also more inclined to ‘share’ and ‘re-post’ information through social media. There are two methods to integrate your eLearning courses with social media: eLearning to social media (promote your eLearning courses) and social media to eLearning (promote your business), as outlined below.

1. eLearning to social media
Promote your eLearning course information by adding ’Share’ or ’Like’ buttons to your courses’ descriptions. This way, when someone is impressed with your course, they can simply click on the button and instantly share it with their social network. There are various plugins that enable you to share your information from your learning platforms to social networks. The aim is to optimise viral marketing and let your existing users promote your courses amongst their network.

2. Social media to eLearning
This method will enable you to post newsworthy information regarding your company on your business social media platforms, and have them automatically updated on your eLearning platform. The aim of this method is to keep your users engaged with your company brand, with the hope that they will ‘Like’ or ‘Follow’ your business page and stay updated on new course releases after they have completed a course.

Social media is part of every person's life today. So much so that it has become unavoidable to consider how to integrate it with eLearning. Register for our webinar titled Social media best practices with an LMS taking place on 29 August 2013, 4:00 PM - 04:30 PM, GMT +2 . CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

At the webinar we will we will share the best practices when integrating social media with eLearning courses, and all the do's and don'ts.

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The Verbum et Ecclesia journal archives, from 1980 to 2012, now available online

8 August 2013
AOSIS has completed the processing and uploading of all archived content for Verbum et Ecclesia (www.ve.org.za), from 1980 to 2012 (Volumes 1 to 33). It is available online on the journal site here.

Verbum et Ecclesia is a theological research journal that challenges traditional discourses within and between the fields of biblical, religious, social and human sciences as well as the constructive engagement with the natural sciences.

It is an instrument of engagement between theological disciplines, on the one hand, and theology and other disciplines, on the other.

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AOSIS MD nominated as candidate to join OASPA’s 2013 Board of Directors

25 July 2013
We are pleased to announce that our Managing Director, Dr Pierre de Villiers, is one of thirteen candidates nominated for three open seats on the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA) Board of Directors.

Dr Pierre de Villiers is professionally trained as a family physician and worked for 10 years in private practice in Cape Town before being appointed Professor and Head of the Department of Family Medicine and Primary Care at the University of Stellenbosch, a position he held for 20 years. He holds a fellowship by peer review of the College of Medicine of South Africa, and a doctorate from the University of Stellenbosch in the field of community health. He is former editor-in-chief of the scholarly journal South African Family Practice, and current managing editor of the African Journal of Primary Health Care and Family Medicine, with a total of 15 years of editorial experience.

AOSIS introduced open access scholarly publishing to the South African market in 2005 and has been responsible for many publishing innovations in the country, such as online manuscript management, Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs), publishing in XML and ePUB and QR codes.

OASPA provides a forum for bringing together the entire community of Open Access journal publishers, representing the interests of Open Access journal and book publishers globally in all scientific, technical and scholarly disciplines.

OASPA has requested their members to indicate by 15 August who their three top choices (in no particular order) are from the candidates list. To read a short biography of each candidate as well as a statement about their interest in joining OASPA’s Board of Directors, visit http://oaspa.org/oaspa-election-candidates-2013/

We wish all candidates the best as each is a deserving representative.

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The ‘Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie’ journal archives, from 1990 to 2000, now available online

23 July 2013
AOSIS has completed the processing and uploading of all archived content for the Suid-Afrikaanse Tydskrif vir Natuurwetenskap en Tegnologie (SATNT) (www.satnt.ac.za), from 1990 to 2000 (Volumes 9 to 19). It is available online on the journal site here.

SATNT is an influential and accredited multi-disciplinary journal that promotes science and technology on the African continent since 1981. The journal explores the latest developments in science and technology and provides insightful research material in Afrikaans (an indigenous African language).

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Great success for first Moodle MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) for school teachers

4 July 2013
The first official Moodle MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) started on 1 June 2013 and closed at the end of June 2013. This four-week MOOC was aimed at school teachers wanting to use Moodle as an online teaching tool. Each week a new topic was released and the school teachers could work through the week’s material in their own time.

This MOOC was widely anticipated, and by 25 May 1100 users had registered for the course. To date 2055 users from across the globe registered for it.

The MOOC was hosted via the WizIQ platform and used open source tools such as Moodle and Google Drive to demonstrate to school teachers – and anyone else who wishes to teach online – how to teach more efficiently using the available online tools.

Course topics included the following:
We invite you to visit and enrol in the free MOOC course: Click here. You will also have the opportunity to review course feedback and recordings. We hope to see more MOOC course initiatives in the following months as it makes a significant contribution to the empowerment of teaching online.

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Back issue digitisation: six journals completed

28 June 2013
Back issue digitisation refers to the process of scanning back journal issues that were previously available only in print format, and making them available online. This helps to create a complete digital archive of journals for future researchers to build upon, and contributes to the following:
Over the past five years the following journals within the AOSIS portfolio have benefitted from our back issue digitisation:
These participating journals gave us the rights to archive the scanned material and make it freely available to the public through their journal websites, subject to the normal ‘fair use’ provisions of copyright law. As with all existing and new content in our journals, copyright for the scanned material remains with the individual authors.

We invite and welcome you to visit these journals’ websites to view the digitised content. More journals within our portfolio will be digitised in the coming months. We encourage you to look out for these developments.

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Using learning management systems (LMSs) in schools

18 June 2014
The use of learning management systems (LMSs) in schools can be a great advantage for both teachers and learners if implemented correctly. For this reason we encourage prospective LMS users to consult professionals before implementation, in order to make sure that their LMS is optimally utilised within their unique environment from the start, before initial setup. Consultants should advise on how to overcome the main challenges from the technical and curriculum management side, but can also give advice on change management for the staff.

One can implement an LMS in a school environment in two ways: as a course repository, or to complement face-to-face classes.

1. Course repository
Teachers can upload course material or class notes onto the LMS for students to download at home before the class starts, the previous evening or at the school facilities. This enables teachers to track who downloaded material and when. This also gives the students more ownership of their content and the opportunity to work through the notes before the class starts.

2. Complementing face-to-face classes
An LMS complements face-to-face class sessions by utilising online assessments. For example, by setting up multiple-choice questionnaires teachers can test the knowledge which learners have obtained from the curriculum through online formative assessments. Using this method allows teachers to spend more time in the classroom attending to learners with specific needs or focusing on the more difficult content.

Unfortunately there seems to be a great resistance to change from teachers, because they do not know how to use an LMS to their advantage. To overcome this challenge you could encourage change amongst teachers by emphasising the advantage of using the LMS for optimising processes and improving their teaching quality. Be patient to help them transition from being a content teacher to a facilitator of learning.

Encourage your teachers by emphasising that an LMS will:
By optimally utilising an LMS within your unique environment from the start, and fostering positive change management amongst your teachers, you could successfully run an eLearning environment at your school, to the benefit of all.

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AOSIS on kykNET program: Ontbytsake

14 June 2013
Ontbytsake on kykNET focusses each week on various sectors of business and industry. Thirty minutes of the show each week is dedicated to this ‘Focus’ and tomorrow morning (June the 15th) they are focussing on Durbanville & surrounds. AOSIS features as one of those Durbanville companies and we invite you to view the Ontbytsake program between 07:30 and 09:00, DStv Channel 144.

The episode is repeated on Sunday, June 16 between 7:30 and 9:00 and on Tuesday, June 18 and Thursday, June 20, between 13:00 and 14:00. We will also receive an electric copy of the broadcast and will make it available to viewers on our website within the coming weeks.

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Literator journal archives, from 1980 to 2012, now available online

30 May 2013
AOSIS has completed the processing and uploading of all archived content for Literator (www.literator.org.za), from 1980 to 2012 (volume 1 to volume 33). It is available online on the journal site here.

Literator is an influential, frequently cited, peer reviewed and open access journal and is accredited since 1988.

The journal publishes research articles and essays on linguistics and literature in general, but focuses in particular on the study and comparative study of South African languages and literatures and other cultural phenomena across language, media and cultural boundaries (e.g. different manifestations of Post-Modernism, the interaction between visual arts and literature, the representation of the South African War in literature, nick-names among students, language attitudes and language policy).

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New official Moodle app in beta phase

28 May 2013
What is more exciting than the release of Moodle 2.5 this month is that the Moodle HQ released the free beta version of a new and improved official Moodle app for iTunes and Android markets. The application is based on HTML5 specifications and is truly platform independent. What makes this app so significant is that it aims not simply to replicate the Moodle website with a mobile theme, but rather to improve user experience by enhancing the mobile viewability and navigation of Moodle features, such as messaging, notifications and access to offline content.

This version allows for more interaction of Moodle in the app itself, than in the previous version, where you were still directed to the browser when accessing courses. It is extremely fluid and very easy to navigate. The founder of Moodle.com, Martin Dougiamas, says that this is the way that Moodle will navigate in future (both on mobile and desktop type devices).

As this app is still in the beta phase, we highly recommend that you should test it and supply feedback to Moodle HQ , as they will consider all recommendations for implementation and improvements.

If your Moodle implementation does not have web services activated, then please view the following site through the app for testing:
We have found this app to be quite impressive and are eagerly awaiting its final release.

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Highlights of the new Moodle 2.5

23 May 2013
Moodle 2.5 features a number of improvements that will benefit both the learners and the administrators. From the students’ point of view a few of the highlights are the new versatile Bootstrap theme and being able to award badges to learners who excel. There are also new features for administrators and course creators such as collapsible forms and the pop-up HTML editor. New versatile Bootstrap theme This theme is widely used in web design, and is a new standard that is being incorporated in Moodle. The theme works on a responsive principle that allows it to automatically adjust according to which device it is displayed on – mobile, tablet or PC. This allows users to access their content from any device while keeping the same look and feel.

Awarding badges to excelling learners
Teachers are able to award badges based on performance in a course as well as accomplishments. Badges are images with embedded meta data that can also be shared on other social media sites. If anyone clicks on the badge, the user will be directed to the issuing site that will verify that the badge is authentic.

Collapsible forms and pop-up HTML editor
The first improvement for administrators, collapsible forms, will allow them to collapse parts of forms in order to prevent ‘the scroll of death’. The second improvement, the pop-up HTML editor, allows the administrators to see just the basic editor tools, and when they need the advanced options they will pop up, which minimises screen clutter.

Although the new features of Moodle 2.5 are very exciting, we encourage our clients to wait for three months from the date of release before upgrading. By this time most of the bugs would have been identified and resolved.

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Changing trends, content delivery and technologies in eLearning

18 April 2013
The changing trends, content delivery and technologies in eLearning pose many opportunities for entrepreneurs and content developers. Once embraced, there will be a great change in the learning industry.

Trends
Teachers are moving towards a facilitator role, whereby each learner will receive more attention in specific fields. This accommodates learners that learn at different speeds and motivates engagement.

lthough technologies advance the industry by allowing more delivery options, they have also become a restriction as teachers resist them through fear of becoming redundant.

Students are becoming more empowered and are led to do their own research. Collaboration with other learners is encouraged to gain more knowledge, even through social learning by using social media platforms like YouTube/Flicker/Twitter and various forums.

Content
Interactive content has replaced static content delivery. This includes SCORM and lately “gamification”. Gamification teaches the learner real-life skills by playing games specifically designed for certain learning outcomes. The interactive learning approach enables all learners to obtain the required learning outcome in the same time period, accommodating those that traditionally fell behind owing to being slower readers.

Open access content and open source software can be used to deliver content cost-effectively.

There are open access publishers in the market, for example AOSIS Publishing, as well as Open Education Resource repositories worldwide, such as OER Africa. Some international universities have taken this one step further and introduced open courses, whereby learners can do a complete course at the university at no cost; the only cost is for certification or to obtain the degree. Examples here are iTunes university and Coursera. This also allows customised content to be delivered to audiences in certain fields with low to no Internet access.

Technology
The traditional classroom model, where a teacher stands in front of learners, is rapidly changing to a form of blended learning, where the teacher becomes a facilitator to help learners develop research skills and explore the world on their own.

One thing to keep in mind is that with all the technology out there, such as Blackberry, iOS, Android and Windows Mobile, the content needs to be delivered in a manner that will be accessible across different platforms.

Globally, more people have access to mobile devices than personal computers; this has led to the development of mLearning. Even in populations where people have access to both a mobile device and a personal computer, mobile devices receive preference due to the ‘always-on’ factor. Even entry-level mobile devices are capable of accessing the Internet nowadays.

A child can create an ebook on a mobile device to tell a story of what they did in their holidays. As an assignment, the teacher can set up the basic structure of the book and share that with the class to complete the learning outcomes. Technology also makes location-based training possible; take for instance a utility company worker that arrives at a distribution box in an unfamiliar town. Equipped with a mobile device with GPS, the device can then - based on the location of the worker - provide the relevant manuals to service the distribution box.

Conclusion
There are a lot of options out there to deliver your online training. Partnering with knowledgeable professionals will ensure that you chose the best solution for your training needs.