About the Journal

 INTRODUCTION

Global demand for knowledge-economy called for universities to actively engage in research and technology generation and transfer activities. In this regard, universities are required to take a prime initiative in disseminatingresearch results, exchanging of knowledgeand partnering with international organizations to share new knowledge, theories, and practices. This may take various forms, of which, having an institutionally accredited journal is one.

As stipulated in the Research, Technology Transfer Directive communicated to higher education institutions by MoSHE Art.19(2), Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) in Ethiopia are expected to contribute to the corpus of scientific knowledge through publications, presentations at scientific meetings,  and education and training of the next generation scientists and professionals. Besides, HEI proclamation 1152/2019 Art 26 (2) gives universities the mandate to publish and disseminate their research outputs to the wider national and international community.

With the current paradigm shift in university differentiation in Ethiopia, Dilla University has been categorized as an applied university with focus on Agriculture, Natural Resources, Health, and Teacher Education. This brings to shed light on the university’s role to excel in knowledge sharing through publication in the fields of education. This has been enhanced by the university’s long years of experience in the fields of education both at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. Thus, this guidelines has been formulated for launching ‘Dilla Journal of Education’ (DJE) in place with the unreserved effort of Research and Technology Transfer Vice President Office, Research and Dissemination Office, and the commitment of the Institute of Education and Behavioural Sciences (IBES) and the Centre for Educational Studies and Research (CESR).

Aims

DJE aims topublish high-quality research outputs that havean impact on the development ofknowledge that helps educators in problem-solving in educational settings; and fostering collaborations among researchers, academia, and scientists.

Scope

DJE will be an open-access peer-reviewed journal published in both printed and online version. DJEpublishes biannually full-length original research papers, critical reviews of books and research articles, shortresearch communications, and commentaries in education.The number of articles to be published per issue shall not be less than five and should not exceed 10 articles. Depending on circumstances, a special edition may be issued.

Education is a broad subject that is intertwined with various related disciplines. As a result, its areas of study are diverse. Hence, it is not feasible for this journal to list the entire breath of education research. Therefore, the primary areas of education research under DJE include:

  • Teacher Education,Curriculum and Instruction
  • Educational Planning and Management
  • Educational Psychology
  • Special Needs and Inclusive Education

Mission

DJEis dedicated to disseminate education research findings toinform policy and improve practice. DJEis also committed to publish high-quality education researches that meet advanced requirements.

Types of publications

As indicated above, DJE publishes original researches, reviews, case studies, short communications, and reflections that meet the required standards. Each of these is described below.

  • Full-length original researches: Original research work refers to manuscripts with elements of (clear statement of purpose, a review of literature, a description of research methods, presentation and discussion of researcher results, implications, and limitations, if any.
  • Article Reviews: these reviews refer to published articles in peer-reviewed journals in the diverse fields of education will be accepted.
  • Book reviews: Are detailed description, critical examination, and/or assessment of the content, context, and significance of a book often written in relation to previous research on the subject.
  • Explications of theory: manuscripts in the form of theory explanations by experienced researchers, teachers and informed analysis and insights regarding effective practice in the broader field of education.
  • Reflections on education: manuscripts that represent reflection of practitionersin education with a clear explanation of a theoretical perspective that informs practice, a description of the historical context, a justification based on literature, and a discussion of theories and practices with their implications in the broader field of education.
  • Commentaries:a series of comments, explanations, or annotations: a commentary on education.

Readership

The target audiences of this publication would be academicians, higher education, research scholars, graduate students, practitioners and others interested and engaged in education and research.

EDITORIAL POLICY

To maintain a high standard of publications in this journal, the editorial board requires editorial policy concerning research ethics, peer review processes, submission guidelines, etc. The editorial policy sets out the requirements of articles and rights of authors, and the roles and responsibilities of editors, and reviewers. Below the editorial policy that regulates the journal's publication is presented.

Research Ethics

Research ethics in this journal is considered as an essential building block in the creation and sharing knowledge that is reliable and valid. It is believed that adherence to ethical guidelines in research publications is a reflection of the quality work of researchers and authors. This journal supports the notions of the scientific method. It is therefore important to set standards of expected ethical considerations before submitting manuscripts to the publisher by the researchers. In order to get their articles published in this journal, researches should meet the required ethical guidelines of this journal. The Ethical issues to observe when publishing in this journal is:

Authorship

Authorship in this journal is limited to those who have made contributions to the article. Hence, those submitting research papers to this journal should carefully check that all those who contributed to the paper are acknowledged as authors.  Principal authorship, authorship order, and other publication credits should be based on the relative scientific or professional contributions of the individuals involved, regardless of their status. This journal requires an author or authors to sign in the form of author statement (Appendix A).

A corresponding author for a co-authored article is primarily responsible for communication with the journal during the manuscript submission, review process, and all the journal’s administrative requirements, such as providing details of authorship, ethics committee approval, documentation, and gathering conflict of interest forms and statements, are properly completed, although these duties may be delegated to one or more co-authors.

The corresponding author is the person who signs the publishing agreement on behalf of all authors and whose contact details are included in the article. Co-authors should be available after publication to respond to critiques of the work and cooperate with any requests from the journal for data or additional information about the paper after publication.

Acknowledgements

Proper acknowledgements of all contributors and sources cited or referred in the article for this journal must always be given. If necessary, contributors who do not meet the criteria for authorship and who provided technical and/or financial supports such as individuals, and/or institutions might be acknowledged.

Third-party submissions

In cases an individual who is not listed as an author submits a manuscript on behalf of the author(s). The statements should:

  • disclose the type of editorial assistance including the individual’s name, company and level of input.
  • identify any entities that paid for this assistance.
  • confirm that the listed authors have authorized the submission of their manuscript via the third party and approved any statements or declarations, e.g. conflicting interests, funding, etc.

Where appropriate DJE will reserve the right to deny consideration to manuscripts submitted by a third party rather than by the authors themselves.

Confidentiality

This journal treats submitted manuscripts and all communications with referees and corresponding authors as confidential. Authors should also treat communication with the Journal as confidential. Confidential materials, correspondence with the journal, and reviewers’ reports must not be posted on any website or publicized without prior permission from the editors whether or not the submission is eventually polished. The editors themselves are not allowed to discuss manuscripts with third parties or to reveal information about correspondences and other interactions with authors and referees.

In other words, editors of this journal do not release reviewers’ identities to authors or other reviewers except when reviewers specifically ask to be identified. However, editors prefer that reviewers should remain anonymous throughout the review process. Referees of manuscripts submitted to this journal also undertake in advance to maintain the confidentiality of manuscripts and any associated supplementary data. Before revealing their identities, reviewers should consider the possibility that they may be asked to comment on the criticisms of other reviewers and further revisions of the manuscript; identified reviewers may find it more difficult to be objective in such circumstances.

Reviewers are requested not to identify themselves to authors without the editors’ knowledge. If they wish to reveal their identities while the manuscript is under consideration, this should be done via the editors. Uses of images or case details, studies on patients or volunteers require ethics committee approval and informed consent, which should be documented in the article.

Originality and Plagiarism

DJE publishes dominantly original researches. Manuscripts for concurrent consideration for publication by another journal are not acceptable. Already published manuscripts should not also be submitted to DJE for publication. This journal seriously considers plagiarism or other breaches of research practices in publication earnestly. The editorial board of the journal protects the rights of authors and the board will always investigates claims of plagiarism or misuse of published articles or the data used for research.

The authors should ensure that they have produced entirely original works, and if the authors have used the work and/or words of others they have to appropriately cite or quoted the sources. This journal has a policy of Zero Tolerance on Plagiarism. The editorial board shall check plagiarism issues through reviewer check and plagiarism prevention tool. When an author discovers a significant error or inaccuracy in his/her published work, the author should promptly notify the journal editor and cooperate with the editor to retract or correct the paper.

All submissions to this journal should be checked by plagiarism prevention software before being sent to reviewers. The authors are also expected to attach the similarity index report generated by the duplication checker software.  Where an article, is found to have plagiarized the work others or included third-party copyright material without permission or with insufficient acknowledgements, or where the authorship of the article is contested, the editorial board reserve the right to take appropriate legal action. Moreover, authors of original research should present an accurate account of the work performed as well as an objective discussion of its significance.

Data Access and Retention

In this journal, the editorial board is dedicated to facilitate openness, transparency and reproducibility of research. Thus, the Board encourages authors to share their research data and to include a data accessibility statement in their manuscript file. Furthermore, authors may be asked to provide the raw data for editorial review and should be prepared to provide such data.

Disclosure and Declaration of Conflicts of interest

The editorial board of the journal encourages authors to include a declaration of any conflicting interests and recommends the good practice guidelines on the authors’ guidelines. Therefore, submissions of articles in this journal must include disclosure of all relationships that could be viewed as presenting a potential conflict of interest. An author should not, in general, publish manuscripts describing essentially the same research in more than one journal or primary publication.

Peer-Reviewing Policy

The process of reviewing is considered critical to establishing reliable body knowledge and process research. The review process aims to make authors meet the standards of their discipline and science in general. DJE employs the Double-blind model of peer review where the reviewer doesn't know the identity of the author, and vice-versa.

In this journal, all submitted manuscripts will pass through preliminary assessment by the editorial staff (Appendix C). To save time for authors and peer-reviewers, only those manuscripts that meet the editorial criteria are sent for external and formal review. Those papers judged by the editors as poor in their organization, presentation, language use and proficiency and insufficient to address educational issues or if they are judged as not directly or indirectly related to educational problems shall be rejected promptly. The decisions are based on the preliminary assessors’ reports and acceptance by the Editorial Board of the validity of the assessors’ reports.

This journal utilizes a double-blind for peer-reviewing system in which both reviewers and authors’ identities remain anonymous to each other. The paper will be peer-reviewed by two external reviewers.

The editor, on the other hand, will pass the manuscripts that are accepted for publication to a publisher who will be responsible for organizing the editorial services and printing of the publication.

All manuscripts will be reviewed as rapidly as possible while maintaining rigour. The approach of this journal’s peer review mainly focuses on determining the quality of research methodology, the discussion of the results which precisely recapitulates the research, and the conclusion reached followings logically the research questions. The Editor or members of the Editorial Board may occasionally submit their manuscripts for possible publication in the journal. In these cases, the peer review process will be managed by alternative members of the Board and the submitting Editor/ Board member will have no involvement in the decision-making process.

This journal will be committed to delivering high quality and fast peer-review reports. To facilitate the review process, DJE will provide certificate of service for reviewers. It is believed that professional services from the external reviewers will be timely and of good quality.

The final result for publication in this journal is based on the editorial board decisions. In doing so, the board tries to evaluate the strength of the arguments raised by the author and each reviewer, and may also consider other information not available to either party. The editors’ primary responsibilities are serving their readers and the scientific community at large. In deciding how best to serve them, the Board must also weigh the claims of each paper.

Editors may return manuscripts to reviewers for further advice, particularly in cases where there are serious disagreements with the reviewers themselves or the reviewers with the authors, where authors believe they have been misunderstood on points of facts. When this happens, the Board should ask the reviewers whether they are willing to provide follow-up advice as requested. Editors should be very aware, however, that reviewers usually tend to be reluctant to be drawn into prolonged disputes, so they try to keep consultation to the minimum judgment necessary to provide a fair hearing for the authors. When reviewers agree to assess a paper, the Board should consider this as a commitment to reviewing subsequent revisions.

The Editorial Board takes reviewers’ criticisms seriously particularly by being very reluctant to disregard technical criticisms. In cases where one reviewer alone opposes manuscript publication, editors may consult the other reviewers as to whether s/he is applying an unduly critical standard. Otherwise, the manuscript may be sent to a third reviewer to resolve disputes and/or make the final decision on acceptance, but editors should avoid doing so unless there is a specific issue, for example, a special technical point on which editors feel a need for further advice.

The Editorial Board is authorized for the selection and assignment of reviewers. Since reviewer selection is critical to the publication process, and the Editorial Board should base its choice of reviewers on many factors, including expertise, reputation, specific recommendations, professional convent, willingness and their own previous experience of a reviewer’s personality and quality.

As a matter of policy, editors should not suppress reviewers’ reports; any comments that are intended for the authors are transmitted, regardless of what the Board many think of the content. Whenever necessary, the Board may edit a report to remove offensive language or comments that reveal confidential information.

The journal Editorial Board should be committed to rapid decisions and publication. Similarly, editors should ensure that an efficient editorial process is a valuable service to the authors, the scientific community as well as to the reputability of the journal. In this respect, it is believed that the editorial process could be completed within the following timeline.

Table 1: Estimated timeline for each editorial process

No

Activities

Estimated time

Implementing agents

1

Preliminary assessment

One week

Board members

2

Reorganization

One week

Author(s)

3

Reviewing

Four weeks

Reviewers

4

Revision

One to two weeks

Author(s)

5

Verification

One week

Board members

6

Reincorporation

One week

Author(s)

7

Language & layout edition

One week

Language editor(s)

8

Content and technical edition

One week

Content and technical editors

The submission and editorial process time is expected to be eleven to twelve weeks on average. However, it is common knowledge that some articles may take a longer time and some others less time. The decision and reviewers’ comments are then communicated to the author(s). The final decision will be made within a week after receiving the revised manuscript from the author(s). After the Board’s approval, the language and content edition should be done in about two weeks. Then, the technical and layout edition is carried out within one week. Publication of the journal should be continuous, i.e., once editors have at least five articles ready for publication, they proceed to publish that issue.

Editors, thus, ask reviewers to respond within four weeks. If reviewers anticipate a longer delay than previously expected, editors ask reviewers to let them know that editors can keep the authors informed, and, where necessary, find an alternative (if timely assessment reports would not be found, editors would request the assessor to return the manuscript and send it to another reviewer. Authors are also required to respond within one week if they are requested to reorganize or revise the submitted manuscripts.

Copyright

To protect authors and the journal against unauthorized reproduction of the whole or part of the published work, the journal requires copyright assigned to it as a publisher on conditions that authors may use their materials at any time without permission. On acceptance of a submitted paper, authors should sign an appropriate copyright form with the understanding that the right to reproduce in all forms and media is the exclusive right of the publisher. 

Article Processing Fee

This journal doesn’t charge author/s for publication of articles. Authors are not subjected to pay an article-processing charge to publish their articles in this journal. However, all accepted manuscripts are obligated to adapt the layout of the paper according to the journal's template.

Abstracting and Indexing Policy

DJE will arrange the application to indexing service. DJE will ensure the correct communications, permissions, and systems in the course of acceptance. The content of the journal will be indexed in an official Digital Object Identifier Registration Agency and assigned a Digital Object Identifier (DOI). This means that all of our references will be made available and citations can be tracked by the publishing community with a DOI number.

Funding

DJE will require all authors to acknowledge their funding consistently under a separate heading. The funding agency should be written out in full, followed by the grant number in square brackets, if any. See the following example (the text in bold is mandatory unless specified otherwise by the journal):

The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by the Thematic Research Grant [grant number xxx].

Multiple grant numbers should be separated by comma and space. Where the research was supported by more than one agency, the different agencies should be separated by semi-colon, with “and” before the final funder. Example:

This work was supported by the Thematic Research Grant [grant numbers xxxx]; the Natural Environment Research Council [grant number yyyy]; and the Economic and Social Research Council [grant number zzzz].

In some cases, research is not funded by a specific project grant, but rather from the block grant and other resources available to a university, college or other research institutions. Where no specific funding has been provided for the research, the corresponding authors are asked to use the following sentence:

The author(s) received no financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article.

Other Important Rules to Consider

DJE will have the following important rules to consider:

  • Language: English is the main language of publication for DJE. Other local languages when ever necessary can be also used for publication for DJE.
  • The language and descriptors used to describe research populations in DJE should be bias-free.
  • Authors to DJE are advised to refere the APA recemmendations for eliminating bias in language in relation to gender, age, racial and ethnic background, sexual orientation, disability status, and socioeconomic status.
  • Authors should avoid using derogatory demographic descriptors or offensive language.
  • Responsibility for Opinions and/or Views: Any statements in an article accepted for publication remain the sole responsibility of the author and should in no way be considered as reflecting the opinions of the editorial board or the publisher of DJE.

Dissemination and subscription policy

Editors of this journal will disseminate published manuscripts in hard or soft copy. The journal may provide open access to all of its contents on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge. Moreover, it is believed that such access is associated with increased readership and citation of an author’s work.

Institutions and individuals can subscribe to the journal copies of the journal. The subscription rate for institutions will be Birr 50 and for individuals Birr 25 per issue plus postage cost in Ethiopia. Overseas subscription rate is USD $ 30.00 for institutions and USD $20.00 for individuals per issue plus the postage cost to the address of the subscriber.

Embargo policy

A material submitted to this journal will not be discussed with the media except in the case of accepted contributions; which can be discussed with the media no more than a week before the publication date under the embargo conditions.

Journalists are encouraged to read the full version of any paper they wish to cover, and will be given the names of corresponding authors, together with phone and fax numbers and e-mail addresses about a week before publication from editors. The contents of the press release and papers will be embargoed until the time and date clearly stated on the press release.

The Editorial Board of DJE permits articles to be released through various techniques such as social media, blogs, press release, and conversations to raise the visibility of research results without any modification and/or misinterpretations.

Standard of writing

DJE accepts the American Psychological Association (APA) publication manual and styles of writing research papers. APA helps authors, editors and reviewers maintain consistency in language, formatting, and visual style. All manuscripts to DJE should follow the style guidelines set forth for the latest version of the APA.