Sadly, perhaps, editorials in AJET cannot aspire to exert the weightiness attained by editorials in more influential scholarly journals. Owing to recent media exposure in Australia [1], some readers may be aware of an editorial in The Lancet [2]. Under the heading "Australia: the politics of fear and neglect", The Lancet aimed an all guns broadside:
Australian clinical and public-health research is an emblem of excellence across the Asia-Pacific region. That enviable position is being put at risk by Prime Minister John Howard's indifference to the academic medical community and his profound intolerance to those less secure than himself and his administration. [2]
Well, The Lancet can do that and get away with it, being a journal with great seniority and prestige on its side (plus high expertise): 'The Lancet first appeared on Oct 5, 1823.'[3] AJET, junior by 162 years, cannot fire such a remarkable broadside, but, just like Prime Minister John Howard, and unlike The Lancet, we do have to be concerned about our 'popularity', in our case with authors and readers. Now the word 'popularity' is not usual in scholarly publishing. We use more complex paradigms, such as the 'Impact Factor®', a Thomson ISI product [4]. For example, The Lancet proclaims an Impact Factor of 23.88 [5], whilst AJET does not have an Impact Factor, because we have not made it into the relevant Thomson product, Social Sciences Citation Index® [6] (hereinafter, let's omit the ®, it's an affectation). However, soon AJET will join BJET, 2005 IF 0.593 [7], ETR&D, 2004 IF 0.200 [8], and JETS, 2005 IF 0.267 [9] in the IF 'stakes'.

On 18 April 2007 we received this advice from a Thomson ISI Editor:

I am happy to inform you that the Australasian Journal of Educational Technology has been selected for coverage in the Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI). Indexing of this title is scheduled to begin later in 2007.[10]
We were pleased with that news, especially as we were on the point of cancelling the mailing of complimentary copies to Thomson ISI's offices in Philadelphia. Our first submission to their journal selection process [11] was dated 4 June 2004. For nearly three years, we received no response. Our last letter ('real' letter, not email) to Thomson ISI, dated 29 March 2007, included a paragraph referring politely to the length of the process:
After three years and the despatch of 11 issues (plus 23(1) despatched a few days ago), I am wondering whether you are able to provide any advice concerning AJET? Advice on whether to continue AJET despatches to you would be appreciated.[12]
However, we also promote AJET and monitor its progress with other providers of citation counts, Thomson ISI's competitors Scopus [13] (AJET coverage applied for) and Google Scholar [14]. Owing to different coverages of journals, citation counts differ (see, for example, Marinova, 2006 [15]), and therefore it is important for editors to monitor progress with all databases. Perhaps, just like practitioners in a more prominent and newsworthy sector of the Australian community (in an election year), we editors may be able to 'talk up' the citation count provider whose data makes our journal look good, whilst ignoring the others! Below, we present some preliminary investigations in Idle Moment 17.

AJET Management Committee resolutions

The AJET Committee [16] considered a Report from AJET staff during an asynchronous electronic meeting period, 23 April to 4 May 2007. Considerations and resolutions included the following matters.

1. Subscription rates. The proposed new rates, to apply in 2008 and to any new 2007 subscriptions are [17]:

The percentage increases from 'old rate' to 'new rate' are larger than the usual annual increases for many kinds of subscriptions, but of course we have not had annual increases in the past. The nominal, estimated margins per subscription (subscription minus annual print and postal) in 2008 are $11.50 for Australia, $8.00 for Asia-Pacific and $8.00 for Rest of World postal zones. We feel that the nominal margins seem fair and reasonable, especially in comparison with commercial journals, and are consistent with a 3-4 year time frame for retiring the printed version of AJET. The proposed increases are much smaller than the annual increases imposed by many other publishers, for example T&F, as illustrated in AJET Editorial 23(1) [18]. However, Committee noted that growth of AJET to five printed issues in 2008 or 2009 is likely to be precluded by cost (the total cost to ascilite for printing and posting member copies is about $3000 per issue). Committee noted also that AJET issues are close to the limit of the 'up to 250 g' class for international postage, and also close to the practical limit of thickness for C5 prepaid envelopes for Australian address postings. The cost penalties for exceeding about 156 total pages per issue are severe. Therefore, for short to medium term expansion we plan to investigate AJET special issues which are electronic only.

2. Expanded editorial team
Committee endorsed outline specifications and a proposed process to 'head hunt' for one or two honorary Associate Editors.

Their duty statements will be to recruit reviewers, advise reviewers, write editorial reject reviews, and write review process advice to authors, in collaboration with the Editor and Production Editor. We will be able to offer the new appointees a developmental, mentored environment. They may be asked to undertake the equivalent of 2-3 days per month total commitment of time. They should have relevant educational research experience and publications in areas represented in AJET and ascilite Conference Proceedings. They must have strongly positive attitudes towards "an encouraging and supportive view of the editorial role." (see, for example, the attitudes outlined in [19]) They must supply their own desktop computer and a broadband Internet connection, either via their employer's premises or their own home office. Library access is desirable but not essential. We feel that it is appropriate to specify membership of ascilite as a prerequisite and we propose to confine the public 'head hunt' to ascilite's membership, for example via ascilite's emailing list. Membership in kindred professional societies is desirable but not essential. It may be possible to recruit a retired member with considerable experience to one position, and a younger, relatively inexperienced member to the other.
3. Merger with IJET (International Journal of Educational Technology)
Committee approved this proposal. For details on what we have done and why, readers are invited to inspect the new archive [20] (note, however, that online 'proof reading' is still in progress).

4. Including AJET in EBSCO Publishing databases
Committee approved this proposal. In due course AJET articles will appear in EBSCO [21] products such as Education Research Index and Education Research Complete [22]. The benefit is an additional avenue for educational researchers to find AJET articles, at least for those whose libraries subscribe to EBSCO products. We are very aware that we have to improve AJET's 'findability' via the traditional abstracting and indexing services produced by EBSCO, T&F and others. It's not sufficient to rely upon Google [23] and library catalogue listings alone. However, as an open access journal we do not require the pay per view facility that EBSCO includes with its database products.

AJET's review process: 2007 update

Table 1 shows progress since our last report on AJET's review process, dated 31 October 2006 and presented in Editorial 22(4) [24]. Although we are maintaining a reasonable consistency in acceptance rate, at about 30% (Table 1), we continue to experience difficulties in attaining our desired benchmark of three months maximum for AJET's review process. For 2006 receipts, 34.3% of reviews were classed as 3 months or less, compared with 34.5% for 2005. Whilst that may suggest no improvement, we are pleased to report that for 2006 receipts, 70.7% of reviews were classed as 4 months or less, compared with 45.2% for 2005. We maintain a frequency histogram showing the distribution of review process times, and when we get to 90% of reviews classed as three months or less, we will publish it!

Table 1: Article review outcomes AJET 2003-2007

Year of
No. rejected
editorially (b)
No. reject
ext review (b)
No. with-
drawn (c)
accept (d)
No. publ-
% accep-
ted (e)
  1. Data in columns 2-8 is at 9 May 2007.
  2. Some of the rejected articles may appear again as receivals in a subsequent year. The reasons for counting these instances as rejections are to enable a clearer cut off for each year's outcomes, and to align data collection with the editorial advice, used in a significant proportion of cases, 'Reject. Invite resubmission of a revised or expanded work for a new review process'.
  3. Withdrawn means withdrawn at the request of the authors.
  4. The number of articles accepted from a particular year's receivals does not correspond to the number published in each year, owing to time taken for review and revisions, and fluctuations in the speed of these processes.
  5. % accepted is calculated from column 2 (No. rec'd) and column 7 (No. accepted).

Idle moment No. 16: Alerting services

Many readers will be familiar with 'alerting services' conducted by most publishers. This is an area we need to develop for AJET, in particular the use of alerting services based upon RSS feeds, which are increasing in popularity. For example:
Instead of spending hours at the library or on the library's website
to scan the latest journals, here are rss feeds you can use to track
the latest articles in your rss reader like bloglines:
http://edresearch.wikispaces.com/Journals [25].
Table 2 lists some illustrative examples of alerts provided by email and RSS feeds. Some publishers provide alerts using both methods. For a clear and succinct description of RSS from a journal publisher's perspective, see 'RSS for Beginners' by Terry Anderson [26]. Of the examples in Table 1, IRRODL may provide the most useful model for further study by AJET: small scale, open access, uses both email and RSS, and Keeps It Simple.

Table 2: Examples of alerting services

Journal or
Name of service
or title of page
EmailBJET [7]Sign up for E-Tocshttp://www.blackwell-synergy.com/action/doUpdateAlertSettings
ETR&D [8]Table of Contents Alert http://www.springer.com/east/home/education?SGWID=5-40406-70-
HERD [27]My Alerts http://www.informaworld.com/smpp/controlpanel~mode=alerts
AACE [28]Table of Contents Alert Service Signup http://www.editlib.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=Reader.EditTOCPreferences
Ingenta [29]Receiving email alerts http://www.ingentaconnect.com/about/researchers/receiving_email_alerts
IRRODL [30]Subscribe http://www.irrodl.org/miscfiles/subscribe.htm
RSSInnovate [31]The Innovate RSS Feed http://www.innovateonline.info/index.php?view=rss
Educause [32]Syndicate Resource Center Content http://www.educause.edu/Syndicate/1586
Ingenta [29]Subscribing to RSS feeds http://www.ingentaconnect.com/about/researchers/subscribing_to_rss_feeds
IRRODL [30]RSS for Beginners http://www.irrodl.org/miscfiles/rss.html

Idle moment No. 17: Google Scholar

Another avenue which we monitor for AJET purposes is Google Scholar [14] searches, using the string form: author:"author name", and Advanced Scholar Search, using 'Return articles published in' australasian journal of educational technology [34]. Table 3 gives results from a very modest, preliminary exploration of this facility, inspired by Dora Marinova's work [15]. For all articles in each volume listed in column 1, column 3 records the total of the "Cited by" numbers given by Google Scholar for the articles in that volume. Based on Table 3, let's record a guess at AJET's first Thomson ISI Impact Factor, expected in about 2010: 0.350.

Table 3: Google Scholar citation counts for 2005 articles in four journals

Average no. cits
per article
Thomson ISI
Impact Factor
AJET 200530672.23(pending!)
BJET [7] 2005592253.810.593 [7]
HERD [27] 200523532.30-
JETS [9] 200566781.180.267 [9]
  1. No. articles obtained from publisher's online tables of contents. The count excludes editorials, 'colloquia' (BJET), book reviews and other non-research or minor articles. No. citations obtained 10 May 2007, using "Return articles published in australasian journal of educational technology 2005-2005". Column 4 is from column3/column2. Column 5 data is for 2005, from the cited references.
  2. Trials with the much slower and more tedious process of author searches for each first author in column 1's journals tended to show lower or even significantly lower counts. Further observations will use journal title searches only.
  3. Owing to author errors in reference lists, it is necessary to check on variations in titles, including Educational Technology & Society (much more widely cited than Journal of...) and Australian... (an error for AJET 2005, should be Australasian...). We record our irritation at finding that several of AJET's authors could not cite their own articles correctly.
  4. Table 3 should be regarded as a longitudinal study now in progress. Developing and understanding the significance of Table 3 and similar compilations may require several years of tracking.

Idle moment No. 18: ERIC

For those who feel bewildered by the blisteringly fast pace of change in educational technologies, here is a reassuring story to show that the pace of change is sometimes agonisingly slow. Below, an extract from a recent email to ERIC (Educational Resources Information Center), following up on correspondence which commenced in November 2000:
Date: Mon, 5 Mar 2007 13:55:00 +0800
To: ericpub@csc.com
From: rjatkinson@bigpond.com (Roger Atkinson)
Subject: Australasian Journal of Educational Technology

Dear ERIC person,

For over six years I have tried to obtain a response from ERIC on the
matter of including AJET in "Journals Indexed in ERIC":

Australasian Journal of Educational Technology
ISSN 1449-3098 (print) 1449-5554 (online)

Some extracts from the correspondence are copied in below. Six years is quite a long time to be waiting!

Would you please advise?
We check Journals Indexed in ERIC [34] occasionally, and we wonder whether during November 2007 we may have to 'recycle' the email quoted above. Maybe changing "Six years..." to "Seven long years..."?

Roger Atkinson and Catherine McLoughlin
AJET Production Editor and AJET Editor


  1. ABC (2007). 'Lancet' slams Govt on Indigenous health, climate change. ABC News Online, 20 April. http://abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200704/s1903022.htm
  2. The Lancet (2007). Editorial. The Lancet, 369(Number 9570, 21 April). http://www.thelancet.com/journals/lancet/section?volume=369&issue=9570§ion=Editorial
  3. http://www.thelancet.com/about
  4. Thomson Scientific. The ISI Impact Factor. http://scientific.thomson.com/free/essays/journalcitationreports/impactfactor/ (see also other references listed under http://scientific.thomson.com/free/essays/)
  5. http://www.thelancet.com/ [viewed 24 Apr 2007]
  6. Thomson Scientific. Social Sciences Citation Index. http://scientific.thomson.com/products/ssci/
  7. British Journal of Educational Technology. Blackwell Publishing. [viewed 29 Apr 2007] http://www.blackwellpublishing.com/journal.asp?ref=0007-1013
  8. Educational Technology Research and Development. The Association for Educational Communications and Technology. http://www.aect.org/Intranet/Publications/index.asp, also http://www.springer.com/east/home/education?SGWID=5-40406-70-50612191-detailsPage=journal|description
  9. Journal of Educational Technology & Society. International Forum of Educational Technology & Society. http://www.ifets.info/others/
  10. Email from Mr Ryan Joyce, Editor, Social Sciences/Arts & Humanities, dated Wed, 18 Apr 2007 13:10:47 -0400.
  11. Thomson Scientific. The Thomson Scientific Journal Selection Process. http://scientific.thomson.com/free/essays/selectionofmaterial/journalselection/
  12. Letter from Roger Atkinson to ISI Thomson, dated 29 March 2007.
  13. Scopus Info. Elsevier B.V. http://www.info.scopus.com/
  14. Google Scholar. http://scholar.google.com/
  15. Marinova, D. (2006). Academic productivity of Australian academics and higher degree research students: What can we learn from the facts. In Experience of Learning. Proceedings of the 15th Annual Teaching Learning Forum, 1-2 February 2006. Perth: The University of Western Australia. http://lsn.curtin.edu.au/tlf/tlf2006/refereed/marinova.html
  16. AJET's new Management Committee. http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/ajet22/editorial22-4.html and http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/about/about.html
  17. About AJET. http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/about/about.html
  18. AJET Editorial 23(1). http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/ajet23/editorial23-1.html
  19. McLoughlin, C., Atkinson, R., Conole, G. & Hedberg, J. (2006). Publishing your research in journals: 'Meet the editors'. In L. Markauskaite, P. Goodyear, & P. Reimann (Eds.), Who's Learning? Whose Technology? Proceedings ASCILITE Conference (pp. 256?265). Sydney: Sydney University Press.
    [PDF] http://www.ascilite.org.au/conferences/sydney06/proceeding/pdf_papers/p302.pdf
    [HTML] http://www.users.bigpond.net.au/atkinson-mcbeath/roger/pubs/confs/ascilite2006.html
  20. IJET Archive. http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/ijet/
  21. EBSCO Publishing. http://www.ebscohost.com/
  22. EBSCO Publishing. Title Lists. http://www.ebscohost.com/titleLists.php?topicID=380&tabForward=titleLists&marketID=
  23. Google. http://www.google.com/
  24. AJET. Editorial 22(4). http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/ajet22/editorial22-4.html
  25. Holton, D. (2005). rss feeds for research journals. Posting to Instructional Technology Forum, 23 April. http://it.coe.uga.edu/itforum/
  26. Anderson, T. (undated). RSS for Beginners. IRRODL. http://www.irrodl.org/miscfiles/rss.html
  27. HERD. Higher Education Research and Development. http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/titles/07294360.asp
  28. AACE. Association for the Advancement of Computing in Education. http://www.aace.org/
  29. Ingenta. Welcome to IngentaConnect. http://www.ingentaconnect.com/
  30. IRRODL. The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning. http://www.irrodl.org/
  31. Innovate. http://www.innovateonline.info/
  32. EDUCAUSE. http://www.educause.edu/
  33. Google Advanced Scholar Search. http://scholar.google.com/advanced_scholar_search?hl=en&lr=
  34. Journals Indexed in ERIC. http://www.eric.ed.gov/ERICWebPortal/Home.portal?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=JournalPage&logoutLink=false

in AJET 23(2)
ASCILITE 2007 logo

2-5 December 2007. Proposals due 23 July 2007. http://www.ascilite.org.au/conferences/singapore07/

AusWeb logo
Novotel Pacific Bay Resort
Coffs Harbour, NSW
30 June - 4 July 2007

LAMS 2007 logo European LAMS Conference 2007
5-6 July, Greenwich University
London, UK.

HERDSA 2007 logo

Adelaide, 8-11 July 2007
Submissions deadline 23 March 2007.

ALT-C 2007 logoALT-C 2007: Beyond Control
Learning technology for the
social network generation

Nottingham, UK, 4-6 September 2007

ODLAA 2007 graphic

ODLAA 2007, 11-14 November, Lincoln University
Canterbury, New Zealand. http://www.odlaa2007.info/

The Australasian Journal of Educational Technology is a refereed research journal published four times per year by the Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education (ASCILITE). Members of ASCILITE receive AJET as a part of their membership benefits.

For details on submission of manuscripts, subscriptions and access to the AJET online archives, please see http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/

For editorial inquiries, contact the Editor, Associate Professor Catherine McLoughlin, School of Education (ACT), Australian Catholic University, PO Box 256, Dickson ACT 2602, Australia. Email: C.McLoughlin@signadou.acu.edu.au, Tel: +61 2 6209 1100 Fax +61 2 6209 1185. For review process, production matters and subscriptions contact the Production Editor and Business Manager, Dr Roger Atkinson, 5/202 Coode Street, Como WA 6152, Australia. Email: rjatkinson@bigpond.com, Tel: +61 8 9367 1133.

Copyright in individual articles contained in Australasian Journal of Educational Technology and its predecessor title is vested in each of the authors in respect of his or her contributions. Copyright in AJET is vested in ASET (1985-86), AJET Publications (1987-1996), ASCILITE and ASET (1997-2005), and ASCILITE (from 2006).

© 2007. All rights reserved. No part of this journal may be reprinted or reproduced without permission from the publishers. ISSN 1449-3098 (print) 1449-5554 (online).


HTML Editor: Roger Atkinson [ rjatkinson@bigpond.com]
This URL: http://www.ascilite.org.au/ajet/ajet23/editorial23-2.html
Created 12 May 2007. Last correction: 17 May 2007.

Page access count