Open Access journals in the field of Agricultural Education

Being a Ph.D. student in the Department of Agricultural, Leadership, and Community Education, I was curious to see if there were open access journals in the field of agricultural education. After spending some time surfing the web, I came across a couple of open access journals. One of them is the: “The Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension: Competence for Rural Innovation and Transformation.” 

So what is Open Access? According to the Budapest Open Access initiative, Open Access means “freedom of information – freedom from price barriers, freedom from needless licensing restrictions, freedom from censorship.” This means that journal article can be accessed online by anybody without purchasing it or paying to be a member of the association that publishes the journal article. This has many advantages that range from a greater visibility for articles to arguably a higher citation (since more people can now have access to it).

The Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension (JAEE) is located in Wageningen University in Netherland. It is published by the Taylor & Francis Online publisher. This journal itself does not have a statement on Open Access on its website, however, Taylor & Francis Online publisher has a statement on their website about Open Access; They refer to Open Access as Open Select. According to them, “Open Select ensures researchers can publish open access (OA) in over 2,300 Taylor & Francis and Routledge journals, ranging across the sciences, social sciences, medicine, technology, engineering, humanities and arts. These hybrid journals publish both OA content and content available via subscription.” The purpose of the JAEE is “to inform experts who do or use research on agricultural education and extension about research conducted in this field worldwide. Information about this research is needed to improve policies, strategies, methods and practices for agricultural education and extension.” In a bid to make a case for Open Access, Taylor & Francis published what they called an “Open Access Survey”. This survey presents statistics that provides support for Open Access. According to their statistics between 2013 to 2014:  there is a greater visibility (from 55% in 2013 to 65% in 2014), larger readership (from 45% in 2013 to 50% in 2014), wider circulation (from 71% in 2013 to 81% in 2014) and more citations (from 21% in 2013 to 29% in 2014).

Bethany Wolters

Here’s another open-access agricultural journal somewhat related to agricultural education, Journal of Agricultural Extension (https://www.ajol.info/index.php/jae/index). It turned up in my research this week.

I don’t know how I feel about Open Select because it dosen’t mean the information in the journal is accessible to everyone. Only the articles published by people who can pay the higher open access publication fees. Maybe this creates some bias in what research is made available to everyone. I guess you could argue that the same thing happens when choosing between a regular and an all open-source journal. Cost of publication is a whole other discussion that maybe we’ll get into in class. Do you feel like the open select option is a good one?

damochi7

Bethany,
I think you raised a good point about the price hike of many open access journals. What’s the point of open access if it is not affordable? However, I would think that Open Select is a good option to have since it at least gives you the opportunity to make your own choice. This is suitable for people who would like to publish in an open access journal but can’t afford the exorbitant fees open access journals charge.

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