Editori - a tool for open journal publishing and learning scientific publishing practices: Editori as a teaching tool

This guide will present Editori, a service by Helsinki University Library for editing and publishing opean journals and learning scientific publishing practices

Editori as a tool for learning publishing practices

Editori service may be used in teaching and research without publishing an Open Access journal.

Some possible ways of using the platform:

  • learning the practice of peer review (doctoral schools, seminars, methodological courses etc.)
  • assessment of article based essays (seminars, tutoring, teaching)
  • as a tool for opposing in seminars (in writing and verbally)
  • as an editorial tool for a blog based study exercise
  • as a tool for a scientific workshop, e.g. for publishing presentations
  • as a back-end tool for commenting, editing and reviewing articles that are published elsewhere, e.g. on a blog platform
  • as platform for an overlay journal, where the content of articles originates from repositories

We would like to hear your ideas of using the tool for different purposes. Please get in touch with editori@helsinki.fi to start conversation.

Example 1: From course journal into disciplinary student journal

Lifespans and Styles is journal at the University of Edinburgh bases of the OJS platform. It aims to offer a publishing platform for the course outputs produced at Honours seminar on intraspeaker sociolinguistic variation. Simultaneously the platform is used for teaching support. The chief editor and course leader Lauren Hall-Lew has formulated the idea of the journal in the introduction to first issue of the journal:

"The journal was inspired by the fact that, while many undergraduates produce exceptional scholarship, most do not get an opportunity to share their work with the wider academic community. Some may go on to postgraduate study in the same field of study as their undergraduate degree, but most will not continue in academia, or if they do, they will often change subfield. Meanwhile, the research they produce for a class, a dissertation, or a thesis will end up in a university library archive or, much more likely, buried in the folders of their personal computer. It is my belief that this is a disservice to both the student and the academic community at large. This journal was founded in the spirit of giving excellent undergraduate work the exposure and longevity that it deserves."

The journal is published  twice a year. Each issue contain a number of articles (2-7) that are produced by students participating the course or reports on research on subject of the course by students. The course leader Lauren Hall-Lew has contrbuted an editorial for each issue introducing the articles. The journal team includes in addition to chief editor a copy editor and an editorial board with six members. The journal is supported by the Teaching and Learning Initiative Fund at the University of Edinburgh.

The journal started with works from one course but already in the editorial of the second issue Hall-Lew announced that the journal can take manuscripts from students outside the University of Edinburgh. The same issue contains writings from the course Language Change Across the Lifespan held at the University of Manchester. The course journal was expanded to represent student works on the theme of intraspeaker variation. In the 2018 issue the chief editor tells that the theme of the journal will expand into broader sociolinguistics and the article review process is changed towards a peer review process typical for scientific journals.

Example 2: Publishing student works

The journal Ethnographic Encounters at the University of St Andrews aims to publish important research on Social Anthropology performed by students. There are many journals worldwide applying similar principles, publishing student works, small studies, course essays, group works etc.

Chief editors of the first journal in 2012, students Zoe Miller and Emily Sheppard, described the aims of the journal:

"To our minds, undergraduate work in all subjects is underrepresented within the university. Particularly in Social Anthropology, however, whose students put so much of their time, their energy, and their lives into work that is as personal as it is academic, a forum for sharing fieldwork experiences seems long overdue. The journal is our contribution to correcting this imbalance."

Ethnographic Encounters is produced by students but Craig Lind who is a faculty member in Social Anthropology has been the journal manager from the start of the journal in 2012. The current editorial board includes two chief editors ja four editors. The journal has been published 1-3 times a year. In addition to regular issues containing student articles there has been many special issues of the journal focusing e.g. on poetry and photographic essays.

With Ethnographic Encounters the assessment on the publishing of articles is solely done by the editorial board, so there is no proper peer review. Most student journals do apply peer review in their publishing workflow. For instance at th University of St Andrews the journal Aporia produced by students of philosophy is using double blind peer review. The journal has also revealed the percentage of approved articles: 14,7% (2012) and 11,2% (2013). Aporia is an example of student journals that receive manuscripts from many countries.