Publication Ethics

Ethics Statement

IAFOR aims to ensure that best practice and ethical standards are maintained by journal editors, authors and reviewers. IAFOR editors and reviewers are required to assess manuscripts fairly and maintain confidentiality. Authors must ensure that research submitted to an IAFOR journal is their own original work and is not under consideration or accepted for publication elsewhere (not even another IAFOR journal).

The IAFOR Journal of Education adheres to the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE) Guidelines.


Conflicts of Interest Disclosure

Editors and editorial board members/reviewers will not use unpublished information disclosed in a submitted manuscript for their own research purposes without the authors’ explicit written consent. Privileged information or ideas obtained by editors as a result of handling the manuscript will be kept confidential and not used for their personal advantage. Editors will recuse themselves from considering manuscripts in which they have conflicts of interest resulting from competitive, collaborative, or other relationships or connections with any of the authors, companies or institutions connected to the papers. In the event that this kind of conflict arises, they will ask another member of the editorial board to handle the manuscript.

Editors evaluate submitted manuscripts on the basis of their academic merit (importance, originality, study’s validity, clarity) and its relevance to the journal’s scope, without regard to the authors’ race, gender, sexual orientation, ethnic origin, citizenship, religious belief, political philosophy or institutional affiliation. Decisions to publish are not determined by any policies outside of the journal itself. The Editor-in-Chief has full authority over the entire editorial content of the journal and its publication.

Authors too must disclose any conflicts of interest that could be considered as influencing the results or their interpretation in the manuscript. This information should be provided on submission.

The journal follows COPE's Key Points on editorial board participation. https://publicationethics.org/resources/guidelines/editorial-board-participation


Editorial Board Conflict of Interest

The Committee on Publication Ethics [COPE] states that there must be a clear statement regarding conflict of interest, including submission of papers to a journal. On its website there is a discussion regarding editors submitting to their own journal. It states:

“Provided every effort is made to minimise any bias in the review process by having another associate editor handle the peer review procedure independently of the editor (recognising that it would be impossible to remove bias completely), and the process is absolutely transparent, then this would be the most appropriate route to take. … As an extra precaution, if and when the article in question is published, the editor might like to publish an accompanying commentary showing how transparent the reviewing process had been” (COPE, https://publicationethics.org/case/editor-author-own-journal).

The IAFOR Journal of Education adopts the following policy regarding submission of papers by members of the Editorial Board to any of its issues.

  1. The Editor-in-Chief may not submit a paper for review to any issue of the journal.
  2. The Editor and Associate Editors may not submit a paper for review to their own issue of the journal.
  3. The Editor and Associate Editors may submit a paper for review to an issue other than their own issue, but all due care and diligence will be taken to ensure the paper is anonymised, the reviewers are not aware of the author(s)’ identity(ies), and that a statement is made in that issue regarding the process to prevent the perception of cronyism.
  4. An Editor, either alone or with his/her Associate Editors, may write an editorial/introduction for their issue of the journal with a statement that this is the views of the author(s) and has not been subject to peer review.
  5. The Editor-in-Chief may write a foreword for any issue of the journal with a statement that this is the views of the author(s) and has not been subject to peer review.

Authorship

Only persons who meet proper authorship criteria should be listed as authors in the manuscript as they must be able to take public responsibility for the content: (i) made significant contributions to the conception, design, execution, data acquisition, or analysis/interpretation of the study; and (ii) drafted the manuscript or revised it critically for important intellectual content; and (iii) have seen and approved the final version of the paper and agreed to its submission for publication.

Those who do not meet the criteria for authorship must not be listed as an author, but should be acknowledged in the "Acknowledgements" section after their written permission to be named as been obtained. The corresponding author should ensure that all appropriate co-authors (according to the above definition) and no inappropriate co-authors are included in the author list and verify that all co-authors have seen and approved the final version of the manuscript and agreed to its submission for publication.

Multiple, duplicate, redundant or concurrent submission/publication

Papers describing essentially the same research should not be published in more than one journal or primary publication. Hence, authors should not submit for consideration a manuscript that has already been published in another journal. Submission of a manuscript concurrently to more than one journal is unethical publishing behaviour and unacceptable.

Disclosure / Conflicts of interest

Authors should, at time of initial submission, disclose any conflicts of interest that might be construed to influence the results or their interpretation in the manuscript. Some examples of potential conflicts that should be disclosed include financial ones such as honoraria, educational grants or other funding, as well as non-financial ones such as personal or professional relationships. All sources of financial support for the work should be disclosed.

Elemental errors in published works

Should authors discover significant errors/inaccuracies in their own published work, it is their obligation to notify the journal’s editors or publisher and cooperate with them to either correct the paper in the form of an erratum or to retract the paper.

If it is leart from a third party that a published work contains a significant error or inaccuracy, then it is the authors’ obligation to promptly correct or retract the paper or provide evidence to the journal editors of the correctness of the paper.

AI Tools and Authorship

IAFOR follows COPE's Position Statement on this matter:

"The use of artificial intelligence (AI) tools such as ChatGPT or Large Language Models in research publications is expanding rapidly. COPE joins organisations, such as WAME and the JAMA Network among others, to state that AI tools cannot be listed as an author of a paper.

AI tools cannot meet the requirements for authorship as they cannot take responsibility for the submitted work. As non-legal entities, they cannot assert the presence or absence of conflicts of interest nor manage copyright and license agreements.

Authors who use AI tools in the writing of a manuscript, production of images or graphical elements of the paper, or in the collection and analysis of data, must be transparent in disclosing in the Materials and Methods (or similar section) of the paper how the AI tool was used and which tool was used. Authors are fully responsible for the content of their manuscript, even those parts produced by an AI tool, and are thus liable for any breach of publication ethics."(COPE, February 2023)

COPE Guidelines:
Authorship and contributorship
Authorship Discussion Document (Key Points on Authorship
Authorship disputes How to Handle Authorship Disputes
Authorship and AI (COPE position statement February 2023)
How potential authorship disputes are managed

Post-Publication Author Name Changes

In accordance with IAFOR's core values of inclusivity and openness, we acknowledge that an author may change their name during their career. IAFOR Journals will therefore support post-publication author name changes where we have the technical capacity to do so (i.e., access to PDF source files). This will be actioned without publicly announcing these changes via a correction notice. Requesting authors will not be asked to provide legal evidence or documentation, nor of the reason for a name change. However, they may be asked to provide evidence that they are the author of the article in question (for example, email correspondence relating to the submission or revisions). However, IAFOR cannot guarantee that these name changed will be reflected in indexes and repositories such at DOAJ (and other organisations that use DOAJ data).

Authors requesting a name change should contact the IAFOR Publications Office: publications@iafor.org


Ethical Oversight

Research involving human subjects, human material, or human data, must have been performed in accordance with the Declaration of Helsinki. Where applicable, the studies must have been approved by an appropriate ethics committee and the authors should include a statement within the article text detailing this approval, including the name of the ethics committee and reference number of the approval. Authors are expected to follow their institutional policies for research ethics. For most research involving human subjects, informed consent to participate in the study should be obtained from participants (or their parent or guardian in the case of children under 16).

Peer reviewers are told to report on any ethical problems perceived in submitted manuscripts.


IAFOR Journal of Education: Policy on Preprints

If a portion of your manuscript has been previously published, your manuscript will not be acceptable for publication in the IAFOR Journal of Education. However, the journal generally supports the early dissemination of research (the pre-peer review version of the paper, also referenced as a “working paper”) through non-commercial preprint platforms and scholarly collaboration networks such as Sage Publications’ preprint server Advance (primarily for Humanities and Social Sciences), SocRxiV, bioRxiV, preprints.org, ResearchGate and Academia.edu.

You should include a description of any prior distribution of any part of your paper when submitting to the journal and also make such a declaration at the end of the submitted paper, prior to the references. The declaration in the submitted paper will allow reviewers to know that a preprint exists and avoid claims of plagiarism. Please include the DOI for the preprint in your communications.

Authors should not post an updated version of their paper on the preprint server while it is being peer reviewed for possible publication in the journal. If your paper is accepted, you must include a link on your preprint to the final version.

Please note:

  1. Our journal uses a double-blind peer review process and by posting your paper on a preprint server or on a scholarly collaboration network such as ResearchGate, your article and its author list may be discovered by reviewers. You need to be comfortable with this and also be aware that some reviewers may recuse themselves from reviewing if they know you, thus shrinking the pool of available reviewers.
  2. Favourable comments from readers of a preprint in no way reflects the likelihood of acceptance. All papers will undergo the usual rigorous peer review process.

Plagiarism

Manuscript submissions are checked with iThenticate plagiarism detection for intellectual property protection and document-versus-document(s) analysis to satisfy the Editor that the submitted manuscript has not been plagiarised. However, when authors submit their manuscripts for consideration in the Journal, they declare that their work is not plagiarised. While the Editor makes reasonable efforts to determine the academic integrity of papers published in the Journal, ultimate responsibility for the originality of submitted manuscripts thus lies with the author.

Plagiarism takes place when one author deliberately uses another’s work without permission, credit, or acknowledgment. Authors must always remember that crediting the work of others (including your advisor’s or your own previous work) is paramount. Authors should always place their work in the context of the advancement of the field, and acknowledge the findings of others on which you have built your research.

COPE Guidelines: Plagiarism in a Submitted Manuscript https://publicationethics.org/resources/flowcharts/plagiarism-submitted-manuscript


Publication Malpractice Statement

Concerned with the increase of plagiarism, fraud and misconduct in academic publishing, the Editor, Associate Editors and the Editorial Board of the journal officially endorse the position statements for editors and authors developed at the 2nd World Conference on Research Integrity in Singapore in 2010 (Kleinert & Wager, 2011), notably the following statements:

  • Editors are accountable and should take responsibility for everything they publish
  • Editors should make fair and unbiased decisions independent from commercial consideration and ensure a fair and appropriate peer review process
  • Editors should adopt editorial policies that encourage maximum transparency and complete, honest reporting
  • Editors should guard the integrity of the published record by issuing corrections and retractions when needed and pursuing suspected or alleged research and publication misconduct
  • Editors should pursue reviewer and editorial misconduct.

As to authors:

  • The research being reported should have been conducted in an ethical and responsible manner and should comply with all relevant legislation
  • Researchers should present their results clearly, honestly, and without fabrication, falsification or inappropriate data manipulation
  • Researchers should strive to describe their methods clearly and unambiguously so that their findings can be confirmed by others
  • Researchers should adhere to publication requirements that submitted work is original, is not plagiarised, and has not been published, or is under consideration for publication elsewhere
  • Authors should take collective responsibility for submitted and published work
  • The manuscript must contain nothing that is abusive, defamatory, libelous, obscene, fraudulent, or illegal.

Editors and reviewers will ensure that articles submitted to the journal are original studies which have not been submitted anywhere else. Manuscripts will be fairly and objectively reviewed; authors will receive corrections and suggestions relatively quickly depending on the availability and expertise of reviewers.


Duties of the Publisher

Handling of unethical publishing behaviour

In cases of alleged or proven misconduct, fraudulent publication including plagiarism, citation manipulation, and data falsification/fabrication, among others, the journal editor will take all appropriate measures to clarify the situation and to amend the article in question. This includes the prompt publication of an erratum, clarification or, in the most severe case, the retraction of the affected work.  The publisher, together with the editors, shall take reasonable steps to identify and prevent the publication of papers where research misconduct has occurred, and under no circumstances encourage such misconduct or knowingly allow such misconduct to take place.

In the event that a journal’s publisher or editors are made aware of any allegation of research misconduct relating to a published article in their journal, the publisher or editor shall follow COPE’s guidelines in dealing with allegations.

Disclosure / Conflicts of interest

Authors should, at time of initial submission, disclose any conflicts of interest that might be construed to influence the results or their interpretation in the manuscript. Some examples of potential conflicts that should be disclosed include financial ones such as honoraria, educational grants or other funding, as well as non-financial ones such as personal or professional relationships. All sources of financial support for the work should be disclosed.

COPE Guidelines: Conflicts of interest / Competing interests

If Conflicts of interest come to light, contact the IAFOR Publications Office, publications@iafor.org, which will refer the matter to the Publications Committee listed here: https://iafor.org/people/academic-board-and-committee/#pubs

Complaints, appeals, elemental errors in published works

Should authors discover significant errors/inaccuracies in their own published work, it is their obligation to notify the journal’s editors or publisher and cooperate with them to either correct the paper in the form of an erratum or to retract the paper.

If it is learnt from a third party that a published work contains a significant error or inaccuracy, then it is the authors’ obligation to promptly correct or retract the paper or provide evidence to the journal editors of the correctness of the paper.

In the first instance, contact the IAFOR Publications Office, publications@iafor.org, which will refer the matter to the Publications Committee listed here if needed: https://iafor.org/people/academic-board-and-committee/#pubs


References

Kleinert, S., & Wager, E. (2011). Responsible research publication: international standards for editors. A position statement developed at the 2nd World Conference on Research Integrity, Singapore, July 22-24, 2010. Chapter 51 in: Mayer, T., & Steneck, N. (eds) Promoting Research Integrity in a Global Environment. Imperial College Press / World Scientific Publishing, Singapore (pp 317-28). (ISBN 978-981-4340-97-7). Retrieved October 10, 2016 from http://www.riha-journal.org/international-standards-editors.