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Submission Preparation Checklist

As part of the submission process, authors are required to check off their submission's compliance with all of the following items, and submissions may be returned to authors that do not adhere to these guidelines.

Author Guidelines

Authors wishing to submit articles for the South African Journal of Libraries and Information Science should follow the instructions outlined below:

Original contributions should be in English and may take the form of scholarly articles, review articles, practical library work, short communications, book reviews or letters to the editor. Items that have been published elsewhere should be submitted only with permission of the original publisher, and this should be clearly indicated.

Contributions from new researchers and authors will be encouraged in this journal.

Articles should be 5,000 to 7,000 words in length. Articles reporting practice or new techniques of a practical nature can be shorter.

Book reviews should be 1,000 to 1,200 words.

Letters should comment on topics covered in the journal or related professional matters. Author(s) names and addresses will be published.


  • All articles will be peer-reviewed. 
  • The title should be brief (preferably no longer than 15 words) but should contain enough information for reliable information retrieval. 
  • An abstract (not longer than 190 words) must be provided. 
  • Keywords: In order to assist in the indexing of the journal, a maximum of 5 keywords should be provided.


  • These should be used sparingly, and should not duplicate information presented in the text. 
  • Each should be numbered sequentially, using Arabic numerals, as they appear in the text. 
  • A brief, descriptive title of 10-15 words should be provided for each. 
  • The tables must be referred to in the text.

Units of measurement

  • Metric (SI) units must be used.
  • Time should be in terms of the 24-hour clock.


  • Each figure (graph, line, drawing, etc.) should be numbered sequentially.
  • Letters and other symbols must be easily legible after reduction. Freehand or typewritten lettering is not acceptable.
  • A brief, descriptive caption for each should be included.
  • Each figure should be referred to in the text.


  • Photographs should be numbered in the same series as Figures.


All references should be listed alphabetically at the end of the article.

References in the text should be formatted according to the Harvard Style, for example, (Bullington & Smith 1998: 85) or "Bullington and Smith (1998: 85) established that…".

Dick, A.L. 2002. The philosophy, politics and economics of information. Pretoria: Unisa Press.

Onyancha, B.O. 2006. Empowering the South African community's AIDs intervention workforce: an informetric study of HIV/AIDs research projects, with special reference to masters and doctoral dissertations and theses. South African Journal of Libraries and Information Science, 72(1): 56-71.

Electronic journals
Bullington, J.S. and Smith, P. 1998. Tips for new librarians: what to know in the first year of a tenure-track position. Research Libraries News, 59(2):85-88. [Online]. 59-2.htm (25 March 2007).

Conference Proceedings 
Ingwersen, P. 2000. The cognitive information structures in information retrieval. Proceedings of the 1st ProLISSA conference. 24-25 October 2000. Pretoria: Center for Information Development. 205-219. 

  • Titles of periodicals should not be abbreviated.
  • Entries should be in the language of source (not necessarily that of the manuscript).
  • Acknowledgement of sources of support, technical assistance, and intellectual contributions not associated with authorship must be made.


  • Manuscripts should be written in South African/UK English.
  • Text should be in Arial, 1.5 line spacing applied, and 2.5 cm margins on all sides.
  • The font size should be 12 point.
  • Upper case should only be used for the first letter of sentences or words, except for acronyms and initials, which should always
  • be spelt in capitals.
  • Acronyms should be spelt out at their first occurrence in the text.
  • Abbreviations should be easily recognized. Contractions (e.g. Ms, Dr) should be given without points.
  • Quotes should be enclosed in double quotation marks ("). Quotes within quotes should be enclosed in single quotation marks.
  • Quotes of more than 25 words should be set out as a separate, indented paragraph.
  • Dates should be written 1990s (i.e. no apostrophe), and not 'nineties' or 90's.
  • Titles of databases, books, journals, computer programs, and online resources should be italicised.
  • Headings and sub-headings should be numbered sequentially.


Articles must be submitted electronically. Please follow the five-step submission process as stated under "Start a New Submission".

Submissions should be produced in Microsoft Word documents (Version 6 or later) (Windows 95 or later).

The author(s) must ensure that the manuscript is grammatically correct.

Plagiarism report

From 1 August 2015, all manuscripts submitted to SAJLIS must be accompanied by a plagiarism report from a reputable plagiarism checker, such as Turnitin or iThenticate. Please upload the plagiarism report at the submission stage. 

Plagiarism is defined as the use of another's work, words or ideas without attribution or permission, and representation of them as one’s own original work. Plagiarism may take many forms, ranging from major plagiarism (the copy-and-paste of large amounts of text), to minor plagiarism without dishonest intent (e.g. when an author uses parts of an introduction from an earlier paper) and even self-plagiarism (the reuse of significant, identical or near-identical portions of one's own work without citing the original version).

The journal subscribes to CrossCheck, an initiative to prevent scholarly and professional plagiarism. All manuscripts submitted to the journal are automatically scanned against the CrossCheck database to verify originality. 

Manuscripts containing plagiarism will not be considered for publication in the journal. If plagiarism is brought to light after a manuscript has been published, the journal will proceed to conduct a preliminary investigation. Suspected misconduct will be reported to the institutes and funding agencies of the authors concerned. The journal reserves the right to formally retract such manuscripts and publish statements to reference material as plagiarism.

Journal Page Charges

Page fees are required for publication in the South African Journal of Libraries and Information Science. The current page fees is R2,000.00 per article. The page fees are used to support the publication of this title in an open access format. Accepted manuscripts will not move into the production process until payment has been received. Page charge forms will be sent automatically on acceptance of an article for publication in the journal.

We thank you for your prompt submission of completed page charge forms so that we can publish your paper more quickly and efficiently.

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