Editorial Policies

Focus and Scope

The AJHPE is a journal for health professions educators. It carries research articles, short scientific reports, letters, editorials, education practice, personal opinion and other topics related to the education of health care professionals. It also features African education-related news, obituaries and general correspondence. 


Section Policies


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Short Research Report

These are shorter length, scholarly research articles of no more than 1500 words. Single-institution, and/or studies with sample sizes <100 are better submitted as short reports.

Guideline word limit: 1500 words

  • Abstract: Structured, of about 250 words, with the following recommended headings: Background, Objectives, Methods, Results, and Conclusion.
  • May include only one illustration or table
  • A  maximum of 8 references

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Articles are longer research reports not exceeding 3 000 words, with up to 6 tables or illustrations. These articles are usually observations or research of relevance to education in the health professions. References should be limited to no more than 15. Please provide a structured abstract not exceeding 250 words, with the following recommended headings:Background, Objectives, Methods, Results, and Conclusion. 

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Short Communication

Short communications are very brief articles that share work in progress, lessons learnt or innovations in medical educaiton. They should be no more than 500 words in lenght, with a maximum of 3 references, and 1 table or figure. Short Communications should be structured under the following headings: Why was the idea necessary ( Problem), What was tried (Approach) and What were the lessons learnt (Outcomes).

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Forum articles are personal opinion pieces that address an area in health professions education that would be of interest to the readership. Forum pieces while reflecting the authors personal views, should be scholarly, and arguments well-supported. They should not exceed 1000 words, and up to 5 references are allowed.

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Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor should not exceed 400 words, and can be responses to articles in the journal, replies to other letters, or about issues of topical interest to health professions education. Tables and figures are not allowed.

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Commentaries are invited by the editor-in-chief. These are brief discussion articles which focus on a particularly relevant issue in health professions education. They are up to a 1000 words in lenght, with no more than 5 references. Abstracts are not required.

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From the editor

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Book reviews

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Peer Review Process

Peer Review Process

The Editors aim to provide prompt reviews to optimise the quality of the published papers. All submissions are reviewed by an editorial advisory group, who will check for scope, fit, quality, originality, interest for the readership, etc., and recommend acceptance, rejection or referral for review. Once an article has been accepted for peer review, it is assigned to an Associate Editor who will manage it through the peer review process.

A double blind review process is followed, which means that both the reviewer and author identities are concealed from each other throughout the review process. A majority of manuscripts will be sent to one or two reviewers, under the management of an editor assigned to the submission. Reviewers as experts in the field provide comments to authors and editors on the importance, originality and scientific merit of the manuscript and suggest changes which may improve the quality and validity of the manuscript. The review process itself takes approximately 4 – 6 weeks to complete but can change depending upon the quality of the manuscript submitted, reviewer’s response and time taken by the authors to submit the revised manuscript.

If the decision is for revision, the author is requested to address each comment by the reviewers, and submit a letter outlining their responses accompanying their revised manuscript. The assigned editor will re-evaluate the revisions and will either make a decision or send the manuscript for a second round of review, usually to the original set of reviewers.  Reviewers will be informed of the outcome of manuscripts which they have reviewed.

The Editor-in-Chief has the final decision on any submitted manuscript.


Enrol as a reviewer

The AJHPE encourages readers who are actively involved in research and with particular expertise to serve as peer reviewers of the Journal.


Accepting/declining an invitation to review

An invitation to review will be sent via email from the Editorial Manager system, and will provide submission details such as the manuscript title and abstract. Reviewers will be asked to indicate their acceptance/decline to review by a specified date, and a date by which the review should be completed will also be provided. Reviewers can respond to the invite either by clicking on the relevant link in the email or by logging in to their Reviewer role on the AJHPE Editorial Manager website, where they will see that they have a pending New Reviewer Invitation. Reviewers who accept the invite to review can access the full text article, by logging into Editorial Manager or via the link to the reviewers’ ‘pending assignments’ found in the automated acknowledgement email (received in response to the their acceptance to review). The article will be blinded and in PDF format, with the option to download in Word version. Once completed, reviewers will submit their review and recommendation on the Editorial Manager website.

Any queries can be directed to the Managing Editor: claudian@hmpg.co.za


Performing/submitting a review

As a reviewer, you will be advising the editors who will make the final decision on a manuscript. The reviewer should provide feedback on all components of the article, including the methodology, results and discussion. The review should conclude with a recommendation: accept, accept with minor revisions, major revisions needed, or reject. Please refer to the Reviewer Guidelines which provides further guidance on completing reviews.

A tutorial on how to complete your review on Editorial Manager can be found here.

To complete a review:

  • Login to the AJHPE Editorial Manager website in the Reviewer role.
  • Ensure that you have accepted to perform the review (outlined above). Manuscripts that you have accepted to review will be located in your 'Pending Assignments' folder.
  • Click on 'View Submission' to access the PDF version of the manuscript.
  • Reviewer Guidelines can be accessed/viewed by clicking 'Submit Recommendation'.
  • Reviewers can record their comments in a separate Word file or the original PDF (if they have the necessary Adobe software) that they can upload on the 'Submit Recommendation' page or complete the reviewer questions on the aforementioned webpage.
  • All reviewers are required to complete three questions on the 'Submit Recommendation' webpage in order to submit their recommendation. Once reviewers have completed and submitted their reviews and recommendation, they can inform the handling editor by clicking 'Send Email'. An acknowledgement email will also be received by the reviewer once the review has been successfully processed on the website.


Should reviewers require additional time to review or further assistance, please contact the Managing Editor: claudian@hmpg.co.za




Publication Frequency

The African Journal of Health Professions Education is published online quarterly (one volume comprising 4 issues per annum).


Open Access Policy

The African Journal of Health Professions Education  is an Open Access Journal and provides immediate open access to its content on the principle that making research freely available to the public supports a greater global exchange of knowledge. In accordance with the definition of the Budapest Open Access Initiative all content published by the AJHPE is made free to users without any subscription or other charges. Users are permitted to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full text of these articles, or use them for any other lawful, non-commercial purpose, without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author.


Comments Policy

The posting of comments to published articles requires registration with this journal website. Only constructive comments that relate to the published material will be permitted. Posted comments solely represent the opinions of the respective user and not those of the AJHPE, and do not imply endorsement by the AJHPE. The AJHPE reserves the right to remove comments without notice that are abusive, threatening, defamatory, contain advertising or spam, or violate another user’s privacy. The AJHPE reserves the right to revoke the privileges of users that post inappropriate material. Such material may be brought to the attention of the publisher (publishing@hmpg.co.za). The AJHPE reserves the right to modify this policy without notice.



Readers of the AJHPE are encouraged to register with the journal website to receive notifications of new issues online (open access).

  • Already a registered user? Login to the journal website and edit your profile to include 'Reader' as a role.
  • Not a registered user? Register with the journal website and specify 'Reader' as a role in your user profile. For assistance contact publishing@hmpg.co.za. Please read our privacy policy regarding registration.



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.


Publication fees

A publication fee of R6 000 (ex vat) is charged for each research article and R3 000 (ex vat) for short report published. The charge applies only to articles submitted after 01 November 2018. The publication fee is standard as per article type and does not vary based on colour, figures, or other elements.


Licensing Information

The AJHPE is published under an Attribution-Non Commercial International Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY-NC 4.0) License. Under this license, authors agree to make articles available to users, without permission or fees, for any lawful, non-commercial purpose. Users may read, copy, or re-use published content as long as the author and original place of publication are properly cited.


Publishing Rights

Authors grant the Publisher the exclusive right to publish, display, reproduce and/or distribute the Work in print and electronic format and in any medium known or hereafter developed, including for commercial use. The Author also agrees that the Publisher may retain in print or electronic format more than one copy of the Work for the purpose of preservation, security and back-up.

 Authors are required to complete and sign an Author Agreement form that outlines Author and Publisher rights and terms of publication. The Agreement form should be uploaded along with other submissions files and any submission will be considered incomplete without it. In undertaking this agreement, the Author represents, and warrants, either as the sole author or on behalf of the co-authors, that the Work is their own work and that the Author has the authority to enter into the Author-Publisher Agreement.