Journal Information

  • ISSN
  • Focus and scope
  • Publication frequency
  • Types of articles published
  • Open access
  • Review process
  • Historic data
  • CEU certification
  • Marketing
  • Membership



1608-9685 (PRINT)
2078-6786 (ONLINE)

Focus and scope

The journal is the leading psychiatric journal of Africa. It provides open-access scholarly reading for psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and all with an interest in mental health. It carries empirical and conceptual research articles, reviews, editorials, and scientific letters related to psychiatry. It publishes work from various places in the world, and makes special provision for the interests of Africa. It seeks to serve its readership and researchers with the most topical content in psychiatry for clinical practice and academic pursuits, including work in the subspecialty areas of psychiatry.

Submissions in English (full article) will be considered for publication.

Publication frequency

The journal publishes at least one issue each year. Articles are published online when ready for publication and then printed in an end-of-year compilation. Additional issues may be published for special events (e.g. conferences) and when special themes are addressed.

In other words, the journal publishes one issue per year (volume), as a rolling online publication. Individual articles are published as soon as they are ready for publication by adding them to the table of contents of the 'current' volume/issue. In this way, the journal aims to speed up the process of manuscript publication from submission to becoming available on the website. Special thematic issues may be added on an ad hoc basis to the journal throughout a particular year and will form part of consecutive issues thereafter.

The online version of the journal is the official version of record, and citations to the journal will refer to the online version. A full print version of each volume/issue the journal will be compiled after the closure of the online volume (year), and will be available on paid order.

Parts of content published in the journal online may be published in print from time to time, usually for distribution among members of the South Africa Society of Psychiatrists (SASOP).

Types of articles published

  • Original articles: An original article provides an overview of innovative research in a particular field within or related to the focus and scope of the journal, presented according to a clear and well-structured format (between 3000 and 4000 words with references kept to the minimum and being restricted to only the most relevant ones). Compulsory as a supplementary file: Ethical clearance letter/certificate.
  • Review articles: The review article presents a critical review of the literature on a topic that has both social and scientific value, and which is within the focus and scope of the journal (between 2500–4000 words with a maximum of 15 references). Systematic reviews are considered under original research.
  • Scientific Letter: Original research that is limited in scope can be submitted as a scientific letter rather than a full original research article. A scientific letter should be no more than 1500 words, 6 references, and 1 table or figure.
  • Letters to the editor: Should be about 400 words with only one illustration or table, and must include a correspondence address. They may be subjected to the peer review process and their eventual placement is at the discretion of the editorial team.
  • Obituaries: Should be about 400 words and may be accompanied by a photograph.
  • Editorials: Editorials are by invitation only and are intended to provide expert comment on relevant topics within the focus and scope of the journal. (Less than 800 words with a maximum of 10 references).
See specifications for the types of articles published here.

Open access

This is an open access journal which means that all content is freely available without charge to the user or his/her institution. Users are allowed to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of the articles, or use them for any other lawful purpose, without asking prior permission from the publisher or the author. This is in accordance with the Budapest Open Access Initiative (BOAI) definition of open access. Learn more about the journal copyright, licensing and publishing rights.

Review process

The journal has a double-blinded peer review process. Manuscripts are initially examined by editorial staff and are sent by the Editor-in-Chief to two expert independent reviewers, either directly or by a Section Editor. Read our full peer review process.

Historic data

The journal was launched in 1995 as an initiative of the South African Society of Psychiatrists (SASOP) and has since been the official scientific journal of SASOP. Prof Cliff Allwood (formerly form Wits) and Prof Robin Emsley (Stellenbosch University) served as editors during its first decade and since 2006, Prof Werdie van Staden (University of Pretoria) has served as editor-in-chief. Prof Lielz Koen (Stellenbosch University), Prof Soraya Seedat (Stellenbosch University) and Prof Bernard Janse van Rensburg (Wits) joined the editorial team as deputy editors in 2013. During the last 5 years or so, SAJP achieved several significant listings including the Web of Science (ISI) and SCiELO. Issues since 2002 are available open-access gratis under a Creative Commons (CC) license as well as in print version.

CEU certification

The journal is accredited by the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA). This accreditation enables AOSIS to offer Continuing Education Units (CEU) certification to authors, co-authors and reviewers of the journal.


AOSIS has a number of ways in which we promote publications. Learn more here.


AOSIS is a member and/or subscribes to the standards and code of practices of several leading industry organisations. This includes the Directory of Open Access Journals, Ithenticate, Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association, CrossRef, Portico and the Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE). Learn more here.

DHET Accreditation

The journal is DHET accredited because it is listed on the following approved indexing services:

  • DHET SA List
  • SciELO SA
  • Thomson Reuters Web of Science Core Collection, Science Citation Index Expanded, SCIE (previously known as ISI)
  • Thomson Reuters Web of Science Core Collection, Social Sciences Citation Index, SSCI (previously known as ISI)

Indexing Services

All articles published in the journal are included in:

  • DHET SA List
  • SciELO SA
  • Web of Science Core Collection, Science Citation Index Expanded, SCIE (previously known as ISI)
  • Web of Science Core Collection, Social Sciences Citation Index, SSCI (previously known as ISI)
  • African Index Medicus
  • African Journals Online (AJOL)
  • Google Scholar
  • GALE, CENGAGE Learning
  • Norwegian Register for Scientific Journals, Series and Publishers, Level 1
  • Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

We are working closely with relevant indexing services to ensure that articles published in the journal will be available in their databases when appropriate.


The full text of the journal articles is deposited in the following archives to guarantee long-term preservation:

  • Portico
  • AOSIS Library
  • SA ePublications, Sabinet
  • South African Government Libraries

AOSIS is also a participant in the LOCKSS (Lots of Copies Keep Stuff Safe) initiative. LOCKSS will enable any library to maintain their own archive of content from AOSIS and other publishers, with minimal technical effort and using cheaply available hardware.

The URL to the LOCKSS Publisher Manifest for the journal is:

Please inform us if you are using our manifest as we would like to add your name to the list above.

Journal Impact

A journal's Impact Factor was originally designed in 1963 as a tool for libraries to compare journals, and identify the most popular ones to subscribe to. It was never intended to measure the quality of journals, and definitely not the quality of individual articles.

The Impact Factor is a journal-level measurement reflecting the yearly average number of citations of recent articles published in that journal. It is frequently used as a proxy for the relative importance of a journal within its field; journals with higher Impact Factors are often deemed to be more important than those with lower ones. Therefore, the more often articles in the journal are cited, the higher its Impact Factor.

The Impact Factor is highly discipline-dependent due to the speed with which articles get cited in each field and the related citation practices. The percentage of total citations occurring in the first two years after publication varies highly amongst disciplines. Accordingly, one cannot compare journals across disciplines based on their relative Impact Factors.

We provide several citation-based measurements for each of our journals, if available. We caution our authors, readers and researchers that they should assess the quality of the content of individual articles, and not judge the quality of articles by the reputation of the journal in which they are published.

 Citation-based measurement 2016
Journal Impact Factor, based on Web of Science (formerly ISI) 0,19
CiteScore, based on Scopus, Elsevier 0,36
Source-Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP), based on Scopus, Elsevier 0,25
Scimago Journal Rank (SJR), based on Scopus, Elsevier 0,18
H-index, based on Google Scholar 9,00