Hi everyone,

I have copied over some of the ideas from the Dgroups discussion on starting a journal club, so we can continue this discussion. Please add your comments below.

Dear researchers. I would like to form a journal club and I would like your experiences on how to go about it, what benefit have you realized? Also for example if you have a group from different disciplines but all within social sciences how do you narrow to what articles to read and discuss? And any other information
Thanks you,

Aurelia M. Munene

Hi Aurelia and everyone,

This blog post might be helpful:
How writing clubs help medical research communication in Sri Lanka and beyond

If you'd like to set up an online journal club, this article might provide some pointers.

Andy Nobes

Dear Aurelia,Forming a Journal club is a good thing for academics. I belong to one though l was not around when it was formed. It comprises of PhD fellows in the health sciences but from various sections such as Pharmacy, medicine, nursing, lab etc.The key thing is everyone has to be willing to learn, contribute their skills,and be committed. We have weekly schedules and present our projects and journal articles. The club is beneficial because we share our knowledge and skills in our research areas.There is a lot of peer mentorship.Hope this is helpful!

Doreen Sitali

Thank you all for your feedback and the links. Doreen can I ask how do run discussions. Is there a moderator/ faciliator? Do you select one paper which everyone reads prior then gives feedback? Do people also discuss how their work is coming up. I would have to know abit of *HOW* you carry out the discussions. And kudos for that.

Aurelia M. Munene

Though I have not formed any journal club, I have been involved in teaching about journal clubs and been planning to start one for a while, I do know a few things about them. I was hoping more of those actually involved would respond first.
Yes, there has to be an identified moderator who guides the club activities. The club members must agree on the direction the club activities go so even though you are from different areas of the social sciences you need to agree if the purpose of the club is to advance you in terms of bringing in your own materials for critique or finding relevant materials by others that will add to you to critique. You will also need to agree on the nature of the club. While online clubs may be easier to manage face-to-face clubs make for greater interaction especially if you are all physically located in the same area.
My contribution. Hope it's useful and looking forward to more from others.

Dr. Arinola Joda
Faculty of Pharmacy,
University of Lagos.

Dear Aurelia, Yes, we make quarterly schedules where we indicate presenters and moderators.Mostly, we review journal articles in our fields.When this is the case, the presenter decides on which article to review and they circulate it to the rest a week before the presentation. When we meet, we critique the article. Sometimes people present their projects at whatever stage it is, the idea is to give peer mentorship.If a member is about to present their thesis to the graduate forum or for defense, we allow them to present their work at our journal club just to help them prepare for the main activity.Occasionally,we have hands-on practicals on use of specific statistical software for data analysis.The whole idea is to share knowledge and skills in research and publications.Of course,for each session, there is a moderator. We also have the journal club chairperson who administers the running of the club. Hope this is helpful!!Regards.

Doreen Sitali

Dear AureliaI believe that its usually people of same research interest that can enjoy the benefit of forming a journal club. Video conferencing can be used and also you can group yourselves into four or five and then give people the different sections using IMRAD and thereby swipe the positions from time to time, this will help sharpen people's skill.
Many thanks

Dr. Mrs. Maryann N. Osuji.
Department of Agricultural Economics, Federal university of Technology,
P.M.B. 1526 Owerri Imo State, Nigeria


Dear all thank you for all you support with the ideas about the journal club. We had our first meeting on Saturday (6 members more can join) and we laid down the objectives below based on the needs of the members: Some of the objectives we will achieve through online discussions (google groups).
But for reading skills we will meet every two weeks to discuss a paper we have read ( not so much the content but learning how to structure arguments (your voice) , using literature, critical reading, how to tease out assumptions etc. We take turns to chair the meeting. We will also submit abstract to conference and each person presents and we peer review.

Our Objectives:

- Develop critical academic reading skills
- Ensure each member publishes 2 papers in 2018 (or begin the process)
- Ensure each member participates in at least one conference in 2018 as a speaker.
- Develop skills in concept note development
- Mapping members research strengths and linking them to opportunities

Your ideas are welcome. Hope it works out well.

Aurelia M. Munene

Thank you for your useful tips so far. If you have any other thoughts, or ideas on how we could run online journal club(s) here on this forum, please share below. Thanks!