GUIDELINES ON WRITING ARTICLES for publication on Vietnam Journal of Agricultural Sciences
- Types of articles
Vietnam Journal of Agricultural Sciences (hereinafter referred to as VJAS or the Journal) accepts articles of the following types:
- Original research articles or original articles: These are the articles that publish original research results. An original research article published on VJAS must meet the following two basic requirements: (1) publishing the original research results for the first time; and (2) the writing of the articles follow the instructed format and contain sufficient information so that others can reproduce the study and test the conclusions. The length of the original research articles (including tables, figures, and references) should not exceed the maximum word count of about 6000 words for the technical sciences and about 7000 words for the socio-economic sciences.
- Literature review articles or review articles: These are the articles that summarizes published research results on a certain topic. There are many different types of review articles, in which VJAS accepts the following types: narrative review, literature review, systematic review, and integrative review.
A narrative review article is a simple review article in which the author(s) objectively describes the ideas and research findings on a given topic drawn from the original published articles in a systematic and succinct way, but does not contain any analysis, comments, evaluation or recommendations. A literature review article is usually an article that systematically presents the results of published research on a certain topic and makes an assessment of the advantages and disadvantages of previous and updated studies, and provides an update on the latest developments, indicating current knowledge gaps as well as trends and research prospects on that topic in the near future. A systematic review article is a review and synthesis of the empirical evidence that results from published studies that meet the selection criteria to answer a particular research question through the use of systematic and clear research methods. A typical form of systematic review article is a review based on statistical analysis of the overall data collected from published sources (meta analysis). An integrative review article is a special research article that creates new knowledge on a topic by presenting in a systematic, comprehensive, concise, and logical manner the information obtained from many published documents, thereby spending most of the article for discussion in order to draw highly generalizable conclusions and judgments, and, at the same time, to give strategic directions, recommendations and proposals on the research problem. These review articles are usually written by leading scientists with good thinking ability at the order of the Journal. The length of a review article (including tables, figures, and references) should not exceed the maximum word count of 8000 words for the technical sciences and 9000 words for the socio-economic sciences.
- Short communications: These are the articles that announces new research results but these results are not enough to constitute a complete original research article. The publication of the short communications does not preclude the publication of those results in full original research articles later. The length of the short communications (including tables, pictures, references) should not exceed the maximum word count of 1500 words.
- Letter to the Editor: is an official letter sent to the Editorial Board for publication in the Journal in order to express the opinions or discuss about an article published in the Journal or convey information and opinions about a certain scientific, technological or development issue in the fields of interest of the Journal that may attract the attention of readers. Those should be objective and constructive opinions. If it is the feedback on a published article, the author of the article is usually invited to respond formally in the form of an author's response letter. The length of a full-composed letter must not exceed the maximum word count of 750 words.
- General principles of writing scientific articles
- Scientific articles need to convey scientific information in a scientific writing style, ensuring the articles to be clear and concise with the least amount of words possible and their length should not exceed the maximum word count required by the Journal for each type of article as mentioned above.
- The format of the article needs to comply with VJAS's Guidelines for authors.
- All information and/or data of others that the authors use in the article must be fully cited, and the detailed information about the source must be fully included in the references at the end of the article. The format of the citations and references must comply with VJAS’s citation and referencing styles as can be seen in VJAS's Guidelines for authors.
- The symbols and exponents need to be clearly presented, and noted from the first use. Plants, insects, animals and microorganisms, when presented for the first time in abstracts and articles, should be accompanied by their scientific names (Latin double names). For land terminology, the International Classification System (FAO-UNESCO) or the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Classification System can be used as a reference document when presenting the local classification system. Math equations: please use Equation. Chemical formulations: the ionic chemistry should be specified as Ca2+ or SO42- , not as Ca++ or SO4—. The number of radioactive isotopes must be written before the symbol, for example: 18O or 15(NH4)2SO4. As for the statistical significance, please specify the corresponding level of significance.
- Ensure common standards of ethical research and scientific publication related to authenticity, accuracy, originality, plagiarism, welfare animal welfare, authorship and conflict of interests.
- Ensure that there are no violations of the Law on the Press, the Law on Publication and other applicable laws of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.
- Do not resubmit published or the articles submitted for publication in other journals, do not submit manuscripts to multiple journals at the same time. The procedure for submitting manuscripts to the Editorial Board follows the Regulations on submitting articles to the Journal.
- Article structure and contents
- Original research article
- General structure of an original research article
- Original research article
An original article has the following structure and main sections: TITLE Authors ABSTRACT Keywords
- MATERIALS AND METHODS or METHODOLOGY
- RESULT AND DISCUSSION (can be separated into 2 sections, RESULT and DISCUSSION)
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS (if available) REFERENCES
- Contents of the sections in an original research article
- Title: The title should be brief, concise, use popular scientific terms, have a clear meaning, accurately reflect the main contents of the article and show new and creative elements of the research work; no abbreviations included; and should not exceed the word count of 20 words.
- Authors: List out the name of the author(s) and their affiliation(s). The full names of the authors should be given, but do not indicate the academic title or degree of the author(s). Each author's name is numbered with an exponent corresponding to the marking number for the institution. The corresponding author has an * next to the exponent and notes the email address below. In a multiple-author article, the order of authors is decided by the author group, where the first author is considered the leading author, but may not be the corresponding author.
- Abstract: Summarize information about research objectives, methods, main results and conclusions in a paragraph consisting of continuous sentences without separating sections. The abstract should be written clearly and concisely within 250 words.
- Keywords: Choose 3-5 short words or phrases that are representative and directly related to the main content of the article, but not already included in the title of the article (to increase the visibility when searching online).
- Introduction: Provide the context, necessity and basis of the study by summarizing the literature review leading to the research problem, current knowledge gaps, research questions/scientific assumptions and research objectives. The author can also state an approach to solve the problem, but not the specific methods. In other words, in this section, the authors need to answer the following important questions: Why is this research necessary? What problems are this research trying to solve? To achieve what goal? and (possibly) how?
- Materials and Methods or Research Methodology: Specify the research object(s), location and time of the research; detailed description of the study design, research sample size, standard sampling method (if it employs sampling), research materials and main equipment (specify the origin if it is a study in laboratory); research targets; methods of information collection; processing and analyzing data (specify statistical model(s) and software(s) used in the study). The content in this section must be written clearly, accurately and in sufficient details so that other can repeat it. If the method is new, all details shall be given. If the research methods have been previously published in a peer-reviewed journal, only a clear reference to the source should be indicated for each method. If there is a modification of an existing method, further details of the modification should be specified. If it is a routine method, just name the method.
Note: For socio-economic studies, there may be no research materials but a theoretical framework used for research instead.
- Results: Present the main results obtained after data processing and analysis. The results need to be presented logically with each completed content of the research, so it can be divided into many subsections (but not too small subsections or bullet points). The results are first presented in the form of tables or figures and are briefly described orally in the text. Tables and figures must be presented in accordance with VJAS’s guidelines for authors and must be mentioned in the text. When interpreting tables orally, emphasize or highlight important results and new findings, but do not rewrite data already presented in the tables. No references were cited or discussed when presenting the results.
- Discussion: The author's subjective discussion takes place after presenting and describing the research results. Discussions should be written in separate sections or paragraphs, separately from results. Authors need to critically evaluate their research findings to answer the research questions, accepting or rejecting the proposed hypothesis. In this section, besides their own data, the authors can use the data of their colleagues (taken from references) either to support his thesis or to provide background information for discussion. Furthermore, the authors need to justify the newly obtained results so that they can lead to messages that announce the new findings, the scientific and/or practical significance of the new findings, ideas for future research and/or recommendations for practical applications. At the same time, in the discussion, the authors also need to analyze and recognize the limitations and shortcomings of the current research, and explain how to solve and improve them.
- Conclusion: Summarize the main findings on the basis of answering research questions, accepting or rejecting the original hypothesis towards the stated goal; and ,at the same time, make generalized inferences from those findings. In the conclusion of the paper, the authors should also outline possible applications or implications of the research results. Finally, the author should suggest ideas for future studies in order to develop new findings or to answer new research questions arising from the current study or to make recommendations for applying the new research results into production and business as well as policy recommendations (if any). Do not make “suggestions” that are not derived from the current study itself. The Conclusion of the article should only be written succinctly, in a complete paragraph.
- Acknowledgments (optional): This is the section for the author to acknowledge and publicly express gratitude to people and/or agencies and organizations who have contributed during the research and /or the writing of the articles. These are often contributions in terms of scientific advice, technical assistance in the conduct of research or funding for the conduct of research. Do not thank the co-authors or reviewers of the article.
- References: All documents cited in the article must be listed in the references and vice versa. The referencing style must comply with VJAS’s guidelines for authors.
- Review articles
- General structure of a review article
The structure of a review article is not exactly the same as that of the original research article. A typical review article has the following structure and main sections: TITLE Authors ABSTRACT Keywords
- First review section
- Second review section
Third review section …CONCLUSION ACKNOWLEDGMENTS (if any) REFERENCES Note: In the overall structure of the review, there are no Materials and Methods and Results and Discussion sections as in the original research article; There is also no section called Review contents, but instead there are headings that reflect the content being reviewed. However, for a systematic review, there may also be a Research Methods section to describe the methodology for analyzing the overall data, and then there may also be a Results and Discussion section that should be included, hence this article has the same structure as the original research article.
- Contents of the sections in a review article
- Title: should be written concisely (should not exceed the length of 15 words), concisely but still able to reflect the topic of the review. The title should include the word “overview” so that editors, secondary searching systems, and readers recognize the type of article in the first place. Do not use abbreviations, jargon or slang terms.
- Author: List the name(s) of the author(s) and their affiliations.
- Abstract: Give an overview of the topic and purpose of the review; how to collect and process the collected documents/references; and main overview results and conclusions. The total number of words in the abstract should not exceed 250 words.
- Keywords: Choose 3-5 short words or phrases, which have representative meaning and are directly related to the review topic, but not included in the title of the article (to increase the visibility when searching online).
- Introduction: Provide the context and reasons for the interest in the reviewed topic (based on the requirements of practice, limitations or prospects of the research topic); state the significance of a review of the topic of interest (the contributions of this review to orientation in the discipline); the author's point of view and approach when reviewing the issue. The issue should be aimed at a wide audience to maximize readership and influence.
Note: For the reviews of socio-economic topics, especially systematic reviews, the approach can be separated into a separate Research Methods section to describe the research methods in more detail (published literature).
- Body: The review content is divided into different large sections, in each large section there may be subsections. The author explains in words and can use tables or figures created by the author or cited from the references. Tables and figures must be presented in accordance with the regulations of the Journal and must be introduced in the text. The author should highlight important new findings, prioritizing those published in the most recent time compared to the time of writing to update the current state of knowledge on the topic of interest. For the literature review articles, the authors also need to analyze the research methods and the value of the results obtained in different works; clarify how far the problem has been studied, what has not been considered (research gap), what is still unknown (current knowledge gap), what is controversial and, if possible, only identify the cause of the problem. Finally, the authors need to comment and indicate the future direction of research on the reviewed topic.
Note: For systematic reviews that have a separate Methodology section, the overview can be written in subsections under the heading of a large section, Results and Discussion, in the same way as an original research article.
- Conclusion: What information did the review provide? Were the objectives set out in the review achieved? What are the prospects and directions for further research on that topic?
- Acknowledgments: The author acknowledges the help of individuals, groups, projects, agencies and/or organizations who provided supports to conduct the review.
- References: All documents cited in the article must be listed in the references and vice versa. The referencing style must comply with the formatting requirements as can be seen at the VJAS’s Guidelines for authors.
- Short communications
The short communications have the same structure as the original research articles, but there are no MATERIALS AND METHODS or RESEARCH METHODOLOGY sections.
- Contents of the parts in a short communication
The contents of the sections in a short communication are similar to those of the original research article, but more concise. The main purpose of short communication articles is to announce preliminary (but valuable) research results, so it is necessary to limit the use of a large number of tables and figures. Discussion should also be limited with a few references.
- Letter to the Editorial Board
A letter to the Editorial Board of the Journal can take the form of a regular formal letter with the following basic format:
Vietnam Journal of Agricultural Sciences
Sender’s address: …………………………………
Receiver: Editorial Board Vietnam Journal of Agricultural Sciences
Vietnam National University of Agriculture, Trau Quy town, Gia Lam district, Hanoi, Vietnam
[INTRODUCTION]: Introduce yourself and explain the purpose of the letter.
[BODY OF THE LETTER]: List out the problem(s), provide all the details about and the sender’s personal opinions of the matter(s) being discussed.
[CONCLUSION]: Summarize what was written and the main point of view; maybe proposing the ways to solve the problem(s).
Ending the letter (i.e. Your sincerely,)
Name of the sender
Address of the sender