Editorial Policies

Focus and Scope

The South African Computer Journal is specialist ICT academic journal, accredited by the South African Department of Higher Education and Training SACJ publishes research articles, viewpoints and communications in English in Computer Science and Information Systems. While it is intended primarily as a local forum for research publications, contributions from scholars from other countries are most welcome to submit articles for review. All research articles submitted for publication are rigorously refereed by independent peer reviewers, ensuring that the journal publishes original work that is of international stature. The editorial board comprises local and international scholars of high repute. The journal usually appears twice per year (occasionally we have additional special issues).

SACJ is indexed by Scopus as of 2016.


Section Policies

Editorial Comment

  • Philip Machanick
Unchecked Open Submissions Unchecked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Research Papers

Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Checked Peer Reviewed


  • Philip Machanick
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Letters to the Editor

  • Philip Machanick
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Book reviews

  • Philip Machanick
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed


  • Philip Machanick
Checked Open Submissions Checked Indexed Unchecked Peer Reviewed

Peer Review Process

All research articles and technical reports submitted for publication are rigourously refereed by independent peer reviewers using double-blind review (authors are not identified to reviwers, nor are reviewers identified to authors), ensuring that the journal publishes original work that is of international stature. The review team comprises local and international scholars of high repute. The journal appears approximately twice per year.

Authors are invited to nominate potential reviewers (ideally at least some from outside South Africa), who may or may not be used, but give the editorial team an indication of the kind of reviewer to approach. Authors should also inform the editorial team if any specific reviewers should not be approached, and why.

Letters and to the editor short (usually 2 pages) viewpoints articles are not reviewed and are accepted at the discretion of the editor-in-chief.


Papers must have significant new content to be considered for publication; a conference paper with at least 30% original content may be submitted, provided the author provides evidence of originality and that there are no copyright issues with reuse. Any other paper that has previously been published will not be considered unless there is sufficient new material to constitute an original publication, both in terms of weight of contribution and sufficient differences to clear copyright concerns.

In any case of reuse of previously published material, the author must inform the editor on submission.

Review Criteria

Research papers using the following checklist:

  • Is there evidence of plagiarism?
  • Does the title of the article reflect the subject matter discussed in the paper?
  • Does the abstract of the article satisfactorily show the aims, methods and result of the article?
  • Is the topic of the paper relevant, timely and of interest to the audience of this journal?
  • Is the rationale of the paper well grounded (is it based on a known theory or does it break new ground)?
  • Is the research methodology for the study rigorous, appropriate and applied properly?
  • Is the content of the article rigorous, technically accurate and sound in supporting the arguments?
  • Is the content sufficiently novel to justify a journal publication?
  • Are the conclusions / contributions supported by the material presented in the article?
  • Is the language used appropriate for an international readership?
  • Does the article have sufficient length to adequately satisfy its aims?
  • Are figure / graphics used in the article clear and appropriately captioned?
  • Are the references cited where relevant?
  • Are the references shown related to the article theme?
  • Are references relevant, recent and representative (i.e. not biased to only support one view)?


In the event that a paper is rejected, that means the paper is either not publishable, or would be more appropriately published elsewhere. In the event that a paper may be suitable if reworked, authors are specifically informed and invited to resubmit. We request that authors do not resubmit a rejected paper without discussion with the relevant editor.


Publication Frequency

Two issues of SACJ appear annually, usually in July and December; there may sometimes be additional special issues. SACJ up to 2015 was numbered by issue, not volume; since 2016 SACJ has been numbered in the conventional way, starting with volume 28, reflecting the start year of the journal’s current name.


Open Access Policy

The journal is open access, meaning there is no charge to read papers.



This journal utilizes the LOCKSS system to create a distributed archiving system among participating libraries and permits those libraries to create permanent archives of the journal for purposes of preservation and restoration. More...


Publication charges

Authors are required to pay a publication charge of R6000 per paper published, unless they are able to motivate successfully to the editor-in-chief at the time their paper is accepted to waive these charges. Lack of funding is not a reason to reject a paper. This charge covers production costs, since we do not charge a subscription.


Ethics and Malpractice

SACJ aims to achieve the highest ethical standards in publication and does not tolerate malpractice.

The editor-in-chief has oversight of paper acceptance, and individual editors take care to ensure that the review process is fair and complete.

Authors are expected to

  • disclose conflicts of interest including in choice of reviewers
  • maintain proper ethical standards in conducting their research and in their writing
  • take reasonable steps to ensure that their identity is not disclosed during review, in line with the journal’s double-blind review policy
  • only submit original works not under consideration for publication elsewhere, with at least 30% new content if extending previous work by the same authors
  • inform the editor-in-chief at time of submission if the paper is an extension of a previous paper
  • list affiliation consistent with where the reported work was done
  • obtain agreement from all co-authors before submission on the order of authors and their affiliation

Reviewers are expected to

  • disclose conflicts of interest and decline review assignments should they not be unbiased
  • decline review assignments expeditiously should they be incapable for whatever reason of performing a competent, timeous review
  • report ethical concerns with papers immediately to the relevant editor
  • not disclose their identity to authors during or after review, and to refrain from attempting to identify or contact authors about the paper under review during the review process.

Should any instance of misconduct be disclosed to any of the editorial team, including but not limited to plagiarism, misuse, falsification or manipulation of results and failure to obtain ethical approval where required, that disclosure will be investigated expeditiously and as thoroughly as possible.

Any paper under review that violates ethics standards may be summarily rejected; a paper already published may be withdrawn. Should withdrawal be necessary, the fact of this withdrawal will be made known in the place of the paper on the journal web site.


Corrections and Retractions

In the event that an error is discovered in a paper, the author or authors will be given the option of publishing a short correction. Should the author or authors not make use of that opportunity, the editorial team will at its discretion make the error known as an erratum or corrigendum.

In the event that a serious problem is discovered in a paper, SACJ reserves the right to retract the paper. Retraction may take the form of removing the paper from the journal site, replacing it with a placeholder, or replacing the original by a version that is clearly marked as retracted.

The editorial team consisting of the editor-in-chief and section editors make decisions on corrections and retractions.

In the event of a dispute, authors have the right to appeal to the Editorial Board, whose decision shall be final.


Data Access

Any papers that have accompanying data should make that data freely available via an appropriate public archive.