ASHA Journals Online 2010: Frequently Asked Questions

Why are the ASHA journals going exclusively online?

1. Online journals allow you to do so much more than print ever could. With print, what you see is what you get-text, tables, and figures. With online journals, you get a much more dynamic environment. The Web technology of online journals promotes new and innovative solutions not available in print (e.g., embedded video of treatment techniques, audio files that provide examples of disordered speech or stimuli). No wonder that online is fast becoming the medium of choice for researchers as well as clinicians. For more background about the value of online journals, read the May 5, 2009, and May 26, 2009, ASHA Leader Online articles.

2. You save shelf space and gain access to the current journal and the complete journal archive anytime, anywhere. The ASHA Journals Online Archive now goes all the way back to 1936. So feel free to recycle (rather than simply discarding) those old issues gathering dust on your shelf. Decades of research can be found right there on the ASHA Journals site: digital and dust-free! It's like having a library of research at your fingertips.

3. You can read about the latest research much sooner-generally within a few months of article acceptance. This is great news for readers, researchers, and evidence-based practice in general. The more that we focus on reducing the time to publication-through enhancements such as our new Papers in Press collections-the more quickly researchers can benefit from the latest developments in their disciplines and the more quickly the science will advance. And that adds to the evidence base for speech-language pathologists and audiologists.

4. Online journals are easier to use, especially for searching. When you have questions on a particular topic, you can search the journals using our advanced search features. No more flipping through dozens of print issues and scouring page after page of text to find what you need. Plus, the journals are indexed by Google, PubMed, and other search engines and online databases to make your searching even easier.

5. You have access to more resources. With the online features we have added and the ones we have in the works, journal articles will connect you to a wealth of other resources. Articles currently link to other articles and to other content. For example, in every issue of every journal, at least one article offers ASHA continuing education units (CEUs). You can link to the CEU article directly from the online table of contents (TOC): Look for the red "[CEUs Available]" link listed with the article, click on the link, and you're on your way to earning valuable CEU credits for your professional learning.

6. You can track the latest research. In addition to receiving electronic table of contents (eTOC) alerts, you can also track the latest research by author or subject through CiteTrack Alerts. This handy tool allows you to efficiently and effectively track research on a particular topic or by a specific author. Simply set up the parameters that you want to track (author, citation, key word, etc.) and receive an e-mail whenever relevant articles are posted. With CiteTrack Alerts, you will be among the first to receive a notification that a particular article is in press: And you'll have access to it immediately!

Sign up for CiteTrack alerts right now for:

Why not keep print journals too?

1. Online is "greener" than print. ASHA is committed to being environmentally responsible, and exclusively online journals are one aspect of this commitment. In 2009, ASHA will print and mail more than 50 million pages of journal content. By eliminating print in 2010, ASHA will greatly reduce its consumption of critical resources such as timber, energy, and water and its contribution to environmental contaminants such as greenhouse gas emissions and other nonrecyclable waste.

2. Printing and mailing journals is a very resource-intensive process. The costs of energy and fuel continue to rise while price increases for paper and postage have become larger and more frequent.

When ASHA journals go exclusively online, how will I know when an issue is published?

You will receive an e-mailed table of contents each time a new issue is published. At any time, you can unsubscribe from these alerts.

If there are no longer printing and postage expenses, then why aren't my dues reduced?

Revenue from dues covers only a small part of the cost of ASHA journals. In fact, to cover the full cost of ASHA journals, we must use non-dues revenue sources, such as library subscriptions, to subsidize the costs. In any case, publishing online does eliminate some costs, but there are still significant costs to providing members with robust journals. There are costs associated with pre-publication processes, such as the peer review process, copy editing, and preparation of articles for online posting. There are also costs to maintain our publication platform at HighWire Press, including a complete journal archive, and to periodically add upgrades to improve your user experience. Eliminating postage and printing expenses has allowed us to improve services without increasing expenses.

Does this mean that ASHA is decreasing my journals member benefit?

No. As a subscriber to ASHA online journals, you are now getting more than you got with print. Here's why: If you were an ASHA subscriber before ASHA's journals were online, you received only one print journal as a member benefit; if you wished additional journals, you paid for a subscription. During the transition period from 2006 to the present, ASHA members have had the benefit of access to all four journals online plus their single print journal. This has, we hope, demonstrated the value of online access. For more background on this transition, read these brief articles from the editors of AJA, AJSLP, JSLHR, and LSHSS. You can also read the August 11, 2009, ASHA Leader Online article regarding this transition, written from an ASHA member's point of view. Plus, be sure to try the interactive tutorial on how to make the most of this incredible member benefit.

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