The Journal of Extension -

December 2011 // Volume 49 // Number 6 // Editorial // v49-6ed1

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Citing JOE Articles

"Citing JOE Articles" discusses why and how to use JOE articles effectively. And "December JOE" describes an issue in which information technology takes center stage.

Laura Hoelscher
Editor, Journal of Extension
Purdue University
West Lafayette, Indiana

Citing JOE Articles


According to the JOE Submission Guidelines <>, "all JOE submissions are expected to contain scholarly citations, including citation of relevant JOE articles." So one reason to cite JOE articles in your articles is because the submission guidelines tell you to.

But there are other reasons.

It's a matter of common sense and courtesy to cite articles from JOE if you are submitting an article to JOE. You are expecting JOE to use its resources to review and publish your article, and it is only courteous and commonsensical that you indicate an awareness of and acknowledge JOE authors' contributions to the scholarship on your subject. (By the way, this advice also holds true when you are submitting to other journals.)

And citing JOE articles is one way to put your work in an Extension context, something I discuss in "Answer the 'So What?' Question for Extension," which is a link on the Help for JOE Authors page <>.


By "How?" I'm not talking about formatting. That's covered in "How JOE and Other Internet Sources Should Be Cited in JOE," another link on Help for JOE Authors.

I'm talking about how you can use JOE citations to strengthen your own article.

Too many authors feel that the only relevant JOE articles are those on the exact same subjects of their own articles, but that's not necessarily the case.

Perhaps there are, for example, a number of articles on 4-H recruitment, but none on the importance of parents in the process. You could cite a few of those recruitment articles and make the point that your article fills a gap in the scholarship.

Maybe there are a number of articles on your subject—even your exact same subject—but your research contradicts or amends the findings reported in those articles or takes a different tack. What better way to establish your point and underscore the originality and importance of your article than by citing a few of them?

Or perhaps your article validates work that has been done by others or adds to it. Citing those works is a way of adding credibility to your article.

Citing JOE articles is also helpful because many JOE readers are much more familiar with JOE than they are with other scholarly journals and because JOE articles are easily retrievable.

What I wrote in "What's Wrong Skimpy References Sections?" (yet another link on Help for JOE Authors) about contributing to the scholarly dialogue holds doubly true for JOE articles and the JOE scholarly dialogue.

December JOE

Information technology takes center stage in this issue. There's the challenging Commentary, "Extension Is Unpopular—On the Internet," and the equally challenging first Feature, "Is Extension Ready to Adopt Technology for Delivering Programs and Reaching New Audiences?"

But they're just the tip of an info tech iceberg.

There are, of course, a number articles on eXtension, including the second Feature, "Land-Grant University Employee Perceptions of eXtension: A Baseline Descriptive Study." And there are articles on new media and social media and wikis and the Web and things virtual.

And even some of the articles that are not overtly about technology, like the two on social network analysis, which depends on software for its utility to be realized, have technology woven through them.

But the issue, like Extension, is not all high tech. So I want to call attention to articles like the last Tools of the Trade, "Conducting Research on Private Farms and Ranches: Approaches, Issues, and Tips," which describes "factors to consider when establishing collaborative research projects with agricultural growers, issues that can arise in establishing these relationships, and key steps that researchers can take to improve collaborations and increase the likelihood of project success."

We still do high touch, too, and use high tech to touch our audiences.

I'm excited about the December issue and hope you will be when you read it.