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1 April 28, 2021


1. Jaime A. Teixeira da Silva
Walailak Journal of Science and Technology: A Potential Black Swan Event is Born

Journal of Advocacy, Research and Education. 2021. 8(1): 3-12.

In early 2017, a manuscript was submitted to a special issue of Walailak Journal of Science and Technology (WJST), a free (platinum) open access (OA) journal published in Thailand. Prior to submission, WJST was checked for most obvious signs of predatory OA publishers and being covered by SCOPUS and listed at Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), it was determined to be a non-predatory OA journal. An editor-created account that entered incorrect data and without the implicit permission of the corresponding author raised an immediate red flag. WJST immediately corrected that error. After submission, the article was peer-reviewed, and the steps between editorial revision and final proof processing and publication were fairly quick, and professionally handled. No DOI was assigned. An unrelated article published in WJST with an apparent error in a figure was discovered. The authors of that paper were contacted about the query, and the journal and editors were copied. After a week of silence, the editor contacted the corresponding author (CA). After one more week, and with the threat of retraction by the editor-in-chief if no suitable explanation was provided, the CA responded. No explanation was provided for the figure irregularities, and it was discovered that the CA had submitted the paper without the knowledge of at least one of the authors, with whom he had not been in contact since 2004. In clear breach of the ethical and submission policies of the journal, WJST decided to swiftly retract the paper, the first-ever such retraction for WJST. WJST was caught by surprise and was very apologetic for editorial oversight. This case represents a rarely documented and witnessed birth of a potential black swan event – a highly unlikely or improbable event – in an OA journal. Future perspectives and cautious advice are provided.

2. Enoch Kwame Tham-Agyekum, Joseph Kwarteng, Ernest Laryea Okorley, Fred Nimoh
Exploring the Critical Determinants of Market Orientation of Cocoa Farmers in Ghana

Journal of Advocacy, Research and Education. 2021. 8(1): 13-20.

Despite the impressive strides made in the cocoa sector, it is still faced with decent deficits. The study was therefore aimed at determining the factors that influence the market orientation of cocoa farmers in Ghana. The factors considered in this study were entrepreneurial proclivity, innovation factors, socio-economic factors and farm characteristics. With a descriptive survey design, 370 cocoa farmers were selected. Data collected was analysed using inferential statistics (ordinal logistic regression model). The results found that entrepreneurial proclivity, the innovation characteristics of the farmer business school, farmer characteristics (gender, age, tribe, religion) and farm characteristics (farm size, yield, source of labour and training of workers) were the factors that influenced the market orientation of cocoa farmers. A revision of the farmer business school is essential for growth in the cocoa sector. The study provides empirical information for considering the various factors that influence the market orientation of cocoa farmers in Ghana. These factors are critical in ensuring that the Farmer business school which was introduced in Ghana can be sustainable.

3. Jelisavka Bulatović, Goran Rajović
Rural Settlement in Gnjili Potok Until the Immigration of Slavs: Geo-Historical Observations

Journal of Advocacy, Research and Education. 2021. 8(1): 21-27.

Studies on rural settlements are useful for tourism, research, historical, and educative purposes. Notwithstanding the indisputable global need for studies in the area of rural settlements, little works have been conducted so far. Since Montenegro lags behind most European and even neighboring countries in this respect, we explored rural settlement in Gnjili Potok until the immigration of Slavs using a geographical (spatial) method. Our findings show that the main relics in the field of social life in the considered geo-space were and are still indicative of tribal-brotherhood and family relations. Furthermore, the history rural settlement of Gnjili Potok is not fully explored, so its history, as well as the history of many other rural settlements in Montenegro, cannot be reliably traced until 1744. It is almost certain that the ancient peoples (Illyrians, Celts, Romans) lived in the area of the rural settlement of Gnjilog Potoka and that they were engaged in agriculture and cattle breeding. Therefore, our study contributes to the study of the rural settlement of Gnjili Potok from the aspect of the evolution of the settlement to the immigration of Slavs.

4. Abiodun A. Bada, Loyiso C. Jita
Blended Learning and Pre-service Teachers’ Achievement on “Classroom Testing” Course during COVID-19 Pandemic

Journal of Advocacy, Research and Education. 2021. 8(1): 28-36.

The COVID-19 pandemic ravaging most cities of the world has forced many countries to go into partial or total lockdown thus suspending face-to-face learning. The difficulties created by the lockdown that arose to mitigate the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic forced educational institutions to adopt blended learning which became crucial to fostering undisrupted teaching and learning. This study, therefore, investigated the effect of blended learning on a compulsory course, Classroom Testing, in the Nigerian Teacher Education Curriculum. The post-test randomised control group quasi-experimental design was adopted using two groups (experimental, n = 232 and control, n = 214). The experimental group was taught using blended learning while the control group was taught using the lecture method. The classroom Testing Achievement Test was used to collect data while descriptive and inferential statistics were used to analyse the data collected. Findings from this investigation revealed that pre-service teachers who taught classroom testing using blended learning achieved better than their counterparts who taught the same content using the conventional lecture method. This study concludes that blended learning can guarantee undisrupted learning and also increase pre-service teachers’ achievement in the course classroom testing.

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