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Abstracts as required fields

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This forum is meant for general questions about the usability of OJS from an everyday user's perspective: journal managers, authors, and editors are welcome to post questions here, as are librarians and other support staff. We welcome general questions about the role of OJS and how the workflow works, as well as specific function- or user-related questions.

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Abstracts as required fields

Postby brianlee » Wed Jan 20, 2010 8:52 am

When we use the XML import to load data, abstracts are not required, and the "abstract" link does not appear in the table of contents. This is the desired behavior for some of our journals which don't have abstracts. However, when we try to edit the metadata the abstract field is required and we cannot make any changes (even for articles that have already been successfully imported into the system without abstracts). Also, when we load a file manually it requires an abstract. Is there a way to make abstracts optional or to work around this issue?

We are using OJS 2.2.2

Thanks!
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Re: Abstracts as required fields

Postby brianlee » Wed Jan 20, 2010 9:11 am

Nevermind: I found the solution---go to the Journal Sections setup pages and check the "Do Not Require Abstracts" box....simple!
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Re: Abstracts as required fields

Postby cnelson » Thu Jul 26, 2012 1:17 pm

Thanks for posting an update! This is very useful information, as we also do a lot of XML importing behind the scenes. I've read a few threads that talk about required fields, and I'm wondering: is there a way to make a field not-required for an entire journal or an entire instance of OJS (rather than just a section)? For example, the <abstract> field is often left blank, and the <firstname> field is often blank if the paper was written by the "Editors". It would be really useful to know how to turn on/off required fields for a whole site, as we host a multi-journal site and would need to do this tens of times if we had to do it per section.

Thanks!

Caitlin
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Re: Abstracts as required fields

Postby barbarah » Tue Jul 31, 2012 1:53 pm

Hi Caitlin,

I don't think there's an easy way to do this through the user interface (other than going into every section for every journal and clicking "Do not require abstracts" checkbox). If you wanted to do a wholesale change for all of your journals and all of their sections, it'd have to be done programmatically in the database, I think. We run a multi-journal installation here and the tech team ends up needing to do blanket changes directly in the database oftentimes for things that aren't enabled in the UI. (This would involve a blanket update of the sections.abstracts_not_required database field.)

Hope that helps a bit,
-Barbara
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