When nearing completion of a research study, it is important to start thinking about where to publish an article. Having a few target journals in mind can offer an idea about the scope of the journals (what topics and types of research are covered), the types of readers (audience), and how best to format or structure a paper based on the journals’ guidelines.
Here are some key things to consider as you are reviewing journals for publication:
- What journal(s) do you, your colleagues, and mentors use for research and clinical care?
- Is it clear what the aim and scope of the journal is?
- Is the journal transparent in providing information about the editorial board, indexing status, the peer review process, reputation, and policies for authors?
- Are you able to assess and determine the scientific rigor and editorial quality of the journal based on review of its publications?
(Suiter & Sarli, 2019)
In addition to these criteria, it is worth exploring the impact or influence of these journals. There are several resources that can provide journal impact metrics such as Web of Science’s Journal Citation Reports to find Journal Impact Factors. Other tools for assessing journal impact or influence include Eigenfactor Metrics, Scimago Journal & Country Rank, and Scopus’ CiteScore metric. Read this article for more information about impact indicators and resources that provide them.
To help researchers discover reputable journals most appropriate for their research topic, there are tools like manuscript matching software. Web of Science’s Master Journal List offers a manuscript matching tool to help find the right journal. Other popular manuscript matching resources are listed in the table below.
|Name||Is it free?||Minimum required information||Information provided|
|American Journal Experts JournalGuide Paper Match||Yes||Manuscript title and abstract||
|Elsevier Journal Finder||Yes||Manuscript title and abstract||
|EndNote Online’s Manuscript Matcher tool||Included in the free EndNote Basic version but might not include all the features of the paid version||Manuscript title, abstract, and references||
|Journal/Author Name Estimator (JANE)||Yes||Manuscript title and abstract||
|Springer Journal Suggester||Yes||Manuscript title and abstract||
Source: Benjamin Saracco. (2018). Internet Resources: Ease the Journal Selection Process Using Manuscript Matching Software. Medical Library Association Newsletter.
- Think.Check. Submit provides a check list to assess the trustworthiness of a journal or publisher.
- Suiter AM, Sarli CC. Selecting a Journal for Publication: Criteria to Consider. Mo Med. 2019 Nov-Dec;116(6):461-465.