HONORS 499C Bioterrorism: Interdisciplinary Perspective on International, Political & Scientific Challenges
- Articles & Books
- Tips & Video Tutorials
- Thesis Writing Tips & Info
- Evaluating Journal Quality
The information in this section of the guide is adapted from the UConn Evaluating Journal Quality guide created by Carolyn Mills, which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Keep in Mind
There is no single list or resource that comprehensively evaluates the quality of all journals. Below are several types of sources that you should consider consulting to help you come to an informed decision about the quality of a journal.
One way to easily avoid many low-quality journals is to use library databases. Most databases evaluate the quality of the journals before they select them to be indexed.
Metrics are an attempt to measure the value of journals, articles, and authors. Although not a direct measure of quality, metrics can indicate the importance of a journal in its field. Traditional metrics, like Impact Factor for journals and the h-index for authors, focus on citation data. Altmetrics measure other types of impact, including mentions in social media, news sources, and in policy documents.
- Journal Citation Reports This link opens in a new windowSubscription database - requires UMass Amherst NetID and passwordAvailable on campus to all, or off-campus to UMass Amherst students, staff and faculty with an UMass Amherst IT NetID (user name) and password.
- Click on the arrow next to Select Journals and start typing the name of your journal. When you see the full title of your journal, click on it.
- Scroll down and click the Submit button.
- Your journal and some metrics about it will be listed in the right panel.
- Look at the Journal Impact Factor.
- Click over to Categories by Rank to check out the Median Impact Factor. This will give you a number to compare the Impact Factor for your journal to (if it is higher, your journal has a higher impact than half the journals in that category).
- Click on the journal title to learn more about the journal and see its Impact Factor over time.
- AltmetricAltmetric collects mentions of scholarly articles from all across the Web by gathering attention from newspapers, blogs, social media, and more.
- SCImagoThe SCImago Journal & Country Rank is a portal that includes the journals and country scientific indicators developed from the information contained in the Scopus® database (Elsevier B.V.). These indicators can be used to assess and analyze scientific domains.
Directories provide listings of journals and useful information about them, such as the name & location of publisher, and where the journal is indexed. Journals that are widely indexed, especially in reputable sources like Web of Science, Scopus, and Medline, are likely to be better established and of higher quality.
- Ulrich's Web This link opens in a new windowSubscription database - requires UMass Amherst NetID and passwordAvailable on campus to all, or off-campus to UMass Amherst students, staff and faculty with an UMass Amherst IT NetID (user name) and password.
- JournalGuideFree directory of journal profile pages drawn from Scopus
- DOAJ: Directory of Open Access Journals This link opens in a new windowThousands of open access scholarly journals, most published by academic departments of universities worldwide. Coverage varies; mostly recent.Content is freely available for use by all.
Open Access Journals
Open Access journals might require additional evaluation, although many of the questions to ask about OA journals can also be applied to traditionally published journals.
- Open Access Journal Quality Indicatorsfrom Grand Valley State University
- Think. Check. Submit.from their website: "helps researchers identify trusted journals and publishers for their research. Through a range of tools and practical resources, this international, cross-sector initiative aims to educate researchers, promote integrity, and build trust in credible research and publications."
- Journal Evaluation Toolfrom Loyola Marymount University - includes a rubric and scoring sheet
Articles may be retracted, or withdrawn, or corrected, or issued an expression of concern, for a variety of reasons. Some reasons may be simple mistakes, but others are due to deliberate research misconduct.
The Retraction Watch website began as a blog about retractions and has now created a searchable database of retracted articles.
- Retraction Watch Database User Guide"Welcome to our database. We’ve prepared this document to help you get started, and to answer some questions that are likely to come up."
- Last Updated: Feb 22, 2023 11:22 AM
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