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Scholarly Communication

Information for faculty and administrators on academic publishing

About the Journal

  • Discover peer-reviewed journals using the Library's Journal Locator
  • Examine the aims and scope: are they appropriate for your research?
  • Review past issues: does the content look topical and credible? Are the authors known to you?
  • Investigate its history of article retractions using Retraction Watch
  • If open access, is it registered in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) The DOAJ vets journals before listing them.
  • Does the website provide complete contact information: email, street address, working phone number?
  • Does it have a valid online ISSN?
  • Journals are disseminated via research databases (academic abstracting and indexing services) such as JSTOR, PubMed, EBSCOhost, ProQuest (even Google Scholar).  A journal website should say where it is indexed.
  • Is it indexed in the places it says it is?
  • Has it been assigned ranking(s)? E.g. SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) Indicator
  • Are its policies on peer review, open access, copyright publicly available?
  • If it charges publication fees, are they clearly stated and explained?
  • What are the copyright policies? Will you be able to preserve copyright over your work? If you are required to meet a public access mandate to share your research, are the copyright policies compatible?  In many open access journals, authors retain full copyright to their work and give the journal a “non-exclusive” right to publish the work.

About the Publisher

Phony vs Legit infographic

Evaluating Scholarly Journals infographic from FrontMatter by Allen Press / CC BY ND NC 3.0