Top 10 Tips for Journal Selection

Make sure you visit scimagojr.com today to find out the h-index and SJR of your target journal. Avoid publishing in low-h-index journals. Clarivate impact factors are also useful, but you need to pay for accessing these numbers. Choose your journal wisely. If your research is interesting but not groundbreaking, publish it in a decent journal. If it’s groundbreaking, then aim for high-h-index or high-Clarivate-impact-factor journals. Find out if you need to pay upfront for getting your paper published. Open access journals make the authors pay, whereas subscription-based journals make the readers or libraries pay. Check the editorial policies to identify inclusions and clear exclusions. Are there any topics that are considered unacceptable? Identify your journal’s target audience. Is the journal available to English-speaking readers? Is it mostly accessed by readers from a particular geography? These critical questions need to be answered during your journal search. Make sure you also check the author guidelines. Are there any prescribed word count limits or charges for publishing colored figures? Visit LinkedIn or ResearchGate to find out more about the academic reputation of your target journal’s peer reviewers. Is the peer review process single-blind or is it double-blind? Check the submission and publication dates of some recent papers published in your target journal. This will give you a fair idea about the overall publication timeline. Is the journal a general-purpose journal, is it too broad and non-specific or does it cater to the needs of a select audience? For example, does it only publish research related to protein structures and protein interactions or does it cover other topics too? Lastly, what is the publication frequency? In other words, how long would you have to wait to see your accepted publication? Journal selection is a fairly easy process. If you follow these tips, you will be able to identify a good journal for your publishing needs within no time. All the best!

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