How can we avoid the risk of publishing in a fake journal and how can we evaluate a journal's quality?
Impact Factor (IF) is one of the journal quality measures, but beside arguing about this measure, it is not easy for researchers to find the correct IF of any journal. One may say that we should depend on the IF calculation produced by Thomson Reuters. However, there is an issue here: it is not easy to find their report! And another issue: it is not easy to find the IF of a specific journal in their report (e.g., see attached file). On the other hand, some journals write their IF on their website, but don't declare where they got this IF.
There are some sites that calculate journal IFs such as:
It is extremely difficult to judge the quality of a journal. However, here are two more lists (the so-called Beall's lists) of presumably problematic journals and publishers that should better be avoided:
As Huy says, the two main international and multidisciplinary databases of academic journals are ISI and Scopus. These two databases are usually used in the evaluation of academic performance in many countries. Each one has at least one indicator of quality of journals as well as quantity indicators. Web of Science publishes anually the Journal Citation Report (JCR) for all journals in science and social sciences. Scopus publishes two quality indicators for journals: the Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) and SCImago Journal Rank (SJR), those values are provided free of charge in this url: http://www.journalmetrics.com/.
Also you can find all indicators of journals of Scopus and its evolution from 1999 to 2012, in the portal of free access SCImago Journal & Country Rank: http://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php. This portal includes the journals and country scientific indicators developed from the information contained in the Scopus® database (Elsevier B.V.)
Additional of all before you could analyze in which journals your patrons publish and which journals have been cited. So you can get information, which journals are high important for your patrons and these journals are not fake journals.
Check the journal's homepage in depth. Who's in the editorial board, are there reliable and comprehensive remarks regarding the (scientific, not formal) submission requirements and scope, the review process, rejection rate and indexing in subject specific databases?
Actually, the quality of a journal is determined by the quality of the research findings they publish. That is also based on the validity and reliability of the findings they reports in their articles. And who determine the validity of research? I tell you: Peer-Review system.
Therefor neither Impact factor nor ICV nor H-Index are good indexed to assess the quality of a journal. We should find some qualitative measures rather than those quantitative measures.
Have a good read at this article for more information. It clearly mentioned the way to determine a fake journal and avoid it:
We must not trust the journal homepage and its information. some of the time we check Master Journal list of ISI for checking the condition of journal, Is it indexed in ISI or not. you can search by title, whole title and Issn. if it is included in ISI, after that we must check its coverage.
in our university, journal/s which is included in ISI, but It is in web of knowledge, it is not acceptable. it must be included in ISI web of Sciences.
based on my little knowledge, we much check and compare the inforation in jounal homepage and available databases such as:
This is not an answer, but rather an additional question to all you gentlemen who have replied to this query and likely have the experience I am looking for. There are good publishers and journals that are not on the Beall's list, but they provide no information on the download frequency of the papers they publish. How does this failure relate to the integrity of the publishers?
Among oher things, I am interested in receiving service from a journal editor. Even journals listed in the scholarlyoa.com site sometimes give you service that the "good" journals do not give. I am thinking of view and download statistics. Any journal that provides me with those statistics ranks high with me, regardless of being cited in the scholaroa.com site or not.
Opinion against opinion, facts are facts. If I publish a paper in a journal and the paper is downloaded hundreds o times, I feel I have reached a numerous audience, which is any author's desire. Now if you tell me this journal is not good or is fake, well, why then would people read it and download papers from it???
I've dealt with a journal, and it dawned on me it's fake:
The International Journal of Advances in Science and Technology (IJAST)
with fake impact factor. If anyone has other information about this journal,s publisher please benefit me because this publisher is a fraud ,I want to raise a lawsuit against him but I do not know how?
I had a recent experience where I was surprised to see my name as an International Editorial Board of a Journal. The journal claimed to be ISI registered and had the ISSN (print and online) displayed in their website. so tactics like this may convince one of the good reputation of the journal. after some more investigation with Thomson Reuter I discovered that what was registered with Thomson Reuter is a print version only and so they provided me with email of this print journal registered with them. I communicated with the print journal and was able to verify that they were the original publishers and they are not a journal but a periodical or newspaper they specifically stated that they had no online version. when I clarified this with the journal claiming to be the online version is they denied it and removed my name in their advisory board. surprising enough not more than 24 hours they were able to pick another researcher from our country (I guess he also doesnt have the slightest clue about this). on another note there are journals in the website sholarlyoa.com that are formally registered as ISI Thomson Reuters and are just victims themselves of poor research by the "Librarian". What I think we can all take away from this experience of mine is that very careful scrutiny should be done first before publishing in a journal, try your best to delve into its history, validity and repute. also, be careful who you listen to, just as not all journals on the internet are of good repute so are people claiming to know it all or at least know a lot whether a journal is fake or not is also susceptible to making mistakes and may place really good journals at the negative end of authors perspective and biases. happy journal hunting and investigating everyone!
Ponte journal Online is a highly questionable journal because they took the same name as Il Ponte which is the real journal registered in Thomson Reuters this can be a classic example of a "Hijacked Journal"
Asian Journal of Biological and Life Sciences is a very good journal. it is formally registered in ISI Thomson Reuters for several years now but it was in the questionable journal list and for me this is not agreeable because if Thomson Reuter has kept it in its Master Journal list for several years now then they conduct regular QA and QC with the journal history, validy and repute. so is the "Librarian" now objective as a researcher himself in including this journal in his list?
International Journal of Research and Ayurveda and Pharmacy is also a very good journal. it is published by Elsevier and is highly-indexed also. when I informed the Editor in chief that they were listed as questionable journal and should communicate with the "The Librarian" to have their journal removed from that listing she explained to me that the "Librarian" believes that Ayurveda is just a pseudoscience and that is his gauge why he listed the journal as questionable. Now let' s contemplate on this, who is the authority to say whether Ayurveda is a pseudoscience or not? Is this an objective or a personal and subjective evaluation?
When you check the Real name of the "Librarian" and cross reference it in different web searche you will also see that there are a lot of Researchers who do not Objectively agree with him in all of his listing content and method of journal shortlisting.
Impact factor (IF) is an index based on the frequency with which a journal's articles are cited in scientific publications in a particular year or period. Some journals put fake impact factor (https://scholarlyoa.com/other-pages/misleading-metrics/) on their own website. Some questionable companies create list of good journals and provide fake impact factor to them without taking approval of publishers. This work is very illegal. The quality of journal should be judged by their indexing in various good databases and universities libraries. The SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) and Journal Citation Reports (JCR) by Thomson Reuters are two common measurements or rankings of journal quality.
I sended to a hijacked journal (www.pontejournal.net) a paper. And I sended a request many times to remove from this journal web site. But they didn't get an answer :(( I want to send another journal. Whan can I do?
If not, you might consider a morally questionable solution: paying them the publication fee for them NOT to publish your paper. It might be wrong to give a predatory journal money, but that would free you to submit your paper to a real journal.
Beall's list ( https://scholarlyoa.com/individual-journals/) is the best resource, reasonable approach would be to avoid publishing in journals that do not have a JIF from Thomson Reuters (now Clarivate Analytics). If it is a new journal that does not have a JIF, should look at the credibility of the publishers in terms of existing journals and their impact.
I think we can avoid this problem by screening the journal through renowned databases such as PubMed, Scopus, Medline. Such indexing services are very sensitive in the selection of journals. Thomson Reuters site is also of great help. If the journal is listed on the site, this simply means that it is not fake. However, we must see the latest updated lists as well as impact factor.
some of the time, because of emergency and short time for yearly promotion, graduating, and without searching in master journal list of ISI, pubmed database, science direct and well known databases, we have some problems in detecting fake journals. I hope the best wishes for all of respectful authors who search for the peaces in the world.
I also want to suggest, it's not all about the IF. There are nice journals out there from disciplines or fields where IF is not everything that counts.
I would suggest reading through some papers in the particular journal, find information about authors, editors, side affairs like (too many) conferences each year, etc. Then go for the journal that seems be most appropriate for you research, audience, and scope. Maybe you will end up submitting to a journal with apparently no IF what so ever but that "everybody" in the field is reading or even citing:-)
An update to an old thread... I see that many of the links provided by others in this thread have been deleted or removed. While several of the early lists of "questionable" or fake journals are no longer available (e.g. Beall's original list), many other people and organizations have kept it alive, and added to it over the past year. A quick search will turn up many examples including this one: http://beallslist.weebly.com/
IMHO: One of the best way to review a journal is not based on its score, but instead to review existing published articles on the journal that you are considering. Poor quality methods and techniques used by the others is a great indicator or a poor quality or even fake journal. Do some reading and reviewing first.
High quality jurnal you can find it from the work quality that have been published before. However, you may use JCR and scopus to know the journal ranking. Usually they gives a history report for the journal.
To complement Ljubomir's answer: the original Beall's list web site (scholarly-oa.com) does not host the well-known Beall's list of predatory journals and publishers anymore but
I have recently found a web site
I think that the first formal and short-time solution to recognize the validity of a given journal is to consult JCR. If the title appears in JCR (has impact factor), it merits publication. Also, Scopus is acceptable.
I think one major issue is that we tend to lean on the journal instead of scrutinizing the quality of the paper itself. This behaviour has paved way for doubtful journals and conferences.
I think we need to develop a cultural there a researcher's overall performance is better evaluated instead of; "oh, s/he has got 50 papers published". In so doing I think many of these predatory journals and conferences will become extinct.
Unfortunately there is various and different impact algorithms and they do not always fairly describe the quality.
Maybe one way forward would be to globally regulate this, e.g. like a kind of ISO standards that is flexible enough to appreciate and recognise that scientific research may have many faces. If a journal or a conference does not meet the criteria, then, it's up to us to decide whether to go for that journal or conference anyway. As it stands now, there are so many databases that different disciplines rely on, all claiming, "this is the one to use to evaluate the quality", which makes it very easy for predatory journals to come up with their one database and claim the same.
The stakes are high for academics and the pressure to produce can be overwhelming at times. As a result, the number of predatory journals and questionable conferences is growing at an alarming rate. It can be tricky, even for a seasoned scholar, to spot a bogus venue for mobilizing our research and scholarship.
There are some differences between how predatory journals and conferences operate, but here are a few things they share in common:
You are 100% correct & it is spreading across the academic Institutions of the Globe now. How can one dealt with such a delicate issue? Unless it is checked it will spoil the dignity of the academicians.
Validation is key, each journal will go through a selective panel. It is up to the panel to validate what is presented? At that point, we have a duty to reject, or accept with changes, or major revise. Reading and understanding the topic area is always important and cannot be rushed! There maybe a push for more journals or publications to be produced; however, it still falls down to specialists within the fields. Nooruldeen Nasih Qader to your second part of the question, which journals - standards within area or research within rating!
There are many factors that I consider in the process of choosing an appropriate journal to submit my manuscript. Listing below the same sequentially.
1.Based on the quality, originality and rigour of the manuscript, determine which category of journal you want to submit to [ABDC rankings - A*, A, B or C]
2. Once decided, shortlist all the journals you think might find your manuscript acceptable (just by looking at the title)
3. Individually check the aims and scope of the journals and eliminate those that doesn't match your field of research.
4. If you have constraints on paying (huge or otherwise) submission fees, its time to eliminate such journals that require you to pay up on submission. At this stage you should seriously consider if paying and submitting is worth a try. Depends largely on the quality of work. These are generally very good journals (not always) which try to avoid mass submissions.
5. From the residual list of journals look for the ones which consistently publish studies that are closely related to yours. Such journals will have several regular reviewers at their disposal and that way you can minimise the turnaround time as well as maximise the probability of acceptance.
6. Lastly, choose between journals on the basis of number of issues each of these journals have per year and also on the basis of the number of papers published in each issue. The more the number of publications in a single year, the better are your chances.
Good luck to all in your publishing endeavours...
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