It is essential to be able to demonstrate that your research is published in journals that are high quality, relevant to your field of research and will have a demonstrated impact on future research and practice. This is especially important when the research output of Murdoch University is being assessed as part of the ERA process.
Factors to consider when determining the most appropriate journals in which to publish your research include:
Journal level metrics can be used to identify quality academic journals in your research field, but like other impact measures journal impact metrics do have limitations:
Metrics, impact factors and rankings should not be the only criteria used to determine journal quality and impact.
Note: As journal metrics and rankings change over time and different metrics tools report the same metric based on different data, when reporting journal metrics and rankings you should always specify which tool you used and the date the metric or ranking was recorded.
Warning: Use only reputable journal metrics tools that are recommended by Murdoch University Library. There are a number of unethical publishing companies that provide misleading or fake journal metrics.
The impact of a journal can be measured using a number of metrics, including JIF, SJR, CiteScore, SNIP, and h-index, as well as total citation count.
The following tools can be used to calculate the impact of a journal:
Journal Citations Reports (JCR)
JCR is a subscription database which delivers quantifiable statistical data, based on citation data from Web of Science Core Collection, for more than 11,500 academic journals. Journals can be analysed individually or as part of a subject category.
To see the metrics for an individual journal, enter the name of the journal into the search box on the JCR homepage.
The individual journal profile includes:
Key indicators offered for each journal include:
A series of tables and graphs detail these indicators for the past five years.
The primary metric used in JCR is the Journal Impact Factor (JIF). JIF is a citation metric based on the number of citations received by a journal in a particular year and the number of citable items published in the journal in the preceding two years.
The secondary metric used in JCR is the Journal Citation Indicator (JCI). JCI is a citation metric based on the average category normalized citation impact (CNCI) of citable items (articles & reviews) published by a journal over a recent three year period. The average JCI in a category is 1. Journals with a JCI of 1.5 have 50% more citation impact than the average in that category.
In addition to these indicators, the journal profile also indicates the rank of a journal within a subject category, based on descending JIF and JCI, and the Quartile to which it is assigned. The Quartile indicates how the journal performs in relation to other journals in the same subject area with Q1 indicating that the title is in the top 25% of journals in that subject category. Multidisciplinary journals may attain different Quartile metrics for each of their different subject categories.
SCImago is a metrics tool is based on data from Scopus. Journals can be analysed as part of a subject area or subject category, or individually.
To see how an individual journal is ranked within a subject area and category; use the Journal Rankings link and select the relevant area and category. The results list will list the journal in the subject area in descending order of prestige, based on a metric called the SJR (SCImago Journal Rank).
SJR is a prestige metric based on the number of citations received by a journal in a particular year and the prestige of the journals that make those citations. SJR is a normalised score which allows the comparison of the impact of articles within a subject area and across disciplines.
Individual journals will also be assigned to a Quartile. The Quartile indicates how the journal performs in relation to other journals in the same subject area with Q1 indicating that the title is in the top 25% of journals in that subject category. Multidisciplinary journals may attain different Quartile metrics for each of their different subject categories. Ideally, you want your articles to be published in journals that are ranked in either Q1 or Q2 for your field of research.
To analyse an individual journal, click on the journal title (either from the journal search results or from the journal ranking list) to obtain an individual profile which includes time series tables and charts to analyse significant indicators and metrics of journal quality and impact.
The individual journal profile includes:
Indicators offered for each journal include:
A series of tables and graphs detail these indicators from 1999 to 2017. At the top of every table or graph, there is a plus symbol that you can click for an explanation of the indicator.
In addition to these indicators, the journal profile also indicates the rank of the journal with a subject Quartile and two journal metrics: h-index and SJR
Scopus is a multidisciplinary bibliometric database of peer-reviewed academic journals, books and conference proceedings.
There are two ways to find impact metrics and rankings of journals indexed by Scopus:
1. Using the Scopus Sources List
The Scopus Sources list is located above in the blue Scopus database banner.
The Sources list provides a range of metrics which can be used to evaluate a journal:
SJR (SCImago Journal Rank) is a prestige metric based on the number of citations received by a journal in a particular year and the prestige of the journals that make those citations. SJR is a normalised score which allows the comparison of the impact of articles within a subject area and across disciplines.
CiteScore calculates the average number of citations received in a calendar year by all items published in that journal in the preceding three years. The calendar year to which a serial title’s issues are assigned is determined by their cover dates, and not the dates that the serial issues were made available online. CiteScore and CiteScore percentile should not be used to compare journals from different subject areas as they are not field-normalised.
SNIP (Source Normalized Impact per Paper) uses Scopus data and measures contextual citation impact by weighting citations based on the total number of citations in a subject field.
The Sources list also provides a percentile ranking within a subject area and a range of indicators of journal impact, including documents published in the preceding three year period, citations in the past year, and percentage of documents cited.
2. Using the Scopus Compare Sources tool
The Compare sources tool can be accessed from the Scopus Search screen. It is a customisable tool which will allow you to compare up to 10 Scopus sources on a variety of metrics and indicators, including SJR, CiteScore, SNIP, citations, documents, percentage of documents not cited, and percentage of review articles published.
The Compare sources tool is available in both a Chart and a Table view. The Chart displays information in a line graph, with separate graphs for each metric or indicator. The Table lists metrics and indicators in one consolidated table.
Other journal resources
Ulrichsweb Global Serials Directory provides information for over 300 000 journals from all disciplines. Peer reviewed journals, open access journals, and electronic titles are all included. Ulrichs can be browsed to identify journals in a subject area. Circulation data indicates the extent a journal's readership.
As journal metrics and ranking information is limited in some areas of research, other measures of prestige may need to be found.
In some fields of research, the publication of articles in journals that are included in lists of respected journals in that field may also be an indication of quality and impact.
Some prestige journal lists include:
Another possible measure of prestige is the rejection rate for a publication. A resource that provides rejection data for journals in literature and linguistics is the MLA Directory of Periodicals. In the full Directory entry for a journal, the difference between Articles Submitted Per Year and Articles Published Per Year gives the rejection rate.
MyRI (Measuring your Research Impact) online tutorial - Module 3 : Journal Ranking and Analysis (a cross institutional project from University College Dublin, Dublin City University, Dublin Institute of Technology and Maynooth University).
Journal Citation Reports Help Guide - Clarivate
Scopus Quick Reference Guide - Elsevier
Scopus Journal Metrics FAQs - Elsevier