With so many journals in publication, it can be daunting to find the ideal journal to which you might submit your manuscript. There are several free tools to match manuscripts to potential journals for publication that might be of help. Most of them work the same way. You enter your manuscript title, keywords, the field of research, and sometimes an abstract, and then it will match journals for your work. Some have limiters to help you narrow your results from there. The major publishers have each created their own version of a journal finder for their journal publications. The free tools often ask you to set up an account. Here are links to some of these tools:
It is important to consider which type of journal in which you want to publish. Do you want to have your work freely available for anyone to read, granting the widest possible readership or do you want to publish in a proprietary journal that requires a subscription so only scholars connected to institutions that hold subscriptions may access your work? You may need to consider the wishes of the grant or agency that funded your research as more funders are requiring Open Access publication of research findings.
Open Access (OA) journals are available to anyone on the web. They have a variety of publishing models, some that require authors to pay to publish in them, and others that are funded in alternate ways allowing authors to publish in them for free. It is important to read the specific requirements for any journal you decide to pursue for publication. Additionally, you will need to determine how you will allow the public to use your work, by selecting a Creative Commons license before you publish your work on the web. The advantages of Open Access are:
Diagram explaining the benefits of making research open access. Adapted by University College London from an original graphic under CC BY by Danny Kingsley and Sarah Brown.
Below are some tools to locate OA journals in which to publish..
Subscription journals are publications that are available with a fee, or found behind a paywall when you find them online. The author signs a contract with the publisher establishing who owns the rights in regard to the content. These vary by publisher, and authors should research the rights being granted by the publisher before signing a contract upon. The University of Kansas Libraries describes Journal-Author Agreements This link opens in a new window in their guide, Resources for Editors of Scholarly Journals:
Publication agreements (sometimes known as copyright transfer agreements) are contracts between a publisher and an author that are signed before an article can be published. Publication agreements outline the rights and responsibilities of both parties.
Terms in publication agreements can vary from journal to journal, but most publication agreements:
For more information about publication agreements, here are some suggestions to begin with:
Impact Factors (IF) are used to measure the importance of a journal by calculating the number of times selected articles are cited within a particular year. Hence, the higher the number of citations or articles coming from a particular journal, or impact factor, the higher it is ranked. IF is also a powerful tool if you want to compare journals in the subject category.
Impact factors may be used by:
Quick Reference Card for Research Impact Metrics This link opens in a new window - provides a brief graphical overview of various metrics.
Simple description of Journal Metrics This link opens in a new window (Elsevier) - Clear explanations of CiteScore, SJR, SNIP, JIF, h-index.
SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) This link opens in a new window - SCImago's "evaluation of scholarly journals is to assign weights to bibliographic citations based on the importance of the journals that issued them, so that citations issued by more important journals will be more valuable than those issued by less important ones." (SJR indicator This link opens in a new window)
Scopus This link opens in a new window - The Scopus Journal Analyzer provides a view of journal performance, enriched with two journal metrics - SJR (SCImago Journal Rank) and SNIP (Source Normalized Impact per Paper).
SNIP This link opens in a new window (Source Normalized Impact per Paper) - is a sophisticated metric that intrinsically accounts for field-specific differences in citation practices. It does so by comparing each journal’s citations per publication with the citation potential of its field, defined as the set of publications citing that journal. SNIP, therefore, measures contextual citation impact and enables direct comparison of journals in different subject fields, since the value of a single citation is greater for journals in fields where citations are less likely, and vice versa. SNIP is calculated annually from Scopus data and is freely available alongside CiteScore and SJR at Scopus This link opens in a new window. (Elsevier)
Cabells Scholarly Analytics is a tool that aggregates various journal metrics to help you make decisions about journals when considering publication opportunities in your discipline.
Directories of publishing opportunities in accounting, economics, finance, management, marketing, education, psychology and library science
It is important when selecting a journal to discover where that journal is indexed. Which databases will add this to their collection, and thus make it searchable to a wider audience? Finding out this information can be helpful, so you know how far your publication may reach. Ulrich's Web This link opens in a new window can be a useful tool to discover this information, as it lists indexing locations under "Online Availability."