Criteria for Selecting a Journal
It is every writer’s wish to have their work accessible to a wider range of readers, most importantly, the targeted audience that the research paper may have impact on. This is, in one way, determined by the journal in which a paper has been published. In fact, journal choices do not only determine the accessibility of an author’s publications, but also affects the author’s career advancement, research reputation and attraction of lucrative research opportunities. As such, authors are encouraged to make informed decisions when identifying journals in which to publish their papers. In its commitment to supporting research activities at the University of Dar es Salaam and beyond, the University Library presents a list of a few important criteria to guide you, the researcher, in selecting journals to which to submit your manuscripts.
- You should check the acceptance rate of the journal.
- Consider the aim and scope of the journal. It is important to read the aim and scope of the journal to determine if they match the scope of the manuscript you intend to submit for publication.
- Frequency of journals’ issues. How many times is the journal published in a year? For instance, if a journal is published multiple times per year (e.g. monthly), there is a huge possibility of your paper being reviewed and published within a considerably shorter period time compared to when a journal publishes a single issue each year.
- View a journal’s indexation to determine the quality of a journal. Scholars are encouraged to verify the indexing status of every journal they are interested in. Those indexed by major bibliographic and citation databases (e.g. MEDLINE®, CINAHL and others) are of considerably high quality.
- Average review times. How long does it take the journal to make a first decision after the submission of a manuscript? This will help researchers to determine the time it will take their manuscript to be published.
- Relevancy and credibility of a journal. Is the journal part of the core literature of a field, or is it insignificant or irrelevant? Consult core literature lists, mapping studies, and citation analysis to verify the state of the journal before deciding to submit your manuscript.
- Reputation of the journal. You should consider the affiliation of the journal (e.g. is it affiliated to a scholarly society or university?), the credentials of its editorial board, its peer-review procedure, its impact factor, and the reputation of previous authors.
- Other important considerations:
a). Is your paper’s structure and length acceptable to the journal?
b). Is the journal read by the audience your manuscript targets?
c). Are there any charges required for publishing.
d). Does the journal accept the type of manuscript you have written?
Under this section, you are going to find a list of links of various journal finders that exist online. These are smart search tools that are useful to discovering thousands of journals in which you may decide to publish your research manuscript. For majority of them, the requirement is to submit your manuscript’s title and abstract for them to generate a list of journals that are close matches of the scope of the manuscript. However, to identify the right journal from the list you will be provided with, in which to publish your manuscript, refer to the selection criteria shared in the criteria for selecting a journal and any other that may be available. The journal finder links are:
- Wiley Journal Finder
- Springer Journal Suggester
- Taylor & Francis Journal Suggester (taylorandfrancis.com)
- Find journals | Elsevier® JournalFinder
- Journal Selector | Edanz
- Web of Science Master Journal List - WoS MJL by Clarivate
- IEEE Publication Recommender
- Journal Recommender (BETA) (sagepub.com)
- Submit a manuscript | AJE
- JSTOR Labs Text Analyzer
- Journal / Author Name Estimator (biosemantics.org)
- Journal Finder | Find Journals | Charlesworth Author Services (cwauthors.com)