You have an article ready to publish, how you know which journal to choose for publishing it? Certainly quality play a crucial role. It is possible to know about the ranking of a journal by referring to Clarivate Analytics Journal Citation Reports. There are other online resources that let you choose other standards to rank journals by.
What Is Journal Citation Report
Journal Citation Reports identify a journal quality by assigning each journal to one or more categories. For example, you can only look at journals in Medical Sciences and decide which journal you want to publish your work in. This is also useful for avoiding to fall into trap of predatory journals.
Understanding Key Metrics in the Report
There are two versions of the Journal Citation Report. One is Science Edition including more than 8,600 journals in 176 categories and Social Sciences Edition with more than 3,100 journals in 56 categories. The metrics involved in this report include impact factor, total number of citations and immediacy index.
The impact factor is an indicator of journal importance and is based on the data for two years before the Report publication. The calculation of Impact Factor is quite easy. Divide the total number of citations to the article by the total number of articles published in the journal. By default, journals in the Report appear in the order of deceasing Impact Factor.
Be aware that Impact factor applies only to the journals and not to the individual articles in a journal. One limitation of Impact Factor is that non-English journals are under-represented. It includes journal self-citations as well. Impact Factor is often misused.
The immediacy index identifies who is publishing hot topics. It depends on how often journal articles are cited in the year they were published. Articles that are published early in the year are more cited than those published toward the end of the year and this affects the calculation of the immediacy index.
How to Use the Journal Citation Reports?
Access to Journal Citation Reports is available through an institution. You can search for your journal of interest; the journal front page gives you additional information. This include the metrics that indicate the relevance of the journal.
If you are not looking for a specific journal, select “Categories by Rank”. Then, choose the Report year and either Science or Social Science edition and click “Submit”. Click the heading of Category to see them in an alphabetical order. By clicking on a category you will get a summary of that category. The “Cited Category Data” provides a list of journals within that subject. Clicking on a journal offers more options including rank, source data, and relationships to other journals.
Through Journal Citation Reports one can easily interact with key bibliometric analysis of academic journals. Based on the Web of Science Research Database, the Reports provide many journal rankings. One can choose to look at a journal’s impact factor, total citations or immediacy index. These reports are a great means for researchers to decide where they want to publish their articles.