Finding the right journal for your manuscript is crucial for publishing your study. Although this process sounds simple, it’s more challenging when you come into this step unprepared; making one mistake in this first step can lead to a myriad of problems. As daunting as it may sound, choosing the journal relevant to your study’s main topic can be easy if you go into the process prepared by keeping some factors in mind.
1. Your study’s main topic and subject area
Knowing your study’s main subject area will significantly narrow down your options as you can focus on journals that match your topic. Remember that the type of study should also factor into your search parameters. Applied studies, for example, would be better suited to applied sciences journals. For a good start, it’s best to list down about 10 journals related to your study.
2. The journal’s aims and scope
Once you’ve narrowed down your options, go over the journals’ aims and scope. This information outlines their topics of interest in more detail, allowing you to discern if these specific topics match the focus of your study. It also helps to browse through the journals’ published studies to learn if their readership is interested in studies related to yours. Keep your study’s type in mind, as any journal’s editorial board will also check if your study type matches manuscripts they’d accept. A journal’s aims and scope could be found on its website, and even if the description is vague or general, the journal’s published studies can give you hints about their topics of interest.
3. Your target audience
Speaking of readership, knowing your target audience will allow you to tailor the message to the reader. Doing this will get you closer to being understood more clearly and effectively. Ask yourself if only researchers in a related field will be interested in reading your study or if your study aims to reach more students or the science-literate public. Once you’ve narrowed down your target audience, it’s best to look for journals that cater to that instead of a journal with a much broader circulation.
4. The journal’s metrics
A journal’s metrics include its impact factor and CiteScore, which can give you an idea of the journal’s performance and reputation. For CiteScore, this metric is calculated as the average number of citations per document in three years, specifically on what studies are cited and how often they are cited in a specific time. As for the impact factor, this metric is calculated using the number of current year citations and the number of items published in the previous two years. High values suggest that the journal is reputable because it publishes high-quality studies. This can also mean that the journal’s standards for an article’s quality are just as high, so publishing in this study could be more difficult. Journals with higher impact factors are deemed more important in their field; being aware of this could help you determine if your study’s impact is suitable for the journal. There are even more metrics to consider, but this is an excellent place to start. Compare metrics like CiteScore and impact factors to give you a better idea of a journal’s reputation.
5. Your requirements
These requirements are dependent on the author, especially if they are looking at other factors such as publication frequency and acceptance rate. Knowing these can help you choose a suitable journal but be aware that not all this information is readily available or openly published by journals. However, it’s possible to infer this information based on other information like the number of volumes published by the journal in a year or its impact factor.
Journal Selection service
Finding the right journal for your studies may be difficult, but Journal Lab’s Journal Selection service will help you narrow down your options. We tailor our suggestions through a combination of existing journal metrics and your requirements, thereby increasing the likelihood of your study being accepted. Any existing target journals you may have in mind are considered when Journal Lab provides suggestions for you through Journal Selection.