The process of selecting journals and evaluating journals are extremely inter-related and inter-twined. There are a few ways authors can evaluate journals:
1) By scrutinizing the journal's homepage and information for authors. More often than not, authors miss out on this crucial step to evaluate if a journal is ideal for their publications. Questions such as the aims and scope of the journal, journal's article type/methodology restrictions, word count limits or even charges and fees are all important considerations when evaluating journals. If you have yet to see our recommendations for selecting journals, refer to our page on Journal Selection for more information!
2) Some authors prefer the use of metrics and journal quality indicators to help them evaluate journals.
Predatory conferences are on the rise. The covid-19 pandemic has enabled many conference organizers to run virtual conferences, reaching out to more researchers and inviting them to attend or submit their manuscripts. Predatory conference organizers have also been enabled through these initiatives, moving their predatory conferences online and reaching out to more researchers who may unknowingly fall prey to their tactics. Think Check Attend has also created a checklist that can help you spot predatory conferences. Learn how to distinguish trustworthy credible conferences and avoid submitting your abstract or attending predatory ones.
The checklist below can be used to both evaluate legitimate journals or evaluate if a journal is potentially predatory. This checklist is adapted from Think. Check. Submit, an initiative started by a group of scholarly communication professionals, organisations and publishers to help researchers identify trusted journals and discern deceptive and predatory publishing practices. The more questions and issues encountered when verifying a journal's characteristics with the checklist, the more you should be wary and avoid publishing in that journal.
Authors may have different objectives, aims, tolerance or thresholds when using such checklists. As such, you should only submit your manuscript to a journal only if you can answer most or all of the questions satisfactorily based on your own standards or requirements.
Think. Check. Submit Checklist
Do you or your colleagues know the journal?
Email or journal website
Peer review and editorial proceses
Metrics and indexing
Can the journal be found on lists?
Adapted from: Think. Check. Submit