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Journal Evaluation for Authors: Journal Impact

How Can I Assess Journal Impact?

Different measures are used to assess the quality and impact of a journal, which are one consideration when deciding where to publish. 

Common Measures of Journal Impact


  Impact Factor (IF) Eigenfactor SCImago Journal Ranking (SJR) Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP)
Measure of... Frequency with which the 'average article' in a journal has been cited in a defined time period Overall value provided by all articles published in a a journal in 1 year. Number of citations received by a journal and the importance of the journals they came from Weights citations based on the total number of citations in a subject field

Impact Factor = A/B

A: Number of citations in the current year to items published in the journal in the previous 2 years
B: Total number of articles published in the journal in the previous two years

Citations from high-quality journals are weighted more than citations from lesser known journals

Citations from more prestigious journals (higher SJR) weighted more than citations from less prestigious journals (lower SJR)
Citations from subject fields in which citations are less likely are weighted more
Can it be used to compare journals from different disciplines? No Yes Yes Yes
Where can I get it? At UW-Madison Libraries in the Journal Citation Reports. Or sometimes it is listed on the journal webpage or publisher page. Google the name of the journal and impact factor to see if it's listed. SCImago Journal Rank CWTS Journal Indicators

Other Sources for Journal Quality