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Increase Your Scholarly Impact

A self-service guide to help you increase your scholarly impact, provided by the Libraries' Scholarly Impact Service (SIS).

Finding journals for publication

If you're looking for possible journals for publication, these resources may help:

  • Ulrich's Periodicals Directory (a.k.a. Ulrichsweb): provides detailed information on academic and popular journals in a variety of disciplines, including publisher and editor contacts, scope & audience, peer review types, indexing information, and demographics . See the "Using Ulrichsweb" handout below.
  • Cabell's Directories of Publishing Opportunitiesdatabase containing contact information, web site addresses, and guidelines for submission to over 4,000 journals in Business, Education and Psychology (some libraries may have access to other disciplinary areas). See the "Using Cabell's Directories" handout below.
  • MLA Directory of Publicationsa directory of scholarly publications searchable by subject or title. Includes literature, language and linguistics, folklore, film, literary theory and criticism, dramatic arts, and historical aspects of printing and publishing. Often includes acceptance rates as well as other publication information.
  • ScienceDirectsearch and browse thousands of journals in the physical sciences, engineering, life sciences, health sciences, and the social sciences; filter by publication or access type; find journal descriptions and submission guidelines within each entry.
  • Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ): a community-curated online directory that indexes and provides access to high quality, open access, peer-reviewed journals. See our Open Access Guide for more information on publishing in OA journals.
  • Journal Matching Services: a number of websites, including some publisher sites, offer journal matching search engines that take subject keywords, titles, or abstracts from your work and match them to potential journals of interest.  Keep in mind that subject area coverage is limited and some publishers only direct you towards their own publications, so you might want to try a variety of resources when searching for a journal. See the "Journal Matching Services" handout below for more information.

Journal Acceptance Rates

Journal acceptance rates may provide an indicator of the quality, selectiveness, or at least the popularity of journals in a particular discipline. This can affect "impact" in a number of ways:

  • Prestigious or popular journals may receive more citations or reach a wider audience
  • Some disciplines may rank low acceptance rate/more selective journals more highly, and give more "credit" towards publication requirements
  • Time to publication may be longer if you target low-acceptance rate journals
  • A higher acceptance rate/less selective journal may reach a target audience more effectively, and reduce time to publication

Where to find acceptance rates:

  • The directories listed above sometimes provide acceptance rates under publication information
  • Journal web-pages may include it in their "author information" or submission guideline pages
  • Scholarly societies that publish journals may include it on their web-pages
  • Editors of journals may provide this information upon request
  • Journal Citation Reports provides "impact factors" that consider acceptance rates as one measure of impact

Tips for finding acceptance rates:

  • Try searching the journal name or scholarly society name and "acceptance rates" in Google
  • Try searching the name of a specific discipline and "journal acceptance rates"

Use caution in utilizing acceptance rates as the sole indicator of quality, because:

  • Journal websites are inconsistent about providing information on their acceptance rates or updating them regularly
  • The only general source for acceptance rates is Cabell's International, a directory of periodicals. The UNT Libraries currently subscribes only to the Education, Business, and Psychology modules of this directory, so finding data on other journals is challenging
  • Acceptance rates may vary over time depending on the discipline, subject matter covered, or number of people working in the specific field(s) covered by that journal; "special topic" issues may also affect submission and acceptance rates in a given year
  • Journals with a broad scope or a recognizable name may receive more submissions, and thus have lower acceptance rates, but this doesn't guarantee that the content is higher quality or more impactful than that of niche journals with higher acceptance rates
  • Depending upon the desired audience for your work, a niche journal, popular press publication, or creative writing publication may provide more "impact" on your chosen field

Evaluating journals for publication

1. The resources above can help you identify journals in your field and gather some of the answers to the questions on our “Consider Your Publication Options” page.

2. The links below may help you decide if the journals that interest you are quality journals, use good editorial practices, or could be potentially predatory or inappropriate for your needs.  But be sure to evaluate the journals and ask questions of the editors yourself, rather than relying on so-called “blacklists” or “whitelists”.

​3. Once you’ve selected a journal that meets your needs, you might want to contact the Scholarly Communication Office to discuss the submission & publication process, or consult our Copyright Advisory Services to help answer questions or concerns about author's rights,  negotiating publication agreements, or licensing and other intellectual property issues that may impact the dissemination and impact of your work.

Advice on Publishing Scholarly Journal Articles

For more ideas on publishing scholarly journal articles, check out these resources:

Additional Links