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Where to Publish: Predatory Journals

This is designed to assist in determining where to publish, avoid predatory journals, and understand journal rankings as well as impact factors.

What Criteria Make a Good Journal?

  • Be indexed in databases related to its field. (In this case, strive for journals indexed in MEDLINE or PubMed).
  • Tends to have professional associations/organizations or government agencies as sponsors.
  • Demonstrates integrity and objectivity.
  • Provides evidence of a rigorous peer-review system.
  • Clearly states any fees associated with publishing.
  • Provides clear information on topics such as ethics, archiving, open access, retraction, and advertising policies.
  • Provides full contact information and author instructions.
  • Has a verified ISSN (International International Standard Serial Number).

Modified from: Bisaccio, M. Cabells’ Journal Whitelist and Blacklist: Intelligent data for informed journal evaluations. Learned Publishing. 19 April 2018; 31: 243-248. doi:10.1002/leap.1164.

Salient Features of Potential Predatory Journals:

  • The scope of interest includes non-biomedical subjects alongside biomedical topics
  • The website contains spelling and grammar errors
  • Images are distorted/fuzzy, intended to look like something they are not, or which are unauthorized
  • The homepage language targets authors
  • The Index Copernicus Value [a bogus metric] is promoted on the website
  • Description of the manuscript handling process is lacking
  • Manuscripts are requested to be submitted via email
  • Rapid publication is promised
  • There is no retraction policy
  • Information on whether and how journal content will be digitally preserved is absent
  • The article processing/publication charge is very low (e.g., < $150 USD)
  • Journals claiming to be open access either retain copyright of published research or fail to mention copyright
  • The contact email address is non-professional and non-journal affiliated (e.g., or
Source: Shamseer, L., Moher, D., Maduekwe, O., Turner, L., Barbour, V., Burch, R., . . . Shea, B. J. (2017). Potential predatory and legitimate biomedical journals: can you tell the difference? A cross-sectional comparison. BMC Medicine, 15(1), 28. doi:10.1186/s12916-017-0785-9

Checklists for Avoiding Predatory Journals

Videos/Webinars about Avoiding Predatory Journals

Predatory Journal Solicitation Example

predatory journal solicitation

Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine, Medical Library
305 348-1466 (phone)
305 348-0631 (fax)
11200 SW 8th Street, GL 380
Miami, FL 33199