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Are there high impact open access journals?

For many researchers, especially in the biomedical sciences, it is important to publish their work in scientific journals with a good impact factor. If there is public funding involved, it may also be required to make the publications "open access". The new version of the Journal Citation Reports makes it possible to find journals with a high impact factor that are also open access.

There is a new version of the Journal Citation Reports (JCR) . In the JCR you can find the impact factors that are published every year by Thomson Reuters. In the new version you can not only find the impact factor and 5-yr impact factor, but also which of the journals are (gold) open access.

The most important changes in the new JCR:

  • The journals are automatically ranked by Impact factor within the Categories.
  • You can easily view the Q1 of a Subject Category, through 'Select Categories', 'JIF Quartile'.
  • You can see which titles are Open Access journals with one button press.

Example: this screenshot shows how to find all journals in the Subject Category “Biochemistry & Molecular Biology” that are in the first quartile based on impact factor and open access. The result shows six journals, of which ‘Molecular Systems Biology’ is on top with an impact factor of 10.872:

Screenshot from Journal Citation Reports
Screenshot from Journal Citation Reports

Did you know...?

What is an impact factor?


An impact factor is the average number of citations received per paper published in a given journal during the two preceding years. The higher a journal impact factor, the more influential a journal is expected to be.

What is the Q1 and why is it relevant?


Q1 journals are the journals with the highest impact factors in a subject category. Q1 means first quartile and is equal to the “top 25%” based on impact factor. For example, the subject category Neurosciences has 252 journals. The Q1 for Neurosciences has 252/4=63 journals. For researchers, especially in the medical sciences, it is important for their career to publish in high impact journals.

Can I find all Open Access journals in the JCR?

Only the “gold” open access journals, with an impact factor, such as PLOS and BMC journals, can be found with the filter in the JCR.
To find out about more possibilities to publish open access, see
http://www.rug.nl/openaccess/

Where can I find the JCR on the University website?

You find a link to the JCR (new version and old version) in the list of electronic databases on the website of the University of Groningen Library.

Last modified:20 September 2017 07.45 a.m.