University of New England - Innovation for a Healthier Planet

Services & Spaces

Determining Publisher Quality

You’ve worked hard on your paper and are now ready to find a publisher – congratulations!

Choosing a Publisher

When choosing a publisher, consider:

  • The journal’s readership and perceived prestige
  • The level of expertise on their staff
  • Whether they require a fee for publication
  • If readers will have to pay to access the journal
  • If they ask for a copyright transfer.

Open access repositories like UNE’s DUNE: DigitalUNE or subject repositories such as Cornell University’s arXiv are alternatives outside traditional publication.

Evaluate Journal Quality

Avoid Predatory Publishers

Learn more about predatory journals and publishers and how to avoid them.

Assess Impact 

Impact Factor

Use the Journal Citation Reports database to determine the impact factor of a journal or compare multiple journals. Learn more about impact factor in this brief video.

Other Metrics

Other useful metrics include the Eigenfactor Score, Scimago Journal and Country Reports (SJR ), and the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) Article Level Metrics. For a deeper dive into these resources, read Boston College Libraries’ guide to these metrics.

Qualitative Factors

Your journal evaluation should also consider qualitative measures such as its editorial board, publisher, peer review process, acceptance rate, and where it is indexed. See Boston College Libraries’ guide to qualitative factors for more information.

Rate Credibility

Rate a journal’s credibility with an evaluation rubric like this one from Loyola Marymount University Libraries.

Investigate Policies

Be sure you know your author’s rights. A journal only needs a non-exclusive license to publish your work, but many request a full copyright transfer. You can negotiate your author agreement so that you retain the rights that are important to you.

Open Access

Open Access repositories are an alternative to traditional publication models. Choose UNE’s own repository DUNE: DigitalUNE or one that specializes in your research area or discipline.

Simmon’s College list of open access repositories by subject/discipline

Search the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) for high quality, peer reviewed open access research publications.

You do not need to choose between traditional publication or repository placement; your publication agreement can include the right to utilize both channels of distribution – some funding bodies require it!

Get Help

If you would like help determining publisher quality, contact us:

  • IN PERSON: Research and Teaching Librarians are usually available weekdays 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
  • ASK A LIBRARIAN: Submit your question and a librarian will get back to you within 24 hours
  • PHONE: Call us at 207-602-3000 most weekdays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • CHAT: Use our pop-up chat service to ask a question