We recently subscribed to a database called Cabells Scholarly Analytics. The library acquired it because there is a need for a resource that provides listings of legitimate academic journals and fraudulent journals all in one place. Now, let’s take a closer look at this database.
This database consists of two sections: The Whitelist and the Blacklist. The Whitelist provides users with over 11,000 journal titles to discover the appropriate publication for their research. The list can be explored alphabetically, by searching the title of a journal or by keyword. See the image below for my search with the phrase “higher education”. Over 600 journals pop-up with that search in the Whitelist search box.
I picked the Adult Education Quarterly from the result to explore it further.
In addition to the journal’s name and country of origin, we get information on its acceptance rate, its peer-review method, the time it takes them to review a submitted article, whether the publisher will check the article for plagiarism and what kind of citation style they expect you to format your article in for submission. This page also furnishes us with information on the importance or rank of the journal by providing its impact factor and its altmetrics report. These are all essentials for a researcher who is interested in publishing their article in a journal new to them.
With the Blacklist, Cabells provides a timely list of predatory journals. As you may know, the number of predatory journals under the name of open access has risen recently and has caused academic damage and misled researchers. If you want to read more about open access and how predatory journals have taken advantage of this new way of publishing, you can read my previous article in the Faculty Focus here.
Currently listing over 8,200 journal titles, the Blacklist is analyzed by data specialists, who review each new journal by a set of criteria to identify deceptive, unprofessional or predatory titles. Some of the criteria these experts are looking for on a journal’s website are as follows: the Article Processing Charge (APC) fee, who owns the copyright after publication, their peer-review style, the scholarly databases in which the journal has been indexed, its impact factor, editorial statements, etc. Dead links and poor grammar and spelling are warning signs.
Now let’s take a look at my search results with the keyword “nutrition” in the Blacklist. As you can see 64 results were found.
I selected Advances in Nutrition & Food Science to explore it more.
Besides giving us information on the country of origin, in this case, the USA, we are also informed of its launch date, its ISSN number (which could be fake) and most importantly why this journal has been classified as predatory and put in the Blacklist under Violations. It is here that the journal is analyzed against a certain number of criteria displaying the reasons it is considered a fraudulent journal. Note that the image here doesn’t show all the violations this journal was accounted for.
In this post, I have given you only a summary of the ways you can search for journals in Cabells. There is so much more you can do with it if you use its advanced search. You can search within a particular discipline or for a topic or even sponsor. The feature that is popular with our users is the “Calls for Papers” button. This helps immensely when you are ready to send your paper out and you are looking for a publisher. You can also decide whether to search for open access journals or go for the traditional way of publishing. And finally, you can limit your search with Metrics and Review & Publication options.
Whether you are a student or a professor, you can access this database via the library website at tourolib.org. Click on the “Databases” tab on the website and scroll down the list for Cabells. I am offering several webinars on this new resource in the next few months. You can sign up here or contact me directly if you would like me to present for your department, class or school. Finally, if you have any questions on open access publishing or the Cabells database, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Contributed by Sara Tabaei, Midtown Library