Robust, novel, innovating, unprecedented – words to avoid to publish in high impact factor medical journals

Study finds that the words robust, novel, innovating, and unprecedented have a 15000% relative increase in frequency over the last 40 years.

A recent study1 in the BMJ Christmas issue investigated the use of positive and negative words in the scientific literature. The study included a retrospective analysis of PubMed titles and abstracts between 1974 and 2014, and found that Read more

Avoiding submission to a fake journal

An article recently published in Science Magazine adds another aspect to the list of factors to be considered when selecting the target journal for your precious manuscript. The article “How to hijack a journal” by John Bohannon outlines the latest scam to hit the scientific publishing field. Bohannon explains how fraudsters have now progressed from building copycat websites with minor differences in the website address, to “snatching entire Web addresses, known as Internet domains, right out from under academic publishers, erecting fake versions of their sites, and hijacking their journals, along with their Web traffic.” Unsuspecting authors could log in, submit, and even pay the article processing fees without any realization. Bohannon explains that so far, journals hit “are careless about website administration and security”, and the article provides a list of 24 hijacked journal domains some of which are even indexed in Thomas Reuters’ Web of Science. Out of these 24 hijacked domains, Bohannon identified Read more

Online Journal Selection Tools

Choosing the right journal for your research manuscript is a crucial step in the publication process. There are many factors to consider such as scope of study, type of study, type of article, journal audience, indexing, impact factor, processing timeframe, accessibility, and fees. Several online tools have been developed to help researchers with this task. The following is a brief summary of some of the currently available tools; this list is not exhaustive, and is not in any particular order.

JournalGuide is a freely accessible tool developed and funded by Research Square that allows researchers to evaluate scholarly journals, mainly in the biomedical field. It allows 4 search options: by paper match (title, abstract, keywords), by journal name or ISSN, by publisher, and by category. Further filtering options include open access features. Researchers can then simultaneously compare up to 3 journals to assess impact, Read more

How important is your abstract?

Except for the title, the abstract is the most widely read part of your manuscript, and therefore must be both effective and attractive. Your abstract must provide a coherent, concise, and convincing summary of your research objective, methodology, results, and conclusions.

For readers and researchers, the abstract acts as a selection tool. Most abstracts are freely available online, and a busy researcher will quickly scan through many abstracts to decide which articles to continue reading in depth.

Journal editors are looking for Read more

Open access journals and their role in disseminating research outcomes

Articles published in most open access journals are immediately and permanently free for anyone to read and download. Some even allow researchers to re-use material dependent on their Creative Commons license. For authors and researchers this translates into the increased visibility and impact of their work. Published research is now available to the masses, regardless of economic background; all that is required is a decent Internet connection. With more content reaching more readers of open access journals, over time this will lead to increased citation and even wider dissemination of research outcomes. Read more