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Open Access Publishing Resources

Make informed decisions in publishing scholarly research.

Journal Impact Factor

The Impact Factor is a measure of the frequency in which the "average article" from a particular journal has been cited in a given period of time. It is one way scholars measure the relative importance of a journal within its field. 

Use InCites Journal Citation Reports (JCR) to locate Journal Impact Factors and JIF quartile rankings. 

Journal Quartile Rankings

Journal quartile rankings are calculated by the JIF of the journal and dividing it by the number journals in that category to find x.  They are then distributed among as follows:

Q1: 0.0 < x ≤ 0.25

Q2: 0.25 < x ≤ 0.5

Q3: 0.5 < x ≤ 0.75

Q4: 0.75 <x

When searching in Web of Science, hover over the journal title in the results list or item record to view the journal's quartile ranking 

Image from University of Denver Libraries

JCR can show you the:

  • Most frequently cited journals in a field
  • Highest impact journals in a field
    • see the Journal Impact Factor tab for more information
  • Issue table of contents and article links

Search by Category

  1. Go to InCites Journal Citation Reports (JCR) and search for a discipline area in the serach box. An alternative is to select Browse Categories at the top left.
  2. For example, type in Biology and look for hits in the Category Name section. Select the desired Category Name.

screenshot in JCR

  1. You will be presented with a list of journal associated with the selected Category.
  2. It defaults to a listing from the highest Journal Impact Factor (JIF) to the least.
  3. You can choose a different Indicators view (Default, Impact, Normalized, Source) or sort by different columns.
  4. Click on a Journal name for additional information including graphs, specific articles contributing to the impact factor, and open access publications.

screenshot of category list in JCR

Measuring the Importance of Journals and Articles

Author Impact Metrics

Author-level metrics attempt to measure the impact of individual authors. While there are many different indicators for measuring author-impact, the two commonly used metrics are: 

  • the H-index: number of papers (h) with a citation number ≥ h
  • i10-index: the number of publications with at least 10 citations

H-index: number of papers (h) with a citation number ≥ h

  • Can be found by doing an author search in Web of Science and selecting Create Citation Report.


i10-index: the number of publications with at least 10 citations

  • Created by Google Scholar; located in a researcher's GoogleScholar Author Profile