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Techniques/methods towards publishing in ISI journals Saeed Zarein-Dolab PhD Associate Professor Shahid Beheshti Medical University Tehran-Iran.

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Presentation on theme: "Techniques/methods towards publishing in ISI journals Saeed Zarein-Dolab PhD Associate Professor Shahid Beheshti Medical University Tehran-Iran."— Presentation transcript:


2 Techniques/methods towards publishing in ISI journals Saeed Zarein-Dolab PhD Associate Professor Shahid Beheshti Medical University Tehran-Iran

3 Outline of the workshop Participation in scientific world –The reasons –how Types of paper –What is a paper –What editors/reviewers consider a paper How to search internet databases –How to find relevant papers

4 –How to evaluate journals Isi Impact factor (IF) –Pros and cons JKR the immediacy index cited half-life aggregate impact factor –Criteria for the selection of a Journal IF Quarterline –How to evaluate an article Citations

5 –How to evaluate an author H-index How to search Internet different search engines PubMed Scopus Thieme Proquest

6 –How to arrange the paper title Introduction Materials and methods Results/findings Discussion Acknowledgement references

7 Integrity in a paper –Title/question/findings/answer in the discussion/conclusion References and their relation to the journal The process of submission –Timetable from submission The process of reviewing the paper –Acceptance –Rejection –Revisions

8 The process of revision –The letter –The corrections

9 Participation in publication Publish or perish Dissemination of information Scientific Development Graduation Employment Promotion Competition Self satisfaction

10 Publish and perish Plagiarism

11 Types of papers Original research –Interventional/hypotheses testing/experimental paper –Descriptive paper –Method paper –Epidemiological paper Review article Case report Letter to the editor Short communication New perspectives Editorials/ from the editor

12 What is considered as a paper/article Paper or article? A research which contributes to –Pushing the frontiers of science a bit further –Strengthening and confirming what is not well established – looking at an issue from a new angle –Proposing a new/previous technique for a particular purpose –Widening/narrowing the application of something

13 What editors and reviewers look for in a paper Originality – whats new about subject, treatment or results? Relevance to and extension of existing knowledge Research methodology – are conclusions valid and objective? Clarity, structure and quality of writing – does it communicate well? Sound, logical progression of argument Theoretical and practical implications (the so what? factors!) Recency and relevance of references Adherence to the editorial scope and objectives of the journal

14 Checking the integrity: –The title, the purpose, the answer and the recommendations –The listing: sequence of information –The words and their relation to the type of the study: Hypothesis paper: (unknown/problematic) examine, find out, to test, Descriptive paper: define, describe, clarify Method paper: develop, design, provide, make, manufacture, offer, Epidemiological paper: report the incidence/prevalence, find out,

15 The integrity between type of the study and the title –The effect of –The comparison, relation, correlation, – a method for –The prevalence date location Parallel ideas in parallel forms

16 Structure check up Clarity in English Tenses Passive or active Subjectivity Words in the appropriate place

17 Being published means Your paper is permanent – published material enters a permanent and accessible knowledge archive – the body of knowledge Your paper is improved – through the interventions of editors, reviewers, sub-editors and proof-readers Your paper is actively promoted – it becomes available to a far greater audience Your writing is trustworthy – material which has been published carries a QA stamp. Someone apart from the author thinks its good

18 Types of journals Research journals Scientific journals Research/scientific journals News journals News letters Pamphlets

19 Research journals Daily weekly Monthly Quarterly Biannual Annual

20 Selection of a journal Using internet –Internet search Free sites for search »search\search engin search.pptsearch\search engin search.ppt Eric search (education) –2577 (770 searchable at full article level) –127233 articles Library

21 PubMed search\PubMed search.pptsearch\PubMed search.ppt Scopussearch\Scopus.pptsearch\Scopus.ppt Thiemesearch\thieme - workshop.pptsearch\thieme - workshop.ppt ProQuestsearch\sandy proQuest presentation.pptsearch\sandy proQuest presentation.ppt Search Engines in Iran search\sterategy search.pptsearch\sterategy search.ppt

22 The situation of Iran in ISI journals 2005 5500 articles

23 Pros and cons: What influences IF Review articles cited more often Case reports rarely cited Rapid publication time > Self-citations > Bias towards rapidly evolving fields Cites not counted after 2 years Specialty journals have < IF

24 Certain important points before sending the paper Many papers are rejected simply because they dont fulfil journal requirements. They dont even go into the review process. Identify a few possible target journals/series but be realistic Follow the Author Guidelines – scope, type of paper, word length, references style, etc Find where to send your paper (editor, regional editor, subject area editor). Check a copy of the journal/series or the publishers web site Send an outline or abstract and ask if this looks suitable and interesting (or how it could be made so) Confirm how an editor would like a submission, e.g. e-mail; hard copy Read at least one issue of the publication – visit your library for access

25 ISI essays/journal_selection_process/ essays/journal_selection_process/ Thomson Scientific is a subsidiary of the Thomson Group and is based in Philadelphia, USA Thomson Scientifics ISI Web of Science database scores 9,000 selected journals with Impact Factors based on journal citations The latest Thomson Scientific statistics were published in June 2008 for the year 2007

26 What is commonly referred to by academics as ISI, SSCI or Impact Factors is actually Thomson Reuters now, and more specifically, its Journal Citation Reports (JCR) These reports index and rank the journals it has on its ISI Web of Knowledge and is a collection of bibliographic information of over 9,000 evaluated scholarly journals

27 Journals are ranked in the JCR depending on how many times the articles included in that journal are cited in other ISI-ranked journals. The ranking is published every June and corresponds to the previous years data. ISI uses a calculation of citation data over a three year period to produce an Impact Factor for a given year.

28 How to evaluate journals 1. ISI: Impact Factor (IF) The Impact factor was devised by Eugene Garfield, the founder of the Institute for Scientific Information, now part of Thomson, a large worldwide US-based publisher. Impact factors are calculated each year by Thomson Scientific for those journals which it indexes, and the factors and indices are published in Journal Citation Reports.

29 How to calculate IF A = the number of times articles published in 2007- 8 were cited in indexed journals during 2009 –B = the number of "citable items" (usually articles, reviews, proceedings or notes; not editorials and letters-to-the-Editor) published in 2007-8 –2009 impact factor = A/B –(note that the 2009 impact factor is actually published in 2010, because it could not be calculated until all of the 2009 publications had been received.)

30 Figure 3: Calculation for impact factor revised to exclude self-citations. A= citations in 1992 to articles published in 1990-91 B= 1992 self-citations to articles published in 1990-91 C= A - B = total citations minus self-citations to recent articles D= number of articles published 1990-91 E= revised impact factor (C/D)


32 2. immediacy index the immediacy index: the number of citations the articles in a journal receive in a given year divided by the number of articles published.

33 3. cited half-life the cited half-life: the median age of the articles that were cited in Journal Citation Reports each year. For example, if a journal's half-life in 2005 is 5, that means the citations from 2001-2005 are half of all the citations from that journal in 2005, and the other half of the citations precede 2000.

34 4. Aggregate impact factor the aggregate impact factor for a subject category: it is calculated taking into account the number of citations to all journals in the subject category and the number of articles from all the journals in the subject category.

35 How to evaluate journal important points Aspects to consider (. I) 1. Contrasted Scientific Quality Peer reviewed. High Impact Factor Scientific editorial committee. 2. Contrasted formal Quality Celarity of process. Priority of discovering assigned. Accomplish publication time release.

36 3. Appropriated field of knowledge covered. 4. Wide dissemination over scientific information channels. 5. Types of works accepted. 6. Copyright issues. Owned by editorial? Owned by author? 7. Fees. Author fee? Subscription fee? Free?

37 Steps on selecting an academic journal 1. Get into a bibliometric database. 2. Choose field of knowledge. 3. List by Impact Factor or other bibliometric parameters. 4. Determine journals quartiles. 5. Select the journals within the first quartile. 6. For all journals selected before visit their website and: –A. Check type of works accepted. –B. Check type of copyright used. –C. Check type of fees implanted. 7. Select any of these journals if you agree with these conditions.

38 Bibliometric database Journal+impact+factor_files\How to publish in Academic Journals02.pdfJournal+impact+factor_files\How to publish in Academic Journals02.pdf

39 How to evaluate the author H-index –The H -index quantifies both the scientific productivity and the scientific impact of a scientist. The index is based on the set of the scientist's most quoted papers and the number of citations that they have received in other people's publications. The index can also be applied to the productivity and impact of a group of scientists, such as a department or university or country. The index was suggested in 2005 byJorge E. Hirsch as a tool for determining theoretical physicists' relative quality and is sometimes called theHirsch index or Hirsch number. The h -index has yet to supplant older metrics.Jorge E. Hirsch

40 How to calculate h-index index-calculator-of-scientist-impact.html index-calculator-of-scientist-impact.html Simply write the name of the authour in the web site and click on compute h-index

41 Concerns and issues related to IF 1. ISI's inadequate international coverage. Although Web of Knowledge indexes journals from 60 countries, the coverage is very uneven. Very few publications from languages other than English are included, and very few journals from the less-developed countries. Even the ones that are included are undercounted, because most of the citations to such journals will come from other journals in the same language or from the same country, most of which are not included. 2. The failure to include many high quality journals in the applied aspects of some subjects, such as marketing communications, public relations and promotion management and many important but not peer-reviewed technical magazines. This editorial comment [1] of the Asian EFL Journal complains of Thomson / ISI's failure to even consider rating certain superior journals. 3. The failure to incorporate book publications including textbooks, handbooks and reference books into the calculations of the impact factor.

42 4. The number of citations to papers in a particular journal does not really directly measure the true quality of a journal, much less the scientific merit of the papers within it. It also reflects, at least in part, the intensity of publication or citation in that area, and the current popularity of that particular topic, along with the availability of particular journals. Journals with low circulation, regardless of the scientific merit of their contents, will never obtain high impact factors in an absolute sense, but if all the journals in a specific subject are of low circulation, as in some areas of botany and zoology, the relative standing is meaningful. Since defining the quality of an academic publication is problematic, involving non-quantifiable factors, such as the influence on the next generation of scientists, assigning this value a specific numeric measure cannot tell the whole story.

43 5. The temporal window for citation is too short, as discussed above. Classic articles are cited frequently even after several decades, but this should not affect specific journals.[4] 6. In the short term - especially in the case of low- impact-factor journals - many of the citations to a certain article are made in papers written by the author(s) of the original article.[5] This means that counting citations may be independent of the real impact of the work among investigators.

44 7. The absolute number of researchers, the average number of authors on each paper, and the nature of results in different research areas, as well as variations in citation habits between different disciplines, particularly the number of citations in each paper, all combine to make impact factors between different groups of scientists incommensurable.[6] Generally, for example, medical journals have higher impact factors than mathematical journals and engineering journals. This limitation is accepted by the publishers; it has never been claimed that they are useful between fields--such a use is an indication of misunderstanding[6]

45 8. By merely counting the frequency of citations per article and disregarding the prestige of the citing journals, the impact factor becomes merely a metric of popularity, not of prestige. 9. HEFCE was urged by the Parliament of the United Kingdom Committee on Science and Technology to remind Research Assessment Exercise (RAE) panels that they are obliged to assess the quality of the content of individual articles, not the reputation of the journal in which they are published

46 Misuse of impact factor The impact factor is often misused to predict the importance of an individual publication based on where it was published.[7] This does not work well since a small number of publications are cited much more than the majority - for example, about 90% of Nature's 2004 impact factor was based on only a fourth of its publications.[8] The impact factor, however, averages over all articles and thus underestimates the citations of the top cited while exaggerating the number of citations of the average publication.[7][8] Academic reviewers involved in programmatic evaluations, particularly those for doctoral degree granting institutions, often turn to ISI's proprietary IF listing of journals in determining scholarly output. This builds in a bias which automatically undervalues some types of research and distorts the total contribution each faculty member makes.

47 The absolute value of an impact factor is meaningless. A journal with an IF of 2 would not be very impressive in Microbiology, while it would in Oceanography. Such values are nonetheless sometimes advertised by scientific publishers. The comparison of impact factors between different fields is invalid. Yet such comparisons have been widely used for the evaluation of not merely journals, but of scientists and of university departments. It is not possible to say, for example, that a department whose publications have an average IF below 2 is low-level. This would not make sense for Mechanical Engineering, where only two review journals attain such a value.

48 Outside the sciences, impact factors are relevant for fields that have a similar publication pattern to the sciences (such as economics), where research publications are almost always journal articles, that cite other journal articles. They are not relevant for literature, where the most important publications are books citing other books. Therefore, ISI does not publish a JCR for the humanities. Even in the sciences, it is not fully relevant to fields, such as some in engineering, where the principal scientific output is conference proceedings, technical reports, and patents.

49 Since only the ISI database journals are used, it undercounts the number of citations from journals in less-developed countries, and less- universal languages. Even though in practice they are applied this way, impact factors cannot correctly be the only thing to be considered by libraries in selecting journals. The local usefulness of the journal is at least equally important, as is whether or not an institution's faculty member is editor of the journal or on its editorial review board.

50 Manipulation of impact factors Increasing IF by not improving quality but consciously increasing: –Review article publications

51 Self citing Skewness –Only 25% of nature journal articles are highly cited Use in scientific employment –It measures popularity not productivity

52 How to search in ISI Finding the articles written by an author Finding the articles published in a country Searching the ISI data base to find how many articles in one university an author has published ISIWorkshop_webpages.ppt

53 Submitting a scientific contribution the process Follow Academic Publishing Steps (I) 1. Author submits manuscript to an academic journal editor. 2. Editor determines if the manuscript has sufficient merit to be reviewed. 3. If merit, manuscript is sent to reviewers, if not, is sent back to the author with a rejection letter. 4. Reviewers return the manuscript to the editor with comments and recommendations.

54 5. Editor sends manuscript back to the author with either a rejection letter or a request for revisions. 6. Author revises manuscript and resubmits to editor. 7. Editor sends revised manuscript back to external reviewers again. 8. Repeat steps 4 and 5. 9. Author provides editing or proofing of final copy before 10. Paper is eventually published in journal

55 Timetable from submission to initial feedback to authors The Editor(s) do an initial read to determine if the subject matter and research approach of the manuscript is appropriate for the journal (approximately 1 week) The Editor(s) identify and contact two reviewers for the manuscript (approximately 1 week) Reviewers are usually given 6-8 weeks to complete their reviews The Editor(s) assess the reviewers' comments and recommendations and make a decision on the manuscript (approximately 2 weeks) Expected time from submission to review feedback: 3 - 3.5 months

56 Process of acceptance for a journal – just one example


58 Submission checklist It is hoped that this list will be useful during the final checking of an article prior to sending it to the journal's Editor for review. Please consult this Guide for Authors for further details of any item. Ensure that the following items are present: One Author designated as corresponding Author: E-mail address Full postal address Telephone and fax numbers All necessary files have been uploaded Keywords All figure captions All tables (including title, description, footnotes) Further considerations Manuscript has been "spellchecked" and "grammar-checked" References are in the correct format for this journal All references mentioned in the Reference list are cited in the text, and vice versa Permission has been obtained for use of copyrighted material from other sources (including the Web) Color figures are clearly marked as being intended for color reproduction on the Web (free of charge) and in print or to be reproduced in color on the Web (free of charge) and in black-and-white in print If only color on the Web is required, black and white versions of the figures are also supplied for printing purposes For any further information please visit our customer support site at

59 Important point If you are asked to choose a peer reviewer: –Be fair –Choose someone in your field; specially someone in the references –Not someone in your country

60 Use of the Digital Object Identifier The Digital Object Identifier (DOI) may be used to cite and link to electronic documents. The DOI consists of a unique alpha-numeric character string which is assigned to a document by the publisher upon the initial electronic publication. The assigned DOI never changes. Therefore, it is an ideal medium for citing a document, particularly 'Articles in press' because they have not yet received their full bibliographic information. The correct format for citing a DOI is shown as follows (example taken from a document in the journal Physics Letters B): doi:10.1016/j.physletb.2003.10.071 When you use the DOI to create URL hyperlinks to documents on the web, they are guaranteed never to change.

61 Revising the paper Acknowledge the editor and set a revision deadline Clarify understanding if in doubt – This is what I understand the comments to mean… Consult with colleagues or co-authors and tend to the points as requested Meet the revision deadline Attach a covering letter which identifies, point by point, how revision requests have been met (or if not, why not)

62 The letter for revision Dear editor I would appreciate the revisions done by the reviewer on my manuscript titled, the effect of X on Y in Z. I have followed all the comments and revised the manuscript which is attached. The revisions are as follow: 1. The title is changed into the effect of X on Y in Z and the word comparison is omitted. 2. line one in the introduction is changed into CCCCCCCC. 3. In line 10, the word modified is changed into altered as revised by the reviewer. 4. In Line 11, the ambiguous sentence AAAAAAAA was deleted and replaced by the following sentences CCCCCCCC. 5. In line 16, Sentence CCCCC was added to clarify the idea. 6. In line 18 of the methodology, the justification for the selection of the participants was added. 7. In line 22, CCCCC was added to justify the method and explicit the reason for the selection of the method. 8. I am afraid the change suggested by the reviewer in line 35 was not confirmed by the co-authors, for the following reasons: –Aaaaaaa –Bbbbbb –Ccccc I am looking forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience. Sincerely yours Saeed Zarein-dolab PhD

63 Dear Professor Lombard Thank you for your letter of October 22nd inviting re-submission of the above manuscript. I have now extensively revised the discussion, figures and presentation to address the reviewers comments as well as those of the journal. My responses to the comments are outlined below. Referee 1 (comments shown in bold) 1. No change in the low MW thiol pool was detected during infusion of SNO-alb. However the authors propose that this pool is critical for this activity (Fig 9). This seems inconsistent and alternative explanations should be considered: We agree with all of the points (see above and below) made by the reviewer, and have revised the discussion in the manuscript as shown below to address each of the specific points. a) the measurement of thiols may not be sufficiently accurate to detect the change in thiol over the time of infusion. Eg 4uM over 20 min may result in relatively little change given that the reductive pathways may keep pace. There are several potential mechanisms to explain this. For example, the measurement of plasma thiols over the time of infusion may not be sufficiently accurate to detect the changes in plasma thiol concentration, particularly if the reductive pathways which lead to the maintenance of extra-cellular thiols keep pace with the changes induced by SNO-albumin infusion.

64 What to do when the paper is rejected Ask why, and listen carefully! Most editors will give detailed comments about a rejected paper. Take a deep breath, and listen to what is being said Try again! Try to improve the paper, and re-submit elsewhere. Do your homework and target your paper as closely as possible Dont give up! At least 50% of papers in business and management dont get published. Everybody has been rejected at least once Keep trying!

65 Publishing in open access open access.ppt

66 Letters Dear Editor Please, find enclosed three copies of my manuscript titled: the effect of X on Y in Z for inclusion in your accredited journal of Ophthalmic Research.

67 Dear Editor Enclosed please find a copy of my manuscript titled the effect of X on Y in Z" for publication in your accredited journal : American Journal of Ophthalmology. The justification for the publication of the manuscript in your accredited journal is that: 1. 2. 3. This submission is original, not under consideration for publication elsewhere, and we are aware of the submission process and guidelines and agree to its publication. Sincerely yours Saeed Zarein-Dolab PhD

68 Letter for the submission Dear Editor Enclosed please find three copies of my article titled : the effect of X on Y in Z for publication in your accredited journal of ophthalmic research. I understand that the submission of an article implies that the work described has not been published previously (except in the form of an abstract or as part of a published lecture or academic thesis), that it is not under consideration for publication elsewhere, that its publication is approved by all authors and tacitly or explicitly by the responsible authorities where the work was carried out, and that, if accepted, it will not be published elsewhere including electronically in the same form, in English or in any other language, without the written consent of the copyright-holder. I am looking forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience. Sincerely yours Saeed Zarein-dolab PhD

69 All authors are requested to disclose any actual or potential conflict of interest including any financial, personal or other relationships with other people or organizations within three years of beginning the submitted work that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work.

70 Dear Ms. Manuscript ID: LAR-11-089 Manuscript title: A comparative study of the effects of topical application of Aloe vera, thyroid hormone and silver sulfadiazine on skin wounds in Wistar rats We are pleased to inform you that your paper has been reviewed favorably. As you can see from the reviewer comments, some revisions are suggested to improve the paper. We would be happy to publish your work if you can revise your manuscript to take account of the points raised. If you decide to submit a revised version, please enclose a point-to-point reply to the reviewers' comments (page, line paragraph, etc.) and underline all changes made in the text. Please send your reply and the revised version to the Editorial Office online within 2 weeks. Should you not be able meet the deadline, please notify the Editor-in- Chief via email. To submit the revision, click Here: I look forward to receiving your revised manuscript soon. Best wishes,

71 Dear Editor All the authors confirm that there is no actual or potential conflict of interest including any financial, personal or other relationships with other people or organizations that could inappropriately influence, or be perceived to influence, their work. Saeed ZArein-Dolab PhD Correspondent author

72 Title. Concise and informative. Titles are often used in information-retrieval systems. Avoid abbreviations and formulae where possible. Author names and affiliations. Where the family name may be ambiguous (e.g., a double name), please indicate this clearly. Present the authors' affiliation addresses (where the actual work was done) below the names. Indicate all affiliations with a lower-case superscript letter immediately after the author's name and in front of the appropriate address. Provide the full postal address of each affiliation, including the country name, and, if available, the e-mail address of each author. Corresponding author. Clearly indicate who will handle correspondence at all stages of refereeing and publication, also post-publication. Ensure that telephone and fax numbers (with country and area code) are provided in addition to the e- mail address and the complete postal address. Present/permanent address. If an author has moved since the work described in the article was done, or was visiting at the time, a "Present address" (or "Permanent address") may be indicated as a footnote to that author's name. The address at which the author actually did the work must be retained as the main, affiliation address. Superscript Arabic numerals are used for such footnotes. Abstract

73 The manuscript Types of papers Title Names Affiliations Introduction Materials and methods Results/findings Discussion Abstract Acknowledgement References

74 Types of paper

75 Types of titles 1.Titles for Hypotheses testing papers 2.Titles for descriptive papers 3.Titles for method papers 4.Titles for epidemiological papers

76 1. Titles for Hypotheses testing papers The effect of X on Y in Z The impact of X on Y in Z Influence of X on Y in Z

77 Checking the accuracy Title: A method for purifying the glycoprotein IIb-IIIa complex in platelet membrane Question: The purpose was to develop a method for the purification of the ….

78 Reference Style Text: All citations in the text should refer to: 1. Single author: the author's name (without initials, unless there is ambiguity) and the year of publication; 2. Two authors: both authors' names and the year of publication; 3. Three or more authors: first author's name followed by 'et al.' and the year of publication. Citations may be made directly (or parenthetically). Groups of references should be listed first alphabetically, then chronologically. List: References should be arranged first alphabetically and then further sorted chronologically if necessary. More than one reference from the same author(s) in the same year must be identified by the letters "a", "b", "c", etc., placed after the year of publication.

79 Examples: Chhokar, J.S., Wallin, J.A., 1984. Improving safety through applied behavior analysis. Journal of Safety Research 15, 141-151. Cook, T.D., Campbell, D.T., Peracchio L., 1990. Quasi experimentation. In: Dunnette, J.D., Hough, L.M. (Eds.), Handbook of Industrial and Organizational Psychology, pp. 491-576. Consulting Psychologists Press, Palo Alto, CA. Hale A.R., Hovden J., 1998. Management and culture: the third age of safety. A review of approaches to organizational aspects of safety health and environment. In: Williamson, A., Feyer, A.-M. (Eds.), Occupational Injury: Risk, Prevention and Injury. Taylor & Francis. Harborview Medical Center Injury Prevention and Research Center, 1997. Systematic Reviews of Childhood Injury Prevention Interventions. (Oct. 22, 1997). Lipsey, M.W., 1990. Design Sensitivity. Sage Publications, Newbury Park, CA. Harvard style APACitationMethods-1.pdf

80 Journal abbreviations source Journal names should be abbreviated according to Index Medicus journal abbreviations:; List of serial title word abbreviations: online.php; CAS (Chemical Abstracts Service): online.php

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