A journal’s citation metrics are a quantitative tool that guides authors in deciding where to submit their manuscript. Authors may consider a number of different metrics when making their decision, and it is important to understand the different strengths of each metric. Each metric has its own strengths and limitations, and it is important to consider a range of metrics – authors should never base their decision on a single metric in isolation. Authors should also take other factors into account in addition to the journal’s metrics, such as its aims and scope and intended readership. Carefully considering all these factors helps to ensure that the chosen journal is a good fit for the journal and increases the chances of acceptance.
Dove Medical Press uses a range of citation metrics, including all or some of the following:
• Impact factor
• 5-year impact factor
• SNIP (Source Normalized Impact per Paper)
• SJR (Scimago Journal Rank)
Impact factors are published each year by Clarivate Analytics in the Journal of Citation Reports, indexed on Web of Science. Impact factors measure the average number of citations of articles published in the journal over a two-year period.
Impact factors are calculated by dividing the number of citations received by the number of articles published over the two years. If the average number of citations for an article is 2 per year, the journal will have an impact factor of 2.
Not every journal will have an impact factor. For the 2022 release journals in the Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI) have received Impact Factors, but these do not have a category ranking. A single ranking for each subject category is expected to be released by Clarivate for the 2023 Impact Factor.
5-year impact factor
5-year impact factors are a modification of the standard impact factor, measured over a period of five years rather than two. This can be useful for fields where research advances more slowly, and older papers continue to be cited for a significant period after publication.
Citescore measures the average number of citations of articles published by journals indexed in the Scopus database. It is calculated by dividing the total number of citations in the journal over the past four years (including the current year), but the total number of articles published in the journal over that period.
SNIP (Source Normalized Impact per Paper)
SNIP also uses the Scopus database. SNIP measures citations of articles in journal against the number of citations that are expected for the subject field as a whole over a three-year period. The number of expected citations is referred to as the citation potential. If an article is cited in a subject where citations are less common, and the citation potential is low, its SNIP value will be higher.
SJR (Scimago Journal Rank)
SJR is also based on the Scopus database. SJR measures the reputation of a journal by considering the prestige of the journals in which it is cited, rather than the total number of citations. SJR is calculated by dividing the average number of citations in the journal by the number of articles published in the journal over the previous three years, with each citation assigned a value weighted by the SJR of the citing journal.
Average Article Statistics
The Average Article Statistics provide the average time that different stages of the publication process take for the journal:
• Time from submission to first editorial decision – this is calculated as the average time for all submitted manuscripts that have reached the first decision stage in the past 3 months.
• Time from editorial acceptance to online publication – this is calculated as the average time for all accepted manuscripts to have reached the stage of online publication in the past 3 months.
The rejection rate is calculated by the number of papers rejected by the journal for publication as a percentage of all papers submitted.
Updated 6 July 2023