I am considering (for a variety of reasons) submitting an article to a philosophy journal, which happens to have a Scientific Journal Impact Factor of 4.699. This would be my first submission.

Is this considered to be a decent impact factor?
Or should I try a higher ranked journal?

  • 7
    "Scientific Journal Impact Factor" sounds an awful lot like something from one of the fake impact factor scam companies. – Corvus Nov 18 '15 at 21:54
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    Do you read this journal? Do you cite papers in this journal? Does your advisor/mentor recommend submitting to this journal? If your answer is yes, then why do you care about impact factor? And if your answer is no, then why do you care about impact factor? – JeffE Nov 19 '15 at 13:24
  • I'm a philosopher, and I've never heard of this impact factor measure. mostly philosophers tend to care about h-index if they care about these kind of measures at all. I'm guessing it's a scam. – user10636 Jun 13 '16 at 18:16

Why not check the impact factor (or similar metrics) at a well-known, reputable source, and then compare it to the rest of the field? I've never heard about Scientific Journal Impact Factor (this one: http://www.sjifactor.inno-space.net/?), but it sounds suspicious and it doesn't list several well-known journals (at least in biology). The "original" impact factor comes from Thomson-Reuters, but in case you do not have access to it (you library should have it though), there are also free reputable services that offer similar metrics. SCImago journal rank or Journal metrics from Scopus comes to mind. Compare the journal you are thinking about with others in the field using one of these services. If the journal you are considering cannot be found there, I would consider this a red flag.

A journal ranking list in philosophy from SCimago can be found here. If you order that list by "Cites per document (2 years)" you will have a very close approximation to the Thomson-Reuters impact factor. From what I can see, an impact factor of >4 would be off the charts for a philosophy journal, which makes me even more sceptical about the metric that you have been looking at.

What's the name of the journal you are considering?

  • +1, Philosopher here. The Philosophical Review, Nous, and Journal of Philosophy are unquestionably the best journals in the field and none of them have an IF > 3, I think. Authorship and citation practices in philosophy don't lead to high IFs, even for widely read, widely cited (for the field) journals like the three I just mentioned. – user10636 Mar 10 '16 at 11:21

IFs vary dramatically in different subjects. For Mathematics, for example, IF of 4.7 is huge. For Physics it is probably somewhere in a medium or higher band. As I heard, for Biology or Pharmacy the IFs are typically much larger.

I am not really aware of a situation in philosophy, but 4.7 seems to be a huge IF for a journal in humanities. Consider asking your colleagues (or your supervisor if you have any), if this is a reputable journal (and check that it is not a scam or predatory journal).

  • 1
    The question is not about Thomson's IF. – Benoît Kloeckner Nov 20 '15 at 19:35

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