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Quality assurance of Open Access journals

Within Open Access a market for disreputable actors has emerged. Those should be avoided. Here are some advice on how to ensure the quality of a journal before submitting your article .

As you may know Open Access journals are published openly on the internet , so eveyone can access them. This is considered the major benefit of Open Access, but when anyone can publish whatever they want, it can be tempting to attemp fraud. Authors may need to pay an APC (Article Processing Charge) to publish in Open Access journals, so there is an opportunity for fraudulent publishers  to make some easy money.

Within Open Access, so-called "predatory journals" have become a significant challenge. These are journals and publishers with low quality and lack of peer review. This article from American Journal Experts tells you how to identify a predatory journal.

We are aware that scientists at UiS get e-mails with requests to contribute to disreputable journals. Our advice is to be wary of unfamiliar journals marketing themselves via e-mail. They are not always predatory, and it is not unusual to pay an APC for open access, but be highly critical!


There are different methods of assessing the quality of journals. If the journal can be found in the Norwegian register of approved scientific publication channels, it is a good sign that it is of acceptable quality. We have made an instruction on how to find good Open Access-journals in NSD.

There are several other ways to check whether a journal holds an acceptable quality:

  •  If the publisher is a member of the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association that is a good sign. They do not acknowledge unserious publishers.
     
  • Make some inquiries: Does the journal look serious? Are the articles relevant? Does the editors have education / Experience within the subject area? Is the e-mail coming from a journal that is valid for your subject area, or far from it?
     
  • Is the timeline plausible? If they offer a very fast peer review, ask yourself if it is realistic that the work can be done properly in such a short time.
     

Please contact us if you are unsure about a particular journal. We will check whether the journal keeps an acceptable level. See also guidelines for support from our publishing fund.