A Magical Combination: Easy Acceptance and an Authentic Impact Factor

Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances

Easy ticket to an impact factor publication

Faisalabad, Pakistan-based Medwell Journals was on my very first list of questionable publishers in 2010, and it continues there today. One of Medwell’s journals is the Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances, and this journal actually has an impact factor.

This journal is clear evidence that the impact factor is not a measure of quality, for this is a bottom-tier journal. The Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances has an impact factor of 0.390. On the other hand, the journal has a very large editorial board, whose 70 members are listed without their affiliations, if any. Moreover, the publisher tries to hide the fact that it’s based in Pakistan, and it does not clearly state what its article processing charges are.

It’s evidently very easy to get published in the Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances. In fact, it’s so easy that the journal has 24 large issues per year to accommodate all the submissions it receives and accepts for publication. It’s clear the publisher is making a lot of money off this single journal. However, the papers appear to be generally of very low quality, and some are off-topic.

Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances 2

An article about concrete in a veterinary journal

One example is the above article, “Effect of Different Cure Conditions on Compressive Strength of Concrete Having Different Properties.” The paper is about curing concrete and has nothing to do with “animal and veterinary advances.” Also, the publisher is not investing in copyediting, as a quick analysis of the articles reveals.

Many countries, universities, and departments require that their faculty publish in impact factor journals for promotion, tenure, and annual evaluations. Somehow, the Journal of Animal and Veterinary Advances has managed to get a legitimate impact factor, so it’s a gold mine for the publisher, and dream-come-true for authors needing a quick and easy publication in a journal with a legitimate impact factor.

Also, if you need academic credit that involves serving on the editorial board of an impact factor journal, this is a good place to go, and I suspect it involves very little if any work.

So, the impact factor is not a measure of quality, as this journal proves. I am keeping Medwell Journals on my list of questionable publishers and recommend that researchers not submit papers to any of their journals, impact factor or not.

Hat tip: Dr. Germán D. Mendoza Martínez

ddd

Avoid this publisher.

19 Responses to A Magical Combination: Easy Acceptance and an Authentic Impact Factor

  1. Dorey, Gerald says:

    Jeffrey – this is deeply weird given how fussy Thomson-Reuters normally is. Plus if you look at the citations it has a very low rate of self-citations, which I would usually would think was very healthy. It is not clearly open access – the journals all ask for both an assignment and for an exclusive licence, confusing the two, but neither of which is very OA! And it has paid subscriptions as well: perhaps they are making money at both ends. But to be honest, their web site is pretty good.

    Odd, odd, odd

    Gerald Dorey
    Routledge – Taylor & Francis
    Associate Editorial Director: Social Science Journals & Digital Resources
    Regional Publisher – South Asia: Science, Social Science and Humanities

    UK office: 4 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, OX14 4RN, UK
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    [Description: http://tandf.tandf.co.uk/journals/Banners/starbanner.gif%5D

    Taylor & Francis is a trading name of Informa UK Limited, registered in England under no. 1072954

  2. Dana Roth says:

    Thanks … I passed this along to my ‘friends’ at TR … we regularly communicate regarding errors in WoS records … formerly author name misspellings but now more often omission of funding information.

    • Shirley Ainsworth says:

      Do you mean omission of funding information from WoS records when the information is included in the original articles, or something else? As in not declaring conflicts of interest?

      • Dana Roth says:

        Yes, simply omissions when information is in the original article. Note that WoS does not add this info for conference papers, editorial material, letters, etc.

  3. Hasseena says:

    The journal is in your list since 2010, but it very very popular on internet having fantastic Alexa rank. Wow……. I was shocked to see the that journal has basket full of paper submissions. This journal is really an Icon and inspiring that it can do well for scholars.

  4. Hello, it is sad that some Turkish people succumb to the lure of easy publication, which is very popular in academic community in order to increase the number of publications, submit a scientific activity report, and become promoted in the ranks of academy. Thanks for this post – I have mentioned it in my Facebook wall. Good work, thank you!

  5. Do journals have any control over whether they are given an impact factor by rating agencies? How “clean” (i.e. independent and conflict-free) are the rating agencies?

    • It differs by agency. In the case of ISI Journal Citation Reports, publishers typically apply to have their journals accepted for indexing and consideration for an impact factor.

      In addition, there are many new and bogus metrics appearing, such as the JIF, UIF, etc.

  6. Ken Lanfear says:

    Do the math. With 24 issues per year and, say, 22 articles per issue, it would take over 400 cites to achieve an IF of 0.390. Has anyone actually looked at who is citing this journal? Are the cites clustered in a few friendly journals, or do they represent a broader spectrum of legitimate journals? Also, what is their IF trend over several years? All of this info should be available from Thompson Reuters.

    • Jake Bundy says:

      OK – I’ve done it, just out of interest – you could have done it too!

      For papers published in 2010-2011 (i.e. years counting to most recent IF), there are over 850 citations. 11% are journal self-citations, but there are 340 different citing journals in total. To my eye, the journals look like normal enough journals (but I’m guessing, as it’s not my field). There is also a reasonable proportion of citations from more general (i.e. non-veterinary) and perfectly well-respected scientific journals that I recognize, including the odd citation from highly selective journals such as PLOS Genetics.

    • tekija says:

      To answer your question, this journal is reported to have had 602, 610 and 583 papers during the latest recorded years, a bit more than what you estimated. Almost all of them are original papers (130 journals. Those between 20 and 10 cites include many Elsevier and one Wiley journal.

      I do not see anything suspicious in the list. This journal is now in volume 12, one volume per year, confirmed by the citation data at TR, so it is not an upstart with falsified volumes. It is also a print with additional online, alledgedly financed at least in part by subscription fees. Do we know this is not true? Do we know hether they perhaps sell advertisements to the print issues, etc?

      Reading the contents of the 6 issues in the current year volume (oddly not close to 24) at least 98% fit well with the title. Thus, the journal seems adequately edited to me and the EB, although large by western standards, seems to do its job. The only odd ones out were 3 papers on human subjects that would be better placed in a medical journal – but admittedly we also belong to the animal kingdom. I did not find the pun in this blog post on the paper on concrete properties appropriate. After all, the paper discusses concrete use in agricultural buildings, so I would for my part consider it bona fide for this journal scope. Overall, to select that particular one and display it in the light of nbeing off topic in this post was unfair, in my opinion.

      Also, I do not find the number of papers published per year any reliable criterion on journal quality. Do you have evidence to the contrary? Take one example from a field more close to me, is it also too easy to publish in Investigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science? After all, they print – on-line only – far more papers in their 12 annual issues than this Pakistani journal does in its 24 – e.g. a grand total of 1002 last year. Yet this is a high tier journal with an IF of 3.441. To make that claim, one would also need to know what is the percentage rejected, which was not mentioned in this blog post.

      This may well be a lower tier journal, as indicated by its low IF, but by and large, it does not appear obviously predatory to me one any account – whatever may apply to Medwell in broad terms as a publisher.

  7. John says:

    Somewhat I felt strange that this blog article lack of credibility. I think that we should not look just only from publication frequencies, copy editing and the size of editorial boards.

    It is ok for the publishers to make money. All publishers do it. That is why now Universities have to pay a lots for subscription fees. We only need to care whether proper PEER REVIEW PROCESS are in place.

    I would say this journal is just simply a low tier journal. It publish low quality research articles. However, we don’t need to condemn it.

  8. marta says:

    i’d like to know how long a journal called ANGLISTICUM has been on you list. It does look totally dodgy, but is it really THAT bad?

  9. jacdem says:

    What is paining you Mr Be all is that all you want is that people publish in your western based journals where papers from third world country are often refused. I tried once and I know that my paper was better than that of many over there. The problem is that I was sending my paper from Africa. Stop then the scienficoracism you are doing. I publish in Elsevier or springer but I need to pay to get access to my own paper. How would you call that. Look at the papers submitted to medwells are all from poor countries. The so called “good journals” refuse our papers. So we go to where they are accepted.
    I think the main reason of journals is to spread knowledge. You should question yourself and the editors of the journals you seem todefend if they have reached that goal.
    Best regards

  10. Wojciech says:

    I’ve found paper, my paper but published under someone name. I’ve asked editor of Medwell Journals, about that asking them to correct it. No answer till now! Maybe someone know their postal address where my laweyers will be able to send letter. If yes please contact: wojtekz@dmcs.pl
    Regards
    Wojciech Zabierowski

  11. Mohammad Ali Salmani Nodoushan says:

    Jeffrey,
    Merry x-mas. Happy new year.
    The sad thing is that the guys in charge of Medwell have used my name as an editorial board member for some of their journals without my knowledge and consent, and have used the University of Zanjan (which I have not been affiliated with since 2009) as my affiliation. After I discovered this, I wrote to them many times, begging them to remove my name from their boards, but they simply do not. Even more annoying is that I noticed that one of my papers which I had published somewhere else, had also been published in PJSS, without my knowledge. I still do not understand why the guys did such a thing to me. This has caused me a lot of trouble, but these guys are not responsive.

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