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Scholarly Journal Publishing Guide

Resources for McGill journal editors


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Jessica Lange
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Unless otherwise noted, content is this guide is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. 

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Getting your journal indexed will be an important part in the discovery and readership of journal. 

Basic indexing strategy:

  1. Register your journal with an ISSN (note: if your journal is hosted on McGill Library's OJS platform we will look after ISSN registration). Remember there are separate registrations for print and electronic ISSNs. 
  2. Once you have an ISSN, register with Ulrich's Periodical Directory
    • Send an email to . In your email, include the name of the publication and any other information you may know about that publication such as the name of the publisher or the provider who makes it available. An editor will follow up with the publisher or provider and attempt to get the most recent information about the publication.(Ulrich's FAQs)
  3. Register with the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
  4. Check to see if your journals is appearing in Google Scholar. If not, register
  5. Thereafter you will want to seek additional indexing opportunities. Are there certain databases that are heavily consulted in your field (e.g. JSTOR, Web of Science etc.)? Each database will have its own indexing procedure and application. If you are unsure of the databases in your field, consult Ulrich's Periodical Directory. Find a listing for journal that's similar and then click on 'Abstracting & Indexing'. This will outline other common databases in your discipline. Consult also with your liaison librarian; they may be able to identify additional indexing opportunities. 
    • ​​Note that many databases require the journal to have published a certain number of volumes before the journal will be indexed. 
    • Also, review your journal's copyright policy to ensure your journal has the right to be indexed by these entities and enter into any agreements with them. Consult with McGill Library's Scholarly Communication team with any questions. 

Citation tracking

Are you interested in seeing how your journal is being cited? There are several search engines where you can look up your journal:

  • Google Scholar 
    • You can set up a journal page within Google Scholar to capture your journal's citations (example)
  • ISI Web of Science*
    • Click 'Journal citation reports' from the top menu.
  • Scopus
    • Select 'Source title' and then type in the name of the journal. Click 'analyze search results'. 

*unless your journal is fairly established you will have to apply to be indexed by these resources. See the indexing section. 

Further reading

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