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Important considerations when choosing a journal or conference

Complying with Open Access policies

 Some journals do not meet the terms set out in funder Open Access (OA) policies, e.g., use of the CC-BY licence for Gold OA or maximum embargo periods for Green OA.

There can be serious consequences if researchers fail to meet funder OA requirements, e.g. being unable to submit papers to the REF, or having grant funding withheld or reduced.

Contact the Library’s Open Access team for advice when selecting a journal.

Assessing the credibility of journals and publishers

It's important to be aware of what are often referred to as 'predatory' journals. Such journals try to appear credible by referring to false Impact Factors or inclusion of content in industry-standard indexing and abstracting services. They commonly send spam emails to potential authors, solicit submissions and request payment of Article Processing Charges (APCs), but they lack any discernible scholarship or academic rigour. 

New journals are launched every year so you may be contacted in connection with an unfamiliar title. Those that are associated with a well-established publisher or learned society are likely to be trustworthy. However, journals without such a connection are not necessarily 'predatory'. Those that adopt new approaches to the publishing process, e.g., use of ORCID or innovation in peer review, are likely to be trustworthy. 

We strongly recommend that researchers always check the credibility of unfamiliar publishers and journals prior to submission. Use the tools below or contact the Library for assistance.

Reputable publishers of fully OA journals meet at least one of the following criteria:

Think. Check. Submit. provides a checklist of questions to help researchers identify trusted journals.

Assessing the credibility of conferences

When choosing a conference to present your research at, be cautious. Some conference organisers send spam emails to researchers, overexaggerating scope and attendance. Such conferences are unlikely to be trustworthy. 

Think. Check. Attend. provides a checklist to help researchers identify trusted conferences.