High Impact Journals Guide

Researcher's Guide to Publishing in High Impact Journals & Books: Scimago & Other Platforms


One of the strategic objectives of the University of Nairobi as a research institution is to increase the visibility and impact of the research output. SCImago platform can be used to support and assist researchers identify recognised journals for publishing their research.

The SCImago Journal and Country Rank portal is a free online resource that uses citation data from Scopus to provide journal impact data. Journals are grouped by subject area (27 major thematic areas), subject category (313 specific subject categories) or by country.

The citation data is drawn from over 21,500 titles from more than 5,000 international publishers. The list of peer-reviewed high impact journals in SCImago can be found in the following link: http://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php (both open access and commercial journals)

Researchers may also publish in reputable peer reviewed high impact Open Access Journals that can be found in the following link: https://www.omicsonline.org/open-access-journals-list.php and https://doaj.org/.

Notable examples of open access journals that waive publishing fee or do not currently charge fees include;

  1. Open Library Humanities: https://olh.openlibhums.org/about/submissions/
  2. Royal Society of Open Science: http://rsos.royalsocietypublishing.org/page/charges
  3. Biomed Central: https://www.biomedcentral.com/getpublished/article-processing-charges/open-access-waiver-fund
  4. PLOS: https://www.plos.org/fee-assistance
  5. Handawi: https://www.hindawi.com/waiver/

Researchers may also publish books, book chapters and journal articles in the following open access presses:

  1. Directory of Open Access Books: https://www.doabooks.org/
  2. Cambridge University Press: http://www.cambridge.org/us/academic/cambridge-open-access#C3Ap1yrFg6tzjgWq.97
  3. Lumnios Publishing for monographs from the California Open Access: https://www.luminosoa.org/
  4. MUP Open Monographs, an initiative from Manchester University Press: http://www.manchesteruniversitypress.co.uk/openmonographs/
  5. Open Humanities Press: http://openhumanitiespress.org/
  6. Athabasca University Press by a Canadian University: http://www.aupress.ca/
  7. Ubuquity Press, a fully open access publisher:  https://www.ubiquitypress.com/
  8. Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ): https://doaj.org/

Links to SciMago Journals on Specific Disciplines

Find below links that will lead you to high impact journals in various disciplines through the Scimago Database https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?wos=true

  1. Accounts: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?wos=true&category=1402
  2. Agriculture/ Biological Sciences: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?wos=true&category=1101
  3. Analytical chemistry: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1602
  4. Animal Science and Zoology: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1103
  5. Anatomy: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2702
  6. Anthropology: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3314
  7. Artificial intelligence: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1702
  8. Arts and humanities: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1201
  9. Architecture: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2216
  10. Biochemistry: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1303
  11. Building and Construction: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2215
  12. Business and international management: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1403
  13. Business management and accounting: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1401
  14. Civil and structural engineering: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2205
  15. Computational mathematics:  https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2605
  16. Dentistry: ttps://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3501
  17. Communication: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3315
  18. Cultural care: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3316
  19. Demography: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3317
  20. Development: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3303
  21. Economics and econometrics: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2002
  22. Education: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3304
  23. E-learning: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3399
  24. Electrical and electronic engineering: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2208
  25. Endocrinology: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1310
  26. Food Science: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1106
  27. Gender Studies: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3318
  28. Geography, Planning and Development: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3305
  29. Health Policy: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2719
  30. History: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1202
  31. Information Systems and management: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1802
  32. Language and linguistics: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1203
  33. Law: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3308
  34. Library and Information Science: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3309
  35. Literature and literary theory: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1208
  36. Marketing: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1406
  37. Mechanical Engineering: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2210
  38. Medicine: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2701
  39. Nursing: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?wos=true&category=2902
  40. Obs & Gyn: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2729
  41. Ophthalmology:  https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2731
  42. Organizational behavior and human resource: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1407
  43. Pediatrics perinatology and Child health: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2735
  44. Political Science and International relations: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1408
  45. Psychology: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3201
  46. Public Health: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2739
  47. Philosophy: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1211
  48. Pharmacy: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3611
  49. Plant Science: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1110
  50. Public Health and environmental and occupational health: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2739
  51. Social Sciences: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3301
  52. Sociology and political Science: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3312
  53. Social work: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3323
  54. Soil Science: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1111
  55. Strategy and Management: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=1408
  56. Surgery: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=2746
  57. Urban studies: https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?category=3322

*NOTE that not all subjects are covered. If your subject is not covered, please use the link below and search it - https://www.scimagojr.com/journalrank.php?wos=true.



In this first growing age of technology, there are a lot of questionable and unscrupulous companies out there that purport to provide scholarly publications. They take advantage of authors wishing to get their manuscripts published by sending offers to publish quickly. These publishers have unclear structures and  review processes. Authors pay them publication fees yet they don’t provide editorial and publishing services associated with legitimate journals. Academics and researchers need to be aware of the following:

  • Predatory/questionable Journals
  • Hijacked Journals

Researchers should be careful when approached by some companies to submit articles or serve as editors on editorial Boards. 

Criteria for determining predatory/questionable publishers or journals:

  1. They state that the manuscripts can take only one week or less and show statements that promise rapid publication and quick peer-review
  2. They ask for submission fee not publishing fee and has optional “fast-track” fee based service for expedited peer review which appears to provide assured publication. Publication fee is often not publically displayed on the website
  3. They try to keep the copyright even if the publication is for open access
  4. Editors are not credible authors or have also published in predatory journals.
  5. Journals are not regular
  6. The journal has a wide coverage of subjects in the title i.e. excessively broad to attract more articles
  7. Their websites are vague and have links and telephone numbers that don’t work.
  8. Publishers use email addresses that end in gmail.com, yahoo.com or other free email supplier
  9.  They often send spam emails to potential authors soliciting for manuscripts
  10. The publisher fails to state licensing policy information on articles or show lack of understanding of licensing standards such as Creative Commons licenses, and lacks policy for article retraction
  11. They accept your article without scrutiny
  12. All editors may be coming from one region, department or community
  13. Their journals have titles similar to other popular Journals
  14. They use same editorial board for more than one journal
  15. Editors/review board members do not possess academic expertise to qualify them or provide scanty academic information regarding the editors, reviewers and board members.
  16. No policies or practices for digital preservation, meaning that if the journal ceases operations, all the content disappears from the Internet

More information on how to determine predatory/questionable journals/publishers, kindly use this link: https://beallslist.weebly.com/uploads/3/0/9/5/30958339/criteria-2015.pdf

You may also use the Jeffrey Beall’s list of potential predatory journals to guide on questionable publications: https://beallslist.weebly.com/

Tools used to distinguish predatory / questionable journals from High Impact Factor Journals

The following tools are used to distinguish predatory/questionable journals from high impact factor journals:

  • Ensure that the  journals are listed in;
  • Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)
  • Publisher is member of OASPA - http://oaspa.org/
  • Web of Science and World of Science
  • Scopus/Scimago

You can also use the following link to guide you before you publish in a journal by clicking on,  “THINK, CHECK, SUBMIT” to guide you-  https://thinkchecksubmit.org/


Angela Mumo

Director, Library & Information Services Department

3rd August 2019