|Year : 2017 | Volume
| Issue : 2 | Page : 314
Impact factor: An important parameter to decide the quality of publication
BS Nagoba, NM Suryawanshi
Department of Microbiology, Maharashtra Institute of Medical Science and Research, Latur, Maharashtra, India
|Date of Web Publication||5-Jul-2017|
B S Nagoba
Department of Microbiology, Maharashtra Institute of Medical Science and Research, Latur, Maharashtra
Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None
|How to cite this article:|
Nagoba B S, Suryawanshi N M. Impact factor: An important parameter to decide the quality of publication. Indian J Med Microbiol 2017;35:314
|How to cite this URL:|
Nagoba B S, Suryawanshi N M. Impact factor: An important parameter to decide the quality of publication. Indian J Med Microbiol [serial online] 2017 [cited 2018 Feb 20];35:314. Available from: http://www.ijmm.org/text.asp?2017/35/2/314/209587
We read with a great interest an editorial entitled, 'Impact factor: Is it the ultimate parameter for the quality of publication?' by Kapil and Jain. We do agree that impact factor is not the only parameter to judge the quality of journal or quality of an article, but in the current scenario, it is the most important yardstick to assess the quality of journals. In recent years, an impact factor assigned by 'Thomson Reuters' has been taken into consideration to decide/judge the quality of journals. Although several other parameters such as indexing in PubMed/MEDLINE/Index Medicus, SCOPUS, EBSCO and EMBASE/Excerpta Medica are taken into consideration in deciding the quality of journals, the impact factor of the journal is considered the most important parameter. Hence, in the current situation, we feel that there is no alternative for impact factor. However, minor change in impact factor by some digits does not matter as far as the quality of journals is concerned. It is obvious from the Journal Citation Reports (JCRs) of 2013 and 2014 that many journals including journals published from the UK/USA, for example, Journal of Hospital Infection, Journal of Medical Microbiology, Journal of Tissue Viability, Burns and many top journals from India including Indian Journal of Medical Research, National Medical Journal of India, Indian Journal of Pathology and Microbiology and Indian Journal of Medical Microbiology face the problems of rise and fall in impact factor. The slight decrease in impact factor does not mean that the quality of journal has gone down and this slight change in impact factor is certainly not the important parameter to judge the quality of journals, as rightly pointed out by authors that the type of articles can sometimes skew the impact factor based on the number of citations received by articles published.
The good news obvious as per the journal impact factor reports of 2010–2015 released by ISI Thomson Reuters in its JCR (a companion volume to Science Citation Index and now Web of Science) that the quality of Indian medical journals is improving. There is a significant increase in the number of journals, which have been assigned impact factor by Thomson Reuters in recent years and currently this number has reached to 104. This indicates that not only the quality of Indian Medical Journal is improving but also there is improvement in the quality of Indian medical research. It shows that Indian journals and Indian research are being read, valued and cited on international level.
Authors have also put forward one more important issue i.e., misconception regarding the publication of an article in an e-journal. This misconception that publication in an e-journal is baseless and not valid is vaguely created by thinking that the publication of an article in e-journal is not creditable because it is not taken into consideration for promotion or approval as a teacher. We do agree with the fact that e-journal (i.e., electronic) is merely a medium of communication like paper in print journal. In the current scenario, many good quality international journals having good impact factor are online only, for example, all Public Library of Science journals and many other journals such as Journal of Infection and International Wound Journal are opting for online only in e-format. This does not mean that publication in these journals is baseless and invalid.
Financial support and sponsorship
Conflicts of interest
There are no conflicts of interest.
| ~ References|| |
Kapil A, Jain NC. Impact factor: Is it the ultimate parameter for the quality of publication? Indian J Med Microbiol 2016;34:1-2.
] [Full text]
Jain NC. Understanding basics of impact factor and good publication practices in the field of statistics and probability. Ind Soc Med Stat Bull 2015;24:27-32.
Nagoba BS, Suryawanshi NM, Selkar SP. The quality of Indian medical journals: Then and now. Natl Med J India 2013;26:311-2.