By Pascal Rocha da Silva, Frontiers analyst
Frontiers in Psychology was launched in 2010. In just 4 years, it has become the largest and the 2nd most-cited psychology journal in the world .
The Impact Factor (IF), defined as the total number of citations in a given year divided by the number of citable articles over the previous two-year period, is the most commonly accepted metric of journal quality (but not of an individual paper or researcher). It was formally established by the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) in 1975. As the IF can be heavily skewed by a few highly-cited papers, total citations generated over the same two-year period provide a more accurate indication of the overall influence or impact of the articles published by a journal in a field. Frontiers is a pioneer in the use of article-level and author-level metrics and encourages every author to use these to track the development of his or her readership on a more granular level.
Analysis within the category of Psychology
There are 597 journals listed in the category of Psychology in the 2014 Journal Citations Reports (JCR) provided by Thomson Reuters in 2015. Frontiers in Psychology is one of the 19 Gold open-access journals.
Below, the results of our comparative analysis on the article volume published, impact factor (IF) achieved and the total number of citations achieved in 2014 based on articles published over the two preceding years, 2012 and 2013. (Click here to see the volume and number of citations of other Frontiers journals).
Comparison of impact factors and volume among all open-access journals (19) in Psychology
Figure 1. Frontiers in Psychology compared to 19 open-access journals listed in all 11 JCR Psychology categories. The journal analysis is based on the 2014 Journal Citations Reports published by Thomson Reuters, 2015.
Comparison of impact factors and volume among all journals (597) in Psychology
Figure 2. Frontiers in Psychology compared to all 597 journals (subscription and open access) listed in all 11 JCR Psychology categories. The journal analysis is based on the 2014 Journal Citations Reports published by Thomson Reuters, 2015.
Comparison of total citations in 2014 for articles published in the previous two years among all journals (597) in Psychology
Figure 3. Top 20 most-cited journals in Psychology in 2014 (citations in 2014 were counted for articles published in 2012 and 2013) in all 11 JCR Psychology categories. The journal analysis is based on the 2014 Journal Citations Reports published by Thomson Reuters, 2015.
Amongst the 19 Gold open-access journals listed in the categories of Psychology, Frontiers in Psychology:
- Ranks 3rd on impact factor – 2.4 times higher than the average for Psychology;
- Is the largest open-access journal in Psychology – 27 times larger than the average article volume in open access journals in Psychology.
Amongst all of the 597 journals listed in the categories of Psychology, Frontiers in Psychology:
- Is in the top 21% on impact factor – 34% higher than the average for Psychology;
- Is the world’s largest psychology journal overall – 21 times larger than the average article volume in all journals in Psychology;
- Is the 2nd most-cited journal in 2014 based on articles published in 2012 and 2013 (second to Frontiers in Human Neuroscience).
In summary, Frontiers in Psychology, one of the youngest journals publishing peer-reviewed scholarly articles in psychology, has become the largest and 2nd most-cited journal in psychology with an impact factor in the top 21%.
Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, also listed in the 2014 JCR category of Psychology, is the most-cited and 2nd largest Psychology journal. Other Frontiers journals listed in the 2014 Journal Citation Reports follow a similar pattern – view the analysis here.
The results are more significant if one considers:
- Frontiers does not engineer the IF by setting a rejection rate, and instead operates an impact neutral peer-review process.
- That post-hoc selection of the top 5-10% most cited articles in Frontiers in Psychology(as other journals try to do on submission) would result in an Impact Factor above 10.
Key to success
At Frontiers, we publish all articles that are scientifically correct. We engineered the Collaborative Peer Review with a review mandate focused on enhancing article quality by means of rigorous and constructive feedback from expert reviewers, quick and direct interactions between authors, reviewers and the editor enabled by our review forum platform, and we enhance transparency by acknowledging reviewers and editors on the published articles. This performance analysis indicates that the impact neutral Collaborative Peer Review conducted in Frontiers together with an outstanding editorial board has become a powerful model for publishing academic papers.
All of this is only possible with a stellar editorial board of researchers (see infographic). Frontiers congratulates Field Chief Editor Axel Cleeremans for leading this field so successfully, the stellar board of Specialty Chief Editors (see below) for their work in building the community, the Associate Editors for safeguarding the integrity of the Frontiers peer-review and the outstanding Review Editors for their dedication and diligence in the peer-review process as well as the Frontiers Journal Management team for their support to the editors.
Frontiers in Psychology fact sheet (as of November 2015):
|Number of sections:||24|
|Number of Research Topics:||374|
|Number of editors:||4,885|
|Number of articles published:||5,605|
|Number of article views:||526,362 / month|
|Number of article downloads:||130,274 / month|
Chief Editors of Frontiers in Psychology