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Most Followed Open Access Journals

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This ranking presents the Open Access (OA) journals that have attracted the largest number of followers among JournalTOCs community of users in 2011. Only the top 30 most followed OA journals are included and compared in this list. An OA journal is a scholarly journal that does not charge readers for reading and using the full-text of its articles.

 NF   Title Publisher FPP     SSS JIF
156 D-Lib Magazine CNRI Free CS   —
  84 J. of Information Literacy Loughborough U. Library Free OJS   —
  66 J. of Digital Information Texas AM U. Libraries Free OJS   —
  63 J of Library and Info. Science Nat. Taiwan Normal U. Free OJS   —
  63 J. of Library Innovation WNYLRC Free OJS   —
  58 College and Research Libraries ALA Free CS   —
  51 Communications in Info. Literacy CIL free OJS   —
  50 Library and Info. Research CILIP N/A N/A   —
  50 Future Internet MDPI $570 CS   —
  50 Ariadne Magazine UKOLN free N/A   —
  48 Annals of Library & Info. Studies NISCAIR free DSpace   —
  45 Evidence Based Library and Info. Practice U. of Alberta Learning Services free OJS   —
  38 Code4Lib Journal Code4lib free Email   —
  36 PLoS ONE PLoS $1350 EMS   4.41
  36 Int. J. of Legal Information Int. Assoc. of Law Libraries free Email   —
  35 PLoS Biology PLoS $2900 EMS 12.47
  32 BMC Cell Biology Biomed Central Ltd. $1845 CS   2.46
  32 Information MDPI $260 CS   —
  30 New Knowledge Environments University of Victoria Free OJS   —
  27 BMC Public Health Biomed Central Ltd. $1845 CS   2.36
  26 Advances in Environmental Sciences Bioflux Society $200 CS   —
  26 J. of Electronic Publishing, The MPublishing Free Email   —
  26 Int. J. of Digital Curation UKOLN Free OJS   —
  24 BMC Bioinformatics Biomed Central Ltd. $1845 CS   3.03
  24 Info. Technologies & Int. Development Georgia Inst. of Technology Free OJS   —
  22 Obstetrics and Gynecology Int. Hindawi Publishing Corp. $1000 CS   —
  21 Computational Linguistics MIT Press Free OJS   2.97
  21 First Monday U. of Illinois at Chicago U. Free OJS   —
  17 J. of Communications Academy Publisher $470 EDAS   —
  15 JIPITEC Digital Peer Publishing Free Email   —
   CC BY 2.0 JournalTOCs Dec.2011 

NF: Number of followers
FPP: Fee paid by the author to publish a paper
SSS: Submissions System software
JIF: Journal Impact Factor (as reported by the publisher for 2010)
CS: Commercial or proprietary online system
OJS: Open Journal System
EMS: Editorial Manager from Aries System
EDAS: Commercial conference submissions system
U: University


  • Do University-based OA journals have a good chance to be regarded as first-class and reliable journals?
    The answer could be “yes” if we consider that 30% of these top 30 OA journals are University-based.
  • Does it matter for this rank who is the publisher?
    All but one of these top 30 OA journals are published by established national corporations, professional associations, prestigious non-profit publishers or universities. Only a few of the OA journals published by commercial publishers have so far attracted the interest of JournalTOCs users. So, it seems that it does matter who the publisher is.
  • Is OJS really the “submissions system of OA journals”?
    Well, 35% of these journals use the Open Source submissions system OJS.
  • Are the OA journals with no fee for the authors attracting the largest number of citations?
    Probably we cannot get a clear answer to this question from the above ranking. What we can see is that PLoS Biology is the OA journal with the highest fee for authors ($2900.00 USD) but also with the highest known citation factor (JIF=12.47)
  • Are publishers of OA journals aware of the significance of JIF?
    Some publishers of OA journals were not aware of JIF or didn’t consider it to be important for their publications. In fact the publishers of most of the OA journals included in this list weren’t concerned about JIFs. An editor told us “JIF is not relevant [for our journal] as it is not a WoS journal. It is an OA journal already indexed in the DOAJ.”
  • Why is it that 19 out of these top 30 OA journals are from the Library and Information Sciences discipline?
    40% of registered users of JournalTOCs are librarians or professionals working in libraries of universities or research centres. This may explain the large number of library and information related journals in this ranking. The ranking doesn’t include the journals being followed by non-registered users.

Written by Santiago Chumbe

December 19th, 2011 at 9:37 am

Posted in Applications

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