Tag Archives: Library

Notes from the Library…Choosing Where to Publish

Where you publish can be as important as what you publish.  Consider the following when choosing a journal to which to submit your article:

Quality

  • How does the journal rank according to impact factor and other journal metrics?
  • Who is on the editorial board of the journal?
  • Can you easily identify and contact the journal’s publisher?
  • Is the journal’s peer review process explicit?
  • Is the journal or publisher a member of a recognized industry initiative?
  • What opinion do your colleagues and mentors have of the journal?

Relevance

  • Does the journal publish research that is relevant to your work?
  • Does the journal publish the type of article that you want to write?
  • Who reads the journal?  Is this the audience that you want to read your work?

Discoverability

  • Is the journal indexed by major databases, such as PubMed, Web of Science, or other discipline-specific databases?  This information can be found on the journal’s website or Ulrichsweb (see below).
  • Does the journal offer extra services, such as graphical abstracts, videos or social media promotion?

Public and Open Access

  • Do you wish to publish in an open access journal, or a journal that has an open access option?  If so, what are the associated article processing charges (APCs)?
  • Does your article need to comply with a funder’s public access policy?
  • Does the journal allow self-archiving a version of the article on a personal website or institutional repository?  Is there an embargo period?

Finding Journal Metrics

For an explanation of the metrics mentioned below, see ‘How is Journal Impact Measured?’ in our Measuring Research Impact guide: http://researchguides.library.tufts.edu/researchimpact.

  • Journal Citation Reports: Journal Citation Reports provides Impact Factors, Eigenfactors and Article Influence Scores for science and social science journals.
  • Scopus: Scopus provides CiteScore, SCImago Journal Rank (SJR) and Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) for journals and book series. These metrics are also freely available at Journal Metrics.

Other Resources for Evaluating Journals

Predatory, or illegitimate, publishers and journals have proliferated in recent years.  These journals collect article processing charges (APCs) without providing publisher services, such as peer review, editing, and long-term preservation and access, in return (note that many legitimate publishers and journals have APCs for open access).  While it can be difficult to determine whether or not a journal is predatory, the questions above and the resources listed below can help you distinguish a predatory journal from one that is not.  In addition, you can look at the potential characteristics of predatory journals identified in a recent cross-sectional study of biomedical journals.1

  • Committee on Publication Ethics (COPE): COPE provides advice to editors and publishers on all aspects of publication ethics, in particular how to handle research and publication misconduct. COPE members are expected to follow a code of conduct for journal editors. Search ‘Member’ page for journal or publisher.
  • Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ): Directory of peer-reviewed open access journals. Journals must apply to be included in this directory. Journals that adhere to an exceptionally high level of publishing standards are awarded the DOAJ Seal.
  • NLM Catalog: Search the National Library of Medicine Catalog (NLM) to discover which journals are indexed in PubMed/MEDLINE and other National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) databases.
  • Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA): OASPA develops business models, tools and standards for open access publishers. Publishers must apply for membership to this organization, and are expected to adhere to set criteria. View ‘Member’ page for complete membership list.
  • Ulrichsweb: Ulrichsweb™ is an authoritative source of bibliographic and publisher information on more than 300,000 periodicals of all types–academic and scholarly journals, Open Access publications, peer-reviewed titles, popular magazines, newspapers, newsletters, and more from around the world.

Match Your Manuscript to a Journal

If you are having trouble finding a journal for your manuscript, then try a manuscript matcher.  These tools recommend journals based on your manuscript’s title, abstract or keywords.

  • EndNote Manuscript Matcher: Manuscript matcher, a feature in EndNote online, uses Web of Science data to suggest journals based on the title, abstract and references of your article. Anyone can create an online EndNote account, which can be synced with the desktop version of EndNote. Once you sign in to your online account, look for ‘Match’ in the menu at the top.
  • Journal/Author Name Estimator (JANE): JANE compares the title and/or abstract of your article to MEDLINE records to find journals that are the best match for your article.
  • JournalGuide: Free tool that helps researchers evaluate journals. Paper Match feature offers journal recommendations based on your manuscript’s title, abstract and/or keywords. Informational page for each journal lists its aims and scope, Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP), acceptance rate, submission and publication charges, when available, responsiveness and speed of publication. ‘Verified’ journals have been verified by third party indexes as recognized, reputable journals in their field.

1Shamseer L, Moher D, Maduekwe O, Turner L, Barbour V, Burch R, Clark J, Galipeau J, Roberts J, Shea BJ. Potential predatory and legitimate biomedical journals: can you tell the difference? A cross-sectional comparison. BMC Med. 2017;15(1):28; PMID: 28298236.

 

On the Shelf…

For Work

 Writing for Biomedical Publication

Writing for Biomedical Publication, David C. Morrison, Christopher J. Papasian, Stephen W. Russell

Location: HHSL Book Stacks, Sackler 5, WZ 345 M878w 2012

This workbook lays out how to think about and write each section of a biomedical manuscript, and how to approach issues such as co-authorship, editors, reviewers and conflict of interest.

For Leisure

The Trespasser

The Trespasser, Tana French

Location: HHSL Leisure Reading, Sackler 4, Fiction F873t 2016

Summer is just around the corner, so why not pick up a good mystery?  Tana French’s thoughtful mysteries provide an intimate portrait of life in and around modern-day Dublin, Ireland.  This is the latest in her Dublin Murder Squad series; while there are recurring characters in this series, it is not necessary to have read the earlier books (although they are all good!)

PubMed Tip of the Month…Search or Filter by Funder

Funding information is recorded in two fields in a PubMed record: Grant Number and Publication Type. Limiting a search to these fields can help you find articles that were supported by a specific grant, funder or type of funder (e.g. non-U.S. government).

  • Grant Number: The Grant Number field records grant or contract numbers as published in the article, or derived from PubMed Central as a result of the NIH Public Access Policy. To find articles funded by a particular organization, search the Grant Number field for the organization’s name, acronym or 2-letter code (click on link above for complete list funding agency names, acronyms and codes). For example, to find studies supported by the National Institute on Aging, search PubMed for: AA[gr].
  • Publication Type: Medical Subject Headings (MeSH), the standardized terms used to describe articles for MEDLINE, include Publication Types to identify financial support when that support is mentioned in the article. A list of publication types, including those for Research Support, can be viewed from the link above. To filter a search by one of the funding Publication Types: in the left-hand column of a results page, click ‘Customize’ under Article types. Scroll down and check the box next to the types of Research Support you would like to view. Click ‘Show’. The types of research support that you selected should now be visible under Article types. Click the research support type to filter your results.

Notes from the Library…Finding Funding & Writing Grant Proposals

Finding funding and writing grant proposals is a necessary, time-consuming, and at times frustrating, part of doing research. Our ‘Finding Funding & Writing Grant Proposals’ guide lists resources available at Tufts and beyond for locating funding opportunities, discovering projects that have been funded, and writing grant proposals. The full guide can be viewed at: http://researchguides.library.tufts.edu/findfunding. Here are a few highlights from this guide:

Finding Funding

  • COS Pivot: Comprehensive database of national and international funding opportunities from government and private funders. Advanced search features allow you to restrict your search to a particular funder, funding type or applicant type (e.g. graduate student). Profiles section may help you identify potential collaborators within or outside of Tufts. Use your Tufts email address to create an account, which will allow you to build a profile, view potential funding matches, save searches and schedule funding alerts.  Log in with Tufts username and password for off campus access.
  • Graduate & Postdoctoral Extramural Support (GRAPES): Compiled by the University of California at Los Angeles, GRAPES is a database of scholarship, grant, award, and fellowship opportunities for graduate students and postdocs.

Discovering Funded Projects

  • National Institutes of Health RePORTER: Research Portfolio Online Reporting Tool Expenditures and Results (RePORTER) is a searchable database of research projects funded by the NIH as well as the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
  • National Science Foundation (NSF) Award Search: Complete data on active and expired NSF awards from 1976 to present; some information available for pre-1976 awards.

Books on Writing Grant Proposals

  • The Grant Application Writer’s Workbook: This popular workbook guides applicants through a NIH grant application, providing examples of each component of the application. Updated to reflect recent changes to application requirements.
  • Guide to Effective Grant Writing: How to Write a Successful NIH Grant Proposal: Covering all aspects of the proposal process, from the most basic questions about form and style to the task of seeking funding, this book offers clear advice backed up with excellent examples. Based on the author’s experience serving on NIH grant review panels, it covers the common mistakes and problems he witnessed while reviewing grants.
  • Writing the NIH Grant Proposal: Hands-on advice that simplifies and demystifies writing a NIH grant proposal.

On the Shelf…The New York Times

The New York Times

Tisch Library in Medford recently subscribed to The New York Times academic pass program. This means that Tufts students, faculty and staff can register for a personal account to access The New York Times from their computer or mobile device, on and off campus. For instructions on creating a personal account using the Tufts academic pass and answers to FAQ about our access, see this page: http://researchguides.library.tufts.edu/nytimes.   Note: When creating an account, be sure to choose the correct link based on your location when registering (i.e. on or off campus).

On the Shelf…

For Work

Effective Data Visualization

Effective Data Visualization: The Right Chart for the Right Data, by Stephanie D.H. Evergreen

Location: HHSL Book Stacks, Sackler 5, P 93.5 E937 2017

This book shows you how to select the best type of chart for your data, design an easily readable chart, and create effective charts and graphs in Excel.

For Leisure

The Undoing Project

The Undoing Project, Michael Lewis

Location: HHSL Book Stacks, Sackler 5, WL 103.4 L675 2017

Michael Lewis, the author of The Blind Side and The Big Short, describes the working relationship between two psychologists, Daniel Kahneman (author of Thinking Fast and Slow) and Amos Tversky, whose work changed how we think about decision making, and catalyzed the creation of the field of behavioral economics.

PubMed Tip of the Month…Topic-Specific Queries

Topic-specific queries in PubMed are carefully constructed search strategies that can either be applied to a set of results as a filter or added to a search using ‘AND’.  Each of these searches has been created by an expert, tested to optimize sensitivity and specificity, and is periodically updated.  To view a complete list of the available searches, click the ‘Topic-Specific Queries’ link under PubMed Tools on the PubMed homepage.  This will bring you to the Directory of Topic-Specific PubMed Queries, where you can view the available subject searches, which include: AIDS, bioethics, cancer, health disparities, toxicology and veterinary medicine.  Clicking the link for a subject either limits your PubMed search to that subject area (i.e. applies a filter) or brings you to a page with the search strategy and additional resources.

Topic-Specific Queries
Topic-Specific Queries link on PubMed homepage.

Some of the searches can also be applied as filters from a search results page.  To do so, click the ‘Show additional filters’ link in the left-hand column of a PubMed search results page.  Check the box next to Subjects and click the Show button.  Select a link under Subjects to narrow your results.  If you do not see a particular filter, then click the ‘Customize’ link under Subjects to choose additional filters.  I don’t use topic-specific queries too often, but they can save you a lot of work if an appropriate search filter has been constructed for your topic.

Notes from the Library…Copyright

As both creators and users of copyrighted works, it is good to know a little about this topic.  Below, you will find a brief copyright primer.  For answers to copyright questions pertaining to your thesis, see FAQs for Dissertation & Thesis Writers from the Tufts University Libraries Scholarly Communications Team, where you will find answers to questions such as: Can I delay the release of my thesis?  What if I have already published part of my thesis as an article?  What if I want to reuse a graph created by someone else in my thesis?  What is open access?

What is copyright?

Copyright is a set of rights, which give the owner the exclusive right to do or authorize any of the following: reproduce the copyrighted work; prepare derivative works based on the copyrighted work; sell, transfer ownership of, rent, lease or lend copies of the work; publicly display or perform the work (17 U.S. Code § 106).

The authorization for copyright legislation goes back to Article 1, Section 8, Clause 8 of the United States Constitution.  The Copyright Act of 1976 provides the framework for today’s copyright law, which can be found in Title 17 of the U.S. Code.

What does copyright apply to?

Copyright applies to “original works of authorship fixed in any tangible medium of expression” (17 U.S. Code § 102).  This includes literary, pictorial, graphic, and audiovisual works.  Copyright does not extend to ideas, procedures, processes, methods of operation, concepts, principles or discoveries.  Patent, trademark or trade secret policy may apply to these forms of intellectual property.  For more information on these types of IP protection, see What Are Patents, Trademarks, Servicemarks, and Copyrights? and Trade Secret Policy on the U.S Patent and Trademark Office website.

How long does copyright last?

In general, for works created on or after January 1, 1978, copyright lasts for the life of the author plus 70 years (17 U.S. Code § 302).

Who owns the copyright to my thesis?

You do!  According to the Tufts Policy on Rights and Responsibilities with Respect to Intellectual Property: “Students generally own the copyright to the academic work they produce.  Academic work can include class papers, theses, dissertations…”.

On the Shelf…

For Work

ontheshelf_fisher_enjoywriting_2017_02

Enjoy Writing your Science Dissertation or Thesis!, Elizabeth Fisher & Richard Thompson

Location: HHSL Book Stacks, Sackler 5, WZ 345 F533e 2014

I am not quite sure whether the title of this book (and exclamatory punctuation) is a command or a promise, but the book does provide advice on all aspects of thesis writing.

For Leisure

ontheshelf_marchant_cure_2017_02

Cure: A Journey into the Science of Mind Over Body, Jo Marchant

Location: HHSL Book Stacks, Sackler 5, WB885 M315 2016

Science writer Jo Marchant explores stories and research about the mind-body connection.

Notes from the Library…Approaching the Literature Review

Whether you are preparing a literature review for your thesis, a journal article, or grant application here are a few tips to help you get started and stay organized:

  1. Determine what information you need.

Why are you searching the literature?  Are you developing a research project and want to know what has been published about your topic?  Are you interested in literature on a particular method?  Are you preparing a grant application or manuscript to submit to a journal?  The answers to these questions will help you decide where to search, and whether or not the information that you find is what you need.

  1. Develop a focused question.

If you enter a few words, or a phrase, into a database, then you are likely to retrieve either a very large or very small number of results.  Developing a focused research question helps you construct a search strategy that will retrieve a precise set of results.  If you have a complex topic, then you may have multiple questions (and searches).

  1. Choose your resources.

Once you have determined what information you need and developed a focused question, then you are ready to choose your resources.  Choosing which resources to search can be overwhelming.  While PubMed is often a good place to start, think about where, and by whom, information about your topic is likely to be published, and what type of information you need (e.g. journal articles, conference proceedings, patents).  What disciplines might have a perspective on your topic?  What organizations, associations, institutes, companies or agencies investigate issues related to your topic?

Bibliographic databases, such as PubMed and Web of Science Core Collection, are organized collections of references to published literature (e.g. journal articles, conference abstracts, books).  When you are deciding which database(s) to search, consider the subjects, dates, and types of literature the database covers, as well as the search platform.  For example, MEDLINE, the database that is the principal component of PubMed, is also available through the Ovid search platform.  While PubMed and Ovid MEDLINE are similar, small differences in the content and search features of these two databases means that you will retrieve different results.  See the Sackler School Biomedical Sciences Research Guide for a list of biomedical database, or ask me!

  1. Create personal accounts.

You may think that you are finally ready to start searching.  Not quite.  Create a personal account with the databases, or platforms (e.g. Ovid, Web of Science), that you plan to search.  A personal account allows you to save searches and sets of results, and receive email notifications when new results matching your search criteria become available.  Unfortunately, you have to create a separate accounts for each database or platform, but it is a good idea to do so for the resources that you use frequently.  At the very least, I suggest that you create a My NCBI account, which is the personal account associated with PubMed and other National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) databases, such as Gene and Protein.  See the March 2016, May 2016, summer 2016 and December 2016 PubMed Tip of the Month posts for more information on creating and using a My NCBI account.

  1. Use a citation manager.

Choose a citation manager before you embark on a literature review.  Citation managers allow you to organize and store your own collection of references, and insert formatted citations and bibliographies into documents.  Contact me (laura.pavlech@tufts.edu) if you need assistance selecting or using a citation manager.

  1. Document your search methods.

Get into the habit of documenting the parameters of your search, including: the databases that you searched; the platform on which you searched (e.g. Ovid, Web of Science, etc.); years covered by the database; complete search strategies; any limits applied, such as year, age, language; and the date on which you ran the searches.  While this information is not typically required for a manuscript (unless, of course, you are doing a systematic review, meta-analysis or scoping review), or grant application, a literature search is part of your research and should be recorded as you would any other experiment.  Doing so saves you considerable time and effort if you need to replicate the search in the future.