June 10th, 2014 | Tags : Grand Valley State University | Category : Publishing

How to Calm Your Faculty’s Fears About Predatory Publishers

There have been many fears, myths, and misconceptions about open access journals and predatory publishing swirling throughout the scholarly communications community in the past couple years. Sarah Beaubien, Scholarly Communications Outreach Coordinator at Grand Valley State University, and Max Eckard, Metadata and Digital Curation Librarian at GVSU, recently published an article in the Journal of Librarianship and Scholarly Communication exploring the topic.

Addressing Faculty Publishing Concerns with Open Access Journal Quality Indicators” provides a set of Open Access Journal Quality Indicators—which were researched, created, and evaluated by GVSU’s University Libraries’ Scholarly Communications Advisory Committee (SCAC) over the course of two years—that library staff can use to help address their faculty’s concerns about predatory publishers. SCAC’s indicators were broken into two categories: positive indicators, which “encourage the researcher to evaluate factors such as the scope of a journal, its primary audience, and the reputation of its editorial board, and societal or institutional affiliations,” and negative indicators, which point to the journal being unethical.

By familiarizing themselves with these indicators and making an effort to share them with faculty, Beabien and Eckard argue that libraries can play an important role in helping to calm faculty fears and promote positive open access publishing experiences. They maintain that education and outreach in this manner are more effective than creating or relying on subjective lists of ethical or unethical publishers, as some in the scholarly community have chosen to do in the past.

For more information and to see the complete set of indicators, download and read the full article here.