Home News Academic Journal Indexing for Beginners – 2024 Guide

Academic Journal Indexing for Beginners – 2024 Guide

by William Gist

If you did some research online, you must have already come across several terms, including “journal indexing” or “index databases”, which is especially true if you’ve already started your career in academic publishing.

To make things clearer, we aren’t talking about document/book indexing, which refers to a way of arranging the elements (such as sections, topics, words, keywords) of a document in an alphabetical order to accommodate the readers and help them easily and quickly navigate any document.

Instead, we are talking about Journal Indexing. Journal indexing, which is also commonly referred to as A&I (Abstracting & Indexing) revolves around large databases of scientific publications where each of the publications – no matter if it’s a journal, E-book, or article – has its own record.

The record most commonly contains all the essential metadata about the specific publication (abstract of the paper, the author, publication and/or editing date, volume, subject, area, keywords, and so on).

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These journal indexes were created to simplify the use of academic publications and literature for researchers, as well as readers. The indexed articles appear in an index database together with other publications on the same subject or topic, and hence, it allows the researchers and readers to easily and quickly find what they need. Some of the most popular index databases that you might have come across include Google Scholar, JSTOR, PubMed, Scopus, and so on.

Now, you might be wondering about the benefits of such databases. To put it simply, there are actually two most important benefits that these index databases can offer to you. For starters, if you’re a publisher, you should definitely consider getting your publications included in the indexes for the following reasons:

  1. The journals that are included in the indexes are most commonly regarded as of higher quality than the journals that aren’t. This way, you’ll be able to earn more trust from the members of the academic community.
  2. If you do have your journal indexed in such databases, you’ll be able to improve your chances of being discovered in the online searches, but more importantly, you could ensure that you’re cited in other, important publications.

You should know that each index has its own set of rules, guidelines, as well as requirements. So, before you actually go ahead and start applying for every single index and/or database you can find out there, it’s better if you take a moment and get yourself familiar with some of the most basic indexing standards.

The tips and notes in the list below will surely help you get a better understanding of how indexing works and what you’ll have to keep in mind whenever you’re applying to one. If you do not have the time or if you think you lack the skills and competence needed, we recommend taking advantage of Publishing Platform PubliMill.

What do you need to get your journal accepted to indexes and databases:

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  1. Before anything else, you’ll want to find out whether or not your journal’s scope is matching the main focus of the index. Some of the indexes out there will only accept publications that cover specific fields or disciplines such as social sciences, mathematics, medicine, and so on,
  2. Keep in mind that some of the indexes will require you to provide additional and more information about your editorial board such as your credentials or in some cases, the credentials of your staff members,
  3. At times, you’ll only be able to be included in an index if you meet certain, minimum publishing experience requirements which can be estimated by the number of years you have been active or the overall number of published peer-reviewed articles,
  4. You must make sure that your journal’s articles are well-prepared, in accordance with all the professional publishing guidelines, regulations, and rules. This includes the overall, general appearance of the content you produce (such as tables, figures, and so on), as well as the overall quality of the journal,
  5. You’ll want to make sure that you have provided the clearly stated copyright policies in your journals and their official website. If not, you won’t be able to submit and get your articles published,
  6. Yet another piece of essential and important information that has to be provided in order to get your journal indexed is its International Standard Serial Number or as it’s more commonly referred to as ISSN,
  7. Besides this, your articles must contain and have the Digital Objects Identifiers, DOIs,
  8. You should make sure that you have stated a detailed peer review policy in your journal’s,
  9. Last, but not least important is providing all the essential metadata for every single article that you’re thinking about publishing.

What else is recommended besides having your journal’s articles included in indexes?

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So, you have just learned about the basic requirements needed by index databases, and being accepted into one is already a perfect first step in creating and building your journal’s name, as well as improving your visibility and discoverability online.

If you want to further increase the possibilities of your publications’ being discovered, you should definitely consider using a journal publishing hosting platform that could help and suit all of your essential needs and wishes as a publisher.

Hence, you’ll want to find a journal publishing hosting platform with a link sharing features, one that could display all the URLs for the articles you publish and index in a wide range of databases and indexes.

Once you’re operating in a virtual environment that will enable you to link your journals to the databases that feature its articles, your audiences will be able to discover, access, and more importantly, share your content on the Internet quickly and easily.


If you’re a beginner at academic journal indexing, you can choose to use all of the aforementioned tips and tricks, all of which will make the entire indexing process easier, less time-consuming, and more importantly, less stressful for everyone involved.

So, now that you’re aware of all the things you should do, you might not want to lose any more of your time. Instead, keep all of these tips in mind and then start the journey of publishing and indexing all of your articles in a proper way.