SciELO Colombia 's criteria for admitting journals to its collection

1.1 Criteria for automatic admission

SciELO Colombia criteria for admitting new titles of de journals consider the evaluation to which these journals were submitted, including their participation in selected international indices and evaluation by Publindex 2012.

1.1.1 Journals included in international indices

The first admission to the SciELO Colombia collection of national journals included in the following international indices will be automatically authorised, up to 2012:

-MEDLINE/Index Medicus

- PsycInfo (American Psychological Association)

Determining whether journals from this group remain in the SciELO Colombia collection will be based on the performance indicators defined in point 2.

These journals will be integrated into SciELO Colombia at the moment of adopting SciELO methodology for electronic publication.

1.1.2 Journals pre-selected by Publindex criteria

The first admission to the SciELO Colombia collection of national journals evaluated by Publindex (Colciencias) in 2012, which have been included in categories A1, A2 and B (to annex a copy of the last evaluation of Publindex), will be authorised following fulfilment of the requirements established in 1.2.

Determining whether journals from this group remain in the SciELO Colombia collection will be based on the performance indicators defined in point 2.

1.2 Evaluation criteria for journals wishing to be admitted to SciELO Colombia

When a journal's title is not automatically authorised for admission to SciELO, then it must be evaluated according to the following indicators:

1.2.1 Scientific nature

Journals must be predominantly publishing original articles resulting from scientific and/or significant research for that journal's specific area. Journals may include other types of contribution, such as review articles, communications, summaries or case studies, which will not be considered as original articles.

SciELO's Consultative Committee will seek peer opinion for verifying the predominance of original contributions.

1.2.2 Peer review

Contributions must be reviewed and approved by peers. The journal must formally specify which procedure is followed for approving articles. Once admitted to SciELO, peer review must be documented. The main dates in the arbitration process must be indicated, including the dates of reception and approbation.

1.2.3 Editorial committee

The composition of a journal's editorial committee must be published. Its integrants must be nationally and/or internationally recognised specialists, duly identified in the publication.

Journals having a committee made up of integrants predominantly linked to a single institution and/or articles mainly coming from a sole institution or geographical region will not be admitted.

1.2.4 Periodicity

Periodicity is an indicator of the flow of scientific production depending on the specific area being dealt with by the journal. It is also an indicator related to the opportunity and velocity of communication.

The following table indicates minimum and desired periodicity as well as the minimum and desired number of articles per year, according to broad thematic areas:

Thematic area


Number of articles per year





Agrarian and Exact















1.2.5 Duration

A journal must have had at least 4 issues published to enable it to be considered for being evaluated.

1.2.6 Punctuality

A journal must appear punctually, according to its stated periodicity.  

1.2.7 Summary, key words and title in English

The articles must contain a title, summary and key words in the language in which the text of the article has been written and in English when this is not the language in which the text has been written.

1.2.8 Standardisation

The journal must specify the norms which have been followed for presenting and structuring texts and for presenting bibliographical citations and descriptors, so that it may be possible to evaluate fulfilment of the indicated norms.

Even though adopting a recognised norm for bibliographical citations is recommended (i.e. ABNT, ISO, Vancouver), other norms will be accepted, if the bibliographical format to be followed has been clearly indicated by authors.

1.2.9 Author affiliation

The articles must be accompanied by complete information about the authors' affiliation, including complete name and originating institution, city and country.

1.2.10 Citations received

A journal must present an index of citations compatible with journals in the same area, verifying them from citations received from articles published in the SciELO Colombia collection. This criterion will be applied from SciELO Colombia 's third year of operation, given that bibliometric statistics have not yet been initiated.

1.3 Admission procedure

Admitting a journal to the SciELO collection must be done after being accepted by SciELO Colombia 's National Editorial Committee.

The evaluation procedure covers three areas:

Evaluating aspects of form include analysing a set of characteristics, based on studies and international norms regarding editing scientific journals. There are some obligatory points and fulfilling 80% of the characteristics is generally accepted as being the minimum (see: Latindex's evaluation criteria for electronic journals - Sistema Regional de Información en Línea para Revistas Científicas de América Latina, el Caribe, España y Portugal - -; Comité International de Editores ).

Evaluating editorial openness is done from the editorial committee, peer and authors' declared affiliation. Verifying institutional or geographical concentration is considered as being a negative result for a journal to be admitted to the collection.

Those journals satisfactorily complying with the previous aspects will be evaluated regarding their content, based on the opinion of a minimum of two specialists in a particular journal's area, regarding the following characteristics:

  1. Editorial committee, peer and author representation;
  2. Scientific nature of the journal's articles;
  3. Peer review;
  4. Importance for developing the area.

Only those journals complying with points 1.2.1. to 1.2.10 will be sent for analysis by the Editorial Committee.

The Committee's opinion may contain recommendations for making improvements and modifications to the journals which might be put into practice within the period of time specified in the opinion.

2 Performance evaluation criteria for remaining in SciELO

In principle, all indicators adopted for evaluating the titles of journals to be admitted to SciELO Colombia will also be applied for their continuance.

Complying with the recommendations or improvements suggested in the opinion given for a particular journal's admission must be treated as an indicator for its continuance in the SciELO collection.

The following specific performance indicators for journals in the SciELO collection must be used for justifying their continuance in the collection:

2.1 Punctuality in sending files

Punctuality in sending material is measured by when the files containing an issue of a particular journal reach the SciELO Unit, which must punctually follow-up a journal's periodicity. The SciELO Unit must indicate any delay in sending files.

Journals which are not punctual must be analysed by SciELO's Consultative Committee as being subject to exclusion from the collection.

2.2 Journal use indicator

Journal use is measured by the monthly evolution of a number of accessions or visits to a journal's content. If journal use is systematically low and/or decreasing when compared to journals from the same area, such journal's continuance in the collection must be evaluated by SciELO's Consultative Committee, which must give its opinion so that causes and possible solutions can be studied, or the journal's exclusion from the collection be proposed.

2.3 Impact indicator

The impact indicator for each title of the journal, measured on the citations which a particular journal has received, must be evaluated together with the titles of journals from the same area.

Increasing the impact factor or its stabilisation in the average value for journals from the same area is considered to result from positive performance and, therefore, guarantee the tile's continuance in the SciELO collection.

3 Excluding titles

A journal may be excluded from the SciELO collection after SciELO's Consultative Committee's opinion has been issued.

When verifying unfavourable results when evaluating a journal's performance, then the journal will relieve notification about the aspects which must be improved; these must be dealt with within the time established by the Committee.

4 Appeals

A journal's editor may appeal at any time regarding the decision of SciELO's Consultative Committee, both in the case of not being admitted or when excluded from the SciELO collection.

Appeals will be examined by the Consultative Committee and a journal may be re-evaluated. The Consultative Committee's opinion will be sent to the journal's editor.

5 Readmission

Journals which may become excluded from the SciELO collection may be readmitted when they come into line with the inclusion criteria and remain in the SciELO collection. Their readmission will be evaluated by SciELO's Consultative Committee.

Readmission will not become effective immediately after the exclusion of a title from the SciELO collection. A journal must demonstrate that it fulfils the inclusion criteria in at least four consecutive issues or a year for it to be re-evaluated.

SciELO - Scientific Electronic Library Online
Universidad Nacional de Colombia - Instituto de Salud Pública
Facultad de Medicina, Oficina 308
Tel: (57 1) 316 5000 ext. 15166
Bogotá, Colombia