Scholarly, Peer Reviewed, and Academic Journals, Oh My!

Are the terms scholarly journals, peer reviewed journals, and academic journals synonyms? Or, are they as different as lions and tigers and bears?

Scholarly, peer reviewed and academic journals aren't too different from three well-known characters from The Wizard of Oz. (Credit: Saku Takakusaki)

Scholarly, peer reviewed and academic journals aren’t too different from three well-known characters from The Wizard of Oz. (Credit: Saku Takakusaki)

Frankly, I think the three terms are distinctions without a difference. All of these periodicals typically publish scholarly, peer reviewed, and academic articles. Or, should I say that all of these publications generally serve as forums for the introduction and presentation for scrutiny of new research, as well as the critique of existing research?

So, let’s not quibble, nitpick, or split hairs over what they’re called.

What really matters is that these journals – with whatever adjective is used to describe them – shouldn’t have to do what the Journal of Vibration and Control had to do earlier this month. To give you an idea of what happened, check out these recent newspaper headlines:

Academic journal retracts articles over ‘peer review ring’ with bogus scholars

On July 10, 2014, Jon Swaine of The Guardian wrote, ”An academic journal has retracted dozens of articles and apologised to readers after falling victim to what it described as a “peer review ring” that appears to have involved more than 100 bogus scholars.” He added, “The Journal of Vibration and Control (JVC), a leading publication in the field of acoustics, said it was withdrawing 60 papers published in print and online over the past four years, after discovering that articles were being approved and cited by academics with ‘assumed and fabricated identities’.”

Scholarly journal retracts 60 articles, smashes ‘peer review ring’

On July 10, 2014, Fred Barbash of The Washington Post wrote, “Every now and then a scholarly journal retracts an article because of errors or outright fraud. In academic circles, and sometimes beyond, each retraction is a big deal.” He added, “Now comes word of a journal retracting 60 articles at once. The reason for the mass retraction is mind-blowing: A “peer review and citation ring” was apparently rigging the review process to get articles published.”

Science Journal Pulls 60 Papers in Peer-Review Fraud

On July 11, 2014, Henry Fountain of The New York Times wrote, “A scientific journal has retracted 60 papers linked to a researcher in Taiwan, accusing him of ‘perverting the peer-review process’ by creating fraudulent online accounts to judge the papers favorably and help get them published.” He added, “Sage Publications, publisher of The Journal of Vibration and Control, in which the papers appeared over the last four years, said the researcher, Chen-Yuan Chen, had established a “peer-review and citation ring” consisting of fake scientists as well as real ones whose identities he had assumed. It said that in at least one case, Mr. Chen, who also uses the first name Peter, reviewed his own paper using one of the aliases.”

Questia’s library of scholarly journals, peer reviewed journals, and academic journals contains hundreds of thousands of full-text journal articles from some of the world’s leading publishers. The latest and most innovative ideas and research are introduced and subjected to the scrutiny and review of the academic community. This system of peer-review makes academic and scholarly journals one of the most trusted sources of research information and allows for the continued progression of academic thought and innovation.

Whether researching psychology, science, education, art, economics or technology, you will find complete and focused journals and journal articles on your academic discipline in Questia’s library. This includes:

42 Arts Journals

  • 11 Art and Architecture
  • 9 Film and Television
  • 16 Music and Dance
  • 6 Theater

246 Economics and Business Journals

  • 76 Economics
  • 37 Finance and Accounting
  • 77 General Business
  • 47 Management
  • 9 Marketing

209 Education Journals

  • 13 Educational Technology
  • 90 General Education
  • 18 Higher Education
  • 20 Library and Information Science
  • 68 Teaching Specific Subjects

354 Humanities Journals

  • 29 Communication
  • 59 General Humanities
  • 42 History
  • 168 Literature and Language
  • 16 Philosophy
  • 40 Religion

112 Law Journals

97 Science, Technology, and Medicine Journals

  • 9 Environmental
  • 22 General Science and Technology
  • 66 Health and Medicine

416 Social Science Journals

  • 14 Criminology
  • 59 Ethnic, Cultural, and Area Studies
  • 8 Gender Studies
  • 90 General Social Science
  • 11 Geography and Demography
  • 60 Politics and Government
  • 106 Psychology
  • 6 Social Work
  • 62 Sociology and Anthropology

If you search Questia’s database of scholarly journals, peer reviewed journals, and academic journals for Journal of Vibration and Control, it’s worth noting that no matching periodicals are found.

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