Landing : Athabascau University

Refereed or not refereed? One way to check if research is peer-reviewed.

I recently had occasion to field an excellent CV question from a senior (full prof-rank) colleague about my publication record:

Are you sure that all of the articles that you have identified as refereed really are? Many of your publications are in on-line journals, which is now the majority of journals, and so not an issue. But do these journals all have peer review? If a few don't, those publications should be placed in a separate section for non-refereed publication.

The question kind of stopped me short. I thought I knew the status of my research articles, according to the correspondence and terms of each one's submission and publication. But I hadn't specifically researched their status, and I thought this detail would be well worth double-checking: since "publish or perish" is the profession's mantra, it would be a rather sloppy CV foul to misrepresent any items in my CV's publication record.

Which is how Googling "refereed or not refereed?" led me to this database, Ulrich's Global Series Directory. The title sounds like that of a travel guide for sports tournaments.

The database provides a good set of stats (to run with the sports metaphor) on any periodical with an ISSN, including indications of whether a given periodical is electronically available, OA, and/or refereed. Refereed status is indicated with a referee jersey icon. (Again with the sports.)

Thankfully, my publication record entries are all playing fair, referee-wise. Still, it was well worth the time out to discover this database. The last place I want my CV to land me is the penalty box. (Okay, that's quite enough of those.)