Is PubMed a Journal Whitelist?

pubmed1By Arabia Higher Ed Staff

Using PubMed as a journal whitelist is a common practice among researchers in biomedical and health sciences. However, a recent article by Jeffrey Beall recommends instead the use of MEDLINE. PubMed is MEDLINE, says Beall, plus thousands of other journals, including many low-quality journals.

PubMed is a database that indexes articles from many thousands of journals, including predatory journals. The criteria for inclusion in PubMed (or PubMed Central, the full-text repository associated with PubMed) are minimal compared to the MEDLINE standards.

According to the article, PubMed inclusion is not an achievement that merits boasting especially with its low barrier to inclusion. In fact, low-quality articles, many of which have not undergone rigorous peer review, are featured prominently in PubMed searches.

MEDLINE includes curated and vetted list of about 5,600 journals that have been reviewed and approved by the National Library of Medicine. These journals are just a small fraction of the nearly 26,000 journals indexed in PubMed. Thus, researchers in the biomedical sciences can consequently use MEDLINE as a whitelist.


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