Academic journals serve a vital function in furthering the discipline of communication studies, by showcasing the latest research on a variety of topics in different contexts (e.g., at home, workplace, policy, mass media, social groups). Articles appearing in such journals are typically peer-reviewed by other scholars before appearing in print, so they often enjoy greater legitimacy compared to self-published manuscripts or books. Journals are usually ranked on the basis of impact factor, which measures the number of times their articles are cited in recent years. Many university departments and schools of communication thus base their hiring, promotion, and tenure decisions on candidates’ records publishing in peer-reviewed journals. This entry explains the various types of communication journals and then addresses several issues of concern....
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