Revista Española de Salud Pública
Print version ISSN 1135-5727
LOPEZ-COZAR, Emilio Delgado. Assesing compliance of Spanish scientific biomedical journals to international standards for the presentation of periodicals. Rev. Esp. Salud Publica [online]. 1997, vol.71, n.6, pp. 531-546. ISSN 1135-5727. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1135-57271997000600003.
BACKGROUND: Because standardization is important to ensure the successful transfer of scientific information, compliance with international standards for the presentation of periodicals in 205 Spanish biomedical journals, with the aim of improving their quality as instruments of information transfer, is evaluated. METHODS: Journals were identified by consulting five printed bibliographies and four electronic databases. A total of 136 parameters of evaluation for the presentation of periodicals derived from ISO (International Standardization Organization) standards (86%) and recomendations published by UNESCO, the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors, The Council of Biology Editors, and EJ Huth (14%) were evaluated. Three features (inclusion, presentation and location) were recorded for most data item, and the total number of items studied was 342. RESULTS: The rate of compliance with standards in Spanish biomedical journals was 33.5% ± 8,5 (DE). Compliance was highest for items related with the identification of the journal in the text pages and the issue contents list. The lowest rates of compliance were found for items related the volume and the abstract sheet. The worst standardized journals were those published by private firms and public administration organizations. As a group, journals published annually were the best standardized. CONCLUSIONS: The low rate of compliance with standards did not reflect inadequate compliance with all items, but was rather the result of complete noncompliance with particular standards, especially those relating to the abstract sheet, volume front cover, volume contents list and volume index. To improve compliance a change in the policies governing the availability of standards, the preparation of guides and manuals for scientific periodical publishing, and the development of training programs aimed at authors, editors, publishers, librarians and information scientists, is suggested.
Keywords : Scientific Journals; Periodicals; Standards; Evaluation; Assessment.