Top 8 Highest Impact Factor Journals: Top High Impact Journals Now

In the academic world, the impact factor of a journal is a crucial metric, reflecting the average number of citations to recent articles published in that journal. 

If you wonder what journals are the most impactful in the world today, you have come to the right place. In this post,  We’ll explore these top-tier journals across various disciplines, highlighting their impact scores and how they shape current research in their respective fields.

Top 8 Highest Impact Factor Journals By Citation

JournalFieldsImpact Score
Cancer Journal for Clinicians (CA-A)Internal Medicine, Cancer Research254.7
LancetGeneral Medical Practice, Public Health Policies168.9
New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM)Internal Medicine, Public Health158.5
Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA)General Medical Practice, Healthcare Policies120.7
Nature Reviews Drug DiscoveryPharmacology, Pharmacy, Drug Development120.1
Nature Reviews Molecular Cell BiologyMolecular and Cellular Biology112.7
BMJ – British Medical JournalEvidence-based Medicine, Public Health105.7
Nature Reviews ImmunologyImmunology100.3

How Do You Calculate Journal Impact Factor?

The Journal Impact Factor (JIF) is a metric used to gauge the average number of citations to articles published in a journal over a specific period.

It’s calculated by dividing the total number of citations in a given year to articles published in that journal during the previous two years, by the total number of “citable items” – such as articles and reviews – published in the same two years.

For instance, if you’re looking at the JIF for 2023, you would consider the number of times articles published in 2021 and 2022 were cited in 2023.

These citations are then divided by the total number of citable items published in 2021 and 2022. This calculation provides a ratio that serves as an approximation of the mean citation rate per citable item in the journal.

It’s important to understand that the JIF should not be seen as a definitive measure of a journal’s quality or importance. It does not provide information on the quality or impact of individual articles.

Also, citation practices can vary significantly between different fields, so the impact factor should be considered in the context of a journal’s specific academic discipline.

Despite its limitations, the JIF is widely used in academic and publishing circles. It can help in assessing the influence of a journal within its field and is often used for library collection management and in academic evaluations.

However, it’s essential to use it sensibly and in conjunction with other metrics and considerations, such as peer reviews and the journal’s scope

Cancer Journal for Clinicians (CA-A) – 254.7

CA-A Cancer Journal for Clinicians has an astounding impact factor, as the average number of times articles from the journal are cited are exceptionally high. Diving deeper, one finds that the journal’s success is built on publishing groundbreaking research in internal medicine, particularly cancer. 

The articles published are often cited in other prestigious journals like NEJM, amplifying the journal’s impact. This citation analysis reflects the journal’s critical role in shaping contemporary medical practice and research.

Notably, CA-A Cancer Journal for Clinicians serves as a valuable resource for researchers, clinicians, and scholars.

It provides the latest developments in cancer research, making it a go-to source for up-to-date information in this field.

Its inclusion in the Web of Science and its high ranking in the Journal Citation Reports (JCR) further attest to its prestige and reliability.

Lancet – 168.9

Lancet stands out in the Journal Citation Reports, with a super high impact factor. However, it’s not just about the number of citations. The impact comes from what’s inside.

Articles in Lancet often lead to groundbreaking research findings. They influence medical practices globally. The journal has a history of publishing studies that shape public health policies.

This is where the real impact lies. Imagine a research article changing how diseases are treated worldwide. That’s the kind of influence Lancet has.

It’s not just any medical journal. It’s a platform where top medical researchers aspire to publish. Being featured in Lancet means your work is among the best. It’s a journal that every:

  • medical professional,
  • researcher, and
  • academic

knows and respects. 

This reputation is why it’s consistently ranked among the top journals globally. Lancet’s impact factor is a testament to its importance in advancing medical science and public health.

New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM)- 158.5

NEJM is known for publishing pivotal, practice-changing medical research. Its articles often become the foundation of new medical guidelines and practices.

Many groundbreaking studies in internal medicine and public health, published in NEJM, have significantly shaped healthcare policies and practices.

The journal’s rigorous peer review process ensures the highest quality of published research. This meticulous scrutiny adds to its reputation, making NEJM a top choice for researchers to submit their best work.

It’s not just a journal; it’s a platform that influences medical thought and practice globally. Its consistently high ranking among medical journals reflects its unwavering commitment to advancing medical science.

For researchers and clinicians, NEJM is more than just a source of information; it’s a guidepost for the latest and most impactful developments in medicine.

Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) – 120.7

The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) is renowned for its significant impact in the medical field. It’s not just the high impact factor that makes it stand out, but also its history and influence in shaping medical practice and research. 

JAMA’s influence extends beyond its impact factor. It’s the most widely circulated general medical journal globally, with a large readership and a strong social media presence.

The journal has been pivotal in publishing studies that have had a significant impact on healthcare policies and practices, making it a leading voice in the medical community.

Its reach includes extensive international news media exposure, ensuring that the research it publishes is widely disseminated and influential.

JAMA’s success can be attributed to:

  • its rigorous peer review process,
  • commitment to high-quality science, and
  • relevance in current medical practice and research.

The journal continues to be a valuable resource for clinicians, researchers, and academics, playing a crucial role in disseminating vital medical knowledge and finding

Nature Reviews Drug Discovery – 120.1

Nature Reviews Drug Discovery, is a standout in the world of scientific journals. It’s a top-tier publication in the field of pharmacology and pharmacy.

But why is it so impactful? It comes down to the quality and relevance of the articles it publishes. These articles are often cited by other researchers, highlighting the journal’s influence in advancing drug discovery.

The journal covers the latest trends and breakthroughs in drug development. This includes everything from initial discovery through clinical trials and regulatory approval.

It’s a valuable resource not just for researchers, but for anyone interested in the latest developments in medicine.

What sets Nature Reviews Drug Discovery apart is its ability to distill complex scientific concepts into understandable insights. This makes it accessible to a wider audience, extending its impact beyond the academic community.

For anyone looking to stay updated on the cutting edge of drug development, this journal is an essential read.

Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology – 112.7

One of the most influential journal on science, Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology stands out in the scientific journal landscape, particularly for its high impact factor.

This journal delves into the complex world of molecular and cellular biology, offering comprehensive reviews on a variety of topics within this field. 

Its focus ranges from the intricate mechanisms at the cellular level to broader concepts that shape our understanding of biology. It is one of the top 100 journals in the world. 

One of the reasons of the journal’s performance is its ability to consistently publish articles that are widely cited across the scientific community. 

Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology’s role as a valuable resource in the scientific community is further highlighted by its high download and altmetric mention rates, demonstrating its widespread reach and influence.

The articles in the journal are frequently referenced in other scientific works, contributing to the ongoing discourse in molecular and cellular biology.

This journal’s success can be attributed to its:

  • stringent peer review process,
  • commitment to publishing authoritative and accessible articles, and
  • focus on presenting complex scientific information in a clear and understandable manner.

For anyone keen on the latest developments and comprehensive reviews in molecular cell biology, Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology is an indispensable resource

BMJ – British Medical Journal -105.7

The BMJ, formerly known as the British Medical Journal, is more than just a medical journal. It’s an influential platform in the global medical community. Founded in the 19th century, it has evolved to become a leading voice in various critical health issues.

One key aspect that makes BMJ impactful is its commitment to evidence-based medicine. It publishes a range of content including:

  • research,
  • clinical reviews, and
  • editorial perspectives.

This diverse content helps in advancing medical knowledge and influencing healthcare policies worldwide. 

The journal is known for its rigorous peer review process, ensuring the high quality and relevance of its published work.

BMJ also stands out for its strong stance on public health and well-being. It actively engages in campaigns and advocacy, aiming to improve healthcare systems globally.

Its role in publishing seminal papers on important health issues, like the effects of smoking, has cemented its reputation as a leader in medical research and discourse.

Nature Reviews Immunology – 100.3

Nature Reviews Immunology is a prestigious journal in the field of immunology. It’s known for its high impact factor, which is a measure of how often articles published in the journal are cited in other scientific works. 

The journal publishes comprehensive review articles that summarize and analyze the latest developments and research in immunology.

These articles are valuable resources for:

  • researchers,
  • clinicians, and
  • students

They cover a wide range of topics, from basic immunological mechanisms to the implications of immunology in health and disease.

What makes Nature Reviews Immunology particularly impactful is its focus on high-quality, in-depth reviews written by leading experts. These articles not only provide a synthesis of current knowledge but often shape future research directions in the field.

The journal’s role in disseminating cutting-edge research and shaping the discourse in immunology makes it a top-ranked publication in the scientific world.

Top High Impact, Prestigious Academic Journals

These top journals represent the pinnacle of academic publishing, setting standards in research and scholarly discourse. Their high impact factors not only reflect their citations but also underscore their importance in driving forward scientific and medical knowledge.

For researchers, academics, and students, these journals are invaluable resources, offering insights into the latest developments and breakthroughs in their fields. They are beacons of excellence, guiding the direction of future research and shaping the landscape of global knowledge.

The Author

Dr Andrew Stapleton has a Masters and PhD in Chemistry from the UK and Australia. He has many years of research experience and has worked as a Postdoctoral Fellow and Associate at a number of Universities. Although having secured funding for his own research, he left academia to help others with his YouTube channel all about the inner workings of academia and how to make it work for you.