This study used all-journal data and systematic random sampling data to primarily determine the average number of issues per year and the average number of articles per issue among the Science Citation Index (SCI), Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Chinese Science Citation Database (CSCD) (China), and Chinese Social Sciences Citation Index (CSSCI) (China) journals. The random sampling data were based on 5% SCI and SSCI samples and 10% CSCD and CSSCI samples. The objectives were to have a 2018–2019 record of the journal publication frequency detailing the number of articles per issue and the number of issues per year for the journals on the lists, as well as to compare Chinese journals’ data with those of international journals, in the perspective of scholarly publishing transformations in the world as well as in China during the past two decades. The study found that the average number of issues per year for SCI, SSCI, CSCD, and CSSCI journals was 10.95, 5.18, 9.17, and 7.87, respectively, and that CSCD/CSSCI journals publish more articles than SCI/SSCI, with CSSCI journals publishing significantly more articles per year than SSCI journals. The author fees for non-OA journals in China could play a role in the higher number of articles. The “mega journal” phenomenon does not seem to be a common practice among all the journal lists studied.
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