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Research publication impact: Home

A guide to different measures and metrics for assessing research publication impact.

Introduction

The ability to assess the impact of research publications is a growing area of importance with applications in securing funding and career development.

Bibliometrics provides a quantitative analysis of the influence of research. It looks at the citation counts for articles to see how they have impacted on the research landscape and with the introduction of altmetrics looks at how the influence of the article can be measured. It stands alongside qualitative measures of excellence such as peer review.

Available metrics include:

Authors and Institutions

Citation counts, publication counts, h-index

Articles

Citation counts, Facebook/Twitter mentions

Journals

Journal impact factor, CiteScore, SCImago journal rank, Eigenfactor

Subjects

Highly-cited papers, hot papers, journal impact factor

This LibGuide highlights some of the tools available to researchers at the University of Hull.

It is worth noting that citation measures are most developed for research in the sciences and social sciences. The arts and humanities, due to disciplinary differences, have less tools available for such analysis. It is also difficult to compare impact factors of journals in different discipline areas as citation practices vary between disciplines.

What is an impact factor?

Impact factors measure how quickly and how often articles in a specific journal are cited by authors of other articles, allowing a comparison of how heavy an impact that journal has within a particular discipline.

Exercises

To help you get used to metrics, you may wish to undertake the following exercises which use the resources listed in this guide.

Contact

Please direct all enquiries to rdm@hull.ac.uk

Key contacts: Stuart Bentley

Limitations

Bibliometrics have the following limitations:

•Not established for all disciplines
•Citation practices vary from one discipline to another
•High number of citations does NOT imply high value
•Potential manipulation, e.g. “group” citing, splitting research between multiple articles
•Coverage of sources other than journal articles can be poor

How to raise your research profile

•Use a consistent form of your name wherever possible
•Use an author ID system, e.g. ResearcherID, ORCID
•Ensure you include your institutional affiliation
•Promote your research via appropriate social media
•Use self-citation in a responsible way

Training

Further reading

CC License