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Scholarly Communication & Research Support: Measuring Article Impact

Article-Level Metrics


Article-level metrics quantify the reach and impact of individual articles, i.e., how they are being used, discussed and shared. We can consult various measures, from traditional measures such as citation counts, to normalized measures such as field-weighted citation impact. Altmetrics (e.g., mentions in blogs, downloads) can also be used to measure article impact.

  • e.g. Citation Count: Citation count measures the total number of times a publication was cited by other publications. But it should be note that it is sometimes difficult to assess the impact of articles through citation counts, since how recent the article is will affect how many times it’s been cited. Besides, the database or source of the statistics greatly impacts the citation count. For example, in Web of Science, it only counts the citations of an article received from other publications indexed in Web of Science (Times Cited). 

 

  • e.g. Field-Weighted Citation Impact: Field-Weighted Citation Impact (FWCI, used in Scopus) is the ratio of the total citations received by an article or an entity's output, and the total citations that would be expected based on the average (1.00) of the subject field, publication type and publication year. It takes time for publications to accumulate citations, and citations in some research fields such as life science tend to be much higher than in other fields such as social sciences due to distinct characteristics of research approaches in different disciplines. Therefore, instead of comparing absolute numbers of citations, normalised measures such as field-weighted citation impact (FWCI) that adjusts for these differences can be used. Similar to FWCI, there is another measure named Categorised Normalised Citation Impact (CNCI) in Web of Science.

 

  • e.g. AltmetricsAltmetrics, or alternative metrics, are untraditional metrics to measure the use and importance of scholarly publications. They measures the number of downloads and page views, mentions in social media and news media such as Twitter or blogs, etc. To learn more about Altmetrics, go to the Altmetrics page.

 Where Do I Find Article-Level Metrics?


Web of Science

Step 1: Find Web of Science Core Collection under 'W' in Databases A-Z list on library website.

Step 2: Search for the article you'd like to find or any keywords you'd like to explore.

Step 3: Find the article in the result list and go to the detailed result page to find the citation count (Times Cited in Web of Science Core Collection) for it. 

Scopus

Step 1:  Find Scopus under 'S' in Databases A-Z list on library website.

Step 2: Search for the article you'd like to find or any keywords you'd like to explore.

Step 3: Find the article in the result list and go to the detailed result page. There you can find the Citations in ScopusField-Weighted Citation Impact as well as various altmetrics measures for the article.   

PLoS (Public Library of Science) ALMs 

ALMs provide quantifiable measures that document the many ways in which both scientists and the general public engage with published research. ALMs are available for works published in PLoS (Public Library of Science) journals. 

Step 1:  Go to PLoS ALMs at http://almreports.plos.org/.

Step 2: Search for the article you'd like to find or any keywords you'd like to explore.

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Step 3: Find the article in the result list and go to the detailed result page. Click Metrics to view all the metrics available for the article, including citations and altmetrics. 

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