This guide introduces resources that describe, utilize, and support the current research landscape.
Considerations of the roles of author, content, sources, impact, reputation, rankings, and benchmarking are increasingly important in analyzing contributions to the research life cycle.
Information here is organized by the different methods of impact that the research landscape is defined by:
Tools are promoted that can be used to engage in research metrics. Since the landscape is constantly changing, Emerging Metrics are also explored.
Some recommended methods of research impact and citation metrics are detailed in the pages of this guide:
Web of Science Citation Report (Author Impact)
Google Scholar Author Profile (Author Impact)
H-Index (Author Impact)
Altmetrics (Article Impact)
Web of Science Cited Reference Search (Article Impact)
Journal Citation Reports Impact Factor (IF) (Journal Impact)
Eigenfactor (Journal Impact)
Image credit: "Metric" CC-BY-ND 2.0 Christina Welsh on Flickr
Research impact is a measure of the significance and importance of academic work within a scholarly community.
Bibliometrics are the use of quantitative tools to study publications and other written material.
Citation metrics focus on the statistical patterns and measurements of citations.
Citation analysis can be used as a quantifiable measure of academic output and research impact, which can help inform decisions on publication, promotion, and tenure.
Altmetrics is increasingly becoming an alternative and important method of measuring the impact of scholarly and other output and allows for social media tracking by various indicators such as number of tweets, blog posts, likes, bookmarks, etc. and are more timely wider-ranging measures of how people—both other researchers and the general public have demonstrated interested in an individual's work and contributions.
This guide is designed to help faculty members, graduate students and librarians use and understand the citation analysis tools available to us. At UCI, there is access to some of the major resources used for citation metrics, for example to obtain an Impact Factor (IF) you could consult the following tools -- Web of Science, Journal Citation Reports and Google Scholar. Descriptions of and guides to these tools can be accessed using the above drop-down menu, organized according to need.
Tools and methods of citation analysis are used to determine:
Because of the limitations of each method, it is important to use multiple methods, sources, and tools to get a fuller and more complete analysis. Increasingly, the research community is studying how to assess the value of cooperation and collaboration among colleagues, scholars and scientists, with barriers being reduced and geography more global. New metrics and values will likely emerge through different sources, to complement and extend already existing methods and products.
Limitations of citation metrics:
This guide was built from the UCI guide that was initially prepared by Laine Thielstrom (email@example.com) during her Library School internship at the San Jose State University Graduate School of Library & Information Science, and was conducted at the University of California, Irvine Libraries in Fall 2012. Additional revision to the guide is an ongoing effort at keeping it current. Any errors are those of the current editor. Please share information to keep accurate.