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Metrics: Understanding your Impact

This guide will assist researchers to articulate the impact of their works through the use of appropriate metrics. The positive and negative aspects of many common journal and article-level metrics are explored.

Understanding Impact

Scholars have long been required to publish research, but how are we to determine whether this research is meaningful? Traditionally, we have attempted to measure the impact of the journal in which that research was published as a proxy for the impact of the research itself. However, this method is becoming increasingly problematic as more research is created and disseminated digitally and in forms beyond the traditional journal article.

Many scholars are now moving beyond the journal-level impact factor towards author- or article-level metrics that better describe the impact of their scholarship, or even to alternative metrics ("altmetrics") that capture the impact of their work beyond simply measuring citations. This guide is designed to teach researchers about the variety of metrics available to them and methods for tracking -- and increasing -- their impact.

Additional Discussion of Metrics