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InfoGuides | Pepperdine Libraries

Scholarly Publishing & Metrics Guide: Scholarly Impact

This guide shares Journal Selection strategies and metric tools the Pepperdine community has access to in order to measure impact. We also explain how to interpret and utilize the aforementioned metrics.  

 

* How many times has my work been cited? * What is this journal's impact factor? * How do I measure/evaluate the impact of my collected scholarship to date? *


Author level metrics

Artifact Level Citations

Journal level metrics

Institution Level Metrics


 

Author level metrics

Author level metrics attempt to evaluate the overall productivity and scholarly impact of authors.

What is the H-Index?

The H-Index is an author level metric created by the physicist  Jorge Hirsch.  It measures both productivity and impact.  

Number of works (h) that have received at least h citations. An H-index of 8 means that you have at least 8 papers that have received at least 8 citations.

How do I find the H-Index?

Google Scholar:

  • To obtain your h-index in Google Scholar, you must create an author profile. You will only be able to locate the h-index scores of authors who have created profiles
  • H-indexes in Google Scholar will be higher than in Scopus because there will be a wider variety of citing documents that include unpublished working papers, dissertations, low-quality journals and better coverage of books.
Google Scholar Search

Limitations of the H-Index.

  • Early career researchers will have fewer publications and their works are often too recent to have accumulated many citations. 
  • H-indexes vary by field and researchers in fields like the natural sciences will have higher scores than humanities faculty
  • Researchers who have a highly cited paper and other works with fewer citations won’t receive credit for a particularly influential paper.

Pros and Cons of Scopus and Google Scholar

  Pros Cons
Scopus

Citation metrics like the FWIC and Citation Benchmarking that place citations in context 

Citing documents are high quality journals, books and book chapters

Can locate the most highly-cited papers on a topic

Poor coverage of books and doesn’t include citations from dissertations

Will receive fewer citations than Google Scholar
Google Scholar

Locates the most citations to your works

Strong coverage for documents like books and dissertations

Only provides raw citations and doesn’t have any metrics that place citations in context

Some of the citations to your papers might be from either unpublished working papers or predatory journals

Artifact (article) Level Metrics

Artifact level metrics 

How many times has your work been cited?

Note: expectations for recent journal articles needs to be realistic; In many cases it will take at least two years for your scholarly works to accumulate citations.

  • Scopus provides strong coverage of citations to articles and the citations will be from high quality sources.
  • Coverage of books is improving, but severely lags journal citations
  • Super useful citation metrics 
    • The Field-Weighted Citation Impact (FWCI) is one of our favorite metrics. The score is adjusted for the age, discipline and type of document. A value greater than 1.00 means the document is more cited than expected. 
    • Citation Benchmarking is another metric that compares your citations to similar documents. It is expressed as a percentile. A score of 84% means that your document was cited more often than 84% 
  • Scopus is also a great resource for a literature review because you can sort articles by how often they were cited to identify the seminal works on your topic.

  • Google Scholar will retrieve more citations to your works than other resources
    • In addition to journals, coverage of books, dissertations and unpublished working papers is very strong
    • Be aware that some of the citing documents could include unpublished papers and low-quality journals.
  • Google Scholar only provides raw citation counts. It doesn’t provide any metrics that place your citations in context.

Pros and Cons of Scopus and Google Scholar

  Pros Cons
Scopus

Citation metrics like the FWIC and Citation Benchmarking that place citations in context 

Citing documents are high quality journals, books and book chapters

Can locate the most highly-cited papers on a topic

Poor coverage of books and doesn’t include citations from dissertations

Will receive fewer citations than Google Scholar
Google Scholar

Locates the most citations to your works

Strong coverage for documents like books and dissertations

Only provides raw citations and doesn’t have any metrics that place citations in context

Some of the citations to your papers might be from either unpublished working papers or predatory journals

Journal Level metrics:

Journal level metrics evaluate and rank journals based on how many times their articles have been cited by other journals.

What is the Journal Impact Factor?

  • The Journal Impact Factor is a metric that measures how many times a journal’s articles have been cited by other journals.
  • The Journal Impact Factor is assigned by the Clarivate (formerly Thomson)
  • Only *some* journals (about 12,000) have Journal Impact Factors
  • If a journal has an JIF of 2 it means that articles that were published 1-2 years ago were cited an average of 2 times this year. 

How can I find the Journal Impact Factor for my journal?

  • Pepperdine doesn’t subscribe to the Journal Citation Reports (JCR) which publishes the Journal Impact Factor.
  • The free Master Journal List Manuscript Matcher (https://mjl.clarivate.com/) has older Journal Impact Factor scores.
  • Publishers sometimes list the Journal Impact Factor on their websites.
  • Please be aware that we don’t have access to complete lists of journal rankings.

CiteScore from Scopus/Elsevier- CiteScore is another journal ranking metric that is available in the library’s Scopus database (after logging in, click the link for Source).

  • Evaluates over 26,000 journals
  • A Citescore of 3 means that articles written 1-4 years ago were cited an average of 3 times
    • The Percentile provides context (e.g. in the top 84% of journals in a field)
  • % Cited shows the percentage of articles in a journal that are cited
  • Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) is a metric that is normalized for subject disciplines which means  a social psychology journal could be compared to a plant science journal.

SCIMago- was developed by a research group from the University of Granada in Spain. It is an open source website  that evaluates and ranks journals

  • The SCIMago Journal Ranking (SJR) metric refers to the average number of citations that articles in a journal receive in a given year for articles published in the past 1-3 years.
  • SCIMago’s list of journals is supplied by the Scopus database
  • Journals are assigned to quartiles based on how often they are cited

Institution Level Metrics:

Institution Level Metrics 

To access published research from Pepperdine professors:

  • Click the ink for Affiliations
  • Search for Pepperdine University
  • Documents authored by Pepperdine faculty are organized by discipline