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Developmental Integrative Biology Group

Multidisciplinary Databases for Physiology and Developmental Biology Research

Web of Science: Cited Reference Search

Scopus Training

The Scopus Training Videos on YouTube will teach you how to:

  • find literature from around the world about a topic
  • analyze and follow the scholarship produced on a topic
  • assess an article's, author's, and journal's impact in a field through citation counts
  • analyze and follow the research output of a university

Definitions of Scholarly Impact and Citation Analysis

Scholarly impact refers to the influence and recognition a scholar has in her/his field through mainly academic journal articles and books. Impact has traditionally been measured by how how many times a book or article is cited, which is called bibliometrics. Slowly, mentions of publications in social media - tweets and posts - are being accepted as evidence of impact. The counting of tweets, posts, etc. about publications is called altmetrics.

Scopus and Web of Science are journal article databases and bibliometric tools that monitor the number of times a journal article has been cited. Scholars usually interpret a high number of cites to mean an article is important in its field and contains significant findings. However, it can also mean that the article is controversial and everyone wants to read it.

Analysis of citations also lets us trace the development of an area of research, impact of an author, and impact of a journal. By looking at who has cited older journal articles, we can see what more recent scientists have done with that foundational knowledge. Looking at cited references of articles, we can see the beginnings of a research trend. The accumulated citation counts of authors and journals are one tool for evaluating impact on a discipline and should be used along with other quantitative and qualitative measures. 

Learn much more about determining and increasing scholarly impact at the Increase Your Scholarly Impact library guide.

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