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Research Impact/Bibliometrics

This guide provides an introduction to using Web of Science, Scopus and other resources to determine journal impact, individual researcher impact, and article impact.

Finding Journal Impact in Web of Science

Our database Web of Science provides several journal metrics including Journal Impact Factor and Eigenfactor. These can be found through the Journal Citation Reports (JCR) section. 

Impact factor is 

  • A measure of the frequency with which the "average article" in a journal has been cited in a particular year or period.
  • A ratio between citations and recent citable items published.
  • Calculated by dividing the number of current year citations to the source items published in that journal during the previous two years.
  • Not comparable across disciplines due to different citation patterns.

 

Eigenfactor (also found at www.eigenfactor.org) is calculated from Web of Science data and based on an algorithm that evaluates the networks between journals. The Eigenfactor attempts to calculate a percentage estimate of the total time that all journal users spend with that journal compared to all other journals. The numbers are normalized so that the total of all Eigenfactors is 100.  

Web of Science does not index every journal published, and therefore not every journal will have a Journal Impact Factor or Eigenfactor.

The Journal Citation Reports help page provides useful information on using JCR wisely.  In particular, “you should not depend solely on citation data in your journal evaluations. Citation data are not meant to replace informed peer review. Careful attention should be paid to the many conditions that can influence citation rates such as language, journal history and format, publication schedule, and subject specialty." Impact factor is highly dependent upon discipline, and should only be used to compare journals within a specific area of study.

This video demonstrates how to find journal metrics in Web of Science