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This guide provides information on various tools that discuss the scholarly reputation of journals, specific journal articles, and in some instances, scholars themselves. Below is a description of the content of this guide with links to the appropriate tabs.
Contents of This Guide
Introduction to Impact Factors
An excellent introduction to the methodology of the impact factor and a discussion of some issues with this metric, compiled by Heidi Schroeder of Michigan State University and used with permission.
ISI Web of Knowledge
Eugene Garfield of the Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) developed and promoted the use of the impact factor. The theory behind it is that scholarship that is cited the most often is the most important. This tab directs users to a five minute tutorial that explains citation reporting and the H-index. The H-index attempts to measure the productivity and impact of a scholar through his/her publications.
Google Scholar: Metrics and Self-Citation Counts
"Google Scholar Metrics provide an easy way for authors to quickly gauge the visibility and influence of recent articles in scholarly publications. Scholar Metrics summarize recent citations to many publications, to help authors as they consider where to publish their new research" (from the website). Google Scholar indexes many more publications than ISI. A search for articles that cite your research will almost always be more comprehensive in Google Scholar than ISI. There is a chance that the work that cites your article is not another scholarly resource, however.
Google Scholar vs ISI: A Case Study
This tab illustrates the differences between these two citation counting tools using an article authored by two Western Carolina University faculty members.
List of Journal Directories
Journal directories can help faculty locate possible publishing venues and provide information on peer-reviewed status, etc. One directory, Cabell's, also provides data on acceptance rates.
"Like the Impact Factor, the Eigenfactor® Score and Article Influence® Score use citation data to assess and track the influence of a journal in relation to other journals. Eigenfactor Metrics are available only for JCR years 2007 and later" (from the website).