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Research Impact Metrics

Understand and communicate the impact of your scholarship

Assessing Journal Impact

Various measures are used to assess the quality and impact of a journal.  These measures are one factor to consider when deciding where to publish your work. 

See the chart below to find out more about measures of journal impact.  Click on the links in the boxes at the bottom of the table to find out how to get these measures.

Common Measures of Journal Impact


  Impact Factor (IF) Eigenfactor SCImago Journal Ranking (SJR) Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP)
Measure of... Frequency with which the 'average article' in a journal has been cited in a particular year or other defined time period Measure of importance: overall value provided by all articles published in a a journal in one year Measure of prestige; accounts for number of citations received by a journal and importance of the journals that citations came from Measures citation impact by weighting citations based on the total number of citations in a subject field
Calculation A: Number of citations in the current year to items published in the journal in the previous two years
B: Total number of articles published in the journal in the previous two years
Impact Factor = A/B
Citations from high-quality journals are weighted more than citations from lesser known journals

Citations from more prestigious journals (higher SJR) weighted more than citations from less prestigious journals (lower SJR)
Citations from subject fields in which citations are less likely are weighted more
Can it be used to compare journals from different disciplines? No Yes Yes Yes
Where can I get it? Journal Citation Reports Journal Citation Reports OR free from Free from SCImago Journal & Country Rank Free from CWTS Journal Indicators


Content used by permission from UNC-Chapel Hill University Libraries Measure Your Research Impact: Journal Impact.



Additional journal impact links

Journal metrics for Humanities, Literature and Arts

The following resources directly address the concerns and priorities of characterizing metrics for humanities scholarship.

Other journal-level metrics