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Scholarly Writing: Metrics

Measuring impact


Citation analysis or metrics provide a comparative quantitative measure of impact and engagement. A range of tools are available to help you calculate the number of times your research has been cited by other researchers. Citation metrics are not an exact science. Always use citation metrics in conjunction with other measures to assess the impact of your research.

The selection of the most appropriate metrics and/or the optimum method of presenting those metrics is dependent on the discipline, the purpose, the context, and the specific research being evaluated.

St. Vincent's Hospital Melbourne Library service does not subscribe to metrics tools. Librarians provide support for the freely available metrics only. Many metric tools are available from universities, if you are affiliated with a University see their library guides on metrics with links to the tools they subscribe to and provide.

Australian Catholic University Monash University
Deakin University Swinburne University
La Trobe University University of Melbourne

 Some University Libraries provide personalised assistance with metrics to eligible staff.

Overview of Metrics


Metrics Toolkit | Helping you use metrics responsibly

Metrics Toolkit provides guidance for demonstrating and evaluating claims of research impact.  With the Toolkit you can quickly understand what a metric means, how it is calculated, and if it’s good match for your impact question.

See Research Write no. 2, June 2019 on Scholarly metrics for the main metrics for authors, articles, journals and institutions. 


Other indicators of research impact
There are additional indicators of research quality or academic esteem, including:

  • Awards and prizes

  • Collaboration with other national or international researchers

  • Conference presentations, keynotes, and publications

  • Editorships of journals, books, and other publications

  • Holdings of edited, authored or contributed to books in libraries

  • International engagement and collaboration

  • Influence on industry/government/public policy/community/cultural organisations

  • Membership of learned academy

  • Membership of statutory committee

  • Membership of conference organising committee

  • Partnerships with other institutions, research groups, or industry

  • Patents

  • Previous successful grant applications and completed research projects

  • Registered designs

  • Research commercialisation income

  • Research fellowships

More resources


Demonstrating research impact by Clarivate (45 mins)  [video]



Main free metrics tools


Create a Google Scholar profile which will generate your citation profile or h-index. The 3 minute video demonstrates the process.

Sign in to your Google account, or create one if you do not have one.

  1. Go to Google Scholar and click on the My profile link.
  2. Follow the prompts to set up your profile:
    1. Enter your SVHA email address in the Email for verification field.
  3. Add your publications.
  4. Select the Article updates setting: Email me updates for review (otherwise Google Scholar may automatically add incorrect publications to your profile).
  5. Review and complete your profile: for example, upload a photo and double check the list of articles.
  6. Ensure you make your profile public if you want other people to be able to view it.
  7. Visit your email inbox and click on the verification link.

For more detailed instructions see: Google Scholar Citations : Setting up your profile 

Publish or Perish (PoP): A citation analysis software program which helps academics to present their case for research impact to its best advantage. Utilises data from Google Scholar. Administrator rights for installation are not required.


How to find article citation counts via Google Scholar or "Who is Citing Whom"

  1. Go to Google Scholar.
  2. Go to the hamburger menu on the top left of the window and select Advanced Search
  3. Enter the appropriate search terms for the article. Enter just enough information to find what you need - do not fill in the complete search form.    
  4. Click on the Search button.
  5. Locate the correct article in the search results list.

If the article was cited by others, you will see a "Cited by" link at the bottom of the record and the number of times it was cited. Click this link to view who cited this item. 


SCImago Journal Rankings:  SJR indicator is a measure of the scientific influence of scholarly journals that accounts for both the number of citations received by a journal and the importance or prestige of the journals where the citations come from. A journal's SJR is a numeric value indicating the average number of weighted citations received during a selected year per document published in that journal during the previous three years. Higher SJR values are meant to indicate greater journal prestige.