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Scholarly Communications at Georgia Southern University

Resources and services to support faculty and graduate students' scholarly work from conception to publication and promotion

What is Research Impact?

How is research impact measured?

"Research impact is the demonstrable contribution that excellent research makes to society and the economy. Impact embraces all the extremely diverse ways in which research-related knowledge and skills benefit individuals, organizations and nations including academic, economic, and societal impacts...” (Research Councils UK)

Research impact is often measured using quantitative methods such as citation counts, the h-index, and journal impact factors. It can also be described qualitatively. Currently, there is no one tool or system that completely measures impact. Each database or tool uses its own measurement systems, indices, data and authority files. And it is difficult to use these tools to compare across disciplines that have different research and publication practices. Furthermore, as scholarly communication continues to evolve, the limitations of existing metrics and tools are becoming increasingly evident. [Source: Adapted  from]

Go to the tabs for Traditional Metrics and Altmetrics for more information