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How to increase the visibility of your research?: Altmetrics

What are Altmetrics?

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia:
This article is about alternative scholarly impact metrics. It is not to be confused with article-level metrics.

In scholarly and scientific publishing, altmetrics are non-traditional metrics proposed as an alternative to more traditional citation impact metrics, such as impact factor and h-index. The term altmetrics was proposed in 2010, as a generalization of article level metrics, and has its roots in the #altmetrics hashtag. Although altmetrics are often thought of as metrics about articles, they can be applied to people, journals, books, data sets, presentations, videos, source code repositories, web pages, etc. They are related to Webometrics, which had similar goals but evolved before the social web. Altmetrics did not originally cover citation counts. It also covers other aspects of the impact of a work, such as how many data and knowledge bases refer to it, article views, downloads, or mentions in social media and news media.


Discover the online impact of your research


Discover the online impact of your research.

Track buzz on Twitter, blogs, news outlets and more: Making a profile takes just seconds:
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A Beginner's Guide

Altmetric Resources

  • This free Web site is a central hub for information about the growing altmetrics movement, which it defines as “the creation and study of new metrics based on the Social Web for analyzing and informing scholarship.” Cofounded by prominent figures in the world of bibliometrics, such as Jason Priem and Heather Piwowar, altmetrics. org maintains links to new online tools for calculating impact. Other prominent features include an altmetrics “manifesto” that argues how altmetrics can improve existing scholarly filters. Access:


  • Impact Story. Formerly known as Total Impact, Impact Story is a free open source tool designed to support URL-based publishing through the aggregation of online altmetrics. Users create collections of materials through online identifiers, such as Google Scholar Profiles, DOIs, and PubMed IDs. Impact Story uses more than a dozen APIs to search for metrics on these collected items, with sources ranging from popular social media to scholarly tools like Mendeley and PLoS. Items are subsequently assigned impact categories, such as generally/highly “saved,” “cited,” “recommended,” or “discussed.” This resource is most useful for researchers publishing in nontraditional venues or with scholarship too new to have accumulated traditional citations. Not a comprehensive source for tracing Web impact. Access:


  • PLoS Article Level Metrics. Public Library of Science (PLoS) has emerged as the leading open access journal repository, in part due to its high traditional impact factors. However, PLoS offers an alternative to traditional impact in the form of Article Level Metrics, which track the influence of individual PLoS articles, from times downloaded to mentions in social media and blogs. PLoS also tracks internal article metrics, including comments, notes, and ratings. While a valuable resource for impact, only PLoS articles benefit from its metrics. Nevertheless, this resource represents an important new avenue for metrics, which future publishers will likely replicate. Available for free online. Access:

  • Publish or Perish. Anne-Wil Harzing created Publish or Perish (PoP) to assist faculty looking for more diverse bibliometrics. PoP is a free, downloadable program that harvests data from Google Scholar based on author name. Users can manually remove records to refine the data, similar to what is now offered by Google Scholar Citations. PoP can also calculate numerous metrics, including alternatives to the h-index. However, because few people are familiar with non h-index calculations, it is up to users to explain such metrics to larger audiences. Access:​

PLoS Altmetrics Project

In 2009, PLoS became the first publisher to add comprehensive usage and reach data to every published article so that the entire academic community could form their own assessments of their value.  This video demonstrates New data sources added to the PLoS Article-Level Metrics Program.