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Evaluating Information and Fake News: Impact Measures

You've found some information for an assignment...but how do you tell if the information is any good?


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Impact Measures

Bibliometric measures of impact provide another way you can assess the quality and importance of individual articles, authors, and/or journal titles. Bibliometrics refers to the "application of mathematics and statistical methods to books and other media" (Alan Pritchard, 1969). 

  • Citation impacts tell us who is reading and following particular researchers through the numbers of references made to them in subsequent publications.  As well as reviewing these on an individual article, author or journal title level you can also use them to evaluate research topic areas and identify influential publications or authors on a topic. 
  • Altimetrics are collated from a range of social media and other web-based communication tools to provide an alternative way to demonstrate the wider interest in scholarly research publications. They may be indicative of the number of downloads, mentions in blogs or re-tweets and may also use mention in traditional media and grey literature. 

Many scholarly databases will collate and provide ways to investigate the citations, references, and altmetrics associated with different journal articles, and increasingly, other forms of scholarly publishing and data. 



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