Imbedding Altmetrics on Your Website
Altmetrics in Library Resources
What are altmetrics?
Altmetrics measure research impact in ways that traditional citation counts and impact factors don't. This can include social media buzz, usage statistics, follower counts, and more. They can also gauge the impact of nontraditional research outputs, such as data sets, software, posters, presentation slides, and videos. They can also provide information on the breadth and composition of your audience
Altmetrics aren't meant to replace traditional measures, but serve as a complement to them. They are useful for gauging the immediate impact of your work, before enough time has passed for formal citations, or how your research has influenced non-scholarly arenas such as policy, technology, and education. They are measures of attention, not necessarily quality.
Examples of Altmetrics
- Social media mentions, shares, comments, and followers
- Pageviews and download counts from Digital Commons, PubMed, arXiv, SSRN, Figshare, GitHub, ICPSR, Slideshare, etc.
- Citations from GoogleScholar, Data Citation Index, etc.
- Bookmarks on Mendeley, CiteULike, Delicious
- Newspaper articles, scholarly blog posts, news coverage, podcast mentions
- Ratings on Amazon or GoodReads
- WorldCat holdings
- Views on YouTube or Vimeo, as well as likes/dislikes, comments, and shares
Sources for Altmetrics
Tips for Using Altmetrics to Support Your Professional Advancement
Context is important! Rather than just listing a bunch of statistics on your CV or tenure dossier, explain what they mean. Provide a qualitative explanation to back up your quantitative data.
- Instead of merely stating that your paper was the subject of 14 blog posts, explain that this puts it in the 98th percentile of all scientific papers published in 2015.
- Instead of saying that your article was mentioned on Twitter 153 times, explain that the hashtag was the third most popular trending topic on the site from June 6-9, 2014.
Include metrics that document the types of impact you want to showcase, rather than including every possible statistic you can find.
- If you want to document scholarly impact, then share information about Mendeley bookmarks (and the demographics of those bookmarking your research), reviews on F1000, or Digital Commons downloads from other universities.
- If you want to show that your work enjoyed a lot of public attention, then include Facebook shares, retweets, Wikipedia citations, blog hits, and so on.
Being selective with your statistics will help them make more impact, instead of overwhelming your audience with numbers.