Introducing Altmetrics

You may have noticed the recently installed Altmetrics plug-in on the School’s online repository of research – LSHTM Research Online as well as on the Schools’ Publications Database. Below each paper now appears a doughnut or polo with different colours and a number  to quickly convey information about each article. From there you are taken to another page and can see further details of the social “buzz” surrounding that article. Altmetrics measures the “impact” of a piece of research by counting the number of times that it’s mentioned in tweets, Facebook pages, blogs, YouTube, news media as well as research platforms such as Mendeley and citeulike.

Alternative metrics, or altmetrics as they are more commonly known, have received a lot of attention recently with news items describing their rise as an “Alternative” metric to measure research impact. However, not everyone has been convinced and you can read an interesting counter-argument here.

You can see for yourself by checking out one of your papers via Research Online or the Pubs DB to see if it’s been picked up on social media or the news. Added features are a geographical breakdown of tweets as well Tweeter demographics (scientist, journalist, Joe Bloggs). You can also monitor via email  updates when your article is shared. Lastly there is also an Altmetric score which measures the quality and quantity of online attention that an article has received.

You can follow the uses of Altmetrics via the Impactstory blog and see what Altmetric are doing in this video.

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