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Journal Ranking Metrics

Journal Citation Reports is an excellent source for determining journal impact factor. It provides impact factors (over the two years citation period) and rankings for approximately 12,000 scholarly and technical journals and conference proceedings in the areas of science, technology, and the social sciences.

The Journal Impact Factor (JIF) is a ratio devised as a measurement of the average citedness (and, by extension, importance) of a journal. It is calculated by dividing the number of citations of a particular publication in a certain year by the number of citable articles published in the journal in the previous two years.

The Journal Citation Indicator (JCI) is the average Category Normalized Citation Impact (CNCI) of citable items (articles & reviews) published by a journal over a recent three year period.

Open Access (OA) The data included in this tile summarizes the items published in the journal in the JCR data year and in the previous two years. This three-year set of published items is used to provide descriptive analysis of the content and community of the journal.

Like author impact measurements, journal impact measures can be only so informative, and researchers in a discipline will have the best sense of the top journals in their fields.

Limitations of the Journal Impact Factor:

What is CiteScore? 


Calculating the CiteScore is based on the number of citations to documents (articles, reviews, conference papers, book chapters, and data papers) by a journal over four years, divided by the number of the same document types indexed in Scopus and published in those same four years.

For example, the 2022 CiteScore counts the citations received in 2019-2022 to articles, reviews, conference papers, book chapters, and data papers published in 2019-2022, and divides this by the number of these documents published in 2019-2022.

See the following selected evaluations about CiteScore:



What is the Eigenfactor score?

The Eigenfactor score reflects importance or prestige of a scientific journal. Created to help capture the value of publication output vs. journal quality (i.e. the value of a single publication in a major journal vs. many publications in minor journals). It considers not only the number of times in the last five years articles from a journal have been cited during the JCR year, but also the source of those citations. Citations from highly rated (i.e. impactful) journals make a larger contribution to a journal's Eigenfactor score than citations from lesser journals.  

Eigenfactor scores are scaled so that the Eigenfactor scores of all journals listed in Thomson's Journal Citation Reports (JCR) sum to 100. Thus if a journal has an Eigenfactor score of 1.0, it has 1% of the total influence of all indexed publications. In 2013, the journal Nature has the highest Eigenfactor score, with a value of 1.603.

NOTE: Eigernfactor scores are also displayed in Journal Citation Reports.

What is the Normalized Eigenfactor score?

The Normalized Eigenfactor score is scaled so that the average journal has a score of 1. Journals can then be compared and influence measured by their score relative to 1; a journal with a Normalized Eigenfactor Score of 3 has three times the total influence of the average journal in the JCR.

What is the Article Influence Score?

Measures the average influence, per article, of the papers in a journal. Article Influence scores are normalized so that the mean article in the entire Thomson Journal Citation Reports (JCR) database has an article influence of 1.00. For example, in 2006, the top journal by Article Influence score is Annual Reviews of Immunology, with an article influence of 27.5 . This means that the average article in that journal has twenty seven times the influence of the mean article in the JCR.

Advantages of Eigenfactor/Article Influence Score:

  • Eigenfactor scores and Article Influence scores adjust for citation differences across disciplines.
  • The Eigenfactor and AL scores are calculated based on the citations received over a five year period

Disadvantages of Eigenfactor/Article Influence Score:

  • Eigenfactor assigns journals to a single category, making it more difficult to compare across disciplines.
  • Some argue that Eigenfactor score isn't much different than raw citation counts (see this blog post, for example).

Google Scholar H5-index and h5-median The h5-index is equivalent to the Hirsch index, but calculated for a journal rather than an author, over a 5 year period. A h5 of 10 means that during the past five years a journal has published 10 articles which were each cited at least ten times. The h5-​​median is the median num­ber of cita­tions of the arti­cles mak­ing up the h5-​​index

SCImago Journal Ranking (SJR) A portal that includes the journals and country scientific indicators (normalized on a scale of 0 to 100) developed from the information contained in the Scopus database. It provides the major alternative to Web of Science's impact factor.

Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) SNIP is closely related to, but independently calculated and maintained from, SCImago's SJR. Its metric, Raw Impact per Paper (RIP) is comparable to both impact factor and SJR.

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