Skip to Main Content

Impact Metrics : Home

What are impact metrics?

Impact metrics attempt to quantify the impact of researchers (author level metrics), publications (article level metrics), and journals (journal level metrics). Impact metrics are frequently used to inform considerations such as hiring, promotion, tenure, grants, and choice in journals.

In this guide are pages dedicated to some of the more common metric types. These include:

Every impact metric has its limitations, and they are prone to misuse. For tips on how to responsibly use impact metrics, see the box below.

How can I use impact metrics responsibly?

Person with gears in head icon Learn about the uses and limitations of the different metrics types. Each page of this guide contains information relating to a specific metric's uses, how it's calculated, where you can find it, its limitations, and where you can learn more about the metric.

Checklist icon Follow best practices. Reference the Leiden Manifesto's Ten Principles of Responsible Metrics-based Research Assessment, and DORA's Declaration on Research Assessment.

Presentation iconTell a story. When possible, use multiple types of metrics to communicate research impact, and make sure to contextualize your metrics rather than simply listing them as raw values. Ask yourself, "What is the message I'm trying to convey to my audience with these metrics?"

Magnifying glass icon Keep up to date. Research on impact metrics is continuously evolving. Keeping up to date on limitations, guidance, and the evolution of impact metrics can help you to continue to use metrics deliberately and responsibly. The Keeping Up to Date page of this guide contains resources for keeping informed on current research and guidance on impact metrics.

Contact us!

The Ebling Library provides education and consultation services for the responsible use of impact metrics.

For additional information, contact Paije Wilson ( or Trisha Adamus (