Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Google Scholar: What is Google Scholar Metrics?

What is Google Scholar? Using Google Scholar, how can you locate scholarly articles, link to articles through Copley Library, and find out how many times articles were cited?

Google Scholar Metrics is . . .

Google Scholar Metrics is a five-year index of journal citations that can be broken down by broad areas of research.  These broad research areas can be further filtered into narrower disciplines.  Google Scholar Metrics displays the citations in these research areas by journal titles in ranked order.  The ranked order of journal titles is based on each title's 5-year h-index and h-median metrics.

Dates of coverage for results in Google Scholar Metrics include articles published between 2013 and 2017.

Google Scholar Metrics also allows you to search its ranked list of journal titles in several languages.

Though results in Google Scholar Metrics leans heavily towards journals, you will also find gray literature, like selective conference articles and preprints from a handful of online archives.

I Want To Publish. How Can I Use Google Scholar Metrics to Help Me Figure Out Where to Publish?

For authors looking to publish their research in widely-indexed journals, Google Scholar Metrics can highlight key indexed publications that might be considered when choosing where to publish. 

Google Scholar displays the journal titles in order by an impact and productivity index known as the h-index

The journals with the highest h-index in Google Scholar Metrics are called its Top Publications.

Sounds Too Good to be True!

Google Scholar Metrics as a tool for research is interesting to understand, but its value is controversial in academia.

After all, Google is a commercial entity.  But there's more than that.

For instance, Google Scholar Metrics does not include coverage of smaller publications or journals with fewer than 100 articles published between 2013 and 2017.

Google Scholar Metrics also clearly states under its list of Top Publications:  Dates and citation counts are estimated and are determined automatically by a computer program.

So, if you're unsure, use a Copley Library resource, like Web of Science, to look into impact factor, or ASK A LIBRARIAN for help!