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What is altmetrics?

Altmetrics provides an insight into how much attention a scientific publication receives in various information channels, such as social media, news media and official investigations.

It also includes metrics that show the use of publications, such as the number of downloads or how many times they have been saved in other systems. While these metrics are more technical in nature, they provide important information about how interesting a publication is and whether it has aroused enough interest that many people would want to download or save it.

Two leading players in altmetrics include and Plum Analytics. University West has no subscriptions to these services, but for Altmetrics there are free resources for researchers.

Examples of altmetric sources are:

  • Social networks (e.g. ResearchGate)
  • Social bookmarks (e.g. Mendeley)
  • Sharing of social data (e.g. Figshare)
  • Blogs
  • Microblogging services (e.g. X)
  • Wikis (e.g. Wikipedia)

What is altmetrics used for?

  • Demonstrate a broader impact and engagement in funding applications and in your resume.
  • Find out who is discussing your research and what they are saying.
  • Monitor the interest in and dissemination of your research in social media and the news, both nationally and internationally.