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Citation Research and Impact Metrics

What You Need to Know

The h-index measures an individual's citation count over time. When looking at the total article output for an individual, the h-index is the number of articles that have at least that number of times. So if an individual has an h-index of 9, that means they have 9 articles that have been cited 9 or more times.  The higher the number, the better.  

Originally, proponents of the h-index claimed it was a better way to compare individuals' output when those individuals were at different career points.  However, the h-index also appears to favor those with longer careers and therefore, more publications, just as the total citation count does.   Take into consideration the number of publications and career length when comparing individuals' h-indexes.  


Data contained in Experts.ASU is derived from Elsevier's Scopus database.  As the name implies, only data for ASU faculty is available; for authors not in Experts.ASU, use the Scopus database to obtain an h-index.  Because the data comes from the same source, you may compare h-indexes  from Experts.ASU with h-indexes from Scopus (provided the authors are in the same field and at the same career level.)

  1. Go to Experts.ASU
  2. In the center of the screen change the search field from "Everything" to "Profiles" and in the search box put the ASU faculty member's name. 

  3. On the results page, you should see only the entry for that person.  Click on the person's name in the entry's box. 

  4. On the person's profile screen, the citation count is listed on the right side. 

The Scopus database covers some conference proceedings and books/book chapters in addition to journal articles and all document types are covered in the h-index calculation.   Originally Scopus only contained article data from 1996 to the present, however they are now updating pre-1996 cited references going back to 1970 so authors with articles published from 1970-1995 may see their h-index increase over time. 

  • Using an author search, find all the publications in the database for an individual. 

    Recommended search strategy:
    lastname firstinitial   as  author
    AND arizona state university  as   affiliation name

  • Select all articles in the set and then click on "View Citation Overview" 

  • On the citation overview, the h-index is located near the top left of the screen, underneath the gray bar.  


The h-index derived from the Web of Science database is calculated only from journal articles and does not count citations from conference papers, books or book chapters. 

  • Using an author search, find all the publications in the database for an individual. 

    Recommended search strategy:
    lastname firstinitial*   as  author
    AND arizona state university  as   organization-enhanced

  • At the upper corner of the results list, click on "Create Citation Report"

  • On the citation report, the h-index is located on the right-hand side of the screen

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