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COMM 311 - Resources

Google Scholar

Google Scholar is the world's largest "free" academic search engine. Google Scholar sorts results by presenting "most relevant" citations first by using its PageRank algorithm (a measure of article popularity/value). The cited-by feature leads to other scholarly articles. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: articles, theses, books, abstracts and court opinions, from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other web sites. Google Scholar helps you find relevant work across the world of scholarly research.

Go to Settings, Library Links, select University of British Columbia - UBC eLink, and Save in order to connect your Google Scholar account to UBC library resources.

To enable more precise searching, go to Advanced Search and enter your search keywords. Limit by date, author, or publication title. Search results will include books as well as articles. There is no way to eliminate books from your search results.

Important features: Related Articles, Cited by, and Cite (select APA citation style).


Google Scholar Citations

Connect: Google Scholar Citations

Source data: Citations present in Google Scholar from a five year period ending one year ago. For example, in August, 2015, Google Scholar Citations includes citations from articles published between 2010 and 2014.  More details.

Metrics include:

  • h5-index 
  • h5-median

See Google Scholar Metrics for definitions.

Also available: ranked lists of Top 100 Publications for journals published in a number of languages including English, French  and Chinese.  For English-language publications, additional Top 100 Publications lists are available for broad disciplines (e.g. Social Science), and for subcategories of the broad disciplines, e.g. Family Studies.


Citation Analysis & Impact Factors

Citation Analysis is the examination of the frequency and patterns of citations in articles and books. 

It can be used to evaluate the impact of individual research, mapping impact in a field of research or journal, discover related research, or decide on a publication in which to publish.

 A Journal Impact Factor (JIF) is used to indicate the relative importance of a journal within a given field and a higher JIF is seen as providing more “authority” or “weight” to a researchers’ work.

For much more detailed information, see UBC Library's Citation Analysis & Impact Factors page:

Journal Citation Reports (JCR)

Journal impact factor is based on the # number of articles published in a given journal, and numbers of times articles have been cited over time (e.g., 2 years). Some metrics aim to account for other aspects of citations, including:

  • disciplinary differences in citation patterns
  • the prestige of the journal in which the citing article appears

Journal Citation Reports (JCR®) provides the Journal Impact Factorthe best known journal metric. 

Source data: Journal Citation Reports provides the impact factor, immediacy index, Eigenfactor metrics, and other citation data for approximately 12,000 scholarly and technical journals and conference proceedings from more than 3,300 publishers in over 60 countries in the Science Citation Index Expanded and Social Science Citation Index in the Web of Science Core Collection. Journals listed exclusively in Arts and Humanities Citation Index are not included.

Metrics include:

  • Journal Impact Factor, calculated on the average number of citations received per paper published in that journal during the three preceding years.
  • Immediacy index, based on the number of times articles published in the preceding year were cited in that year.
  • Eigenfactor® Score, based on the number of citations received by articles in a journal, weighted by the rank of the journals the citations appear in. 
  • Article Influence® Score, a measure of the average influence of each of its articles over the first five years after publication.

Also available:  ranked lists of journals in Subject Categories (e.g. History, Forestry, Pathology), based on journal impact factor.