Archive for the ‘Open access journals’ Category

Top articles of 2016 revealed

December 16, 2016

It doesn’t seem long ago that I talked about the top 100 journal articles for 2015 as ranked by analysis of altmetrics. Altmetrics – literally alternative metrics – explore the impact of research. To consider altmetrics is to look at how many times an article is tweeted about, how many likes it gets, how many times it is mentioned in the media, how often it is blogged about and whether or not it gets any Wikipedia mentions.

One of the organisations that measures impact in this way is Altmetrics: you may have seen the brightly-coloured ‘doughnuts’ appearing next to journal articles on some platforms. Each year, Altmetrics publishes its top 100 articles and just like last year, the results are fascinating. Something that struck me immediately was that many of the highest ranked articles this year concern world events and concerns: for example, in the No. 1 position is an article about Barack Obama. Others that appear in the top 20 include articles on the Zika Virus, and an article by Robin Williams’ widow on her late husband’s illness. Compare this to the 2015 list, which contained articles on equally emotive topics – for example, plastic waste in oceans and antibiotic resistance – but did not have as great an emphasis on what we might term articles relating to ‘popular culture’.

Of course, that might not indicate anything at all, but it’s interesting. Barack Obama has been very much in the news this year; the Zika Virus was another subject of intense media coverage. When people are looking for information on either of those topics, the likelihood is that they will turn to a search engine, and their search may well have led them to an open access, academic article.

A number of these are articles are open access articles, so they can be accessed without having to login to anything, and access does not depend on having an institutional subscription.

The full list of the top 100 articles as ranked by Altmetrics is available here.

Advertisements

Exploring the Top 100 articles of 2015

December 15, 2015

Something fascinating to share this morning. Those of you who have had research published might well be aware of something called altmetrics, which are items of information about research articles that go beyond citation factors, H Indexes and other metrics we normally use to assess research impact.

Altmetrics look at the wider picture: how research is disseminated using the channels we have become accustomed to using to access and share information in every aspect of our lives. Altmetrics look at tweets, Facebook likes, how often the research is shared, is mentioned in the media (for example, the BBC website). Considering altmetrics is to consider blog posts and even Wikipedia references. There are a number of software packages that do this, one of which is Altmetric.

By using the information gathered by Altmetric, the provider has compiled a Top 100 of articles according to the altmetrics of that article. The top article is from the journal Nature and is entitled “A new antibiotic kills pathogens without detectable resistance”. This article has had 97 news stories recorded, 61 blog posts, 161 Facebook posts and an amazing 2,428 tweets. What’s really interesting about looking at this sort of information is that number 6 on this list, “Plastic pollution in the world’s oceans: more than 5 trillion plastic pieces weighing over 250,000 tons afloat at sea”, was published in an open access journal, and therefore is freely available. Although overall it has been ranked lower than the article from Nature, this particular article had seen 162 news stories and 252 Facebook posts. I can see why this article might have attracted attention: the title of it this provocative, shocking even. To me, it demonstrates the value of open access publishing: something that is clearly relevant to the world in which we live is accessible to all who want it.

The full Top 100 from Altmetric is available here.

I wonder if the impact of open access publishing will be seen to be even wider in 2016 as we head towards REF 2020. It will certainly be interesting to look at this sort of information next year!

Extra content added to the Directory of Open Access Journals on Discover@Bolton

November 23, 2015

Around 7,000 extra journals from the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) are now available via Discover@Bolton. DOAJ is an important open access resource, and if you want to ensure that you can discover article from these journals from your Discover@Bolton searches, make sure that you check the “Check this box to search open access resources beyond your library’s collection” option at the top right-hand side of your search results.