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Research Impact

This guide outlines the resources and support available for ACU researchers to track their research impact.

Article Level Metrics

Article-Level Metrics are an attempt to measure impact at the article level. they can include traditional measures of impact such as citation counts as well as newer metrics like the number of times an article was downloaded. Article-level metrics can also include altmetrics. 

A growing number of journals and publishing platforms are making article-level metrics available. For example, article-level metrics are provided for every article published by the Public Library of Science (PLoS). Metrics include total article views and downloads; citation data from SCOPUSWeb of ScienceCrossRef, and Google Scholar; bookmarks in Mendeley and CiteULike; and mentions on blogs, facebook, and twitter.

Other journals, including Nature, offer similar metrics from, while journals published on the HighWire platform incorporate metrics from ImpactStory

ACU Researchers and Article-Level Metrics

Login to your ACU Reseach Bank account to view the download statistics for the full-text version of your publications.The library’s Research Services staff manage ACU Research Bank. Contact us if you have any questions.

Esteem Measures

In addition to citation metrics, research impact can also be demonstrated qualitatively in terms and social and cultural applications and measures of esteem. Researchers should include esteem measures into grant and promotion applications.

The esteem measures eligible for ERA are:

  • editor of a prestigious work of reference;
  • fellowship of a learned academy and membership of the Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies;
  • recipient of a nationally competitive research fellowship;
  • membership of a statutory committee; and
  • recipient of an Australia Council grant of Australia Council fellowship.

Other esteem measures may include:

  • International engagement/collaboration
  • Influence on industry/government/public policy/community/cultural organisations
  • Successfully acquitted research grants and research projects
  • Awards and Prizes
  • Holdings in Libraries
  • Research Fellowships
  • Membership of Learned Academy or Statutory Committee
  • Patents
  • Registered Designs
  • Plant Breeders Rights
  • NHMRC endorsed Guidelines
  • Research Commercialisation Income


Altmetrics are an alternative set of metrics that are complimentary to traditional, citation-based metrics. In addition to journal articles, Altmetrics can measure the impact of a diverse array of online scholarly outputs such as books, book chapters, data sets, computer code, presentation slides, posters, blog posts, and websites. Altmetrics are an indicator of online usage and measure the number of times a resource is mentioned, shared, downloaded or viewed, highlighting the public or social visibility of the output.