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Altmetrics showcase the attention and influence of research.


  • Altmetrics are metrics and qualitative data that complement traditional, citation-based metrics.
  • Altmetrics measures the attention a resource generates online, on the social web, research blogs, bookmarks on reference managers and other sources. 
  • Altmetrics can be applied to journal articles, books/book chapters, software, datasets, websites, videos, etc.
  • Altmetrics begin gathering online mentions and shares of your research as soon as it’s published, so you can get almost immediate feedback on how it’s being received long before any citation data becomes available.

What you can do with Altmetrics

1. Find out what attention your research papers are receiving

2. Get notified when your research papers are mentioned

3. Make sure your research is tracked

4. Demonstrate the attention and impact of your research

5. Find research in your discipline that is trending

Advantages of using Altmetrics

► They are quicker to gather than citation-based metrics.

► They can capture more varied impacts than citation-based metrics.

► They apply to more than journal articles and books.

Limitations of using Altmetrics

► Altmetrics don’t tell the complete story.

► Like any metric, there’s a possibility for gaming of altmetrics.

► Altmetrics are moderately new, more research into their use is required.

Standards in Altmetrics

Altmetric data meets all guidelines laid out in the NISO Data Quality Code of Conduct.

Attention Sources

The colours of the Altmetric donut each denote a different source of attention. The amount of each colour in the donut will change depending on which sources a research output has gotten attention from.

Altmetric currently tracks the following attention sources for mentions of research outputs (

Altmetric Donut


How do Altmetric collect mentions across each data source?

The Altmetric Attention Score

This score is an automatically calculated, weighted sum of all of the attention a research output has received.

It is based on 3 main factors:

  1. Volume
  2. Sources
  3. Authors

► Find out about how the attention score is calculated, including the standard weightings for all mention type.