Answered By: Daniel Hendrix Last Updated: Nov 04, 2014 Views: 227
Impact Factor is a metric used in part to help build a picture of how important a particular publication is to a specific field of study or topical issue being researched and debated. The number tells you how often that particular publication has been cited in other works. If an article contains a breakthrough, for example, it would likely be cited in works from various other author's and professionals within the field it has provided new or important data to, so it would have a very high IF; specifically, IF indicates the work is of value to those who are considered experts on the topic therein discussed.
If an article is not being cited, it will have a low IF, and the information inside would be considered of little value--nothing new has been added to the body of knowledge that the field deems cannon, or the work makes claims or provides information that has a lack of hard evidence, etc.
Be sure to check out the Citation Analysis & Journal Rankings LibGuide link below.
If you'd like to discuss this topic at length, you can contact a librarian at either of our reference desks at MMC Green Library Reference: 305-348-2454, or BBC Hubert Library Reference: 305-919-5726. Or stop by either desk when you're on campus.
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