Becoming a successful scholar
function of the quality of ideas we hold in our heads, or of the data we
hold in our hands, but also of the language we use to describe them. We
all understand that "publish of perish" is real and dominates our
professional lives. But "publish or perish" is about surviving, not
succeeding. You don't succeed as a scientist by getting papers published. You succeed as a scientist by getting them cited.
30 tips for successful academic research and writing Deborah Lupton, Impact Blog
- "Connect for inspiration."
Measuring your impact
"Research impact is the demonstrable contribution that excellent
research makes to society and the economy. Impact embraces all the
extremely diverse ways in which research-related knowledge and skills
benefit individual, organisations and nations..." (Research Councils UK)
Citation AnalysisCitation analysis is the examination of the frequency, patterns, and
graphs of citations in articles and books. It uses citations in
scholarly works to establish links to other works or
other researchers. Citation analysis is one of the most widely used
methods of bibliometrics. (Wikipedia)
frequency with which an "average article" in a journal has been cited
in a given year; evaluative measure of a journal's relative importance.
Read more about this in founder Eugene Garfield's The Meaning of the Impact Factor.
h-indexThe h-index is an author-level metric that
attempts to measure both the productivity and citation impact of
the publications of a scientist or scholar. The index is based on the
set of the scientist's most cited papers and the number of citations
that they have received in other publications. (Wikipedia)
Take a closer look using Google Scholar
Read more about the h-index:
- An index to quantify an individual’s scientific research output by: J. E. Hirsch
- Tools for determining the h-index for different disciplines (UTL's Research Impact Guide)
people, journals, books, data sets, presentations, videos, source code
repositories, web pages, etc.
- The Altmetric Bookmarklet - "instantly get article level metrics"
- ImpactStory is an
open-source tool that provides researchers with a number of ways to
measure both their traditional and alternative research outputs. View
researcher Holly Bik's profile.
Other ways to monitor:
Things to read later:
The Impact Blog - London School of Economics and Political Science - many excellent articles and publications on academic impact
associate them with their scholarly output has given rise to
bibliometrics and its extension, altmetrics— the attempt to measure the
impact of a work as it is reflected by mentions in social networks and
news media." (OCLC Report)
Why is researcher identity management important?
- Ensures appropriate credit and recognition are given for scholarly output of all types
- Helps to make a researcher's work for discoverable
- Unambiguously distinguishes you and your work from other researchers
- A researcher may have the same name as you (example: John Smith)
- You may have different versions of your name floating around (J.M. Smith or John Michael Smith) [read more here on PLOS]
How can you manage your researcher identity?Publishers, libraries, and other groups have introduced a variety of
identification schemes to support name disambiguation and help to
capture the full picture of a researcher's work.
Using ORCID to manage your identity:
- ORCID (Open Researcher and Contributor ID) is a nonproprietary alphanumeric code to uniquely identify authors. This is an example: orcid.org/0000-0002-1825-0097
- ORCID allows for the addition of several types of works, such as: working papers, conference posters, and lecture/speeches. Here is a list of the work types that are currently supported.
- ORCID is integrated with many of the major stakeholders in
the research process, such as: funding agencies, publishers, research
UTL's Research Impact guide has for information on managing your research identity, including identifier options.
Traditionally, scholars "talked" to each other through their
publications (who they cited, etc.) and f2f at conferences. Today, a
part of the scholarly conversation takes place online.
- Daniels, J. (2013). From tweet to blog post to peer-reviewed article: How to be a scholar now.
- Dunleavey, P. (2015). Shorter, better, faster, free: Blogging changes the nature of academic research, not just how it is communicated
- Greenhow, C., & Gleason, B. (2014). Social scholarship: Reconsidering scholarly practices in the age of social media. British Journal of Educational Technology, 45(3), n/a–n/a. doi:10.1111/bjet.12150
Social networks in academia
networking and current awareness. Chronicle of Higher Education
article: Social Network Sites Proliferate Despite Some Doubts
- Academia.edu - "a place to share and follow research"
- Academia, Not Edu (Kathleen Fitzpatrick) - a critique
- Focus on Research - U of T only!
- Mendeley - reference manager as well as SNS
- Zotero - reference manager as well as SNS
- SSRN - Social Science Research Network
Writing an academic blog
will. The ResearchImpact blog, Mobilize This! (hosted by York
University) has received over 63,000 page views. Blogs and
microblogging services like Twitter get your research seen by more
non-academics than your peer reviewed papers ever will. The importance
of this is not to be dismissed. The public believes that they deserve a
return on their public investment in your public research."
Source: "To blog or not to blog"
Academic blogging has exploded in the last few years. Blogs can be useful for:
- increasing your impact and visibility
- entering into conversation with others
- current awareness
- following an individual's work
Heap's framework of blog use in digital scholarship.
|Purpose||Type of scholarship||Description of scholarship through blogs|
|Motivation for beginning and maintaining a blog||Open knowledge production||Posting and archiving ideas in progress, “half-baked”|
|Impact||Need to construct and control an online academic persona|
|Audience and public engagement||Being accessible to other people|
|Skills development||Experimenting writing online|
|Benefits of blogging||Open knowledge production||Informal and faster dissemination of information|
|Impact||Invitation by a blog reader to give keynote presentation|
|Promoting a book|
|Audience and public engagement||Mediating relationships between academics and non-academics|
|Complementing blogs with other social software|
|Skills development||Developing self-discipline; clarity in writing|
|Challenges to address||Open knowledge production||Information and opinions presented in blogs may be unsustained|
|Impact||Content on blog is vulnerable, may disappear for server problems|
|Audience and public engagement||Care is needed when writing about third parties (people, institutions) in public|
|Skills development||Difficulties in maintaining the activity and managing time|
Twitter for academics
Twitter is a microblogging service
where you can follow others' posts (tweets) or be followed yourself.
Tweets are grouped by hashtags (#), but can also be searched by word or
Best practices for tweeting at conferences
Types of conference tweets
- Session related – discussions about sessions/workshops
- Social – arranging unofficial meetings/meeting new people
- Logistics – change in room locations/events, information about an individual’s presentation
- Advertising – Tweets from companies present at the meetings
"5. Attribution is key: Be clear in your tweets
about who is saying what. If you don't attribute and/or use quotation
marks when reporting what has been said, people can (and rightly will)
assume it's you saying it. If the speaker is on Twitter, find out what
they are called on Twitter in advance, as their 'handle' will often be
shorter than their name.
6. If you are quoting directly, use quotation marks.
Think direct and indirect reported speech. Never assume anything you
read online is from the public domain. Attribute other people's ideas or
anything else you quote. It's not just good manners, it's professional
7. Even if you completely disagree with what is being said, always be polite and respectful. Don't tweet anything you wouldn't say to a person or group face-to-face."
From her perspective"And then, within the first two minutes, I started hearing rumblings.
And then laughter. […] I didn’t know what was going on but I kept
hearing sounds that made it very clear that something was happening
behind me that was the focus of everyone’s attention."
Further reading on social scholarship
About academic blogging
Conway, D. (2010, June 8). Ten reasons why grad students should blog [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://drewconway.com/zia/2013/3/27/ten-reasons-why-grad-students-should-blog
Faulkes, Z. (2013, June 10). Back room science [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://neurodojo.blogspot.ca/2013/06/back-room-science.html
Heap, T., & Minocha, S. (2012). An empirically grounded framework to guide blogging for digital scholarship. Research in Learning Technology, 20, 176-188. doi: 10.3402/rlt.v20i0.19195
Kirkup, G. (2010). Academic blogging: Academic practice and academic identity. London Review of Education, 8(1), 75-84. doi: 10.1080/14748460903557803
Powell, D. A., Jacob, C. J., & Chapman, B. J. (2012). Using blogs
and new media in academic practice: Potential roles in research,
teaching, learning, and extension. Innovative Higher Education, 37(4), 271-282. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com/docview/1037906463?accountid=14771
ResearchImpact. (2011, May 5). To blog or not to blog? [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://researchimpact.wordpress.com/2011/05/05/to-blog-or-not-to-blog/
Weller, M. (2012, April 29). The virtues of blogging as scholarly activity [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/article/The-Virtues-of-Blogging-as/131666/
Wren-Lewis, S. (2013, January 14). Advice for potential academic bloggers [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/impactofsocialsciences/2013/01/14/advice-for-potential-academic-bloggers/
Chen, B. (2011). Is the backchannel enabled? Using Twitter at
academic conferences. Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the
American Educational Research Association, New Orleans, LA. Retrieved
Gulliver, K. (2012, May 9). 10 commandments of Twitter for academics [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/article/10-Commandments-of-Twitter-for/131813/
Macademise. (2013, February 22). Academic twittering: What I’ve learned from two months on Twitter [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://macademise.wordpress.com/2013/02/22/academic-twittering-what-ive-learned-from-two-months-on-twitter/
Priego, E. (2012, October 3) Live-tweeting at academic conference: 10 rules of thumb [Blog post]. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/higher-education-network/blog/2012/oct/03/ethics-live-tweeting-academic-conferences
ProfHacker. (2011, February 10). Encouraging a conference backchannel on Twitter. Retrieved from http://chronicle.com/blogs/profhacker/encouraging-a-conference-backchannel-on-twitter/30612
Ross, C., Terras, M., Warwick, C., & Welsh, A. (2011) Enabled
backchannel: conference Twitter use by digital humanists. Journal of
Documentation, 67(2), 214 -237. doi: 10.1108/00220411111109449
Get noticed - Scholarly Publishing and Current Awareness - Research guides at University of Toronto