Tuesday, March 06, 2012

How the game is played


An efficient and effective system for interactive student feedback using Google+ to enhance an institutional virtual learning environment was published in the Leicester Research Archive on 7th February, and in 22 days was accessed 1,175 times. This is a very gratifying outcome of my first experiment with open peer review. To put that number in context, the average number of views for a PloS ONE article is 900 per year (but since the distribution of accesses will be skewed by a few very high values, we really need to know the median, which will be lower than the mean).

Given that we know:
  1. Articles in lower-ranked journals have a greater increase rate of citations if they are freely accessible, and:
  2. Heavily tweeted articles are eleven times more likely to be highly cited than less tweeted articles, then:
this is how the game is played. As I wrote recently, we are all publishers now. That means taking on all the roles that publishers formerly fulfilled, including not only publication, but also marketing. I'd love to know what the numbers are for my papers in Bioscience Education and Research in Learning Technology, but that data is not available to me. If I want value added to my papers, I need to add it myself.

A.J. Cann


  1. I tweeted about some similar metrics after Andy Farke's research notes passed the 1000 view mark in 4 days on figshare, there is so much research impact that is not being captured:!/figshare/status/176971338416799745

  2. It is indeed. In my EdMedia debate about digital scholarship being recognised I argued that one of the driving factors would be competition. Academics are an egotistical bunch and if having a good network and open access means your papers get cited more, then that will drive its uptake far more than people such as us extolling its virtues.