In spite of the April 1st announcement date, it’s no April Fool’s joke – Google is indeed adding a ranking service to Google Scholar. Dubbed Google Scholar Metrics, think of it as the “scholarly” version of Page Rank, only instead of measuring popularity through links, Google Scholar Metrics will use citations.
In Google Scholar’s blog announcement of the new Metrics feature, software engineer Helder Suzuki wrote of aspirations to “help authors worldwide as they consider where to publish their latest article”. An admirable goal, undoubtedly, but there are necessary caveats! Authors (not to mention researchers) using Google Scholar Metrics should consider what is being ranked (the 5 year h-index and h-median), what is included in that calculation, and the update frequency. More details on all of those breakdowns are on Google Scholar’s Metric help page, and The Scholarly Kitchen offers and ever-eloquent and insightful analysis.
See what others are saying about Google Scholar Metrics:
· Significance Magazine
· Scholarship 2.0 Blog