Rizkallah, J; Sin, DD. 2010. Integrative Approach to Quality Assessment of Medical Journals Using Impact Factor, Eigenfactor, and Article Influence Scores. PLOS ONE 5 (4): art. no.-e10204
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Rizkallah, J; Sin, DD. 2010. Integrative Approach to Quality Assessment of
Medical Journals Using Impact Factor, Eigenfactor, and Article Influence
Scores. PLOS ONE 5 (4): art. no.-e10204.
Author Full Name(s): Rizkallah, Jacques; Sin, Don D.
Document Type: Article
KeyWords Plus: CITATION; PAGERANK; COUNTS
Background: Impact factor ( IF) is a commonly used surrogate for assessing
the scientific quality of journals and articles. There is growing discontent in the
medical community with the use of this quality assessment tool because of its
many inherent limitations. To help address such concerns, Eigenfactor (ES) and
Article Influence scores (AIS) have been devised to assess scientific impact of
journals. The principal aim was to compare the temporal trends in IF, ES, and
AIS on the rank order of leading medical journals over time.
Methods: The 2001 to 2008 IF, ES, AIS, and number of citable items (CI) of 35
leading medical journals were collected from the Institute of Scientific
Information (ISI) and the http://www.eigenfactor.orgdatabases. The journals
were ranked based on the published 2008 ES, AIS, and IF scores. Temporal
score trends and variations were analyzed.
Results: In general, the AIS and IF values provided similar rank orders. Using ES
values resulted in large changes in the rank orders with higher ranking being
assigned to journals that publish a large volume of articles. Since 2001, the IF
and AIS of most journals increased significantly; however the ES increased in
only 51% of the journals in the analysis. Conversely, 26% of journals
experienced a downward trend in their ES, while the rest experienced no
significant changes (23%). This discordance between temporal trends in IF and
ES was largely driven by temporal changes in the number of CI published by the
Conclusion: The rank order of medical journals changes depending on whether
IF, AIS or ES is used. All of these metrics are sensitive to the number of citable
items published by journals. Consumers should thus consider all of these metrics
rather than just IF alone in assessing the influence and importance of medical
journals in their respective disciplines.
Addresses: [Rizkallah, Jacques] St Pauls Hosp, Dept Med, Div Resp, Vancouver,
BC V6Z 1Y6, Canada; St Pauls Hosp, Providence Heart & Lung Inst, Vancouver,
BC V6Z 1Y6, Canada
Reprint Address: Rizkallah, J, St Pauls Hosp, Dept Med, Div Resp, Vancouver, BC
V6Z 1Y6, Canada.
E-mail Address: don.sin at hli.ubc.ca
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