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Citation Analysis

What are citation indexes?

When researchers refer to another author’s work in their own published work, they cite it.

Image of cited content

Such citations can be analysed to measure the usage of the cited work.

A citation index is a compilation of all the cited references from articles published during a particular year or period. A citation index allows you to determine the research impact of your publications according to the number of times it has been cited by other researchers.

The h-Index

The h-index is a variation on the concept of times cited. The h-index was proposed in 2005 by Jorge E. Hirsch to quantify the research achievement of physicists based on their publication record. The h-index has been applied to other fields such as biology and computing science.

H-index from a plot of decreasing citations for numbered papers

A researcher with an index of h has published h papers with at least h citations each.

Research Achievement Database (RAD)

Research Achievement Database is a web application which enables academic staff to access the latest information about their research activity sourced from various systems on the QUT network.  Academic staff can view and export information about their published research outputs, project funding as well as HDR student supervisions for the purposes of reporting, promotion or submitting a grant application.  Currently RAD also provides the interface for academic staff to configure parts of their public QUT Staff Profile.  Academic staff are automatically granted access to RAD once they commence work at QUT.  For general enquiries regarding RAD please email



Scopus is the world's largest abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature and quality web sources, with smart tools to track, analyze and visualize research. Find details about Scopus here.

Web of Science

Web of Science® is perhaps the most well-known tool for determining the number of times a publication has been cited.

Web of Science® is made up of three citation indexes owned by Thomson Scientific:

  • Science Citation Index ®
  • Social Sciences Citation Index ®
  • Arts & Humanities Citation Index ®.

Within Web of Science®, cited reference searching can be used to find articles that have cited a previously published work. This enables you to trace research forward in time, to see how an idea has been confirmed, applied, improved or corrected. Cited reference searching can also be used to determine the number of times a publication has been cited.

In Arts & Humanities Citation Index®, cited reference searching also enables you to find articles that make reference to and/or include an illustration of a work of art or a music score.

Cited reference searching is a two-step process. First, you look up a cited reference. You can search by cited author, cited work (e.g. journal title, book title or patent number), or cited year. Second, you select the cited reference(s) of interest, then retrieve the articles that cite the reference(s).

Google Scholar


The Google Scholar Beta logo

Google Scholar indexes citations which can then be analysed using the free program, Publish or Perish.