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Year : 2016  |  Volume : 2  |  Issue : 2  |  Page : 187-202

Competing for impact and prestige: Deciphering the “alphabet soup” of academic publications and faculty productivity metrics

1 Department of Research and Innovation, St. Luke's University Health Network, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA
2 Heart and Vascular Center, St. Luke's University Health Network, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA
3 Temple University School of Medicine, St. Luke's University Hospital Campus, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA
4 W. L. Estes Memorial Library, St. Luke's University Health Network, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, USA
5 Department of Anesthesiology, University of Toledo, Toledo, Ohio, USA

Correspondence Address:
Stanislaw P Stawicki
Department of Research and Innovation, St. Luke's University Health Network, EW2 – Research Administration, 801 Ostrum Street, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania 18015
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2455-5568.196875

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Accurate quantification of scholarly productivity continues to pose a significant challenge to academic medical institutions seeking to standardize faculty performance metrics. Numerous approaches have been described in this domain, from subjective measures employed in the past to rapidly evolving objective assessments of today. Metrics based on publication characteristics include a variety of easily categorized, normalized, referenced, and quantifiable data points. In general, such measures can be broadly grouped as being author-, manuscript-, and publication/journal-specific. Commonly employed units of measurement are derived from the number of publications and/or citations, in various combinations and derivations. In aggregate, these metrics are utilized to more objectively assess academic productivity, mainly for the purpose of determining faculty promotion and tenure potential; evaluating grant application/renewal competitiveness; journal/publication, and institutional benchmarking; faculty recruitment, retention, and placement; as well as various departmental and institutional performance assessments. This article provides an overview of different measures of academic productivity and scientific impact, focusing on bibliometric data utilization, including advantages and disadvantages of each respective methodological approach. The following core competencies are addressed in this article: Interpersonal skills and communication, practice-based learning and improvement, systems-based practice.

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