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Bibliometrics & Responsible Research Evaluation: SciVal (Elsevier)

Learn how to track citations to your research and the limitations of using bibliometric indicators

Help Navigating SciVal

Support and guidance is available for each module within SciVal.  You can access this help by clicking on the question mark icon at the end of each screen to get a run through of that module.

To find help regarding SciVal and metrics, you can click on the question mark icon beside your login. 



Alternatively you can contact Your UCD Scholarly Communications Librarian for assistance:

Jenny Collery

Scholarly Communications Librarian

What Information Does SciVal Contain

The Overview Module holds a a high-level analysis of your institution's research performance based on multiple contributing factors such as publications, citations and collaborations. 

The Benchmarking Module offers you the ability to asses your research performance in comparison to fellow peers. 

The Collaboration Module enables you to measure the current or previous research collaborations of institutions and highlight new opportunities for possible future collaborations in Ireland or globally. 

The Reporting Module allows you to build specifically tailored reports required for your research strategy. 


What is SciVal

SciVal is a benchmarking tool that uses Scopus data in order to identify research output and to pull from a range of metrics to present your research from various perspectives. SciVal can show the performance of your own research, UCD's wider research as well as institutions and individual researchers worldwide. SciVal allows you to visually present and dissect research performance, use a number of metrics to aid in the selection of potential future collaborative partnerships and to benchmark against:

  • Peers 
  • Review co-author networks

Research groups can be created within SciVal from profiles of UCD researchers and external collaborators from other institutions. These research groups can then be used for benchmarking reports to support researchers with:

  • Funding applications
  • Promotion applications 
  • Inform strategic planning

This can also be used to identify current and potential collaborators in addition to research trends analysed to discover the activity and impact of institutions, individuals and current developments.

It is critical to use metrics responsibly, as using only one metric on its own can falsely distort reality. As such it is better to employ multiple metrics in order to offer a more robust account on the institution or individual.  Metrics are designed to be used in addition to peer review or expert opinion and not as a replacement. Metrics are a great tool and can be a useful way to support a researcher's impact narrative, however it is important not to over rely on metrics and to include all of these in your analysis also.

About Overview

There is a wealth of information about individual researchers and institutions available from the Overview module and new data is uploaded approximately every three weeks from Scopus. 

Note: date range, there are a limited number of years are offered here. The Benchmarking module can be used if you require a different time period.  

Note: subject area filters. Exercise caution if you use the subject filters as they are based on journal categories, so  articles published in multidisciplinary journals such as Nature, JAMA, etc will be included in the Multidisciplinary category and not in the subject area related to the article itself and you can only search one category at a time.

There are various options to save and manipulate the data in SciVal, you can export to a pdf document or save to a spreadsheet etc.  Additionally, you can add the data to the Reporting feature and the data will automatically update with each new upload from Scopus and other sources.

The Summary Tab

The Summary tab comprises three sections: Overall Research Performance, Research Topics and Performance Indicators.

Overall Research Performance:

  • Scholarly Output: number of publications. Click on View list of publications to display the details of the publications. This will show the number of citations for each publication. You can also filter the publications, by author, publication year(s), type of publication, collaborating institution etc and download the publications to a spreadsheet.
  • Authors
  • Field-Weighted Citation Impact: the ratio of citations received in relation to the expected world average for  that specific subject field, publication type and publication year. Note: FWCI is less stable on small data sets
  • Citation Count: number of citations
  • Citations per Publication: average number of citations
  • h5-index: h-index based on data from the previous five years
  • Publications by subject area: the pie chart shows the concentration of research in various subject areas. Note: these subject areas are based on journal categories 

Click on the Analyze in more detail link to see a more detailed breakdown including the number of authors, citations and FWCI in pie charts, tables and bar charts.This link will bring you out of the Summary tab and into the Published tab.


Research Topics: these are the most prominent UCD research areas and have the most visibility and momentum at present. 

Note: prominence is not necessarily the same as importance. Comparisons should only be drawn between topics in similar fields.

Using citation links, all Scopus publications are clustered into topics. The Scholarly Output column indicates the number of UCD publications which contribute to this cluster and links to the details of the papers. The Prominence percentile shows how UCD affiliated papers are performing on a worldwide basis. This percentile is comprised of three metrics: citation count, Scopus Views Count and Average CiteScore, which are calculated on the most recent papers only, in order to reflect currency.


If you hover over the topic you will a see link for Analyze Topic at Institution, here you can see metrics such as Field-weighted Citation Impact, Citation Count, Views Count, International Collaboration and more. 

If you click on the Analyze all Topic Clusters at this Institution it will bring you from the Summary tab into the Topic & Topic Clusters tab. Here you will be able to see more data, in a table or a wheel display. 


Other Indicators:  four summary indicators

  • Outputs in Top Citation Percentiles (top 10%):  publications in the top 10% most cited publications worldwide
  • Publications in Top Journal Percentiles (top 10%):  publications in the top 10% journals by CiteScore. CiteScore is somewhat similar to the Journal Impact Factor (JIF), but calculates the average number of citations received in a year by articles published in a journal in the previous three years, while JIF is calculated over a two year period. 
  • Collaboration: international and corporate collaboration

Clicking on Analyze in more detail link will bring you from the Summary tab to either the Published or the Collaboration tab and will provide more data.