Explaining H-index, i10-index, G-index & other research metrics

This blog post aims to explain various research metrics like the h-index, i-10 index, and g-index. Moreover, we will also be explaining how you can increase these research metrics.

Measuring your research impact

Researchers use different metrics to measure the quality of published papers in journals. It basically gives an idea of the impact of any research paper. These metrics can be applied to any publication on any subject across the world. Through research metrics, one can monitor and quantify published articles. These citation metrics ultimately help in getting a university’s ranking.

Research metrics are one of the most established ways to measure the quality of research work. It tells the importance of particular research. Nowadays, H-index, impact factor, G-index, i-10 index are commonly used research metrics. These metrics help in measuring how much a researcher’s article is cited by the co-researchers. It helps in increasing the impact of the research work.  Researchers can use these metrics for availing various fellowships and scholarships, and gaining job opportunities across the world. 

Also, read the following articles:

Difference between SCI, SCIE, and ESCI journals

Difference between Scopus and Web of Science (WoS)

What is the h-index?

It is commonly known as the Hirsch number or Hirsch index. It was developed by American physicist Jorge E. Hirsch in 2005. h-index can be defined as for a given value of h, the researchers should h number of published articles that are cited at least by h-times. Suppose the author has an h-index of 25, which means that each of his published articles is cited at least 25 times by other researchers. It mainly gives an idea of the quality of the research papers. Generally, the higher the h-index, the greater the impact of a research paper will be. Thus, the h-index can be used to measure the quality and quantity of the research paper simultaneously. The h-index for any author can be determined manually with the help of any citation database. Using Scopus or Web of Science data, the h-index can also be calculated.

What is the i-10 index?

It is another commonly used research metric by the authors/researchers. i-10 index is provided by Google Scholar. It can define as a measure of having publications with at least 10 citations. For example, if an author/researcher’s i-10 index is 6, it indicates that six of his/her publications are cited 10 times. i-10 index also helps in increasing the weightage of any student profile. The main advantage of the i-10 index is that it can be calculated very easily. Google Scholar provides easy and free access to find out these metrics. 

Charles Robert Darwin, a renowned scientist, has the highest number of citations to date. This scientist has 156678 citations with an h-index of 106 and an i-10 index of 526. This means this researcher has received at least 10 citations for each of the 526 published articles. An h-index of 106 means that, out of his total publications, his 106 articles have been cited at least 106 times by different researchers.

What is G-index?

It is another level of measuring research metrics. It was suggested by Leo Egge in 2006. In general, the h-index does include a citation count of highly cites papers. But g-index helps in boosting the profile of a researcher by giving preference to highly cited papers. G-index is basically an advanced version of the h-index.  G-index measures the citation performance for a set of articles. A g-index of 20 indicates that the top 20 publications in a researcher/author profile are cited by 400 times (202). Similarly, a g-index of 10 indicates that the top 10 publications in a researcher profile are cited by 100 times (102)

How to increase the h-index? 

In the present scenario, the quality of any published article is measured by the number of citations he/she received, research metrics like the impact factor of the journal he/she has published, and the h-index of any author profile. Generally, during the entire research career, if the researcher receives of h-index of 25 or more, it is considered to be an excellent researcher’s profile. However, on average most of the researchers have an h-index between 10-15.

  • In order to increase the h-index, one must publish papers of high quality. The researcher should ensure that he/she has not published any article in predatory/fake journals. The researcher should publish more and more original research articles. Although, sometimes publishing more review articles receives a greater number of citations, that ultimately increases the h-index in a profile.  
  • Secondly, another way of increasing the h-index is through proper communication of the published article. He/she can advertise through various social media platforms such as Twitter, and ResearchGate, and continuously update the Google scholar profile. This will mainly help in increasing the visibility of published articles. 
  • Thirdly, the researchers while writing the manuscript, he/she should ensure that the title of the paper is simple, clear, short, and concise. He/she should use a maximum of 5-6 appropriate keywords in the abstract. The abstract should be written in a very informative manner. It should briefly describe the research study. The research paper should always explain the novelty/newness of his/her article. Usually, the first sentence of the article appears in the all-search engines. So, it should be written in a very attractive manner. The abstract should be written in a such way it gives an overall summary of the research findings. 
  • Fourthly, if it is possible, the researcher should publish in open-access journals. OA journals also undergo a peer-review process. Generally, these journals are available on online platforms which are easy to access and free of charge. Through open-access journals, readers can get full-text access to published articles easily. It will ultimately draw the attention of more audiences, which will ultimately help in gaining citations, thus increasing the h-index. 

What is considered to be a good i-10 index? 

Similar to the h-index, if the author/researcher has an i-10 index of 25 or more, it is considered an excellent research profile. An i-10 index of 25 means that, out of total publications, the researcher has received at least 10 citations for every 25 published articles. The i-10 index differs from researcher to researcher. It mainly depends on the subject area and sub-section of the research area. Generally, publishing more articles related to solving practical problems receives a greater number of citations. Professors with arts and humanities backgrounds may not have a higher i-index as compared to professors with science backgrounds. However, the i-10 index is the second-well-recognized research metric after the h-index.

I Hope, this blog post will help you to understand various research metrics used in research.

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