How to determine your h-index


The h-index is a factor determining both the quantity and the quality of a scientist's research output.

Up-to-date information about the h-index can be found in Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hirsch_number).

The h-index can be calculated automatically in Web of Science and Scopus or manually in other databases that provide citation information (e.g. SciFinder, PsychINFO, Google Scholar). The index is based on a list of publications ranked in descending order by the number of citations these publications received. The value of h is equal to the number of papers (N) in the list that have N or more citations.

Before you can calculate your h-index, you will need a complete publication list. The procedures to do this in Web of Science and in Scopus are listed below.

Procedure in Google Scholar

Please, see the short manual (pdf).

Procedure in Web of Science

  1. Go to Web of Science (to be found on the home page of the Digital Library)
  2. Type all the variations of your name in the search box
    • Think of variations in initials
    • Before 1997, Web of Science changed common Dutch names as De Groot or Van der Plas into DeGroot and VANDERPLAS, respectively. Search for both variations
    • Use the Author Index (click on behind the Author search box)
    Example:

    Example 1
  3. Click on Search and a list of your publications appears.
  4. Click on the link Create citation report:

    Example
  5. A Citation report is created with information on the number of publications, the number of times these are cited, and your h-index.
    Example:

    Example
  6. If one of the variations of your name was not a unique name in Web of Science, you can remove the articles that are not yours by using the checkboxes in the publication list. If you are only interested in obtaining a right h-index, it will be enough to verify the articles above the green line (i.e. the first 39 articles in this example). To get the number of publications and citations right, you need to check the whole publication list. Another option is to pay more attention to your initial search, see example:

    Example

Procedure in Scopus

  1. Go to Scopus (to be found on the home page of the Digital Library)
  2. Choose the tab Author Search and type your last name in the search box and for common names also one or more initials. Click Search
  3. A list appears with different variations of your name and different combinations of name and affiliation or subject area. Check all the appropriate entries and click on the button Show documents:

    Example

    N.B. Do not click on the button Citation tracker. At the moment (March 2009), the h-value given when following this path is too low, because only documents published after 1995 are considered in the calculation. This is a mistake in Scopus.
  4. You are now on the Results page. Select all references and click on the Citation tracker button:

    Example

  5. A list of Cited documents is shown ordered by publication year. This can be changed into an ordering by citations. At the right-hand side a box with information on the h-index is given. Clicking on h-graph gives you the visual presentation of the data.

    Example
  6. Articles that are not yours can be deleted from the list and the h-index will be recalculated.

Final remark: If you calculate your h-index in both Web of Science and in Scopus, you will probably experience differences in the value. This is because Scopus only counts citations received since 1996 and/or because Scopus indexes a broader set of journals than Web of Science.

mail icon Wageningen Digital Library, 17 March, 2009