Research impact refers to the effect your work has on others. For example, when the information and knowledge you impart through your scholarship informs or influences how subsequent researchers approach or perform their own research or when decision makers use your research to make evidence-informed policy, your research has made an impact!
Comprehensive tracking of impact includes tracking your outputs - the many ways in which you communicate your research knowledge, and uptakes - the indications that your research information has been acquired and used. This guide provides a foundation for doing that, but never hesitate to ask your librarian for more information or help.
There are a range of reasons why it is beneficial to track research impact:
(This list has been slightly modified from Bernard Becker Medical Library. (2015). Becker Medical Library Model for Assessment of Research Impact. Retrieved from Assessing the Impact of Research).
The nature of scholarly outputs can differ widely across disciplines, which means there is no single way to assess research impact. The quantitative methods based on citation counts were developed with the sciences in mind. These methods should be used with caution in the social sciences and may not be appropriate in the humanities. Please consult with your subject librarian for more information. The links below lead to impact resources outside the sciences.