Analysis of the journal impact factor and related bibliometric indicators in education and educational research category

Orbay M., Karamustafaoglu O., Miranda R.

Education for Information, vol.37, no.3, pp.315-336, 2021 (ESCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 37 Issue: 3
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.3233/efi-200442
  • Journal Name: Education for Information
  • Journal Indexes: Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, IBZ Online, Periodicals Index Online, Aerospace Database, Applied Science & Technology Source, Communication Abstracts, Computer & Applied Sciences, EBSCO Education Source, Education Abstracts, Educational research abstracts (ERA), ERIC (Education Resources Information Center), Information Science and Technology Abstracts, INSPEC, Library and Information Science Abstracts, Library Literature and Information Science, Library, Information Science & Technology Abstracts (LISTA), Metadex, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.315-336
  • Keywords: citation analysis, impact factor, journal quartiles, The education and educational research category
  • Ankara Haci Bayram Veli University Affiliated: No


This study analyzes the journal impact factor and related bibliometric indicators in Education and Educational Research (E&ER) category, highlighting the main differences among journal quartiles, using Web of Science (Social Sciences Citation Index, SSCI) as the data source. High impact journals (Q1) publish only slightly more papers than expected, which is different to other areas. The papers published in Q1 journal have greater average citations and lower uncitedness rates compared to other quartiles, although the differences among quartiles are lower than in other areas. The impact factor is only weakly negative correlated (r=-0.184) with the journal self-citation but strongly correlated with the citedness of the median journal paper (r= 0.864). Although this strong correlation exists, the impact factor is still far to be the perfect indicator for expected citations of a paper due to the high skewness of the citations distribution. This skewness was moderately correlated with the citations received by the most cited paper of the journal (r= 0.649) and the number of papers published by the journal (r= 0.484), but no important differences by journal quartiles were observed. In the period 2013-2018, the average journal impact factor in the E&ER has increased largely from 0.908 to 1.638, which is justified by the field growth but also by the increase in international collaboration and the share of papers published in open access. Despite their inherent limitations, the use of impact factors and related indicators is a starting point for introducing the use of bibliometric tools for objective and consistent assessment of researcher.