May 19, 2022

New Article: “Altmetrics: What Good are They to Academic Libraries?”

The following full text article appears in Vol.4 No. 2 of the Kansas Library Association College and University Libraries Section Proceedings, a peer-reviewed open access publication.


Altmetrics: What Good are They to Academic Libraries?


Sarah H. Sutton
Emporia State University


Kansas Library Association College and University Libraries Section Proceedings
Vol.4 No. 2 (2014)


New knowledge is built on existing knowledge and academic libraries are the primary repositories of existing knowledge for the scholars whose work they support. In these times of belt tightening and budget reductions, it behooves academic libraries to think about how to demonstrate to administrators the value being returned on investments in the library, and to provide scholars with tools to do the same. Traditional means of measuring the quality of new knowledge like the impact factor and h-index are being made richer and more meaningful through the addition of new, social media based alternative metrics. Altmetrics also provide scholars communicating in non-traditional venues like the blogosphere and the Twitterverse with meaningful measures of the impact of their work. In this presentation I will introduce altmetrics, discuss their advantages and disadvantages relative to more traditional metrics, and propose some specific uses to which academic libraries may put altmetrics in support of the transitions now occurring in scholarly communication and thus in academic libraries

Direct to Full Text Article

See Also: Complete Table of Contents for Vol.4 (2014) No. 2 issue of Kansas Library Association College and University Libraries Section Proceedings

Note: This is a peer-reviewed publication.

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.