A Focus on Faculty: Promotion, Tenure and Impact Factors

By Kristy Padron, Scholarly Communication Services Librarian

Promotion and tenure (P&T) are milestones in a professor or instructor’s career.  A P&T bid involves creating an ePortfolio to document one’s professional accomplishments and is subject to various levels of review.

A P&T ePortfolio consists of documentation that includes evidence of accomplishments and descriptive information about one’s works.  The February 2022 memorandum by the FAU Office of the Provost states that P&T candidates need to provide the following on their scholarship, research, and/or other creative activity where applicable (Danilowicz, 2022, p. 7):

  • Type of refereeing used.
  • Type of journal or press (scholarly, trade, or commercial)
  • (Journal) Impact Factor (JIF): a bibliometric by Clarivate Analytics that describes the average number of times articles in a given publication are cited every year.
  • Acceptance rates.
  • Citation counts:  a number that describes the sum citations for an articlebook or chapter, or other publication.
  • Other descriptions are recommended in the memorandum and depend on the type of work or accomplishment.

Where do I get this information?
Bibliometric web pages: Journal Citation Reports and others.  Some creators of bibliometrics post their most recent numbers through their web pages:

A journal’s “About” section.  A journal often has a link or section on their home page with its bibliometrics.  Its “About” page may include the Journal Impact Factor or CiteScore if it has one, the type of review and acceptance rates. 

Image source: The Quarterly Journal of Economics: About the journal, by Oxford University Press
Image source: The Quarterly Journal of Economics: About the journal, by Oxford University Press.  

Sources of citation counts. 
The following sites can provide citation count information:

  • Web of Science (WoS):  if an article is available in WoS, it will include its citation counts.
  • Google Scholar: useful for finding citation counts for articles and books.
  • A publisher’s web page for a particular article or other work (see this example in Frontiers in Science).
  • P&T candidates are encouraged to provide the source of where they found a citation count. 

What if I’m not finding any of this information?
Journals that receive bibliometrics are select ones included in publication indexes like Web of Science or Scopus.  If your work was published in a journal that is not included in these indexes, it may not have a JIF or other bibliometric.  If this information is not available, contact a publication’s editor.  An FAU librarian can also help you ascertain if a journal has a bibliometric or assist with citation counts. 

More Information:


Danilowicz, B. (2022, February).  Memorandum:  Promotion and tenure ePortfolio guidelines for tenure track Faculty for 2022- 2023 [Document].  Boca Raton, FL:  Florida Atlantic University.   https://www.fau.edu/provost/documents/pandt-guidelines-memo-2022-2023.pdf

Originality statement:  Updated content added to original post in the FAU Libraries External Relations Blog on April 20, 2021 at https://library.fau.edu/external-relations/focus-faculty-promotion-tenure-and-bibliometrics.

Last modified at 06/22/2022 - 14:46 PM