The Office of Research and Graduate Studies is now using SciVal to better understand research productivity at CMU. SciVal is a tool that provides students, faculty, and administrators with valuable insight into the research performance of universities worldwide. From the home page, users can get a snapshot of any school’s research performance over the last several years based on its scholarly output, the number of affiliates and authors, as well as the citation impact score. The citation impact score lets users know how well the school is performing compared to the worldwide average, taking into account the quality and quantity of the school’s overall scholarly output.
The impact score can benefit prospective students and administration by revealing subject areas in which a university has expertise. With this information, students can make more informed decisions about the schools and programs of which they wish to apply. Furthermore, by revealing a school’s strengths and weaknesses, the school’s administration can better direct its resources to focus on the areas that need improvement. As a result, schools have the opportunity to improve their overall impact, raise their visibility, and thus attract more students.
Dissection of the citation impact score is just one of the beneficial tools available on SciVal. Users can also filter through and find research that was published within a specific time frame, written by a certain author, or part of an international collaboration. By using the map tool in SciVal, users can see all of the active research projects of which the school is a part. This gives students and faculty who are looking to study or teach abroad the opportunity to connect with scholars from around the world.
Last year, CMU achieved a record amount of scholarly output. This year, the scholarly output looks even stronger, with the second-highest impact of scholarly work at CMU in the past two decades. Dr. David Weindorf, CMU’s Vice President for Research and Innovation, expressed how valuable this tool is for universities, sharing “... it’s an opportunity for us to continually improve as a university, to know our strengths and weaknesses… knowledge is power.”