Special Article: Academic Productivity of US Neurosurgery Residents as Measured by H-Index: Program Ranking with Correlation to Faculty Productivity

THE H-INDEX IN NEUROSURGERY

Publishing is one of the most important factors used to determine promotional advancement in academic medicine.1,2 While peer review still plays a vital role, there is an ongoing pursuit to develop more objective measures for the evaluation of academic productivity with the use of bibliometric parameters.3 The field of bibliometrics uses quantitative methods to study scholarly publications. Applying these techniques to determine measures of research performance and productivity in academic medicine is in the early stages on both the individual and departmental levels.4

Bibliometric parameters have strengths and weaknesses which must be understood when evaluating results. Total publication count is the most known and rudimentary parameter that offers a basic quantitative metric of publication impact. However, it treats all publications equally and does not differentiate on a paper’s contribution or impact to science. An article publishing important original research findings is counted the same as a case review.4 Citation count is a parameter that offers a basic qualitative metric of impact by totaling the number of times an article has been cited in other papers. This parameter gives importance to articles that have influenced other’s work. Citation count has several drawbacks; however, citation numbers never decline, an extensively read article may not receive citations, self-citation influences, and negative and positive citations count the same.4

From Academic Productivity of US Neurosurgery Residents as Measured by H-Index: Program Ranking with Correlation to Faculty Productivity by Christopher A. Sarkiss, MD, Kyle J. Riley, BS, Christopher M. Hernandez, BS, Eric K. Oermann, MD, Travis R. Ladner, MD, Joshua B. Bederson, MD, Raj K. Shrivastava, MD

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