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Social media for researchers

Provides guidelines on platforms and advice for the RMIT community on promoting and engaging with social media, as well as providing copyright information.

Social media altmetrics

Scholarly work gets created, shared, and discussed in a number of ways. While your work may be published and disseminated via journals, which can be measured by citation and journal metrics, your work will also be reached and discussed on social media.

Social media altmetrics measure mentions, tweets, downloads, comments, shares, and use of scholarly work in non-academic discussion forums. These measures can complement traditional metrics to assist in determining your scholarly impact, frequently offering qualitative and contextual uses of your work alongside quantitative measures.

Each social media platform, whether it is used to share presentations, citations, research data, articles, etc. should have altmetric measures attached to it. These could be in the form of downloads, views, hits, shares, saves, etc. Always use these measures with some caution, considering whether they are reliable and whether they truly complement a positive demonstration of your impact.

Benefits to tracking your social media response

  1. Demonstrate valuable non-academic engagement and societal value
  2. Provide evidence in your applications for promotion or tenure
  3. Understand and join the public conversation
  4. See where there is research interest and where there are gaps
  5. Discover non-traditional research outputs

More information about Altmetrics is available from the library guide Altmetrics.

Altmetric tools

Altmetric and PlumX are tools that assist in measuring the impact your research work is having on social media.


Thousands of conversations about scholarly content happen online every day.  Altmetric tracks a range of sources to capture and collate this activity, helping you to monitor and report on the attention surrounding the work you care about.

Altmetric measures can be tracked through the following two resources:


PlumX measures the individual works of a researcher. It divides the types of interactions into five categories:

  1. usage
  2. captures
  3. mentions
  4. social media
  5. citations

PlumX metrics are embedded in databases such as Scopus, ScienceDirect, and EBSCOhost.