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Mendeley as a Source of 
Readership by Students and Postdocs? 
Evaluating Article Usage by Academic Status 
stefanie.haust...
Introduction 
Measuring use of scholarly documents 
• reshelving, interlibrary loan 
• citation analysis 
• electronic ful...
Introduction 
Research questions: 
• Can Mendeley readership counts be used to monitor use 
of scholarly documents? 
• Doe...
Introduction
Introduction 
• 2.8 million users, 275,860 groups, 535 user documents (02/2014) 
• monthly growth rate of 3.7% (documents)...
Data sets & methods 
• 1,161,145 PubMed papers covered by WoS 
• publication years: 2010-2012 
• document types: articles ...
Data sets & methods 
• aggregating reader counts of multiple entries
Data sets & methods 
• number of readers per academic status 
• number of missing readership status per paper 
29% 7 PhD s...
Data sets & methods 
• aggregating academic status information
Results: disciplines 
• two-thirds of papers saved at least once on Mendeley 
• reader rate comparable to citation rate 
•...
Results: specialties 
Differences between specialties 
Papers with readers 
% 
Mean 
reader rate 
ρ 
NSF discipline or spe...
Results: specialties 
Differences between specialties 
Size of data points represents mean reader rate. 
Papers with reade...
Results: specialties 
Differences between specialties 
Size of data points represents mean reader rate. 
Papers with reade...
Results: specialties 
Differences between specialties 
Geriatrics & Gerontology 
Size of data points represents mean reade...
Results: sectors
Results: sectors 
• Biomedical Research papers mostly used by readers from 
scientific sector 
• more professionals in Cli...
Results: sectors 
Spearman correlation between citations and reader counts 
y = 0.0031x + 0.3823 
0.4 
R² = 0.433 
0.0 
0%...
Results: users
Results: users
Results: users 
0.575** 
0.559** 
0.534** 
0.478** 
0.435** 
0.426** 
0.410** 
0.396** 
0.353** 
0.318** 
0.224** 
0.089**...
Results: users 
0.492** 
0.451** 
0.425** 
0.410** 
0.408** 
0.364** 
0.361** 
0.317** 
0.300** 
0.183** 
0.137** 
0.055**...
Results: users 
0.434** 
0.340** 
0.329** 
0.320** 
0.307** 
0.282** 
0.280** 
0.276** 
0.266** 
0.250** 
0.214** 
0.083**...
Results: users 
0.545** 
0.480** 
0.480** 
0.425** 
0.403** 
0.400** 
0.368** 
0.356** 
0.321** 
0.299** 
0.189** 
0.282**...
Conclusions: general results 
• Mendeley important source of documents’ usage 
• 2.8 million users, 535 million user docum...
Conclusions: general results 
• differences between disciplines and specialties 
• coverage: 
39.5% (Psychoanalysis) – 85....
Limitations 
• metadata quality 
• academic status self-reported 
 need to verify whether accurate and up-to-date 
• rest...
Thank you for your attention! 
Stefanie Haustein 
Questions? 
stefanie.haustein@umontreal.ca 
@stefhaustein
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Mendeley as a Source of Readership by Students and Postdocs? Evaluating Article Usage by Academic Status

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Stefanie Haustein & Vincent Larivière (2014). Mendeley as a Source of Readership by Students and Postdocs? Evaluating Article Usage by Academic Status. Presentation at IATUL 2014. http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2033&context=iatul

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Mendeley as a Source of Readership by Students and Postdocs? Evaluating Article Usage by Academic Status

  1. 1. Mendeley as a Source of Readership by Students and Postdocs? Evaluating Article Usage by Academic Status stefanie.haustein@umontreal.ca @stefhaustein Stefanie Haustein & Vincent Larivière
  2. 2. Introduction Measuring use of scholarly documents • reshelving, interlibrary loan • citation analysis • electronic full text access • social reference managers and bookmarking systems
  3. 3. Introduction Research questions: • Can Mendeley readership counts be used to monitor use of scholarly documents? • Does use differ between scientific fields? • Can different user sectors and user types be identified based on the academic status? • Can the data be used to determine whether specific user groups predict citation impact?
  4. 4. Introduction
  5. 5. Introduction • 2.8 million users, 275,860 groups, 535 user documents (02/2014) • monthly growth rate of 3.7% (documents) and 2.3% (users) 2013 • 68 million unique publications (08/2012; 281 million user documents) Mendeley statistics based on monthly user counts from 10/2010 to 02/2014 on the Mendeley website accessed through the Internet Archive
  6. 6. Data sets & methods • 1,161,145 PubMed papers covered by WoS • publication years: 2010-2012 • document types: articles & reviews • NSF disciplines: Biomedical Research, Clinical Medicine, Health, Psychology (journal-based classification) • open citation window • Mendeley readership data collected via API • Levenshtein distance (5%) to account for errors in metadata • document title (long titles = 70 characters, 5 words) • document title and first author name (short titles)  1.7% false positives, 0.7% false negatives
  7. 7. Data sets & methods • aggregating reader counts of multiple entries
  8. 8. Data sets & methods • number of readers per academic status • number of missing readership status per paper 29% 7 PhD students 21% 5 Master students 8% 2 Doctoral students 58% 14 readership status available 42% 10 missing readership status
  9. 9. Data sets & methods • aggregating academic status information
  10. 10. Results: disciplines • two-thirds of papers saved at least once on Mendeley • reader rate comparable to citation rate • Spearman correlations between citations and reader counts moderately positive (ρ=0.445** / ρ=0.512**) • academic status not available for 30% of reader counts Papers PubMed & WoS Mean citation rate Papers with readers NSF discipline Readership status available missing ρ % Mean reader rate Mean citation rate all disciplines 1,161,145 7.5 65.9% 9.6 8.9 0.512 ** 70.0% 30.0% Biomedical Research 286,398 10.3 72.4% 14.3 11.8 0.575 ** 69.5% 30.5% Clinical Medicine 779,707 6.8 62.8% 7.6 8.2 0.492 ** 70.5% 29.5% Health 59,073 4.4 67.0% 6.5 4.3 0.434 ** 72.8% 27.2% Psychology 35,967 6.1 81.0% 14.0 6.6 0.545 ** 67.5% 32.5%
  11. 11. Results: specialties Differences between specialties Papers with readers % Mean reader rate ρ NSF discipline or specialty all disciplines 65.9% 9.6 0.512 ** Biomedical Research 72.4% 14.3 0.575 ** Anatomy & Morphology 68.2% 5.5 0.380 ** Biochem & Mol Biol 71.6% 12.4 0.550 ** Biomedical Engineering 74.9% 10.4 0.513 ** Biophysics 78.6% 11.8 0.537 ** Cell Biol, Cytol & Histol 74.7% 14.3 0.584 ** Embryology 79.2% 13.2 0.649 ** Gen Biomed Research 72.5% 35.1 0.689 ** Genetics & Heredity 74.1% 17.3 0.558 ** Microbiology 72.7% 10.4 0.555 ** Microscopy 72.5% 6.7 0.494 ** Misc Biomed Research 74.3% 8.8 0.585 ** Nutrition & Dietetic 66.9% 6.6 0.494 ** Parasitology 66.0% 6.1 0.436 ** Physiology 72.1% 8.0 0.457 ** Virology 68.9% 7.1 0.534 ** General Biomedical Research Anatomy & Morphology Size of data points represents mean reader rate. Embryology
  12. 12. Results: specialties Differences between specialties Size of data points represents mean reader rate. Papers with readers % Mean reader rate ρ NSF discipline or specialty all disciplines 65.9% 9.6 0.512 ** Clinical Medicine 62.8% 7.6 0.492 ** Addictive Diseases 68.2% 5.8 0.436 ** Allergy 69.8% 8.3 0.582 ** Anesthesiology 63.0% 6.8 0.497 ** Arthritis & Rheumatology 63.3% 6.3 0.488 ** Cancer 62.8% 7.3 0.550 ** Cardiovascular System 56.6% 7.4 0.555 ** Dentistry 68.5% 5.6 0.398 ** Dermat & Venerial Dis 51.3% 4.2 0.433 ** Endocrinology 64.4% 7.1 0.518 ** Environ & Occupat Health 66.1% 6.9 0.501 ** Fertility 64.4% 4.3 0.417 ** Gastroenterology 58.1% 6.0 0.508 ** Gen & Internal Medicine 51.8% 8.2 0.519 ** Geriatrics 73.5% 7.5 0.494 ** Hematology 59.5% 6.9 0.557 ** Immunology 65.8% 9.1 0.561 ** Misc Clinical Medicine 70.6% 9.1 0.458 ** Psychiatry Neurology & Neurosurgery VeterinaryMedicine
  13. 13. Results: specialties Differences between specialties Size of data points represents mean reader rate. Papers with readers % Mean reader rate ρ NSF discipline or specialty all disciplines 65.9% 9.6 0.512 ** Clinical Medicine 62.8% 7.6 0.492 ** Nephrology 63.9% 5.3 0.458 ** Neurol & Neurosurgery 73.1% 13.6 0.554 ** Obstetrics & Gynecology 60.4% 4.3 0.420 ** Ophthalmology 63.0% 4.4 0.486 ** Orthopedics 66.0% 6.9 0.449 ** Otorhinolaryngology 59.7% 4.1 0.383 ** Pathology 60.1% 5.3 0.503 ** Pediatrics 62.0% 5.8 0.469 ** Pharmacology 63.4% 6.5 0.501 ** Pharmacy 55.9% 4.8 0.405 ** Psychiatry 72.1% 9.2 0.583 ** Radiol & Nucl Medicine 63.9% 6.8 0.467 ** Respiratory System 65.1% 6.8 0.487 ** Surgery 58.0% 4.2 0.420 ** Tropical Medicine 65.4% 5.8 0.478 ** Urology 54.8% 4.1 0.432 ** Veterinary Medicine 66.3% 7.5 0.236 ** Psychiatry Neurology & Neurosurgery VeterinaryMedicine
  14. 14. Results: specialties Differences between specialties Geriatrics & Gerontology Size of data points represents mean reader rate. Papers with readers % Mean reader rate ρ NSF discipline or specialty all disciplines 65.9% 9.6 0.512 ** Health 67.0% 6.5 0.434 ** Geriatrics & Gerontology 69.8% 7.3 0.540 ** Health Policy & Services 66.1% 6.8 0.421 ** Nursing 62.0% 5.1 0.378 ** Public Health 66.0% 6.0 0.439 ** Rehabilitation 73.0% 8.0 0.434 ** Social Sciences, Biomed 76.0% 9.2 0.495 ** Social Studies of Med 49.5% 3.1 0.281 ** Speech-Lang Path & Audio 79.0% 7.7 0.436 ** Psychology 81.0% 14.0 0.545 ** Behav Sci & Compl Psych 83.4% 12.2 0.503 ** Clinical Psychology 80.7% 11.1 0.536 ** Develop & Child Psych 80.3% 13.2 0.531 ** Experimental Psychology 85.6% 19.2 0.582 ** General Psychology 68.5% 9.3 0.493 ** Human Factors 84.2% 9.2 0.434 ** Misc Psychology 79.3% 11.4 0.531 ** Psychoanalysis 39.5% 3.6 0.137 Social Psychology 82.4% 24.8 0.687 ** Social Studies of Medicine Psychoanalysis Social Psychology
  15. 15. Results: sectors
  16. 16. Results: sectors • Biomedical Research papers mostly used by readers from scientific sector • more professionals in Clinical Medicine • more educational and professional users in Health • more educational, less professional users in Psychology % Papers with readers Sector type of readership status Mean reader rate Mean citation rate Scientific Educational Professionalmissing NSF discipline ρ all disciplines 65.9% 9.6 8.9 0.512 ** 48.5% 15.7% 5.8% 30.0% Biomedical Research 72.4% 14.3 11.8 0.575 ** 54.9% 12.0% 2.6% 30.5% Clinical Medicine 62.8% 7.6 8.2 0.492 ** 44.2% 17.6% 8.7% 29.5% Health 67.0% 6.5 4.3 0.434 ** 38.1% 27.3% 7.4% 27.2% Psychology 81.0% 14.0 6.6 0.545 ** 46.6% 19.0% 1.8% 32.5%
  17. 17. Results: sectors Spearman correlation between citations and reader counts y = 0.0031x + 0.3823 0.4 R² = 0.433 0.0 0% 0.1 10% 0.2 20% 0.3 30% 40% 0.5 50% 0.6 60% 0.7 70% 0.8 80% 0.9 90% 1.0 100% Veterinary Medicine Dentistry Misc Clinical Medicine Nursing Social Studies of Med Rehabilitation Anesthesiology Obstetrics & Gynecology Orthopedics Urology Dermat & Venerial Dis Nutrition & Dietetic Surgery Public Health Tropical Medicine Pediatrics Fertility Health Policy & Services Ophthalmology Pharmacy Otorhinolaryngology Speech-Lang Path & Audio Arthritis & Rheumatology Addictive Diseases Gen & Internal Medicine Cardiovascular System Psychoanalysis Respiratory System Nephrology Geriatrics Allergy Environ & Occupat Health Social Sciences, Biomed Pathology Human Factors Pharmacology Gastroenterology Parasitology General Psychology Endocrinology Radiol & Nucl Medicine Misc Biomed Research Geriatrics & Gerontology Clinical Psychology Psychiatry Anatomy & Morphology Cancer Physiology Biomedical Engineering Misc Psychology Social Psychology Hematology Virology Immunology Behav Sci & Compl Psych Develop & Child Psych Microbiology Experimental Psychology Neurol & Neurosurgery Microscopy Biochem & Mol Biol Biophysics Genetics & Heredity Embryology Cell Biol, Cytol & Histol Gen Biomed Research Percentage of readers per sector Professional Educational Scientific missing Spearman's ρ
  18. 18. Results: users
  19. 19. Results: users
  20. 20. Results: users 0.575** 0.559** 0.534** 0.478** 0.435** 0.426** 0.410** 0.396** 0.353** 0.318** 0.224** 0.089** 0.234** 0.135** 0.183** 0.059** 0.071** 0.059** 0.066** 0.074** 0.049** 0.042** 0.040 0.051 all readers Postdoc PhD Student Researcher (Academic) Student (Postgraduate) Researcher (Non-Academic) Professor Assistant Professor Student (Bachelor) Associate Professor Other Professional Librarian Biomedical Research all documents (n=207,255) 100% available reader status (n=80,858) All documents • postdocs and PhD students most similar to citations • librarians least similar 100% status info • PhD students and Postdocs most similar to citations • other professionals and associate professors least similar
  21. 21. Results: users 0.492** 0.451** 0.425** 0.410** 0.408** 0.364** 0.361** 0.317** 0.300** 0.183** 0.137** 0.055** 0.238** 0.075** 0.093** 0.174** 0.121** 0.067** 0.059** 0.056** 0.079** 0.050** 0.030** 0.029** all readers Researcher (Academic) Researcher (Non-Academic) PhD Student Postdoc Assistant Professor Professor Associate Professor Other Professional Student (Postgraduate) Student (Bachelor) Librarian Clinical Medicine all documents (n=489,597) 100% available reader status (n=258,656) All documents • researchers most similar to citations • librarians least similar 100% status info • PhD students and Postdocs most similar to citations • Bachelor students and librarians least similar
  22. 22. Results: users 0.434** 0.340** 0.329** 0.320** 0.307** 0.282** 0.280** 0.276** 0.266** 0.250** 0.214** 0.083** 0.196** 0.127** 0.099** 0.038 0.000 0.093** 0.021 0.004 0.076** 0.044 0.058** -0.028 all readers PhD Student Researcher (Academic) Researcher (Non-Academic) Postdoc Student (Postgraduate) Professor Assistant Professor Other Professional Associate Professor Student (Bachelor) Librarian Health all documents (n=39,564) 100% available reader status (n=19,955) All documents • low correlations • PhD students, researchers and postdocs most similar 100% status info • PhD students and Postdocs most similar to citations • no similarity for librarians and postdocs
  23. 23. Results: users 0.545** 0.480** 0.480** 0.425** 0.403** 0.400** 0.368** 0.356** 0.321** 0.299** 0.189** 0.282** 0.158** 0.125** 0.082** 0.070 0.052 0.076* 0.048 0.107** 0.037 0.120** 0.048 -0.069 all readers PhD Student Postdoc Student (Postgraduate) Professor Researcher (Academic) Assistant Professor Student (Bachelor) Researcher (Non-Academic) Other Professional Associate Professor Librarian Psychology all documents (n=29,121) 100% available reader status (n=7,932) All documents • PhD students and postdocs most similar to citations • librarians least similar 100% status info • PhD students, postdocs and other professionals most similar to citations • negative correlation for librarians
  24. 24. Conclusions: general results • Mendeley important source of documents’ usage • 2.8 million users, 535 million user documents • 65.9% of sampled documents saved 9.6 times on average • reader counts reflect similar but broader use of scholarly documents than citations • Spearman’s ρ = 0.445**/0.512** • PhD students, postgraduate students and postdocs largest user group, librarians the smallest
  25. 25. Conclusions: general results • differences between disciplines and specialties • coverage: 39.5% (Psychoanalysis) – 85.6% (Experimental Psychology) • reader rate: 3.1 (Social Studies of Medicine) – 35.1 (General Biomedical Research) • correlation with citations: 0.137 (Psychoanalysis) – 0.687** (Social Psychology) • user sector • scientific: 27.7% (Veterinary Medicine) – 63.2% (Microscopy) • educational: 8.6% (General Biomedical Research) – 32.5% (Dentistry) • professional: 0.7% (Experimental Psychology) – 18.6% (Veterinary Medicine)
  26. 26. Limitations • metadata quality • academic status self-reported  need to verify whether accurate and up-to-date • restriction to top 3 • differences between user groups cannot be determined due to data restriction • similarity with citation patterns of different user groups cannot be accurately determined • even more problematic for countries and disciplines  complete data needed for detailed and accurate statistics
  27. 27. Thank you for your attention! Stefanie Haustein Questions? stefanie.haustein@umontreal.ca @stefhaustein

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