, Volume 109, Issue 2, pp 917–926

Usage patterns of scholarly articles on Web of Science: a study on Web of Science usage count


DOI: 10.1007/s11192-016-2093-0

Cite this article as:
Wang, X., Fang, Z. & Sun, X. Scientometrics (2016) 109: 917. doi:10.1007/s11192-016-2093-0


Usage data of scholarly articles provide a direct way to explore the usage preferences of users. Using the “Usage Count” provided by the Web of Science platform, we collect and analyze the usage data of five journals in the field of Information Science and Library Science, to investigate the usage patterns of scholarly articles on Web of Science. Our analysis finds that the distribution of usage fits a power law. And according to the time distribution of usage, researchers prefer to use more recent papers. As to those old papers, citations play an important role in determining the usage count. Highly cited old papers are more likely to be used even a long time after publication.


Article usage Usage count Altmetrics Usage metrics Web of Science 

Funding information

Funder NameGrant NumberFunding Note
National Natural Science Foundation of China
  • 61301227
Growth Plan of Distinguished Young Scholar in Liaoning Province
  • WJQ2014009
the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities
  • DUT15YQ111
MOE (Ministry of Education in China) Project of Humanities and Social Sciences
  • 11YJA630128
Liaoning Province Higher Education Innovation Team Fund “Research on Responsible Innovation”
  • WT2015002

Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.WISE Lab, Faculty of Humanities and Social SciencesDalian University of TechnologyDalianChina

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