, Volume 113, Issue 1, pp 417–435 | Cite as

On academic reading: citation patterns and beyond

  • Anton OleinikEmail author
  • Svetlana Kirdina-Chandler
  • Irina Popova
  • Tatyana Shatalova


The article discusses the process of textually mediated communication in science and proposes an approach that complements citation analysis. Namely, it addresses the question of how the author’s text is read by the reader and whether the reader interprets the text in the same manner as the author. Fifty-seven scholarly contributions (articles, book chapters and book reviews), written by three social scientists, were content analyzed with the help of the QDA Miner and WordStat computer programs. The outcomes of the qualitative coding were compared with the outcomes of the analysis of word co-occurrences and the outcomes of the analysis on the basis of a dictionary based on substitution. Our findings suggest that texts have plural interpretations. Depending on the reading context, either the author’s or the reader’s perspective prevails. Also, both the author and the reader may read the text in a either deep or perfunctory manner. Deep reading necessitates spending significant time and cognitive resources.


Academic reading Comprehension Interpretation Citation analysis Content analysis 



The authors are grateful for the Scientometrics anonymous reviewers’ deep and constructive reading of the text. An earlier, Russian, version of the text appeared in SOCIS (Sotsiologicheskie Issledovaniia). The remaining errors and inaccuracies are their own.


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Copyright information

© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest, Hungary 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyMemorial University of NewfoundlandSt. John’sCanada
  2. 2.Central Economics and Mathematics Institute of the Russian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia
  3. 3.Institute of Economics of the Russian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia
  4. 4.Institute of Sociology of the Russian Academy of SciencesMoscowRussia
  5. 5.National Research University – the Higher School of EconomicsMoscowRussia
  6. 6.XXI Century Integration International Secondary SchoolMoscowRussia

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