Citation Index Databases at BLS

The Brooklyn Law School Library has online subscriptions to two Thomson Reuters databases, Web of Science and Journal Citation Reports (JCR), that together provide valuable information for faculty members working toward promotion and tenure. Both databases contain information that can help assess the impact of a particular author, article, or periodical. The datebases are accessible on campus via the Library’s A-Z List of databases.

Web of Science is an online citation index that will lead to books, academic journals, and other literature that have cited to a particular work. Researchers can obtain literature showing the greatest impact in a field, or more than one discipline. For example, a paper’s influence can be determined by linking to all the papers that have cited it. In this way, researchers can assess current trends, patterns, and emerging fields of research. Web of Science has indexing coverage from the year 1900 to the present. A Thomson Reuters tutorial for Web of Science is available at this link.

JCR allows researchers to evaluate and compare journals using citation data drawn from over 7,500 scholarly and technical journals from more than 3,300 publishers in over 60 countries. It is the only source of citation data on journals, and includes virtually all areas of science, technology, and social sciences. A tutorial for using JCR is at this link. Journal Citation Reports will help the researcher identify the:

  • Most frequently cited journals in a field
  • Highest impact journals in a field
  • Largest journals in a field

Citation and article counts are important indicators of how frequently current researchers are using individual journals. By tabulating and aggregating citation and article counts, JCR offers a unique perspective for journal evaluation and comparison.

These databases provide valuable information for students beginning research in a particular discipline or area of research. The databases do have limitations as not every journal that is published is listed in JCR. Together they provide a great deal of valuable information for both the new researcher and the more experienced faculty member applying for tenure.