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Readership & Use Metrics

IUScholarWorks repository currently offers two ways for submitters to see how often their deposits are used by others: usage statistics, which include pageviews and downloads, and altmetrics, which include social media shares, saves, and comments as reported by

All depositors can find a Usage Statistics page for their content at the bottom of the left-hand navigation bar on their item records. (See Figure 1.) Depositors who enable altmetrics for their content can find an "badge," which links out to a comprehensive report, beneath the Usage Statistics link on their item records. (See Figure 2.)

Usage statistics in IUScholarWorks badge in IUScholarWorks

Below, we describe how these measures are compiled, what control submitters have over their display on item records, and what steps are taken to control fraud and "gaming" of the figures. 

Usage Statistics

The term "usage statistics" usually refers to pageviews, downloads, and other information that can be pulled from server logs, where activity on websites is often tracked. DSpace 3.x (which we currently run) tracks and displays the total views an item record receives, the number of downloads from an item record, and the top countries from which views originate. This information is available for all items dating back to the beginning of the repository in 2007.

Automated "hits" on item records can theoretically create pageviews and downloads that do not correspond with legitimate, human-initiated requests for content. Such automation–usually caused by "bots" from services such as Google –can inflate the metrics for an item record. The IUScholarWorks repository team takes measures to protect the integrity of our metrics by adding known bots to a block list, which prevents our metrics compiler from recording hits originating from web crawlers and other bots. We do not currently monitor usage statistics for possible gaming by depositors. Please keep these limitations in mind when using usage statistics to consider the impact of a deposit within our repository.

Enabling and disabling Usage Statistics in IUScholarWorks

Please note that usage statistics are tracked and displayed on item records by system default and cannot be removed from an individual item record.


"Altmetrics" is an umbrella term referring to metrics that quantify the way scholarship is shared, saved, and commented upon on the social web. Altmetrics sources commonly include (but are by no means limited to) TwitterFacebookDeliciousF1000, Mendeley, and CiteULike.

Using APIs, altmetrics are compiled by third-party services such as and ImpactStory. There is currently no standard for what sources such services pull their altmetrics counts from, nor an auditing standard to prevent fraud. (However, the altmetrics community does currently attempt to prevent gaming using ad hoc techniques. See: blogPLOS at Altmetrics '12)

IUScholarWorks has partnered with to track and display the usage of our repository's content on the social web. To learn more about, including the work they do for many major journal publishers, visit their website.

To learn more about how Altmetric compiles and assigns a score to the content they track, visit the support knowledge base.

The use of permanent identifiers when sharing and citing repository content greatly increases the ability of to track metrics for that item. Be sure to use the Handle that appears in the URI field of your item record (NOT the URL that appears in your browser's address bar) when sharing your content with friends and colleagues, and encourage others to do the same when sharing your content.

Enabling and disabling Altmetrics in IUScholarWorks

Altmetrics can be enabled on individual deposits by submitters at the time of deposit. (See this item record for an example of what altmetrics look like on a deposit.) To remove altmetrics for an item record that you have created, please contact your collection administrator or the IUScholarWorks team for your campus.