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Articles with short titles describing the results are cited more often.

Paiva CE, Lima JP, Paiva BS - Clinics (Sao Paulo) (2012)

Bottom Line: The titles were classified according to their contents, namely methods-describing titles and results-describing titles.Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles.Short titles presenting results or conclusions were independently associated with higher citation counts.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Barretos Cancer Hospital, Department of Clinical Oncology, Division of Breast and Gynecological Cancers, SP, Brazil. caredupai@gmail.com

ABSTRACT

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate some features of article titles from open access journals and to assess the possible impact of these titles on predicting the number of article views and citations.

Methods: Research articles (n = 423, published in October 2008) from all Public Library of Science (PLoS) journals and from 12 Biomed Central (BMC) journals were evaluated. Publication metrics (views and citations) were analyzed in December 2011. The titles were classified according to their contents, namely methods-describing titles and results-describing titles. The number of title characters, title typology, the use of a question mark, reference to a specific geographical region, and the use of a colon or a hyphen separating different ideas within a sentence were analyzed to identify predictors of views and citations. A logistic regression model was used to identify independent title characteristics that could predict citation rates.

Results: Short-titled articles had higher viewing and citation rates than those with longer titles. Titles containing a question mark, containing a reference to a specific geographical region, and that used a colon or a hyphen were associated with a lower number of citations. Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles. After multivariate analysis, only a low number of characters and title typology remained as predictors of the number of citations.

Conclusions: Some features of article titles can help predict the number of article views and citation counts. Short titles presenting results or conclusions were independently associated with higher citation counts. The findings presented here could be used by authors, reviewers, and editors to maximize the impact of articles in the scientific community.

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Related in: MedlinePlus

Citation counts according to some features of article titles. A) Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles (p<0.001). B) Articles with titles containing a question mark were cited less often than those without such punctuation (p = 0.046). C) Articles with titles referring to a specific geographic region were cited significantly less often than those without reference to a specific region (p<0.001). D) Articles with titles containing two components separated by a colon or a hyphen had a lower number of citations compared to those with titles without this grammatical structure (p = 0.004).
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f2-cln_67p509: Citation counts according to some features of article titles. A) Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles (p<0.001). B) Articles with titles containing a question mark were cited less often than those without such punctuation (p = 0.046). C) Articles with titles referring to a specific geographic region were cited significantly less often than those without reference to a specific region (p<0.001). D) Articles with titles containing two components separated by a colon or a hyphen had a lower number of citations compared to those with titles without this grammatical structure (p = 0.004).

Mentions: There were 231 (54.6%) methods-describing titles (type 1), 171 (40.4%) results-describing titles (type 2), and 21 (4.9%) non-classifiable titles (type 3). The median numbers of views were not different between groups of articles with different typologies (p = 0.111, data not shown). In contrast, the median number (IQR) of citations for type 1 articles was 8 (10.5), which was significantly less than the median number of citations for type 2 articles (median = 12, IQR = 13) (p<0.001; Figure 2A).


Articles with short titles describing the results are cited more often.

Paiva CE, Lima JP, Paiva BS - Clinics (Sao Paulo) (2012)

Citation counts according to some features of article titles. A) Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles (p<0.001). B) Articles with titles containing a question mark were cited less often than those without such punctuation (p = 0.046). C) Articles with titles referring to a specific geographic region were cited significantly less often than those without reference to a specific region (p<0.001). D) Articles with titles containing two components separated by a colon or a hyphen had a lower number of citations compared to those with titles without this grammatical structure (p = 0.004).
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3351256&req=5

f2-cln_67p509: Citation counts according to some features of article titles. A) Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles (p<0.001). B) Articles with titles containing a question mark were cited less often than those without such punctuation (p = 0.046). C) Articles with titles referring to a specific geographic region were cited significantly less often than those without reference to a specific region (p<0.001). D) Articles with titles containing two components separated by a colon or a hyphen had a lower number of citations compared to those with titles without this grammatical structure (p = 0.004).
Mentions: There were 231 (54.6%) methods-describing titles (type 1), 171 (40.4%) results-describing titles (type 2), and 21 (4.9%) non-classifiable titles (type 3). The median numbers of views were not different between groups of articles with different typologies (p = 0.111, data not shown). In contrast, the median number (IQR) of citations for type 1 articles was 8 (10.5), which was significantly less than the median number of citations for type 2 articles (median = 12, IQR = 13) (p<0.001; Figure 2A).

Bottom Line: The titles were classified according to their contents, namely methods-describing titles and results-describing titles.Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles.Short titles presenting results or conclusions were independently associated with higher citation counts.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Barretos Cancer Hospital, Department of Clinical Oncology, Division of Breast and Gynecological Cancers, SP, Brazil. caredupai@gmail.com

ABSTRACT

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate some features of article titles from open access journals and to assess the possible impact of these titles on predicting the number of article views and citations.

Methods: Research articles (n = 423, published in October 2008) from all Public Library of Science (PLoS) journals and from 12 Biomed Central (BMC) journals were evaluated. Publication metrics (views and citations) were analyzed in December 2011. The titles were classified according to their contents, namely methods-describing titles and results-describing titles. The number of title characters, title typology, the use of a question mark, reference to a specific geographical region, and the use of a colon or a hyphen separating different ideas within a sentence were analyzed to identify predictors of views and citations. A logistic regression model was used to identify independent title characteristics that could predict citation rates.

Results: Short-titled articles had higher viewing and citation rates than those with longer titles. Titles containing a question mark, containing a reference to a specific geographical region, and that used a colon or a hyphen were associated with a lower number of citations. Articles with results-describing titles were cited more often than those with methods-describing titles. After multivariate analysis, only a low number of characters and title typology remained as predictors of the number of citations.

Conclusions: Some features of article titles can help predict the number of article views and citation counts. Short titles presenting results or conclusions were independently associated with higher citation counts. The findings presented here could be used by authors, reviewers, and editors to maximize the impact of articles in the scientific community.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus