Explaining Scopus and How to Use It

About Scopus

Scopus is the largest abstract and citation database of peer-reviewed literature: scientific journals, books and conference proceedings. Delivering a comprehensive overview of the world's research output in the fields of science, technology, medicine, social sciences, and arts and humanities, Scopus features smart tools to track, analyze and visualize research.

  • Journals — Over 21,000 titles from more than 5,000 international publishers
  • Books — Almost 50,000 books with more than 75,000 expected by 2015
  • Conference papers — 6.5 million conference papers from over 17,000 worldwide events
  • Patents — 24 million patents from five patent offices

Sign In to Scopus

Registration is quick and free. It allows you to personalize all subscribed Elsevier products, if you have access. For example you can stay up-to-date with Search Alerts and Document Citation Alerts or keep track of your research with Saved Searches.

Journal Metrics in Scopus

Three different impact metrics are all based on methodologies developed by external bibliometricians and use Scopus as the data source. Scopus is used to obtain metrics about the quality and importance of individual journals. The metrics that are calculated are the SCImago Journal Rankings (SJR), Source Normalized Impact per Paper (SNIP) and Impact per Publication (IPP). See the Journal Metrics page for more information on how SJR and SNIP are calculated.

To find the SJR and SNIP for a journal:

  1. Click on the "Browse Sources" link at the top right of the Scopus search box
  2. Enter the name of the journal in the box, and click "Search". A list of matching journal titles is displayed showing the SJR and SNIP for each one
  3. Click on a journal title for more details about the publication


  1. Click “Compare Journals” link at the top right of the Scopus search box
  2. Type in the journal name or key term and all related journal title are listed
  3. Check the box for the journal titles you want to compare and you can see the result graph with SJR or SNIP

Author Metrics in Scopus

Scopus can be used to obtain a range of metrics relating to an author and his work.

To find citation metrics for an author, including the author's h-index:

  1. Access "Scopus" and click the "Author Search" tab
  2. Enter Author's surname and intial or first name
  3. Click "Search" to begin your Author Search. At the "Make Author Selection" page, click on the name of the author(s) you want to search for
  4. On the author details page, you can click on the numbers and links in the "Research" section to display a range of metrics

Article Metrics in Scopus

Scopus provide citation counts for articles indexed within it (limited to article written in 1996 and after). It indexes over 21,000 journals from over 5,000 international publishers across the disciplines. This is shown in the right-hand column of the search results screen.