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Four U of M College of Nursing faculty members were named in a study of the most cited nursing researchers in Canadian peer-reviewed journals, led by Dr. Tom Hack (pictured). Hack was also one of the researchers that made the list.

U of M nursing researchers among most cited in Canada

July 4, 2019 — 

Four faculty members at the College of Nursing, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences, were recently recognized for being among the top cited nursing researchers in Canada in a study published June 2019 in the Journal of Advanced Nursing.

The study, led by College of Nursing professor Dr. Tom Hack, is a nine-year follow-up to his previous analysis into the performance of nursing researchers in Canadian peer-reviewed journals. Hack was joined in this effort by James Plohman, research coordinator at Manitoba Centre for Nursing and Health Research, College of Nursing student Ashley Bell and Dr. Bev Temple, associate dean of the  School of Health Sciences, Red Deer College.

“For the initial study, my mentor, Dr. Lesley Degner approached me with the idea. We thought this would be a good way to encourage academic excellence and recognize scholarly leadership,” Hack said. He noted that he and Degner, who is now retired, were both on the 2010 list.

“During the last decade, the number, variety, scope and depth of indices used for this purpose have grown, so we thought it was time to look at this again,” he said.

Dr. Roberta Woodgate

The study reviewed specific articles and the total career citations of each author in five different categories. Authors needed to have the rank of professor, associate professor or assistant professor. Forty-nine academic institutions were analyzed and, in total, 44 researchers from 17 academic institutions earned a spot on the five “top 25” lists.

“The names that appear represent 3.8 per cent of sample of all the nurse academics in Canada, and we are proud that we have four researchers among that group,” Hack said.

Hack, who is the director of the Psychosocial Oncology and Cancer Nursing Research group of the College of Nursing, was named on the lists, along with Dr. Roberta Woodgate, professor and Canada Research Chair in Child and Family Engagement in Health Research and Healthcare, Dr. Susan McClement, associate dean of research, and recently retired professor Dr. Maureen Heaman.

Dr. Susan McClement

Retired faculty are not in the scope of the project, but Heaman was still active with the U of M at the time the study was completed in August 2018.

Hack, McClement and Heaman were among the top 25 most cited Canadian nursing researchers, based on citations to all their published journal articles. Hack and Woodgate were among the top 25 for citations to work that they each first-authored.

Hack had three articles in the 25 most highly cited first-authored studies. His highest was The communication goals and needs of cancer patients: A review, with 237 citations. The study ranked 20th overall. The most cited article was by Dr. Dawn Stacey of the University of Ottawa and had 727 citations.

Hack, Heaman, McClement and Woodgate were all named on the list of the top 25 researchers according to the h-index for all published journal articles. Woodgate, Hack and Heaman were also on the h-index list for those who first-authored articles. The h-index measures the overall impact of a researcher based on his or her total publications and how many times they’ve been cited.

Dr. Maureen Heaman

“It gives you the sense of whether the entirety of an individual’s work has been well-cited.” Hack said.

In terms of overall citations, the U of M ranked third behind the University of Toronto and University of Alberta, which Hack said is significant because those universities have much larger nursing faculties than the U of M.

Dr. Netha Dyck, dean of the College of Nursing, said she is proud to see how strongly the college performed in the study.

“This speaks to the high calibre of these stellar researchers and their exceptional knowledge translation through publication,” she said.

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