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Boost your academic profile: Preparing Publications

Tips to help get your work seen and cited

Prepare your publications

Prepare your publications well and vary your outputs

  • Form a reading club with colleagues to get constructive feedback on your outputs before submission.
  • Different output types accrue citations at different rates. Consider writing a review or perspective paper, ideally in a high-impact journal.
  • Consider provocative debate pieces, inputs into policy, and if appropriate for your field, multi-author surveys.
  • If appropriate for your discipline, and not considered as prior publication by your chosen journal, post your manuscript to a pre-print server such as arXiv, bioRxiv, PeerJ Preprints or SSRN.

Use a consistent name and affiliation in your publications

One simple way to make sure that your research outputs are correctly assigned to you (and to your institution) is to standardise the way in you refer to yourself and the format of your affiliation. 

  • Your affiliation must always be ‘University of Reading’ and this should come first, before any departmental or other affiliation
  • Always use the same format for your names and initials on every output.
  • Use your University email
  • Use your ORCID iD when you submit your manuscript.

If you have changed your name through marriage, divorce, deedpoll or gender reassignment, you can make sure that outputs in different names are aggregated by adding the name variations to your ORCID record. 

Cite yourself (when appropriate and in moderation)

  • Always cite your own work correctly, preferably using the DOI if one was assigned.
  • Self-citations can be excluded from citation indices, but advertise your previous relevant work to others.
  • Female authors don’t self-cite as often as male authors. Self-citation is OK when appropriate and in moderation.
  • Cite your colleagues if appropriate.

What to consider before you start writing

Write clear titles and abstracts

  • Think what keywords/phrases your audience might search for.
    You can use tools such as Scopus and Web of Science to perform your own test searches to see what kind of articles are selected based on your proposed article title. 
  • Use keywords and phrases in the title, and repeatedly in the abstract.
    This will help to make the paper more discoverable by search engines. 


  • Co-authors from other countries or other institutions can give a citation advantage (check it out in SciVal).
  • Explore opportunities to collaborate across disciplines thereby tapping into multiple citation networks.
  • Articles with two authors double citations, on average

Share your research data and materials

The open research movement encourages researchers to share software, data and protocols in order to increase the pace of research and make research open to as many people as possible. 
Sharing the underlying data and software code used in your research publications can lead to greater transparency and should aid reproducibility. Several journals now insist that the data supporting a research article are submitted along with the article manuscript. If you deposit your data in a suitable repository you may be able to assign a DOI to the data. This can help others find and cite your research data. 

  • Share your supporting data and other materials, such as software code, using a data repository. Search for a repository at, or use the University’s Research Data Archive 
  • Cite and link to the data from your publication using a DOI or other unique identifier.
  • Contact for advice and assistance in sharing data.