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Scholarly Publishing and Communication

Promoting Your Research

Getting Started

Promoting your research is beneficial for a variety of reasons. This can include making your work more discoverable by other researchers and the public. It also allows you to control your online research identity and potentially increase your research impact. The following are a few ideas on how to get started with promoting your work.

  • Create an ORCID iD, a unique identifier that connects your work to your name and distinguishes yourself from other researchers.
  • Publish or post your research outputs and make them open access if you can. This could include protocols, preprints, journal articles, data, software, and code associated with your study.
  • Establish an online researcher profile that showcases your work, citation metrics, peer review contributions, and other research indicators.
  • Include your research outputs on your CV.
  • Make your datasets, software, and code more discoverable in the Pitt Data Catalog.
  • Submit your work to the University of Pittsburgh's institutional repository D-Scholarship@Pitt.

Open Scholarship and Research Impact Challenge

Create an ORCID iD

What is ORCID?

ORCID is a non-profit organization that provides users with a free, persistent digital identifier that distinguishes them from every other researcher. This is a 16-digit number known as an Open Researcher and Contributor iD (ORCID iD), which is affiliated with a profile that individuals can build and edit. 

Your ORCID iD is the hub in the scholarly communication environment, ensuring interoperability between you and your publisher(s), employer institution(s), and funder(s).

How do I get started?

Our guide on Managing Your Scholarly Record with ORCID includes step-by-step instructions for signing up, adding works, and how to use ORCID to save time and increase your research visibility.

Researcher Profiles

Explore the researcher profile tools below and choose one or two to get started. Most of these researcher profiles can sync to your ORCID iD, which makes managing and populating your profile quick and easy.

Visual / Graphical Abstracts

What is a Visual Abstract?

Also known as a Graphical Abstract, it is a visual summary of the information contained in the abstract of a scientific paper. The point of a Visual Abstract is to clearly, concisely, and graphically share the KEY FINDING of an article or research project.

A Visual Abstract is NOT...

  • ...a substitute for reading the article. It IS like a movie preview, giving a peek at things to come.
  • ...a list of all the article details. It IS a summary of main points.
  • ...used to make clinical decisions. It IS used to entice readers to find out more information about the study in question.
  • ...wordy. It DOES primarily contain images and only enough text necessary to convey meaning.

Examples of Visual Abstracts

10 Steps to Create a Visual Abstract

  1. Select the software you're going to use. It doesn't matter what you choose, so pick something you're comfortable with, such as Powerpoint, Keynote, Photoshop, or Pixlr.
  2. Choose the article or research project to promote.
  3. Identify the key outcomes. This is the most important and challenging step, as it can be difficult to limit the focus to no more than 2 or 3 points.
  4. Create the visual fields. Overlaid colored boxes are a simple way to start.
  5. Add the easy, factual information: title, authors, journal or institution.
  6. Add outcome descriptions, using short, precise, and understandable phrases.
  7. Add outcome values, including units if numeric, and any necessary additional brief descriptions.
  8. Add visuals. This is the second most challenging step. Do not use images for which you don't have permission or rights, and give credit for what you do use.
  9. Proofread and double-check all outcomes to make sure they are consistent with the article / research project results.
  10. Export to share or print.
Resources by the founder of #VisualAbstract, Andrew M. Ibrahim, MD.

Resources for Visual Abstracts

Developing Design Thinking
Finding & Using Images

Subscription Databases:

Tips, Tools, & Trainings
Suggested Reading

Press Release

Working with UPMC/Pitt Health Sciences Media Relations to promote your work and expertise is a great way to do public outreach around taxpayer funded research and make new connections with peers and the community Pitt serves.

If your research findings may be of interest to a general audience beyond readers of the journal, you may want to consider promoting it to news media. This is NOT advertising and there is no cost to you, rather it is a process where Pitt Health Sciences media relations officers experienced in science writing work with you to make your findings understandable and engaging to the general public and then promote them to reporters. This promotion can result in newspaper, magazine, TV news, radio and online articles.

To improve the chances of media covering your research, the best time to contact Media Relations is when your article is accepted to a peer-reviewed journal. This allows time for a solid, accurate media outreach plan to be devised and implemented during the journal publication embargo period. Waiting until after the research is published to contact media relations undermines the timeliness that journalists crave and makes it more difficult to attract media attention.

Sometimes reporters will request an interview with you. Pitt Health Sciences public relations officers can give you more information on the outlet and reporter so you can determine if the interview is in your best interest. If you want to do the interview, they can also give you tips and training to make it successful.

Contact if you are contacted by a reporter or have a research publication accepted to a peer-reviewed journal that you think could attract public interest.

Write an Explainer

The University of Pittsburgh is a member of The Conversation, a nonprofit, independent news organization that publishes “explainer” articles written by academic experts. Is a topic in your field making news? Could the science you do be explained to the public better? Is your research something that you think is of interest to more than your peer academics? Write for The Conversation!

Pitt experts work with experienced editors to write approximately 800-word articles that are published with a Creative Commons license, meaning that any news outlet that agrees to run the article in full can republish it for their audiences. Dozens of Pitt authors have written for The Conversation, resulting in millions of reads annually. Every author is given access to a dashboard where they can see which outlets republished their article and get real-time statistics on readership.

To learn more and craft an engaging pitch, contact UPMC/Pitt Health Sciences Media Relations at and tell them you’re interested in writing for The Conversation. A media relations science writer will answer your questions and work with you to pitch an editor.