“The room with the negotiating table isn’t the most pleasant room to be a part of.
But when hundreds of thousands of students are denied access to valuable research, there’s no other place negotiators should be.
It has been almost four months since the University of California’s California Digital Library lost direct access to Elsevier’s journals. Elsevier is one of the largest scientific publishers in the world, owning over 2,500 research journals that UC students and researchers were once able to access. The last agreement between the two parties, which valued at about $10.5 million, ended in December.
Negotiations for a new deal continued into the new year, but firmly broke off at the end of February over differing opinions on both sides about costs and access.
The CDL wanted to lower subscription costs and publish its research with open access to the public, while Elsevier wanted to charge publishing fees to UC authors on top of the monumental subscription cost – a cost that has seen incremental increases since 2014.
At the core of this standoff are two parties bickering with each other on the basis of unfeasible demands. Meanwhile, students will be the ones paying the price….”
“The World Science Day for Peace and Development 2019 will be devoted to the theme of “Open Science, leaving no one behind”. Celebrated every 10 November, World Science Day for Peace and Development highlights the important role of science in society and underlines the importance and relevance of science in our daily lives. Open Science is not only an issue of science being open to the research community, as in “open access” and “open data”, but refers to a science open to society. In spite of the progress made in recent years, we are still witnessing great disparities across and within different regions and different countries when it comes to accessing science, technology and innovation (STI) and enjoying their benefits. To address these disparities and close the existing STI gaps, Open Science is an important step in the right direction….”
“Regardless of whether you feel a stronger affinity with the ZTC [zero textbook cost] camp or the OER camp, there is something we should all strive to remember. Our primary priority should neither be minimizing cost nor maximizing pedagogical flexibility. Our primary priority should be increasing student learning, and our efforts to reduce costs and increase pedagogical flexibility must always be subservient to that end. When we fail to put student learning first, we can become zealots who confuse the means with the ends. This makes it possible for us to pursue cost reduction at any price to student learning. It also makes it possible for us to pursue pedagogical flexibility regardless of the cost to student learning….”
“The Massachusetts Institute of Technology has published its final recommendations on how to increase the open sharing of MIT publications, data, software and educational materials.
An open-access task force was convened in 2017 to update and revise MIT’s open-access policies. The task force published its final recommendations last week. A draft set of recommendations was released in March 2019 for public comment.
The task force recommend that MIT ratify a set of open-access principles, create an open-access fund for monographs and work with department heads to encourage open practices across all disciplines. The existing MIT Faculty Open Access Policy will be expanded to include students, staff, postdoctoral fellows and research staff….”
“I’m hoping some wise and worldly readers have found, figured out or devised an elegant solution to this one.
How do you keep the textbook cost of a math class at zero without sacrificing an online homework platform?…”
“Educators around the world are encouraging better reading practice with Rivet. With Rivet’s real-time feedback and word help, kids can practice independently without getting stuck. Encourage your students’ families to download Rivet for free today!…
More books: Rivet has a rapidly growing digital library of over 3,000 free books across 14 categories in a kid-friendly interface.
Appropriate content: Every book in our library is carefully reviewed by content quality experts and placed across 8 reading levels.
Interactive fun: Game-like features such as points and badges, as well as self-selected avatars and themes keep students excited and motivated to read….”
“Open educational resources (OERs) are not usually a hard sell for students. But what about educators? How do they benefit from having access to resources that are licensed openly? And how can we, as librarians, guide faculty in adopting and adapting OERs? This free webcast will cover essential OER questions and topics, including:
• What does OER mean?
• How is OER helpful not only to students, but to educators as well?
• Locating and adapting OER (or how to interpret Creative Commons licensing attached to OERs)….”
Abstract: Hip-Hop music, business, distribution, and culture exhibit highly-comparable trends in the scholarly communication and publication industry. This article discusses Hip-Hop artists and research authors as content creators, each operating within marketplaces still adjusting to digital, online connectivity. These discussions are intended for classroom use, where students may access their existing knowledge framework of popular media and apply it to a new understanding of the scholarly communication environment. Research instructors and librarians may discover new perspectives to familiar issues through conversations with students engaging with this material in a novel way.
“This project seeks to engage the student community in activities that will maximise the reach of their work and embrace contemporary developments in scholarly communication via the facilitation of a Student Open Access Project, or SOAPBOX for short. Students participating in this project will receive recognition for their participation on this programme materialising in the award of a ‘Certificate in Scholarly Communication’ from the Office of the Dean of Research. …”
“All good, it would seem. These strategies suggest lower cost, “fresher” (or constantly improving) curricular content along with better options for Day One access. After all, textbook prices are the low-hanging fruit (and publishers the villains) in one component of the continuing public anger and angst about college costs. So strategies that promise to reduce costs and enhance Day One access are good things.
And yet, going digital or digital first strategies may actually disadvantage large numbers of low-income, full- and part-time undergraduates, primarily enrolled in community colleges or public four-year comprehensives, who are the intended beneficiaries of these initiatives. As shown below, there is consistent and significant concern from faculty, from provosts/Chief Academic Officers, and from CIOs, about digital access as a key issue in the process of going digital….”