Abstract: “For the past several years, many libraries have been developing institutional repositories to house their open access publishing efforts to both showcase and preserve their faculty’s research. Some of those same libraries have been building sizable digital collections, often built from digitized versions of materials in their special collections. So what happens when you put these two groups together? The University of South Florida Tampa Library did exactly that by creating a new Digital Scholarship Services unit. The union of these two groups has created new synergies between staff in complementary areas of the library, as we combine unique skill sets from each group to offer new services to the faculty. This presentation will discuss why this change was made, examine some of the benefits and growing pains of this change, and showcase some of the unusual projects that have resulted. For example, a group of faculty from the College of Education has a multimodal project featuring new methodological approaches for analyzing various formats such as websites, images, and film. The library also has two research associates who are archaeologists creating three dimensional representations of artifacts for cultural heritage preservation that are now embedded with metadata in the repository. Creating such collections not only highlights the university’s work but provides materials professors can use to enhance their course curricula and use technology to engage students in new and innovative ways.”
A thesis by Sigurbjörg Jóhannesdóttir, submitted in October 2015.
Abstract: Open Access (OA) are introduced and discussed associated with open scholarship and the international scientific community. The status of Open Access in Iceland is explored through the laws and policies relating to OA, gratis and libre publications within scholarly journals, publication within open repositories, and the opportunities that scientists have to publish scholarly papers in OA.
Data was collected through interviews with experts in the Open Access field. Two questions were used from a study of OA that was conducted among scientists at Reykjavik University (RU) 2014, as well as an analysis of a list of their published articles in scholarly journals in 2013.
The results show that OA is growing slowly in Iceland. Four institutions have OA policies. Icelandic scientists are not taking full advantage of the rules of journals about publishing articles within OA. Scientists’ beliefs concerning the barriers standing in their way for publishing sholarly papers in OA are based on a lack of knowledge and a lack of access to institutional repositories in which they might wish to publish their articles.
The opportunities and challenges that Icelandic universities face regarding open sholarship are outlined and discussed. The universities need to have policies for OA and Open Educational Resources (OER) which are consistent with what is happening internationally. Academics need to receive helpful information on OA, they also need to receive encouragement, advice and support concerning publishing in OA. The universities and the scientific community in Iceland need to take a joint decision on what are the best ways for the continued preservation and publication of research and educational resources in OA.
Jisc Collections has been gathering and releasing data on APC payments made by UK higher education institutions (HEIs).
Following the publication of a new data set (2013-2016), OpenAPC has decided to replace all its existing Jisc collection data with the new version.
Since the data format employed by Jisc differs from the OpenAPC standard in several ways, a comprehensive pre- and postprocessing had to be conducted. The README in the Jisc data folder provides more details.
Abstract: The role of distance education is shifting. Traditionally distance education was limited in the number of people served because of production, reproduction, and distribution costs. Today, while it still costs the university time and money to produce a course, technology has made it such that reproduction costs are almost non-existent. This shift has significant implications, and allows distance educators to play an important role in the fulfillment of the promise of the right to universal education. At little or no cost, universities can make their content available to millions. This content has the potential to substantially improve the quality of life of learners around the world. New distance education technologies, such as OpenCourseWares, act as enablers to achieving the universal right to education. These technologies, and the associated changes in the cost of providing access to education, change distance education’s role from one of classroom alternative to one of social transformer.
“Today, SPARC released the first ‘Connect OER Annual Report, 2016-2017,’ which shows that its member institutions in the U.S. and Canada are working to reduce the cost of textbooks, increase access to learning materials and support better student outcomes through open educational resources (OER)—freely available materials that can be used, adapted and shared to better serve all students.
The report provides insights based on data collected through Connect OER, a pilot project to build a searchable directory maintained by academic libraries to share and discover information about OER activities across North America. This data provides a snapshot of the state of OER on 65 SPARC member campuses—spanning 31 U.S. states and five Canadian provinces—during the 2016-2017 academic year. The six key insights are:
- Libraries are the most engaged entity on campus in efforts to advance OER.
- Within libraries, the department most actively engaged in advancing OER is Scholarly Communications.
- Mathematics and statistics is the academic subject with the most OER traction.
- Nearly half of the participating institutions have a faculty or staff person with explicit OER responsibilities.
- OER grant programs are the most common type of OER program reported.
- SPARC member institutions saved students an estimated $5 million through the use of OER in the 2016-2017 academic year.”
“Present paper attempts to provides the overview of the contributions made by the central universities of India to the open access repository namely Shodhganga. There are in total 46 central universities in India as listed in UGC website out of which only 25 are sharing their research outputs to Shodhganga or are the ones which have signed MoU with Shodhganga. Open ETD plays an important role in the academic community as it helps in preventing duplication of research work already been done. This paper is an intensive case study of the contribution of theses faculty wise and year wise from different central universities in India.”
“Please note that due to high demand, our block grant funding for several COAF partner charities has been depleted as of mid-August 2017….We are pleased that so many LSHTM publications in the past year have been made open access via the ‘gold’ (paid) route. Funding is expected to become available again for the aforementioned COAF partner charities from October, but in the mean time we encourage you to apply for APC waivers from your chosen journals, or follow the ‘green’ (self-archiving, free) route to open access by forwarding your accepted manuscript and acceptance email to firstname.lastname@example.org.”
“Preliminary results from a national effort to expand community college degree programs that use open educational resources (OER) nationwide found high levels of faculty interest and engagement in OER. OER are freely available learning materials that users can download, edit and share.
The study, Launching OER Degree Pathways: An Early Snapshot of Achieving the Dream’s OER Degree Initiative and Emerging Lessons, was released today by Achieving the Dream (ATD). Conducted by SRI International and the rpk GROUP, the report indicates that faculty at colleges participating in ATD’s OER Degree Initiative are changing their teaching and that students are at least as or more engaged using OER courses than students in non-OER classrooms.”
Denmark’s top-ranked higher education institution is to shift away from patenting research conducted in partnership with the private sector to pursue an open science model.
Aarhus University’s new initiative, called Open Science, does not allow either the university or the companies involved to patent any discoveries made during the research process and, at the end, the results are disclosed to everyone – even other firms – in what it calls a “patent-free playground”.