A big OA Week thank you

Thanks to everyone who showed up for OA Week 2014 events! We had great discussions about OA issues and hope we sparked some long term interest in OA. We want to thank the UT Libraries administration for providing financial support for this week. And a big thanks to everyone who helped make our second annual OA Week a success.  In addition to everyone in the planning group, the following people were instrumental in making our OA events possible:

  • Greg Aker
  • Emilie Algenio
  • Geoff Bahre
  • Roxanne Bogucka
  • Dale Correa
  • Subhamoy Das
  • Joe Dobbs
  • Phil Doty
  • Janelle Hedstrom
  • David Hillis
  • Mason Jones
  • Frank Meaker
  • Erin McKiernan
  • Bonnie Brown Real
  • Jason Sick
  • Kathryn Strickland
  • Travis Willmann
  • All the cleaning crews at PCL and UTA

OA Week 2014 Planning Group

Here is the list of the wonderful people who volunteered to plan this year’s Open Access Week events.

  • Roxanne Bogucka
  • Carolyn Cunningham
  • Jee Davis
  • Allyssa Guzman
  • Georgia Harper
  • Colleen Lyon
  • Aizul Ortega
  • Kristi Park
  • Robyn Rosenberg
  • Kathryn Strickland

If you have questions about any of the OA Week events, please feel free to ask one of the group members!



The University of California Press will be launching a new open access journal that has a very interesting publication funding model. The journal will have a reasonable article processing charge (APC) of about $875. Of that, $250 will go into a pool that will pay editors and reviewers who work for the journal. Editors and reviewers collect points for making decisions on articles that are submitted to the journal. Payments are based on the total number of points for a given month. For example: if the activity on the journal generated 100 points for the month and you as a reviewer were responsible for 10 of those points, you would get 10% of the APC pool. You would then have an option to keep that money, or pay it forward to an OA fund at your institution or to a fund that future authors in that journal could use to pay their APCs. This will definitely be something to follow!

Here’s an interview with Neil Christensen, Director of Digital Development at UC Press, in which he explains the model in detail.

American dissertations from 1933-1955 now online

EBSCO Information Service has recently made the print index, Doctoral Dissertations Accepted by American Universities (DDAAU), available for free at http://www.OpenDissertations.com. The print index was published by the H.W. Wilson Company, who provided financial support for this project. The database covers dissertations that were completed between 1933-1955 at American universities. More information about the project is available here: http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/2225010#ixzz3Ezj0aDhJ

Communication Toolkit

Engage your departments in our OA Week events!

Flyers to print or attach to emails

Sample message to customize

Hello [department] faculty and instructors,

The UT Libraries are participating in the national celebration of Open Access (OA) Week, October 20-24. Open Access is the free, immediate, online access to products of scholarship. OA Week is organized by SPARC and aims to “promote Open Access as a new norm in scholarship and research.”

The UT Libraries will sponsor three OA Week events that reach out to different campus communities. Of particular interest to faculty are:

Friday, Oct. 17, 12:00-1:00, PCL UFCU Room
Open Access and the Early-career Researcher (ECR): Join our keynote speaker and early-career researcher, Erin McKiernan, as she tackles concerns about open access, open data, and open science and discusses several ways in which ECRs can make their work open and achieve success. Pizza and drinks provided while they last.

Tuesday, Oct. 21, 12:00-1:30, UTA 1.208
Forum on Open Access (OA): Hear from faculty panelists already working with OA, and bring your questions! Pizza and drinks provided while they last.

Thursday, Oct. 23, 12:00-1:30, PCL 1.124
OpenStreetMap Edit-a-thon: Stop by anytime and start mapping.  Pizza (while it lasts), drinks, tutorials, and support will be provided!

Find information about all UT’s 2014 OA Week events on our blog!

Altmetrics brown bag discussion

Our June brown bag discussion focused on altmetrics. Two tools that are offered that could integrate with our UT Digital Repository are PlumX and Altmetric. Both of these tools provide information on downloads, saves, and social media mentions as part of the larger picture for research impact. They are also both subscription-based tools. In a time of shrinking budgets, it may be difficult to add one of these to our toolkit. One person suggesting trying to get administration buy in for paying for a tool like this.

Many participants were concerned about the lack of assessment information for altmetrics tools – if we don’t know how and what they are measuring it’s difficult to evaluate their effectiveness. For instance, do any of the tools differentiate between something that is tweeted to 1 million followers as opposed to something tweeted to 10 followers. And, is there any way of measuring scholarly tweets as opposed to popular tweets and should that matter? And are Zotero and EndNote included in altmetrics, as that is how many scholars “save” an article or book for future reference.

Altmetrics are a quantitative measure, just like traditional bibliometrics. Using both quantitative and qualitative measures for evaluating scholarship provides a much richer picture of a scholar’s work, but quantitative metrics are frequently used alone. The altmetrics tools also don’t really address citation tracking which is a large part of the scholarly communication cycle. NSF and NIH have both widened the definition of what can be considered a research output, so metrics could be collected for non-traditional kinds of publications like data sets.

A final major issue brought up by participants was the lack of awareness about altmetrics among faculty and students. When thinking about education opportunities surrounding altmetrics, there was a desire to make sure those on tenure and promotion committees are aware of these tools and what they can measure and what the measurements mean. Word of mouth was one option presented for getting information out about altmetrics. Identifying early adopters was also put forth as an outreach strategy. The hardest part is catching faculty’s attention before the last minute. We’d like to be able to provide information about altmetrics before faculty are compiling their tenure packages; while there is still time to incorporate them in a meaningful way. Catching faculty interest is a topic of ongoing discussion -emails frequently get deleted before they are read, events on campus are usually not well-attended, and flyers and brochures get limited attention. One faculty member candidly told us that going door-to-door is the only way to get faculty attention. One way of getting around this is by approaching graduate students who may have more incentive for finding ways to stand out among their peers and who may be more familiar with social media, which plays into altmetrics tools. Conducting a survey or using focus groups to elicit faculty and student opinions were also mentioned as ways of moving forward.

In the end, everyone agreed this is an issue that merits further attention. It is likely that at least one library-class this fall will incorporate altmetrics somehow, and there was interest expressed in doing some sort of train-the-trainer event for library staff.

OpenKnowledge MOOC

Stanford University is offering a public, online course this fall called, OpenKnowledge: Changing the global course of learning. Weekly topics include: technological change, digital identity, citizen journalism, citizen science, IP, copyright, open science, open data, open educational resources, evaluating open collections, scholarly publishing, student publishing, information literacy, global perspectives on equity, and the future of open knowledge.

The course is free. Registration and additional information available: https://class.stanford.edu/courses/Education/OpenKnowledge/Fall2014/about.