Monthly Archives: July 2015

MANTRA: Free online training for Research Data Management

MANTRAIf you collect, create, use or re-use data during your research, it’s important to make sure that your data management skills are up to scratch. Good research data management is necessary to ensure compliance with a number of funder policies, as well as the OU’s policy on research data management, but it can also positively impact your everyday working practice. By developing processes to store, describe, share and preserve your data you will see an improvement in efficiency and teamwork and may even spot connections in your data you might otherwise have missed.

Library Services run training sessions on Research Data Management throughout the year, but in the meantime if you want to improve your practice, or need a refresher on a certain aspect of data management why not try using MANTRA? This fantastic online training resource developed by the Data Library at the University of Edinburgh covers a range of topics relating to Research Data Management. Each module takes around 20 minutes to complete and is a great way to improve your knowledge at your own pace. Topics covered include:

MANTRA is free for anyone to use at: 

Open Access research in Open Access courses

Recently a FutureLearn MOOC  linked to a full text research article archived in ORO.  The paper was “New directions for early literacy in a digital age: the iPad. Journal of Early Childhood Literacy, 2014  (Early View) by Rosie Flewitt, David Messer and Natalia Kucirkova.” and it featured in the “Childhood in the digital age” MOOC.

A short extract from the paper appeared in the body of the course and the full text ORO item was linked to as a “See Also” option.  The full text was used free of charge with no need to worry about licenses as all full text content in ORO is made available with a CC-BY-NC-ND license.

Using ORO is a cost effective and increasingly popular way of getting OU research publications into module materials.  Astrid Wissenburg gave a great presentation outlining some of these opportunities at the Inspiring Content event last year.  The presentation is available to watch again here: “Sprinkling Gold Dust: challenging students with cutting edge research“.

The ORO item “New directions for early literacy in a digital age…” was the most visited item page in ORO immediately after it was used in the MOOC and showed a marked spike in both site visits and downloads.


Feel free to contact us if you are interested in using ORO items in an OU module or MOOC.

Top ORO Downloads for June

Here are the top ORO downloads for June.

Again certain faculties are very well represented in the list, which indicates to me the value of an institutional repository to particular disciplines not served by well established subject repositories.  I’ll pick this up next month when I produce some statistics for the University year and I’ll post findings to the blog.


PDF is available here: OROTop15DownloadsJune2015