Open Access Week at The OU

Join us on October 23rd for a day of Open Access training and discussions, in celebration of International Open Access Week.

Perhaps you want to learn a bit more about Open Access Publishing, or the REF Open Access Policy. Chris Biggs from the Library Support Team will be on hand to give an overview of the Open Access landscape in his training session Getting to grips with Open Access Publishing from 10.30 – 12.00. You can sign up to join this training session via My Learning Centre.

Stick around for our lunchtime seminar (12.30 – 1.30pm) to hear Dr Muriel Swijghuisen Reigersberg from Research, Enterprise and Scholarship (RES) present on the topic of open knowledge distribution and how this may (or may not) provide opportunities to enhance the capacity of the Global South and other areas to participate in the production, sharing and consumption of new knowledge.  As a backdrop to this discussion, she will refer to her involvement with the Curtin Open Knowledge Initiative (COKI) as well as her own research writing and publishing practices within the field of ethnomusicology.

This will be followed by a presentation from David Jenkins of the Research Support Team of results from a project he has been coordinating, investigating the possibility of The OU signing up to an external responsible metrics statement, such as the San Francisco declaration on Research Assessment (DORA).

Sign up to attend this lunchtime seminar in person or online via EventBrite.

We look forward to seeing you there!

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We are the (Data) Champions!

The Library Research Support team are pleased to announce the launch of our new Data Champions programme, with the first of our Data Champions forums being held in the Library last week. 

This forum was an opportunity for us to meet our Champions and for them to get to know each other, as well as to find out more about what the programme entails. 

The Data Champions programme has been set up as a way of promoting OU Research Data Management (RDM) services and tools within faculties and to provide more discipline-specific data management advice and support.  

As part of this programme, our Data Champions have been asked to contribute to the development and delivery of a data-focussed seminar series across the coming year; and planning for our first session has already begun in earnest. 

Our 13 Data Champions offer representation across every faculty and bring with them a range of experiences of managing diverse data types, from highly sensitive interview data to archival materials and the re-use of third-party data. After hearing more about the programme (and a bit of themed cake!), our Champions made an enthusiastic start, sharing their data management experiences and producing a whole host of fantastic ideas to theme our future seminars around.   

Keep your eyes open for updates on our first seminar!

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Literature searching for postgraduate researchers – online training

We have a series of online training for OU postgraduate researchers, full details and sign-up information is below:

Literature Searching for Postgraduate Researchers 1 (online)

Mon, 7 October 2019

14:00 – 15:00 BST

Online access – via the Research Support online training room

This session involves reflecting on a model of the literature search process in order to (re)conceptualize literature searching, increase confidence with the process and assess the model in relation to your practice. We will then look at formulating and revising a search strategy in order to perform a systematic and comprehensive search – this includes choosing databases, choosing keywords and recording your searches.

Please note that you are required to undertake a brief exercise in advance of this session and be prepared to discuss your thoughts on the exercise in the session itself. Details of this exercise are on the booking page.

To book a place, please go to https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/literature-searching-for-postgraduate-researchers-1-online-tickets-73822925357

Literature Searching for Postgraduate Researchers 2 (online)*

Wed, 16 October 2019

15:30 – 16:30 BST

Online access – via the Research Support online training room

This session involves identifying techniques for narrowing and broadening searches and when to apply them in order to construct and revise a search strategy. We will then identify and reflect on means of saving and exporting search results, this will allow us to manage search results effectively and understand the benefits of doing so.

Please note that you are required to undertake a brief exercise in advance of this session and be prepared to discuss your thoughts on the exercise in the session itself. Details of this exercise are on the booking page.

To book a place, please go to https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/literature-searching-for-postgraduate-researchers-2-online-tickets-73824522133

Literature Searching for Postgraduate Researchers 3 (online)*

Mon, 21 October 2019

10:00 – 11:00 BST

Online access – via the Research Support online training room

This session involves analysing search results using the CRAAP framework in order to identify the most appropriate papers on a topic and revise your search strategy. We will then describe and apply a scoping search process in order to establish the extent of the literature that exists on a topic.

Please note that you are required to undertake a brief exercise in advance of this session and be prepared to discuss your thoughts on the exercise in the session itself. Details of this exercise are on the booking page.

To book a place, please go to https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/literature-searching-for-postgraduate-researchers-3-online-tickets-73825523127

 

*Note – Advanced literature searching 1, 2 and 3 are designed to complement each other. You are very welcome to attend (or watch the recordings of) whichever of the sessions you need but please note that familiarity with content from previous sessions will be assumed and won’t be recapped in detail.

We look forward to seeing you at the training!!

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Postgraduate researcher (PGR) training survey results – 2019

The Library Research Support team recently undertook its annual survey to capture the training needs and communication preferences of postgraduate researchers (PGRs). We got a good response rate (19.3% of PGRs available). Here are some takeaways:

Over a quarter (25.6%) had not attended any OU training whatsoever, whether run by their faculty, the Graduate School, the Library or anyone else

Email was the most common way that PGRs heard about the training they attended (75.7%). Twitter (2.7%) and Facebook (0%) were not well used in this regard

A clear majority felt Library training met their learning needs (89.2%), had clear learning outcomes (89.2%) and included sufficient interactivity (75.6%)

PGRs who attended Library sessions using flipped learning felt it improved their understanding of the topic (86.3%), led them to reflect more about the topic than they would have done otherwise (81.8%) and led to more efficient use of session time (81.8%). Although, fewer (68.2%) felt it enabled the group to discuss issues in more depth

Additional training needs were diverse and the majority were in areas outside the Library’s traditional remit – Nvivo, presentation skills and academic writing were the most requested training topics

 The results will inform the planning and communication of Library Research Support training in the 2019/20 academic year as we continually develop a tailored programme in response to PGR feedback. We are also sharing findings with colleagues in relevant departments/faculties.

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UK Data Service announce 2019 webinar series

The UK Data Service has just published the dates of its free online training sessions for 2019 for developing skills in data use.

The UK Data Service is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and provides access to a collection of high quality social and economic data, including UK census data, international business data, cross-national surveys, and longitudinal studies; as well as providing guidance and training for the development of skills in data use.

These introductory webinars are aimed at anyone interested in using the data collections in their research or teaching. The hour-long sessions will walk you through the range of datasets available from the UK Data Service and demonstrate how to gain access to them, as well as exploring some of the key issues you might encounter when using these various data types.

Two particularly useful sessions for researchers looking to engage with any of their data collections centre on Data Management Basics, which explores how to manage, document, store and safeguard research data with a view to optimising data sharing, and Key issues in re-using data, which highlights some of the main issues associated with secondary analysis.

Why not have a look at the range of sessions available now and sign up?

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Online training – Research Data Management

Over the coming months we will be running a series of online bitesize training sessions on various aspects of research data management. These are open to all OU research staff and postgraduate researchers.

Please follow the links below for further information and joining instructions.

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ORDO best practice #4 – sharing videos

The latest instalment of my series on best practice in ORDO looks at sharing videos.

In late 2017, we were approached by Dr Erica Borgstrom from the faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies. Erica’s research focuses on death and dying, with a particular focus on end of life care. Over the course of the previous year she had been running a series of seminars on death and dying, all of which had been recorded and posted on an OU hosted website. Erica was concerned that the website would not be supported for much longer and that the videos were of high interest and needed to be made available to the public on another platform.This is where ORDO comes in – by putting the videos of the seminars on ORDO, they were given the security and credibility of being hosted on an OU platform, and we were able to guarantee that they would be maintained for a minimum of 10 years. Adding the videos to ORDO gave each one a DOI, enabling Erica and the seminar presenters to cite them at conferences or in papers and ensuring that they are recognised as valid research outputs. ORDO allows in-browser viewing of most audiovisual file types which means that the videos don’t need to be downloaded to be watched. We were also able to add metadata to the records to enable discoverability, and upload extra background documents alongside the videos to add context.Finally, we grouped all the videos together into one collection, giving the entire seminar series a DOI and ensuring that they are seen as a complete body of work.

Seruset Borgstrom, Erica (2017): Open University Death and Dying Seminar Series. figshare. Collection. https://doi.org/10.21954/ou.rd.c.3825658.v2 

Since the seminar series was uploaded to ORDO in January 2018, the videos have consistently featured in our top ten most viewed items. They have been viewed almost 7,500 times and downloaded 571 times.

A brief note from Erica:

I found working with ORDO and the library staff very helpful and exciting. Uploading and storing the videos in this way make them easy to share with a much wider audience and helps us fulfil our mission as an open, and accessible, university. The seminar speakers have also appreciated the professional platform to recognise their talk as a research output.

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“Measuring research: what everyone needs to know” – new ebook available

Want to know more about quantitative research indicators (a.k.a. bibliometrics) such as Journal Impact Factor, h-index or altmetrics? We have a new ebook in stock, containing thorough discussion of this field, the pros and cons of various indicators and the future of measuring research:

Sugimoto, C. R. and Larivière, Vincent (2018) Measuring research : what everyone needs to know(OU login required)

It also answers questions such as:

  • What are the data sources for measuring research?
  • How is impact defined and measured?
  • How is research funding measured?
  • What is the relationship between science indicators and peer review?

 

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“Getting the most out of your doctorate” – new ebook available

We’ve just procured a new ebook at the request of academic staff:

Dollinger, M. (2019) Getting the most out of your doctorate : the importance of supervision, networking and becoming a global academic. First edition. (OU login required).

It focuses on the importance of networking and building relationships as a postgraduate researcher or early career academic:

Beyond the doctoral thesis itself, the most significant factors in the progression of PhD candidature and early academic careers are: the relationships between the researcher and their supervisor(s), the ability to network, and understanding one’s place in the global research arena. Navigating these critical factors and moving from a novice to expert, is a critical undertaking for every PhD candidate and a process that will continue for years following one’s PhD. In this book, scholars from around the world offer practical advice on how to get the most out of one’s doctorate. Readers will get helpful tips on how to sustain healthy and long-lasting relationships with their supervisors, learn how to develop their networks, and understand the important changes impacting the modern PhD candidate.

Edited by Dr Mollie Dollinger (Higher Education Researcher at La Trobe University, Australia) it features contributions from a wide variety of academics, including our very own Prof. Bart Rientes.

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New Podcast – Copyright and your Thesis

You may remember earlier in the year that we created some guidance for Postgraduate Researchers for including third-party copyright works in their thesis. You can now find out more in our new copyright podcast which covers the basics of copyright: what it is, what works it protects, and why and how to seek permission to include copyrighted materials in your thesis.

Between the online guide and the new podcast, we’re confident you’ll get to grips with copyright in no time!

Still got questions? We’re always happy to help. Contact us at: library-research-support@open.ac.uk

 

 

 

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