Why Open Access is so important?

As students, researchers and staff at QUT we go about our studies, research and work often not really thinking about where our information and resources for assignments and research come from. In many cases it’s not until we have trouble with a link to a full-text journal article that we even consider the prospect of not being able to access what we are looking for.  We take it for granted that if we can’t access that article, we can get someone at the library to find it for us, or we can use the library’s document delivery service to have the article sent directly to us.

But what if we didn’t have such easy access to articles, what if we had to pay every time we clicked on the full text link? Well, the simple answer is we do pay; QUT Library provides access to subscriptions to the world’s top academic journals and databases to ensure that we have the best and latest research available at our fingertips.  Most of these articles sit behind a pay wall and aren’t open access.

The main argument for open access to scholarly publishing is that if most research is undertaken by publically funded universities (like QUT), why then should those same institutions then have to pay again, at the library level, to access that research?   And why should this information only be shared with others who can pay for it?  The restrictive practices in traditional academic publishing constrain the growth, reach, visibility, accessibility and impact of information.   This not only stifles innovation and world knowledge, it limits the contribution to research by developing countries who can’t afford subscription costs.

Open Access is important because it benefits everyone. From researchers whose work benefits through increased collaboration and sharing, to communities who benefit from the accelerated pace of discovery.

QUT has been a key innovator in advocating for open access and was the first university to mandate open access to its scholarly work in 2003. QUT’s ePrints is the highest ranked Australian repository  according to Webometrics.  QUT also  hosts the Australasian Open Access Strategy Group (AOASG) which works across the region to advocate, collaborate, raise awareness, and help build capacity in open access. Creative Commons Australia is also based at QUT and provides free licences and tools that copyright owners can use to allow others to share, reuse and remix their material, legally.  QUT library, the AOASG and Creative Commons Australia can provide advice to QUT researchers on all aspects of open access.

During International Open Access week (23-29th Oct) QUT Library will be hosting a number of events and is delighted Heather Joseph, the Executive Director of Scholarly Publishing and Research Coalition (SPARC), an important US based advocacy group will be visiting QUT.

Monday 23rd Oct  2-4pm  – Open Access Bizarre Bazaar – GP-Z1064

Tuesday 24th Oct 1-3pm – Wikipedia Editing Workshop – KG Library

Wednesday 25th Oct 8:15-10am – Brisbane Tri-University event 

Friday 27th Oct 10-11:30am – The Power of Open: International Policy and Practice with Heather Joseph from SPARC – GP-Z1064

 

 

 

Odd socks day…because everyone can have an odd day!

On Friday 6th October put on your odd socks and to help remove the stigma surrounding mental health with Odd Socks Day! Stigma associated with mental illness is one of the biggest barriers to people looking for help. By wearing odd socks you can show your support, plus look great while doing it!

Mental illness has far reaching effects, even if you are not the one in five Australians who might experience it you cannot evade its impact for long. Whether you know someone who is suffering or are suffering yourself there is no condemnation for reaching out for help. Everyone will face the consequences of mental illness at some point, whether financial, social or emotional. QUT offers a lot of support including personal support and counselling as well as financial help and support.

QUT Library also has many resources available so you can learn more about mental health. Whether you are curious, want to support someone or need some advice, you can stay informed with these mental health books, ebooks and videos.

So this Friday make sure to wear your odd socks and share it with us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram #oddsocksday because everyone can have an odd day!

Different socks

Finding Information #2 – Searching PubMed

PubMed is a freely available version of the U.S. National Library of Medicine’s MEDLINE database and also provides access to some additional content not selected for MEDLINE. PubMed doesn’t contain full-text articles, but may link to publishers’ websites and other resources

Access PubMed via QUT Library’s Databases and specialised search tools. You can then select Health or view all databases to find the PubMed link. When you connect to PubMed, using your QUT login details, and search for information a QUT Fulltext Finder link may appear. This allows you to check if a fulltext copy of an article is available via QUT Library.

Simple steps for searching PubMed:

  1. Identify your search terms for each of your main concepts
  2. Perform a simple search by entering terms in the PubMed search box
  3. Include terms from the controlled vocabulary MeSH (Medical Subject Headings)
  4. Use the advanced search to see your search history and combine searches
  5. Apply limits to your search results using the filters sidebar

PubMed uses Automatic Term Mapping which automatically searches for phrases and MeSH terms. Check for successful mapping to MeSH terms by viewing the “Search details” box on your Search results page.

For more help searching PubMed, check out the comprehensive online PubMed Tutorial.

Finding Information #1 – Quickfind Advanced Search

Did you know that QUT Library’s Quickfind searches over 80% of all the resources available at QUT? If you are looking for a book, journal article, report or newspaper article this is a great first place to look!

Quickfind’s Advanced Search can help you find information you need efficiently. You can find the Advanced Search underneath the Quickfind Search Bar.

QUT Library Homepage with advanced search icon highlighted.

Once you are in the Advance Search screen type your keywords into the search boxes. To search efficiently, put each concept or keyword on a different line and choose the right Search Operators to separate the lines. After you’ve entered your keywords you can refine your results further by selecting certain publication years to look at or by choosing the content type you want to focus on, such as articles or books. Advanced Search also allows you to select peer reviewed sources as another option to refine your results. By refining your search using the Advanced Search you will save time and get to relevant results faster, woo!

Here are our top tips to get the most out of advanced searches –

  1. Speak the database’s language. Figure out your keywords and synonyms first and how link them with search operators used by the database so it can understand exactly what you are looking for.
  2. Look for ‘search tips’ or ‘help’ buttons within the database to identify your database’s preferred search operators.
  3. Don’t be afraid to change your search strategy. Look in your results for other keywords or synonyms you can use and try different keywords and combinations.
  4. Try new things. Change the field you are searching in. If you are getting too many results from searching All Fields, try searching for your keywords just within the abstract, or look for a particular author.

Contact your information experts for more assistance with using Quickfind’s Advanced Search.

Children’s Book Week 2017

The theme for Children’s Book Week 2017 is Escape to Everywhere.

Each year in Australia, The Children’s Book Council of Australia brings children and books together in celebrating Children’s Book Week.

Kelvin Grove Library is supporting this event with a wonderful display of all the shortlisted and winning books from The Children’s Book Council of Australia Book of the Year Awards. The winners will be announced and published on their website on Friday 18th August.

Check out the shortlisted books in each category. Awards are presented in the following categories:

  • Book of the Year: Older Readers (For ages 13-18 years)
  • Book of the Year: Younger Readers (For ages 8-12 years)
  • Book of the Year: Early Childhood (For pre and beginning readers)
  • Picture Book of the Year (Can be for any age)
  • Eve Pownall Award for Information Books (For ages 0-18 years)

You can borrow these from QUT Library’s Curriculum Collection, which is located on Level 4 of Kelvin Grove Library. To read the shortlisted and winning books, just visit the Children’s Literature Library Subject Guide and follow the links to QUT Library’s online and print copies.

Paperbark: First Nation Narratives with Aunty Lesley Williams

Join us at QUT Library for Paperbark: First Nation Narratives with Aunty Lesley Williams.

This event is part of celebrating Murri-Ailan Way 2017 @ QUT. Seats are limited so register your attendance. Tea and coffee will be provided from 10:30 am, with author discussion from 11:00 am.

About the author:

Aunty Lesley Williams, a respected Aboriginal Elder, is the co-author of Not Just Black and White: A conversation between a mother and daughter. This book was the winner of both the David Unaipon Award and the Queensland Premier’s Award for a work of State Significance. Told with honesty and humour the book is an extraordinary memoir about two women determined to make sure history is not forgotten.

Library orientation – Need help?

For help with library services check out the Need help? section of the QUT Library website.

Here you will find information about visiting and contacting the library.

Visit HiQ on campus for library support, including help accessing information, referencing and using library materials.

You can also Chat online with a librarian to have your questions about QUT Library services answered.

Need more help?
Here there are links to Study skills workshops, including library workshops on referencing and researching. For individual assistance with your academic study you can book a Study Solutions consultation.

From page to screen

Many books have been adapted for the screen over the years, and this trend isn’t over yet. QUT Library has many of these popular titles in a variety of formats, including as books, ebooks, DVDs and online videos. Visit our library website for tips on searching for feature films and TV series.

Filmstrip-92140__340 by geralt (CC0 Public Domain)

Why not check out these book titles which have inspired recent movies and TV series? These are all available through QUT Library.

Movies

TV series

 

NAIDOC Week – Our Languages Matter

2017 National NAIDOC logo

NAIDOC Week runs from the 2-9 July and celebrates the rich history, culture and achievements of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in Australia. This year’s theme is ‘Our Languages Matter’ and hopes to emphasise the vital role Indigenous language plays in the cultural identity, spirituality for Indigenous Australians and in linking them to their land and water.

Today only about 120 languages from over 250 are still spoken and many are at risk of being lost. Each unique language carries with it stories, rites and knowledge so it is important they each one is preserved and maintained. Ms Anne Martin, National NAIDOC Committee Co-Chair has said,

“Each language is associated with an area of land and has a deep spiritual significance and it is through their own languages, that Indigenous nations maintain their connection with their ancestors, land and law.”

This NAIDOC Week why not learn about the languages that shaped Australia’s Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples. Here are some of the resources available at QUT Library that can get you started on your language journey.

Semester Break is here!

It’s that time of year again where all you have to do rest, recuperate and have some fun. Even though you may not need to use the library to find information for your assignments or to borrow your text books, while on holiday there are still a lot of fun things you can access at the Library to make your semester break even better!

Did you know you can borrow and play computer games? Borrow your favourites for the holiday and play all you want. Kelvin Grove Library even has Xbox One and PS4 consoles available to use in the Games Lab on level 4. The most popular games are already installed on these so you can get playing straight away!

You can also settle in and borrow or stream the movies you have been dying to see and the TV shows you need to catch up on, all through QUT Library. Watch Star Wars: The Force Awakens, get started watching Vikings or re-watch Game of Thrones Season 6 to prepare for the upcoming season. There are so many feature films and TV series to watch semester break won’t be long enough!

Want to rest your eyes from all the screens around you? Don’t forget you can borrow novels from the library too. This includes young adult fiction, found in the Curriculum Collection, and graphic novels too. Plus we have three great eBook platforms, including BorrowBox, Axis 360 and Overdrive fiction collection, where you can find audiobooks as well as some more great reading material.

Now you are all set to enjoy your semester break to the fullest. From all of us at QUT Library, stay safe, have fun and we will see you soon!