AHIS Conference Dublin

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Is there a CoW in the Library? Issues and solutions in providing library services for research

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AHIS Conference Dublin

  1. 1. Is there a CoW in the Library? Issues and solutions in providing library services for research Moira Bent National Teaching Fellow Faculty Liaison Librarian
  2. 2. Today’s talk • Who are “researchers” and what do they do? • The 7 ages model of research • Where do libraries fit into the 21st century picture? • Issues and solutions- do we need a CoW? AHIS Dublin June 2009
  3. 3. What is research? Researchers said .. Research is • Theory-led; Data-led; Scholarship • Grounded in disciplines; multi / inter disciplinary • Investigation; interpretation; gathering evidence • A holistic activity; a set of transferable skills • Collaborative / solo activity • Related to self • Validated by peer group • Made meaningful by an external audience AHIS Dublin June 2009
  4. 4. What are researchers? Researchers said.. Researchers are: • Usually recognised within organization • People who find out new things, reflect and take action • At different levels and career stages • Working in different disciplines • Keen/ obliged to share what they find • Ready to be challenged • Making connections • Passionate • Ambitious A researcher is someone with “enthusiasm, an almost insane desire to know more about what you are interested in…” AHIS Dublin June 2009
  5. 5. The 7 Ages of research • Masters students • Doctoral students • Contract researchers • Early career researchers • Established academic staff • Senior researchers • Experts New Review of Information Networking (2007) 13 (2) : 81-99 AHIS Dublin June 2009
  6. 6. Early • Apprenticeship - influenced by supervisors / tutors / mentors • Skills and competences are defined (also funded and monitored) • Different levels of control • Transition from structured learning to self- organization • Managing different roles e.g. other jobs, developing teaching skills • Information consumer, objective is production “I reckon I spent nearly all my first year reading journal articles.” [Computing Sciences Final year PhD] AHIS Dublin June 2009
  7. 7. Mid • Moving field / moving role / learning a different landscape • Balancing teaching/ mentoring with research • Situating yourself / making your name / establishing credentials – Locally/ wider research community • Need to be adaptable / avoiding isolation • Starting to supervise other researchers • Starting role in management / administration • Information production and consumption • Shift from systematic to pragmatic information retrieval “I hardly ever use databases, probably because I’m not usually starting from a position of knowing nothing. I tend to start with a few key papers and then follow up their references.” [Senior lecturer in Biology] AHIS Dublin June 2009
  8. 8. Late / Senior • Significant role in research leadership and administration • Leading research teams / research centres / research projects • Supervising and examining theses • Teaching research methods • Plenary conference speaker • Editorial board of journals etc. • Refereeing / peer reviewer / specialist assessor • Disseminating research practice or defining their field • Information producers “These days all my papers are invited plenaries and similar tertiary reviews” [Retired Professor of Chemistry, UK] AHIS Dublin June 2009
  9. 9. How is research changing? Researchers said… • More accountability / Fewer blue sky opportunities • More targeted outcomes • More collaboration (UK, overseas, across different types of organisation) • Multidisciplinary research areas • Data archives – data mining, data storage • E science / grid • Repositories / Open access mandates • Harder to know all that is happening, especially in China, India etc AHIS Dublin June 2009
  10. 10. What is the library role in supporting research? Librarians said… • Research methodology - how to do it • Updating skills for older/ experienced researchers • Awareness of needing to know • Understanding scholarly communication issues • Effective use of sources, inc people • Supervisors & librarians - skills assessment • Access to resources • Separate study spaces AHIS Dublin June 2009
  11. 11. Researchers said I have concerns about • Resources: No full text access /Missing / unavailable material • Space: Access/ Noisy study spaces • English as language of scholarship • Management of data • REF/ measuring my impact • Publishing – where and how • Repositories, keeping track of my publications accurately, organising information • Time wasting, quantity/ quality of information • “E” limits research to what is easy AHIS Dublin June 2009
  12. 12. Where can librarians contribute to the research process in future? – Everything we do now…. – More involvement in research proposals – More information literacy development – Understand REF/ personal impact measures/ metrics – Access/ resource sharing (SRX, UKRR) – Help researchers to publish – Develop expertise in data mining/data storage - E science / grid – Support Repositories / Open access mandates – Collection development – less western centric AHIS Dublin June 2009
  13. 13. Types of publication • Book • Book chapter/section • Conference paper/proceedings • E-article • E- book • Book review • Journal article • Magazine article • Newspaper article • Wiki • Report • Thesis • Webpage • Presentation • Handout • Personal communication (letter, blog, email, discussion list, chat room…) AHIS Dublin June 2009
  14. 14. Why do people publish? • Expectation of the job • Condition of the funding • Pressure to publish • Contributing to debate/ body of knowledge/ networking • Passion • Research informed teaching • Intellectual challenge • Personal profile • Sense of achievement/ enjoyable • Advance career • Income generation • Develop skills • Clarify thinking AHIS Dublin June 2009
  15. 15. What stops them? • RAE/REF can skew priorities • Lack of motivation • Don’t have to do it • Other (work) commitments • Too busy to get started • Lack of support • Confidence in own ability • No ideas to write about • Fear of rejection • Fear of open criticism • Lack of knowledge of how to start • Language skills • Information Literacy ability AHIS Dublin June 2009
  16. 16. So publication can be: • Subject based – Peer reviewed paper • Philosophical – Opinion piece – Letter to editor • Pedagogical – Audit of practice – Reflective piece • Whimsical – Laurie Taylor in THE AHIS Dublin June 2009
  17. 17. How can LIS get involved in the publication process? • What do we do now? – Personal examples? – Do we do it well? • What else might we do? – Ideas/ inspirations • What is stopping us – Barriers to effective support • What do we need to help us? – Apart from more money…. AHIS Dublin June 2009
  18. 18. “One thing” The Librarian’s perspective • Advice & support, mentoring • Resources/collection development • Services • Training opportunities • Promote yourself • Use of other services • Use of other academic staff • Networking • Lead by example AHIS Dublin June 2009
  19. 19. Case studies • NUI Maynooth www.anltc.ie • MMU • Northampton Open Access Journals • Newcastle Research Training programmes • JISCiPAS IL researcher leaflet AHIS Dublin June 2009
  20. 20. Some further thoughts • Who else in our organisation is researching/ writing? • Who else is supporting? • Who else do we need to talk to? AHIS Dublin June 2009

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