News from the Field

David Free


Penn State, UNC faculties pass open access resolutions

The Pennsylvania State University Faculty Senate passed an open access resolution in April 2015. The Senate Committee on Libraries, Information Systems, and Technology (LIST) proposed the “Resolution on Open Access to Scholarly Publications” to encourage faculty to deposit their scholarly work in ScholarSphere, support the principle of open access to research results, review rights retained by authors in publishing contracts, and consider publishing their work in reputable open access journals that make their contents freely available online. Scholarsphere is a repository service launched in 2012 by LIST. Students, faculty, and staff at Penn State can use the service to collect their work in one location and create a durable and citable record of their scholarly materials. These materials can be discovered and accessed online.

The passing of the resolution follows an earlier vote by University Libraries faculty to embrace open access principles when publishing their scholarly articles.

Also in April 2015, the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill (UNC) joined the community of leading universities that endorse open access thanks to a unanimous vote by its Faculty Council. Resolution 2015-9: On Endorsing a University Open Access Policy represented more than a year of work by a 35-member faculty Open Access Task Force. The policy benefits faculty by enabling their work to reach an expanded readership, including healthcare workers, journalists, policymakers, K–12 students and teachers, researchers in the private sector, and scholars in the developing world.

UNC faculty who do not already have access to a disciplinary open access repository would be able to preserve and distribute their work through the Carolina Digital Repository, operated by the UNC Library.

2015 ACRL Legislative Agenda

Each year, the ACRL Government Relations Committee, in consultation with the ACRL Board of Directors and staff, formulates an ACRL Legislative Agenda. Drafted with input from key ACRL committees, ACRL leaders, and the ALA Washington Office, the ACRL Legislative Agenda is prioritized and focuses on issues at the national level affecting the welfare of academic and research libraries.

The 2015 ACRL Legislative Agenda focuses on two issues that the U.S. Congress has recently taken, or will most likely take, action on in the year ahead: access to federally funded research and curbing government surveillance. The agenda also includes a watch list of policy issues of great concern to academic librarians. Legislation on these issues is not likely to arise and, moreover, ACRL does not believe that any legislation about these issues is necessary. Issues on the watch list are: net neutrality, copyright reform, fair use, “making available” right, preservation and reproduction exceptions, orphan works, and the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

Georgetown opens Booth Family Center for Special Collections

Georgetown University opened its new Booth Family Center for Special Collections in March 2015. The celebration marked the completion of the $5 million renovation and expansion of the previous Special Collections Research Center on the fifth floor of Lauinger Library. The new center includes a revamped reading room, state-of-the-art storage and exhibition facilities, and, for the first time, a high-tech classroom designed specifically for teaching with rare and valuable items.

The renovation was funded entirely through philanthropy, including a landmark $3 million gift from Suzanne Deal and David G. Booth (P’2012), for whom the new Center is named. In addition, Barbara Ellis Jones (C’1974) and members of the Lauinger family gave lead gifts for the project.

Virginia Commonwealth University launches digitized Historic Fulton Oral History Project

The Virginia Commonwealth University Libraries recently launched a newly digitized version of its Historic Fulton Oral History Project. The project represents the next stage in telling an important and little-known story of the once-vibrant Historic Fulton community that fell victim to 1970s urban renewal.

The physical neighborhood of Historic Fulton, a venerable history-rich section of Richmond that had declined into blight and slum-like conditions, was razed in the early ’70s. Gone were some 800 houses and businesses. While the physical neighborhood was lost, emotional ties to the East End community remain strong. The oral histories capture memories, observations, facts, and, for some, sadness and outrage at what was taken from Historic Fulton residents.

The collection contains 17 interviews with 32 named interviewees, teachers, activists, clergy, and community leaders who grew up in the predominantly African American community in the 1930s through 1950s. The interviewees also witnessed the death of Historic Fulton through Richmond’s urban renewal efforts. The collection is available at http://dig.library.vcu.edu/cdm/landingpage/collection/ful.

ProQuest acquires Coutts, MyLibrary

ProQuest has signed an agreement to acquire Coutts Information Services from Ingram Content Group, adding Coutts’ expertise in collection development, broad catalog of print and digital titles, and platforms MyiLibrary and OASIS to ProQuest’s selection of ebooks and technology framework. The move paves the way to combine Coutts’ acquisitions strengths with ProQuest’s digital tools to deliver a end-to-end workflow across print and electronic. Ingram will play a continuing role in print fulfillment in North America, supporting ProQuest with its extensive print inventory, fast on-demand print capabilities, and delivery network. Read more about the acquisition at http://bit.ly/PQandCoutts.

EBSCO offers YBP Core Titles Collections

EBSCO Information Services is introducing ten new EBSCO eBooks Featured Collections. The YBP U.S. Core Titles Collections and the YBP U.K. Core Titles Collections are each comprised of five subject-related collections of EBSCO eBooks found in the YBP Core Titles. Each year, profiling bibliographers from YBP Library Services compile YBP Core Titles, a list of titles that are considered to be essential to academic libraries. These lists assist academic librarians with identifying the best possible titles to add to their collections each year. The YBP Core Titles Featured Collections include more than 2,800 titles that have been identified as excellent academic titles between 2010 and 2014. Separate collections are available for the U.S. Core Titles list and the U.K. Titles list organized by Arts and Humanities, Medicine, Science and Technology, Business and Economics, and Social Sciences. Visit www.ebscohost.com/ebooks for more information.

Teams selected for third year of ACRL Assessment in Action learning community

ACRL has selected 54 institutional teams to participate in the third year of the program Assessment in Action: Academic Libraries and Student Success (AiA). The program is made possible by the Institute of Museum and Library Services and carried out in partnership with the Association for Institutional Research and the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. The teams, representing all types of institutions, come from 23 states, the District of Columbia, and Australia. For a list of currently confirmed institutions, see the AiA program webpage at www.ala.org/acrl/AiA.

Columbia announces 2015 research award recipients

Columbia University Libraries/Information Services (CUL) has announced the ten recipients of the 2015 Libraries Research Awards. The program, provides $2,500 grants to facilitate access to Columbia’s special and unique collections. Grants were awarded on a competitive basis to scholars whose research proposals demonstrated a compelling need to consult CUL holdings for their work. A complete list of recipients is available on the program website at http://library.columbia.edu/about/awards/research-awards.html.

2015 RBMS Leab Exhibition award winners

The ACRL Rare Books and Manuscripts Section (RBMS) has selected five winners and two honorable mentions for the 2015 Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab American Book Prices Current Exhibition Awards.

The awards, funded by an endowment established by Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab, editors of American Book Prices Current, recognize outstanding printed exhibition catalogs and guides, and electronic exhibitions, produced by North America and Caribbean institutions. Certificates will be presented to each winner on Sunday, June 28, 2015, at the ALA Annual Conference in San Francisco.

The Division One (expensive) winner is the Grolier Club for “Pop-Ups from Prague: A Centennial Celebration of the Graphic Artistry of Vojtĕch Kubašta (1914–1992) from the Collection of Ellen G. K. Rubin.”

“The committee appreciated the unusual subject matter of this catalog, how it described the way Kubašta’s art changed over time, and [how] the influence of politics and printing technology affected his career,” said David Faulds, chair of the RBMS Exhibition Awards committee and curator of rare books and literary manuscripts at the University of California-Berkeley.

The Division Two (moderately expensive) winner is the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library at the University of Toronto for “Vesalius at 500: An Exhibition Commemorating the Five-Hundredth Anniversary of the Birth of Andreas Vesalius.”

“The committee found this catalog to be well written and designed, and predicted that it will be used as a scholarly resource on Vesalius for years to come,” noted Faulds.

The Division Three (inexpensive) winner is the Saint Louis University Libraries, Archives and Records Management for “Saint Louis University Libraries Special Collections Presents (Please Don’t) Steal this Poster! An Exhibition of Letterpress Prints by The Firecracker Press for the Billiken Club.”

“This well designed catalog features an eye-catching letterpress printed cover which derives from the featured posters’ aesthetic,” remarked Faulds.

The Division Four (brochures) winner is the Bruce Peel Special Collections Library at the University of Alberta for “‘Wow, open this!’: Paper Engineering in Books & Artists’ Books.”

“The brochure stood out as a true keepsake from the exhibition with an appeal for all ages,” stated Faulds. “It featured an innovative pop-up feature that tied it to the exhibition theme and was also educational.”

The Division Four (brochures) honorable mention is the Getty Research Institute for “A Kid’s Guide to Connecting Seas: A Visual History of Discoveries and Encounters.”

“The committee thought that this brochure deserved an honorable mention, as it was a creative and fun way to engage a younger audience than might normally visit such an exhibition,” noted Faulds.

The Division Five (electronic exhibition) winner is the Eda Kuhn Loeb Music Library at Harvard University for “Music, First and Last: Scores from the Sir Georg Solti Archive.”

“This online exhibition had a clean, uncluttered design, and it was easy to navigate,” stated Faulds. “The ability to access complete scores is good for scholarship, while the ability to easily access audio and video enhances the experience for the visitor.”

The Division Five (electronic exhibition) honorable mention is the University of Texas-San Antonio Libraries Special Collections for “Gebhardt Mexican Foods Company Collection: A Virtual Exhibit.”

“This online exhibition merited an honorable mention for the quality of both its content and design,” remarked Faulds.

For more information regarding the ACRL RBMS Katharine Kyes Leab and Daniel J. Leab American Book Prices Current Exhibition Awards, including a complete list of past recipients, please visit the awards section of the ACRL website at www.ala.org/acrl/awards/publicationawards/leabawards.

Meaningful Metrics: A 21st Century Librarian’s Guide to Bibliometrics, Altmetrics, and Research Impact

ACRL announces the release of Meaningful Metrics: A 21st Century Librarian’s Guide to Bibliometrics, Altmetrics, and Research Impact by Robin Chin Roemer and Rachel Borchardt.

What does it mean to have meaningful research metrics in today’s complex higher education landscape? This highly engaging and activity-filled book serves to introduce readers to the fast-paced world of research metrics from the unique perspective of academic librarians and LIS practitioners. Starting with the essential histories of bibliometrics and altmetrics, and continuing with in-depth descriptions of the core tools and emerging issues at stake in the future of both fields, Meaningful Metrics is a convenient all-in-one resource.


Chin Roemer and Borchardt provide information and insight applicable to a range of readers from those with little to no background on the subject to those looking to become movers and shakers in the current scholarly metrics movement. Tips, tricks, and real-world examples illustrate how librarians can support the successful adoption of research metrics, whether in their institutions or across academia as a whole.

This book is suitable for collections in all types of college and research libraries and for collections in schools of library and information science.

Meaningful Metrics: A 21st Century Librarian’s Guide to Bibliometrics, Altmetrics, and Research Impact is available for purchase in print, as an ebook, and as a print/ebook bundle through the ALA Online Store; in print and for Kindle through Amazon.com; and by telephone order at (866) 746-7252 in the United States or (770) 442-8633 for international customers.

Tech Bits …

Brought to you by the ACRL ULS Technology in University Libraries Committee

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Loyola Marymount University

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