News from the Field

David Free

Penn State librarians approve open access policy for scholarly work

Penn State University Libraries faculty voted recently to embrace open access principles when publishing their scholarly articles. The Open Access Policy, passed into legislation at the February 11, 2015, Library Faculty Organization meeting, preserves the right of library faculty to publish where they wish, but encourages authors to take advantage of open access opportunities whenever feasible.

ScholarSphere, Penn State’s repository for scholarly work launched in 2012, will be the institutional location for deposit and sharing of faculty research. ScholarSphere records are harvested regularly by search engines, such as Google, increasing the likelihood of ready discovery over the Internet.

Texas A&M Libraries launch OAKSearch

The Sterling C. Evans Library at Texas A&M has developed a new web-based search portal, called Open Access to Knowledge Search (OAKSearch), which provides public access to a large collection of open access books, journals, and other scholarly documents. Because of licensing agreements with commercial publishers, only students, faculty, and staff at Texas A&M have online access to most of the holdings in the Texas A&M Libraries. OAKSearch extends the library’s ability to provide K–12 schools, businesses, and the citizens of Texas with convenient online access to information. This search portal draws from a number of open access collections, including more than 6.5 million resources from BioMed Central, arXiv, Directory of Open Access Journals, HathiTrust, Public Library of Science (PLoS), and more. More information is available at

New ACRL Scholarly Communication workshop presenters

The ACRL Research and Scholarly Environment Committee recently announced the selection of Katie Fortney and Anali Maughan Perry as the newest presenters for the workshop “Scholarly Communication: From Understanding to Engagement,” which is offered to institutions across the country on an ongoing basis. Fortney and Perry join the team of experienced presenters as collegial partners in shaping the curriculum and presenting the popular workshop. Fortney is copyright policy and education officer for California Digital Library, serving the University of California libraries and their users. Perry is associate librarian for collections and scholarly communication at Arizona State University Libraries.

University of Denver, West Virginia University join Greater Western Library Alliance

The University of Denver Libraries and the West Virginia University Libraries have been granted membership into the Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA). Membership was approved at the GWLA Spring Membership Meeting in March 2015.

GWLA is a dynamic, effective, project-oriented consortium of research libraries located in the central and western United States, nationally recognized as a leader in the transformation of scholarly communication, and a facilitator in the application of new information technologies. With these additions, there are 35 GWLA member institutions. The criteria for GWLA membership include land-grant university status, classification as a Research University (High Research Activity) by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and unique collections that can contribute to the consortium. More information on GWLA is available at

Portland State publishes five open textbooks

The Portland State University (PSU) Library has published five open textbooks authored by PSU faculty for PSU students. In their first term of use, these textbooks saved students more than $23,800. PSU’s first open text-books are part of the university’s bigger push to reduce costs for students and help them be more successful through curricular innovation, community engagement, and effective use of technology. The open textbooks were published in PDXScholar by the PSU Library and funded through PDX Open: Reducing Student Textbook Costs, a project of the reTHINK PSU Provost’s Challenge. PDX Open created an open textbook publishing initiative that provided technical and financial support for faculty members to create open textbooks, with the goal of reducing costs for students. The five textbooks were created for courses in Special Education, Japanese, University Studies, Math, and Urban Studies and Planning.

ProQuest acquires SIPX

ProQuest (through its affiliate Bowker) has acquired Palo Alto-based SIPX, creator of a unique digital course materials solution that addresses a variety of copyright and costs concerns for universities. SIPX eliminates duplicate spending on course packs (collections of assigned readings) by connecting students to materials already purchased and available to them through their university library.

Developed from Stanford University research, SIPX became an independent business in 2012. Educators, librarians, and support staff use SIPX to set up course readings and benefit from the system’s automatic check for works that are available at no cost to students via library subscriptions or open sources. SIPX’s technology is flexible and integrates with a wide range of platforms and use cases, such as campus learning management systems, library course reserves, bookstore course packs, and global Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Learn more about SIPX at

LexisNexis Academic soon accessible through OCLC WorldCat Discovery Services

OCLC and LexisNexis are working together to make the LexisNexis Academic database available to mutual subscribers through OCLC WorldCat Discovery Services. LexisNexis Academic features a collection more than 15,000 news, legal, and business sources. The news collection offers deep and reliable coverage of world events from the most trusted newspapers, broadcasters, and social media outlets. To access the database through WorldCat Discovery, users must subscribe to both LexisNexis Academic and WorldCat Discovery Services. LexisNexis Academic will be available through WorldCat Discovery later this year.

EBSCO releases Chinese Insight

EBSCO Information Services (EBSCO) has released Chinese Insight, a full-text database that provides coverage of a wide range of predominantly Chinese-language journals. Chinese Insight, produced by Airiti Press Inc. in Taiwan, will support information and research needs related to the dynamic Greater China region. Content is indexed in both Chinese and English making this a valuable resource for researchers worldwide. Chinese Insight includes more than 3,000 full-text academic journals, more than 2,000 eBooks, more than 4,000 art images, and nearly 50,000 Chinese-language dissertations from more than 50 universities dating back to 2010. The Taiwan Electronic Periodical Services, the largest and only collection of full-text Taiwanese periodicals in the world, is also included in Chinese Insight. More information is available at

2015 ACRL Environmental Scan

Every two years, the ACRL Research Planning and Review Committee releases an environmental scan of higher education, including developments with the potential for continuing impact on academic libraries. The 2015 environmental scan provides a broad review of the current higher education landscape, with special focus on the state of academic and research libraries. The document builds on earlier ACRL reports, including the Top Ten Trends in Academic Libraries. The 2015 environmental scan is freely available on the ACRL website at

SALALM reaches a new milestone

This year marks the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials (SALALM). As the professional association of librarians in the Latin American Studies field, SALALM’s primary missions are the control and dissemination of bibliographic information about all types of Latin American publications, the development of library collections of Latin Americana in support of educational research, and the promotion of cooperative efforts to achieve better library services.

Brazil will be the core theme of the SALALM LX conference program: “Brazil in the World, the World in Brazil: Research Trends and Library Resources.” Taking Brazil as the core theme, SALALM LX will explore the role of the research library within the current internationalization agenda of North American universities.

Hosted by Princeton University Library and the Program in Latin American Studies at Princeton, SALALM LX will take place June 13–17, 2015.

For more information on this year’s conference, please visit

ACRL endorses AAUP Statement on Trigger Warnings

At a recent Executive Committee Meeting, the ACRL Board of Directors endorsed the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) Statement on Trigger Warnings. The board had been solicited by AAUP’s Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure during the drafting of the statement. The full statement is available at

JSTOR offers DRM-free, unlimited-user e-book access

JSTOR recently announced that all 25,000 titles offered in its ebook program are now available exclusively in a DRM-free, unlimited-user model. JSTOR decided to eliminate its single-user ebook offering late last year, and has since worked with publishers to bring more of their books into its unlimited offering.

The ebooks are available through title-by-title selection, subject collections, or Demand-Driven Acquisition, and are also available through YBP Library Services.

More than 400 institutions currently participate in the Books at JSTOR program. To learn more, please visit

New ACRL publications focus on digital humanities, information literacy

ACRL recently published two new books— Digital Humanities in the Library: Challenges and Opportunities for Subject Specialists, edited by Arianne Hartsell-Gundy, Laura Braunstein, and Liorah Golomb; and Not Just Where to Click: Teaching Students How to Think about Information, edited by Troy A Swanson and Heather Jagman.

Digital Humanities in the Library is a collection of essays focusing on the role of the subject specialist in creating, supporting, and promoting digital humanities projects. Chapter authors include experts from diverse areas, such as humanities subject specialists, digital humanities librarians, special collections librarians, and professors and graduate students from many disciplines. The work also includes a foreword by Joan K. Lippincott.

Published in collaboration with the ACRL Literatures in English Section, Digital Humanities in the Library provides valuable discussions around the role of subject specialists in digital humanities, gives practical advice regarding support of and collaboration with digital humanities projects, and describes real-world examples to inspire subject specialists to increase their own knowledge and expertise.

Not Just Where to Click explores how librarians and faculty work together to teach students about the nature of expertise, authority, and credibility. The book provides practical approaches for motivating students to explore their beliefs, biases, and ways of interpreting the world.

Not Just Where to Click also includes chapters that bridge the gap between the epistemological stances and threshold concepts held by librarians and faculty, and those held by students, focusing on pedagogies that challenge students to evaluate authority, connect to prior knowledge, and construct new knowledge in a world of information abundance. Authors draw from a deep pool of perspectives, including social psychology, critical theory, and various philosophical traditions.

Contributors to the 19 chapters offer a balance of theoretical and applied approaches to teaching information literacy, supplying readers with accessible and innovative ideas ready to be put into practice.

Both books are available for purchase in print, as an e-book, and as a print/e-book bundle through the ALA Online Store; in print and for Kindle through; 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

GoAnimate is a web-based tool for creating fun and simple animated videos. Choose from a variety of scenes, characters, and even animation styles to customize your video. Advanced features, such as zoom and pan, can add drama to a scene. There are plenty of props and backgrounds to choose from, or you can upload your own. The interface takes some practice to get used to, but the quality of the end product justifies the effort. I like to use GoAnimate to introduce research concepts and skills to new undergraduates. Embed your video directly from GoAnimate or download an MP4 and share via your library’s social media accounts or learning management system. For the GoAnimate for Schools edition, pricing starts at $59/year for a 1-educator account.

Sara O’Donnell

University of Northern Colorado

. . . GoAnimate

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