Output – CURVE – Final Report: eTheses

Title: JISC Final Report – CURVE

Page: 8

Summary of contents:
“We have integrated the UK-ETD-DC metadata schema, recommended by EThOS for this collection to ensure that the EThOS service will be able to harvest material from our repository to further disseminate and share the PhD research undertaken at the University.”

Comments:
Adoption of UK-ETD-DC metadata schema to promote Theses visability.

Date Released: August 2008

URI for Output: http://cuba.coventry.ac.uk/curve/files/2008/10/curve_final_report.doc

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Output – CURVE – Final Report: Identifiers and access

Title: JISC Final Report – CURVE

Page: 7

Summary of contents:
“An unexpected problem discovered during the RAE and after the submission date was the use of Digital Object Identifiers (DOI) to reference published research outputs. Some academic staff were not aware of there existence or intended use. Whenever a DOI was submitted it had to be checked immediately since experience showed that a high portion of references were wrong, inaccessible or incomplete. Despite assurances from the RAE organisers that they had arrangements in place to access all published outputs with a DOI, from about March 2008 onwards CURVE staff were regularly contacted by them to obtain electronic copies as they had been unable to access the output. In many cases a correct DOI had been given and it could be accessed from the University because the library had a subscription to the journal. In other cases the electronic copy of the output had to be resent again, highlighting the need to store all output in a repository.”

The project also records concern that the availabilty of (at least) two electronic versions (publisher’s and repository’s may dilute any impact factor in future metrics-based Research Assessment)

Comments:
Good example of a problem that repositories can help overcome by providing a single point of reference for institutional outputs (though questions about versions may exist). Also a useful pointer to the problems which authenticated/ restricted access sources may cause for future metrics-based research assessment.

Date Released: August 2008

URI for Output: http://cuba.coventry.ac.uk/curve/files/2008/10/curve_final_report.doc

Output – CURVE – Final Report:availability of key research

Title: JISC Final Report – CURVE

Page: 6

Summary of contents:

“the data collection required to support the RAE submission provided a representative sample of all the various types of research outputs used across the institution. At the start of the data collection exercise, approximately 40% of all members of staff submitted did not have complete and correct citation information about all of their four chosen outputs. Surprisingly approximately 18% did not have physical copies of their selected outputs. Reasons given included they had been mislaid, they had given away their last copy or had never received a copy from the publisher. The most common reason given in creative subjects was they had sold the artwork and had not taken a photographic copy. By the end of the data collection process we had resolved all of the issues or had substituted equivalent outputs. This highlighted the need for a systematic process to collect all outputs as they are generated and store them in a repository.”

Comments:
The project’s findings about the unavailabilty of copies of and inaccuracy of information about each academic’s four most important works over the preceding 8 years highlight the need for techncial and procedural systems (such as repositories and policies) to help academics in managing their work and help institutions retain access to ‘their’ assets.

Date Released: August 2008

URI for Output: http://cuba.coventry.ac.uk/curve/files/2008/10/curve_final_report.doc

Output – CURVE – Final Report:FE to HE transition and repositories

Title: JISC Final Report – CURVE

Page:5

Summary of contents:
Discussing part of the project examining the
“development of the student experience and repository resources to support a more seamless progression from FE to HE from a student perspective.

The main repository resources that were considered as beneficial following a consultation exercise were:

  • A lecturers’ web where CU lecturers express their academic expectations of students joining CU courses of study. In conjunction with this an area where Warwickshire College lecturers outline their academic expectations and levels of support offered to students on WC courses.
  • A student web where first year students from CU outline their experiences at joining University course and how this differs from their experiences at Warwickshire College (there is an ideal opportunity to identify these differences with students on the Foundation Degree Motorsports course, the majority of whom continue with CU for a full degree)
  • A generic student web outlining the key elements of living and studying at Coventry University and how they differ from the Warwickshire College experiences.”

Comments:
This outlines some of the key tools and functions that the project has found to support the first year transition from FE to HE. It is of note that none of these are core repository functions and frankly likely to be much better supported by other platforms. It is of course true that such web sites and other resources could (and for completeness possibly should) be catalogued and recorded in the repository, but if the repository is being pitched as a way to discover or manage these resources (which all appear to be critical student induction resources) I think there’s a problem with how we’re understanding the place of a repository.

I think this is illustrates the importance of the balance between repositories and other tools thinking not just in terms of their capabilities but how they fit into teaching practice. Conversely it illustrates that though there may be benefits to having all the information in a single place – this is not in itself an automatic benefit.

Date Released: August 2008

URI for Output: http://cuba.coventry.ac.uk/curve/files/2008/10/curve_final_report.doc