Omeka is a free, open-source platform for creating digital archives, exhibitions, and more. This workshop will give an overview of the various versions of Omeka and their different uses, before covering how to set up a basic Omeka site.
A virtual workshop on patents aimed at a beginner audience. We will define patents as a type of intellectual property, describe the different ways in which patents can be useful to researchers, and show how to find patent documents on freely available websites such as Google Patents.
Author Profiles & Citation Metrics: An Introduction for Scholars
When: Nov. 8, 2023, 1 pm to 2 pm
Taking advantage of profile services and understanding publishing metrics can help you increase the discovery of your work and track its impact. This workshop will introduce you to ORCID and Google Scholar profile systems and give you some tips for making the most of these types of services. We will also highlight several widely used citation metrics (Impact Factors, h-indices, SJR indicators) and help to demystify what they mean and how to find them.
The Theory & Practice of Digitization: A Community Symposium
When: Nov. 9, 2023, 4:45 pm – 7 pm
Where: The Scholars Lab, Perry-Castañeda Library
Join us in the Scholars Lab for a symposium on digitization. What gets digitized and how it gets digitized are decisions that affect everyone, but most of all, marginalized communities that have been historically disadvantaged from participation in scholarship and the building of library collections. Come and listen to lightning talks from cohort members trained in OCR and digitization, followed by a keynote address by Dr. Raha Rafii.
Where: Scholars Lab, Perry-Castañeda Library and Zoom
Join the UT Austin community in celebrating GIS Day 2023 on Wednesday, November 15th! GIS Day is an internationally acknowledged annual event held each November on the Wednesday of Geography Awareness week. It is a day dedicated to appreciating, discussing, and learning about GIS (geographic information system) technology and all that it enables. Through our UT GIS Day events this year we hope to raise the profile of the innovative GIS work being carried out by the UT campus community and specifically highlight open geospatial research since 2023 has been designated a Year of Open Science by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP).
Eight UT graduate students were selected to participate in the program cohort. The students–in MA and PhD programs–are studying in the African & African Diaspora Studies, English, History, and Middle Eastern Studies departments, as well as in the UT iSchool. They have a variety of experiences with research in libraries and archives, with digitization, and with publishing scholarship, all of which they bring to their cohort discussions. However, they are united to realize the goals of this symposium program, which include reading about, discussing, and creating approaches for research and collection development in a digitizable environment. The latter can be described with the question: what does it mean to create or select print and electronic content in an environment in which digitization is possible and high quality; in which there is support for the applications of machine-readable text; and in which the materials are stewarded by libraries and used by researchers outside of the materials’ region of origin?
Cohort participants are encouraged to engage with existing writing (scholarly and popular) on these topics in thoughtful and critical ways, with the end goal being to create a sense of belonging to the conversation. What gets digitized and how it gets digitized are decisions that affect everyone, but most of all, marginalized communities that have been historically disadvantaged from participation in scholarship and the building of library collections (even, and especially, collections for which they are the subject). As part of this program, cohort participants are trained in the basics of scanning, OCR, and outputs/applications with a material selection of their choice, so that they have insight into the hands-on processes of digitization and how to use this technology for their goals. The program’s culminating public symposium puts the cohort’s theoretical and practical experiences in conversation with a digital cultural heritage scholar and engagement with the audience in order to realize new approaches to digitized resources.
I developed The Theory & Practice of Digitization Community Symposium Program as the final project for my Mellon Fellowship for Diversity, Inclusion & Cultural Heritage at the Rare Book School. As fellows, we are asked to put together a community symposium at our home institution that advances understanding of cultural heritage, archives, and/or special collections and allows us to promote aspects of our collections to broader publics and communities. With the development of the new Scholars Lab at the Perry-Castañeda Library, and considering my own interests in reparative and restorative practices in librarianship and scholarship, I wanted to create an opportunity for graduate students to expand their researcher skill-sets and build reflective approaches to their future professions. We are incredibly fortunate to have a wide range and depth of expertise at the UT Libraries, and it is from this well of experience and insight that this program has drawn.
Our first session, held at the end of August shortly after the semester began, featured a conversation with Rachel E. Winston (Black Diaspora Archivist at the Benson Latin American Collection) and Beth Dodd (Curator at the Alexander Architectural Archives) on defining terms for our work in this program through their experience with digitization as archivists at UT. Rachel and Beth presented on the process of selecting and adding items to the archives, including when, how, and why they make decisions around digitization. Their experiences with a variety of collections––from donors or vendors; recent or older; created in the U.S. or around the world––gave them insight to respond to students’ questions regarding the ethics of archival digitization and stimulated the students’ engagement with crucial concepts by providing real and tried examples for them to consider.
The program’s second session introduced students to the basic principles of handling cultural heritage materials and digitizing them. My colleagues from the UT Libraries’ Stewardship department, Brittany Centeno (Preservation Librarian) and Kiana Fekette (Head of Digitization) led the students through a review of best practices for handling paper materials such as books, periodicals, and personal archives. The session was held in the new Scan Tech Studio in the Scholars Lab, which functions as a self-service facility for independent researcher digitization, image processing, and text recognition-based scholarship. Brittany and Kiana brought sample materials so that the students could get a sense of what to do for for different preservation situations, such as a book with a broken spine, brittle and flaking paper or leather, bent or misshapen items, and materials that are tightly bound. They also demonstrated how to use a diffuser light set up, which can be particularly useful for items with a difficult-to-capture sheen (such as different types of photographs) or for mobile applications when traveling for research.
In our third session, we met with Allyssa Guzman (Head of Digital Scholarship Services) and Ian Goodale (European Studies Librarian) for a survey of, training with, and discussion of tools that the students might use for their research with digitized materials. Allyssa covered how to get started with digital scholarship, including project planning/management and tool selection. She created an excellent LibGuide for the cohort to refer back to as they move forward with their work. Ian reviewed a number of tools that we recommend and regularly use here at the UT Libraries for transcription/OCR correction and text analysis, including some that he has developed himself.
The cohort’s efforts will culminate in a community symposium on November 9, 2023, 5 – 7 PM in the PCL Scholars Lab Data Lab. This event is free and open to the public: everyone is invited and encouraged to attend. The symposium is an opportunity for the UT, Austin, and greater central Texas communities to learn about the digitization of cultural heritage through the experiences of the student cohort members. It’s also an opportunity to hear from a respected scholar of digital cultural heritage, Dr. Raha Rafii, who will be giving the keynote address. Her lecture, titled, “Navigating the Ethical Landscape of Manuscript Digitization,” will look at recent examples of digitized forms of cultural heritage and the impact on their origin communities in order to think through complex issues of ethics, and to determine the lines between academic researcher priorities and digitization as an extension of colonial and imperialist practices. For more information on the community symposium, please see the UT Libraries’ Events page.
The much-anticipated grand opening of the new Scholars’ Lab at the University of Texas at Austin’s Perry-Castañeda Library (PCL) officially launched the new space on Thursday, October 5, with more than 100 members of the campus community and beyond in attendance. This event marked a significant milestone in the university’s commitment to fostering innovation, collaboration, and research excellence.
The Lab is a dynamic space designed to support interdisciplinary research, collaboration, and digital scholarship, welcomed scholars, researchers, students, and community members to its beautifully designed premises. The event was a celebration of the university’s dedication to providing cutting-edge resources for its academic community.
The grand opening event featured from university administrators and experts in libraries, who highlighted the importance of the Scholars’ Lab in advancing research and scholarship at UT Austin. Attendees were then given an opportunity to explore the state-of-the-art facilities, including dedicated workstations equipped with the latest technology, collaborative spaces for group projects, and a vast collection of digital resources.
As the Scholars’ Lab officially opens its doors, it is poised to become a vibrant center for academic inquiry and collaboration. The university’s investment in this cutting-edge facility reaffirms its commitment to fostering innovation and excellence in research.
In the coming months and years, we can expect to see exciting developments and groundbreaking research emerge from the Scholars’ Lab at UT Austin. The grand opening event was just the beginning of what promises to be a transformative journey for the academic community and the university as a whole.
StoryMaps is a digital tool that enables you to craft a narrative using maps, images, videos, and text. This workshop session will provide an introductory overview of creating a digital exhibit with StoryMaps. Participants will learn to weave together data points, images, videos, and text to form engaging stories.
How much is a star really worth? This session will examine customer review data including how to use reviews effectively, how to spot fake reviews, and what consumers, companies and academic researchers do with customer review data.
Where: Zoom and Perry-Castañeda Library (PCL), Scholars Lab, Data Lab
This workshop will provide an explanation of key geospatial terms and concepts and an introduction to open source geographic information system (GIS) software for visualizing, analyzing, storing, processing, and managing geospatial data. By the end of this session you should have the core knowledge required to start working effectively with geospatial datasets using open source tools.
In this session we’ll talk about Libraries’ support for open access (OA) publishing, including support that eliminates article processing charges (APCs) for UT authors. We’ll discuss the main types of OA publishing business models (including OA book publishing), and how the Libraries is strategically investing in these options. Finally, we’ll show participants how they can share their work regardless of the publication model. This free session is open to anyone, but will be of most interest to faculty, students, and staff who publish scholarly content. Registration is required.
Join us for the Grand Opening celebration and ribbon cutting ceremony for the new Scholars Lab in the Perry-Castañeda Library.
When: Thursday, October 5, 12-2 p.m.
Where: Perry-Castañeda Library Entry Level
12:00-12:30 – Introductory Remarks and Ribbon Cutting
lorraine haricombe – Vice Provost and Director, UT Libraries
Jennifer Lyon Gardner – Deputy Vice President for Research
Joan Lippincott – Associate Executive Director Emerita/Coalition for Networked Information
Sharon Wood – Executive Vice-President and Provost
12:30-2:00 – Self-guided tours, Activities, Refreshments and Giveaways!
Free and open to the public.
About the Scholars Lab
The new Scholars Lab is a campus-wide resource with spaces and infrastructure designed to enhance multidisciplinary research and advance digital scholarship. It will facilitate collaboration among students, faculty, departments, and centers across campus. The Scholars Lab supports experiential learning, provides access to University of Texas Libraries’ experts for research lifecycle consultation, and offers training on the use of robust technologies and tools.
The doors of the new Scholars Lab at the Perry-Castañeda Library swung open for the first Texas Open Science Summit, held on Wednesday, September 20.
Hosted by the Libraries, this summit was organized as a call to action for the advancement of open science in recognition of the Year of Open Science, a move by the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to advance national open science policies across the federal government in 2023.
The Summit marked an initiatory gathering to highlight the commitment of advocates in the campus community to openness, collaboration, and the dissemination of knowledge. The event took place both in-person and virtually, to ensure accessibility to a wide audience.
The event served a diversity of ideas and perspectives to attendees, with participants from various disciplines and backgrounds coming together to explore the benefits of open science practices and individual experiences in the application of those practices. It offered a platform for sharing success stories, discussing challenges, and brainstorming solutions, all with the ultimate goal of promoting transparency and accessibility in research.
The summit provided inspiring keynote addresses and panel discussions featuring local and national experts in open science, including representatives from Higher Education Leadership Initiative for Open Scholarship (HELIOS) and NASA’s Transform to Open Science (TOPS) program.
These thought-provoking sessions covered a broad spectrum of topics, from open-access publishing to data sharing and reproducibility. Participants left inspired and armed with practical insights to implement in their own work.
Attendees were also introduced to the university’s new Open Source Programs Office (OSPO) – funded by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation – which has recently been launched to promote open source and open science opportunities to students, faculty, staff and researchers at UT.
Those who attended expressed that the Summit was a resounding success in reaffirming the global scientific community’s dedication to open science principles. Participants left the event with a deeper understanding of open science practices and a shared commitment to making research more transparent and accessible.