OEN Offers Freely Available Resources in Open Pedagogy & Open Educational Practices – Open Education Network Blog

“The Open Pedagogy Student Toolkit is a guidebook for a student audience authored by Jamie Witman, OEN Open Educational Practices Specialist. Published last month, the open educational resource (OER) is available on Pressbooks and Google Drive for students interested in developing foundational knowledge of open pedagogy. The book offers basic definitions, examines student benefits, and delves into student rights and responsibilities as co-creators. ”

The utilisation of open research data repositories for storing and sharing research data in higher learning institutions in Tanzania | Emerald Insight

Abstract:  Purpose

The study aims to investigate the utilisation of open research data repositories (RDRs) for storing and sharing research data in higher learning institutions (HLIs) in Tanzania.


A survey research design was employed to collect data from postgraduate students at the Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM-AIST) in Arusha, Tanzania. The data were collected and analysed quantitatively and qualitatively. A census sampling technique was employed to select the sample size for this study. The quantitative data were analysed using the Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS), whilst the qualitative data were analysed thematically.


Less than half of the respondents were aware of and were using open RDRs, including Zenodo, DataVerse, Dryad, OMERO, GitHub and Mendeley data repositories. More than half of the respondents were not willing to share research data and cited a lack of ownership after storing their research data in most of the open RDRs and data security. HILs need to conduct training on using trusted repositories and motivate postgraduate students to utilise open repositories (ORs). The challenges for underutilisation of open RDRs were a lack of policies governing the storage and sharing of research data and grant constraints.


Research data storage and sharing are of great interest to researchers in HILs to inform them to implement open RDRs to support these researchers. Open RDRs increase visibility within HILs and reduce research data loss, and research works will be cited and used publicly. This paper identifies the potential for additional studies focussed on this area.

Publish and flourish: investigating publication requirements for PhD students in China | Scientometrics

Abstract:  This study analyzes the publication requirements of PhD programs in China. It is based on a representative sample of PhD programs from 164 Chinese universities from all fields of science. Our results show that Chinese PhD student significant pressures to publish in order to obtain their degree, with papers indexed in the Science Citation Index often a mandatory requirement for students to obtain their degree. Moreover, it is found that first authorship is also mandatory: only as first authors count towards the degree, which may affect PhD students’ collaborative behavior. These findings highlight the role of publications indexed in the Science Citation Index for China’s PhD programs and contributes to our understanding of the landscape of research evaluation in China’s higher education system.


Supporting an Inclusive and Equitable Classroom: Student Perspectives on a Textbook Affordability Initiative

Abstract: As academic librarians become aware of the challenges expensive textbooks pose to student success, they increasingly collaborate to provide zero-cost access to required course materials. Librarians at Illinois State University initiated a program to license e-books assigned in courses, surveying students and faculty in participating courses regarding their perspectives on textbook affordability and their experiences with the provided e-books. Student participants reported overwhelmingly positive responses and identified several ways in which the e-books enhanced their experience in the course. The findings suggest that providing assigned materials as e-books contributes to students’ engagement as learners and their academic success within courses.

Improving Student Journal Visibility via the Directory of Open Access Journals | Current Issues in Education

Abstract:  In this interview with Judith Barnsby, Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ), we look at how student-run journals could enhance their visibility by joining DOAJ. We highlight the general and student journal-specific application requirements for inclusion in DOAJ, known challenges with the application process, and recommendations for student journals that want to apply. The interview is conducted by Mariya Maistrovskaya, University of Toronto Libraries, the Interviewer.


UH Students Author Chinese Popular Culture Dictionary through Open Pedagogy Collaboration | University of Houston Libraries

“Dr. Melody Yunzi Li, assistant professor of Chinese in the University of Houston College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences, collaborated with the UH Libraries department of Open Education Services to create the first volume of a student-authored dictionary of Chinese popular culture terms.

Students in the spring 2023 Chinese Popular Culture course each defined three popular culture terms for their midterm assignments and were invited to contribute their work to this digital open educational resource (OER). This was the second successful collaboration with Dr. Li, following the development of another student-authored textbook for her Tales of East Asian Cities course last fall….”

Citizen science and global biodiversity – OpenLearn – Open University

“This free course, Citizen science and global biodiversity, deals with the importance of biodiversity and explores how anyone can contribute to and be involved in identifying and recording wildlife, as a citizen scientist. It looks at what citizen science is, and how citizen science facilitates public involvement in scientific research activities as individuals learn and build skills.

Traditional biological keys are introduced and online recording is demonstrated using citizen science techniques and practical activities using the www.iSpotnature.org platform. The course goes on to demonstrate how, once a species is identified, web resources can be used to research its ecology. The role of citizen science is illustrated through a number of case studies from across the world. Finally, the course concludes by exploring the impact citizen scientists are having on recording biodiversity around the globe….”

How Students Can Document Scientific Phenomena | Edutopia

“Given that technology plays a larger role in how students collect their facts about a topic, it makes sense to give them more dynamic opportunities to show what they know. One approach could be asking students to make meaningful connections between information learned in class and their “real life” surroundings. Open access to information doesn’t necessarily create more knowledgeable critical thinkers. A limitless supply and convenience of access may often lead to information overwhelm. A key starting point for science teachers is to distinguish the content that can be observed in a concrete and accessible way. 


A method I use to build scientific habits of mind is asking learners to document phenomena outside of the classroom with a personal photo. I challenge students to look for examples of what we’re learning in class in the outside world. Students demonstrate their understanding by creating common links between what happens in the confines of the classroom and the unpredictability of the natural world. This activity can inspire deeper analysis, classroom discussion, and broadening of student understanding of the topic….”

Preprints for degree graduation requirements – ASAPbio

“Different institutions around the world have varying requirements for PhD students to graduate. Some require a thesis whilst others require published papers (or several!). Publishing a paper can take months or even years, delaying the graduation of students in programmes with this requirement. Delays in graduating can have serious consequences for students.

Preprints speed up the dissemination of scientific findings but they can also aid in student graduation requirements. Once submitted to a preprint server, manuscripts are usually available online within 2 days. Preprints also allow the sharing of negative data (see our negative data winners!) and shorter formats that journals would not accept. By utilising preprints instead of published papers as a requirement for graduation, science would still be accelerated forward, students would get invaluable skills in writing in addition to the credit for their findings but without the delay and restrictions of traditional journal publication.

This year, a group of 2023 ASAPbio Fellows are addressing this topic as one of their projects.


We need your help to understand the current role (or not) of preprints in the graduation requirements at your institution. Help us by taking part in a short survey (10 minutes) by selecting the appropriate language below.”

High Prices Make Textbook ‘Piracy’ Acceptable to Most Students * TorrentFreak

“Through several lawsuits, Danish publishers tried to send a clear message: educating oneself through pirated textbooks is illegal. This message has thus far failed to make an impact. New research published by the Rights Alliance shows that more than half of all students find it acceptable to use pirated books. Prison threats are not much of a deterrent but they are willing to change if prices drop significantly.”

Provide Feedback on Open Science to White House | Duke University Medical Center Library Online

“The OSTP is hosting a series of virtual public listening sessions to explore perspectives from the early career researcher community on the challenges and opportunities for advancing open science in the United States. Hosted as part of a Year of Open Science, these listening sessions aim to elevate the needs, priorities, and experiences of this community in shaping a future of open and equitable research.

OSTP is seeking input from undergraduate students, graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows from a diverse range of backgrounds and disciplines, as well as those involved in training and capacity building, including librarians, educators, and administrators. We are therefore writing to invite your community to join the conversation. We welcome your support in sharing this opportunity with your broader community/network….”

Nieuwe gids over open science speciaal voor beginnende onderzoekers | NWO

From Google’s English:  “What should I pay attention to in open science? How do I set up my research openly and transparently? Where can I publish? NWO has published a manual on open science in collaboration with UNL, DANS-KNAW and UKB (the partnership of university libraries and the KB). The guide answers a number of frequently asked questions from (young) researchers that they have when they start working with open science.”

Practical Guide on Open Science is available!

“Practical Guide on Open Science for Early-Career Researchers is published by the Dutch consortium of University Libraries and the National Library of the Netherlands (UKB), together with the Universities of The Netherlands (UNL), the Dutch National Centre of Expertise and Repository for Research Data (DANS) and the Dutch Research Council (NWO). The guide is fully open access and available to any researcher and interested party via Zenodo repository.

This guide will be useful for anyone looking for practical information about Open Science, but especially for beginning researchers such as PhD candidates and researchers who recently received their PhD. The practical guide is designed to accompany researchers from all disciplines at Dutch universities and research institutes. Every chapter provides help, tools, links and practices that can be applied immediately….”