Student video contest and week of activities put focus on freely sharing scholarly, creative works
The worldwide movement to bring scholarly work and other knowledge within reach of all those wishing to access it has gained momentum at Washington University in recent years, most notably with the adoption of an Open Access Resolution by the Faculty Senate in 2011 and the creation of a digital repository at http://openscholarship.wustl.edu. But a need for greater awareness of open access remains, and librarians on campus are providing a series of activities in October to promote open access ideas and resources as they relate to scholarly publishing and other endeavors.
A video shorts contest aimed specifically at students is already underway, with three prizes of $500 each to be awarded to creations of five minutes or less in three categories. Sponsored by Washington University Libraries, the Access Granted Video Shorts 2013 Contest is the inaugural run of what organizers hope will become an annual competition. All undergraduate and graduate students are eligible to participate, with submissions due by Monday, Oct. 14. Four judges—volunteers from among the Washington University faculty and staff—will choose the winners, who will be announced in late October.
"The contest is meant to make students think about open access in practice, rather than just in principle," says Jennifer Moore, geographic information systems and anthropology librarian. "It allows for students to be creative and have fun while also getting familiar with using and authoring open access content. In addition, we've heard from faculty that increasingly students will be called on to create all kinds of dynamic content, and we want to encourage and support students in seeing themselves as active participants in scholarship."
Opportunities for both students and faculty to learn more about the open access movement as a whole as well as helpful tools for facilitating the wide dissemination of knowledge in specific disciplines will continue during international Open Access Week from Oct. 21 to 27. Highlights include a kickoff webinar titled Open Access: Redefining Impact on Monday, Oct. 21; an Open Access Film Festival with screenings at noon each weekday in Olin Library’s Ginkgo Room (Level 1); and sessions on Electronic Thesis and Dissertations and Open Access, Tools for Facilitating Open Sharing of Data, and Open Access and Engineering.
"Already open access is part of the fabric of our community, as evidenced by the Faculty Senate’s adoption of the Open Access Resolution," says Ruth Lewis, scholarly communications coordinator and science librarian. "Some level of open access is appearing in all disciplines and driving changes for funding, legislation around the world, scholarly societies, publishers, students, and scholars. International Open Access Week is an opportunity to focus attention on some aspects of this movement and related services in the libraries."