FSU Libraries News

FSU Libraries Participates in Big Deal Report

FSU Libraries participated in the recently published Ithaka S+R report, “What’s the Big Deal? How Researchers Are Navigating Changes to Journal Access.” The article focuses on institutions who have cancelled big deal subscription packages and those who were ready to cancel. For this project, 11 academic libraries were selected to explore faculty research habits, how they obtain research materials, how they view academic publishing models, and how this informs the libraries’ ongoing strategic decision making about Big Deal journal subscriptions. 

In 2019, FSU Libraries was among the first to terminate their multi-title subscription package or “big deal” contract with the publisher Elsevier. By opting to subscribe to only the most highly-used Elsevier titles, FSU Libraries greatly reduced annual subscription costs, while providing new options to maintain the same level of access to researchers. In making this decision, FSU Libraries worked closely with faculty to explore big deal subscription models and costs associated with journal subscriptions. 

Valerie Boulos, Associate Dean for Resource Management & Discovery Services, Renaine Julian, director of STEM Libraries, and Scott Schmucker, Electronic Resources Librarian, participated in the project. Julian and Schmucker acted as research partners by interviewing FSU faculty, gathering data, and submitting their findings. Interview questions focused on measuring the impact of these decisions, the exploration of open access models, and how research occurs after cancellation.

The team was pleased to see that the experiences of FSU faculty were well represented in the overall results of the study, which gave insight into the discovery habits, publishing preferences, and appreciation of the library as aspects of faculty research.

To learn more about FSU’s Big Deal cancellation, click here

Read the Big Deal report here: https://sr.ithaka.org/publications/whats-the-big-deal/.

Introducing FSU Libraries eTextbooks Search

Lindsey Wharton, Michael Pritchard, Finley Talley

As we welcome the start of 2021 Summer C, FSU Libraries are proud to announce the launch of our eTextbooks in the Classroom portal!

FSU Libraries’ new eTextbook program identifies currently available eBook titles assigned as required course materials. Instructors and students are able to search by course code, instructor, or book title to see if required course materials are available online through the Libraries. Since its implementation, this project has identified 848 total titles in Spring 2021 and 343 titles in Summer 2021 available through the Libraries’ existing licenses. In these two semesters, the total potential student savings is $1,941,369. 

A screenshot of the eTextbook Search portal on the Library website.

This initiative was inspired by ongoing student feedback about the high cost of course materials. The Libraries’ eTextbook program builds upon our current Course Reserves service and bolsters advocacy for the program as part of the broader Libraries’ Open & Affordable Textbook Initiative.

$1,941,369 United States Dollars

Here is a message of support from a student whose textbook was identified as currently licensed by the Libraries:

It’s well known that textbooks can be an onerous additional cost for those pursuing any degree, so it was a welcome and extremely helpful surprise when my professor announced that the library had added an electronic version of the course textbook. This happened two semesters in a row, and the savings across those semesters was close to $200 just for two classes. The ease of access is also a huge benefit that I was very grateful for.

FSU Libraries eResources expand the amount of materials available for higher-level coursework and complements other open educational resources. Furthermore, this program provides a crucial opportunity to support student success by ensuring equitable access to teaching and learning materials. Our eResources work to benefit our FSU community by…

Positively impacting student success & engaged learning

20 out of 28 instructors from studies between 2015 and 2018 reported that learning outcomes improved with open textbooks. FSU Alternative Textbook Grant recipient Vanessa Dennen, Professor of Instructional Systems & Learning Technologies, recently published results from her customized OER project in which students offered positive feedback because the OER were customized to meet their needs and received accurate, relevant, and focused learning materials. This OER and eTextbook integration in the classroom meets these same learning outcomes by providing students and instructors access to paid information that is covered by FSU Libraries.

Ensuring an affordable FSU education for all students regardless of socioeconomic status.

 A ground-breaking study from the University of Georgia found that drop, fail and withdrawal rates (DFW) decreased significantly for low income (Federal Pell Grant Recipients) and part-time students when Open Educational Resources (OER) were used in courses. There was a 53.12% increase in average course grade and a 29.54% decrease in DFW rates for students who were not enrolled full-time. The average final grades of self-identified non-white students in the study were higher with OER and their DFW rates were lower.

Allowing instructors to incorporate perspectives that prepare students to live and work in a diverse and global society.

Open Educational Resources support a diverse community of learners including those with accessibility needs and multicultural perspectives and active student participation with materials. Sixty-four percent of faculty members in studies between 2015 and 2018 reported that using OER facilitated meeting diverse learners’ needs and sixty-eight percent perceived greater student satisfaction with the learning experience when using OER.

We look forward to growing our eTextbook program as part of our larger affordability initiative to reduce barriers to information access and reduce the cost of higher education.

If you are interested in adopting a library-licensed or open eBook to replace your traditional textbook, please reach out to Lindsey Wharton or learn more at our eTextbook Information for Instructors.

FSU’s Interlibrary Loan Department

Are you a patron in need of material that isn’t available at FSU Libraries? If so, their Interlibrary Loan Department has got you covered!

FSU Libraries Interlibrary Loan Department provides the service of giving patrons of the Libraries access to request articles, books and other materials owned by another library or from other outside sources. Through the FSU Libraries Interlibrary Loan services, there are three ways for patrons to get the material they need: using the FSU Catalog, UBorrow, or Interlibrary Loan (ILLiad). FSU Libraries asks for patrons to check the catalog before requesting material from outside sources to see if they have them or not. For a faster delivery of print books from colleges and universities in Florida, patrons can search through UBorrow, an unmediated interlibrary loan service. ILLiad is used to request material from libraries around the world.

Lindsey Eckert, an assistant professor in FSU’s English Department, was able to get access to a copy of Rowden’s A Biographical Sketch of the Most Distinguished Writers of Ancient and Modern Times that she requested from Emory University. Although there were some issues encountered during the process, the endless support of the FSU ILL Department helped her tremendously.

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FSU observes Open Access Week 2020 and celebrates a year of action

Happy Open Access Week! Open Access Week (Oct. 19 -25, 2020) is a time to celebrate open access, raise awareness and observe the work done to support OA year-round. The core principle of open access is that all published scholarship and research should be accessible to the general public. Those new to open access can learn more in this video from PhD Comics:  https://youtu.be/L5rVH1KGBCY.

The Open Access Week theme for 2020 is Taking Action to Build Structural Equity and Inclusion

Universities around the world are supporting this principle in different ways. The Libraries’ Office of Digital Research and Scholarship created an anti-racism action plan, conducted research on the experiences of marginalized scholars and students interacting with open, and added cultural competency in teaching modules to the Canvas course for Alternative Textbook Grant recipients. Of course, this is only a start to building structural equity and inclusion into local open infrastructure at FSU.

This past year, Florida State has shown commitment to the principle of open access through several actions:

  1. Reinstating the Alternative Textbook Grant Program to support open and affordable materials, especially as students and instructors contend with remote courses and financial uncertainty.
  2. Continuing the Open Access Fund and developing the ‘Open Scholars Project’ to support an informal yet active community of practice around open access at FSU. Coming this spring!
  3. Hosting the Fall 2020 Road Scholars virtual event Friday, November 13, in partnership with the Road Scholars Committee, Faculty Senate, and the Office of Faculty Development and Advancement:

The annual FSU Road Scholars speaker series welcomes distinguished scholars from institutions within the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) to FSU during weeks that coincide with ACC athletic events. The Fall 2020 virtual event Friday, November 13 from 3:00pm – 4:30pm EST will feature Micah Vandegrift, Open Knowledge Librarian at North Carolina State University. He will be speaking about his project as a Fulbright-Schuman Research Fellow, titled “Open Scholarship Policies and Technologies: The European Research Library as a Model for Advancing Global Scholarly Communication”. The event will include an hour lecture and additional time for questions. Register here: https://fla.st/3nNEkat

Trust Students, Suspect Algorithms

A Deep Dive into the Dubious Claims of Online Test Proctoring

By Adam Beauchamp

When universities across the United States reacted to the coronavirus pandemic by shifting to remote instruction last spring, many of us quickly adopted new technologies to keep our courses running. Now, as we prepare for another semester of remote instruction, we have an opportunity to reassess these tools and ask ourselves if they still meet our educational needs and comport with our values. In this time of heightened stress and trauma, I suggest that we abandon technologies or practices that create an adversarial relationship between teachers and students. These include plagiarism detection software, technologies that track students’ movements, and classroom policies that privilege compliance over learning, what Jeffrey Moro refers to colorfully and astutely as “cop shit.”

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Library Tutoring is on Zoom

The Strozier Library Learning District late-night tutoring has moved online. Due to the recent closure of the FSU campus, we’re now on Zoom! The Learning District is still providing students tutoring on all the usual subjects and operating during our regularly scheduled times, but students can now ask us questions from their own living rooms.

Attention, Students! We’re still here to help!

What is Zoom?

Zoom is an online video conferencing application, and most FSU courses have switched to Zoom lectures and classes. This application also allows the Learning District tutors the chance to chat with students and help subjects in real time no matter where each person is located.

If you need assistance figuring out Zoom, start with this page of FSU’s Information Technology Services site or Zoom’s official help center.

How can I find FSU Zoom tutoring?

From the main tutoring home page, details on hours and how to connect to our tutors are on the Online Tutoring page. During active hours, you can also reach most of our tutors directly by visiting this page for the Zoom link.

What subjects are being tutoring?

The Learning District offers chemistry, math, and physics. We also have our Expanded Subjects tutoring which covers economics, English, and other humanities.

What time is tutoring?

Zoom tutoring for STEM subjects is available Sunday-Wednesday from 8:00 p.m. EST to midnight EST.

Other subjects may be available between 6:00 p.m. EST and midnight EST, Sunday through Thursday, but specific hours vary by tutor, so check the calendar on this page for details.

FSU Libraries’ Celebrates Newly-Tenured Faculty

On April 22, 2019, newly-tenured FSU faculty celebrated their accomplishments during a reception at the President’s house. Each year, FSU Libraries honor the achievements of newly-tenured faculty by selecting an item for the collection in their name. These items are on display the celebration event, with a paragraph describing why each particular item was selected and its significance.

To view the list of faculty and their explanation of the books or materials they hand-picked to be purchased and book plated in their honor, click here.