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Open Space Session 19th January 2012

Here are some hints, tips and notes from the workshops held today at the British Library.

Alan Cann, Leicester Uni: Quality Assuring Knowledge
Summarised by Helen Williams, Northumbria University

What is quality? Above all it is subjective.
Why is it measured? For the purposes of academic prizes, funding, REF
How do we measure or filter it? Through editorial boards, REF – the multitude of possible outcomes suggests that a quality standard does not exist.
What do we measure? How many research papers yoiu have. Depth of research. What your peers say about your research. Relevance to market forces. Will it improve society?
Why do we measure quality? We must consider questions of effectiveness and efficiency. We don’t want to waste our time on low quality research (if we know what quality means in the first place). For Impact – personal impact, reputation, career development. Eg., Alan’s Tweeting led to him being invited to speak today – this is a personal impact.
Authority as a researcher on a particular topic should be supported by social media, alongside traditional publication methods (peer reviewed journals).
Social citations (retweets) amplify comments – this is a subtle form of peer review. Creative commons material establish researcher’s authority on a particular topic. There is always the possibility of negative Impact.
When? Create more time. Alan uses Google Plus to publicise queries from students to minimise personal emails, and it then benefits anyone.
Filter on the way out, not the way in. Peer reviewers decide quality, but sometimes researchers gems should be published but aren’t because reviewers have a bad day, or due to size restrictions. Journals filter on the way in. Online works differently. Models for post-publication per review: The journal ARXIV – people put pre-prints of their papers online and then the authors can revise if desired. You can view the reviewers and what experts think but everything still get published – no size limits online.

Carol MacGillivray, Goldsmiths University
Attended Quality Assurance and then Dissemination of Research

First session – a wall of opened laptops, no internet connection
Good discussion of copyright
Cite u like
Arxiv – online Peer review

2nd session
‘It is up to you to Trailblaze in technology’ – but we used post-it notes in the
Plagiarism – We rely on other’s responsible attitude, not to abuse copyright
Facebook is Evil
Wordpress is Good and recommend creative commons license for your content
Creative space – Amazon and Lulu
Academia.Edu and Linked-in
Blog is vital for connections

Identification of knowledge
Summarised by Wing Sin Chiu, University of Bath

-information overload–> the importance of filtering
-RSS feed from different websites- create own igoogle page
-joint power of searching
-strategies to create useful networks which can help increase own
capacity to expand the knowledge
-reciprocity: use of social media is a two-way process (mutual action
of give and take)

Useful tools:
-Manage information: iGoogle, Netvibes, Google reader, FeedDemon,
Feedly, Pulse
-Networking: Twitter (#phdchat), Linkedln, JiscMail, Academia.edu,
Graduate junction
-Social bookmarking/citation: CiteULike, Mendeley, Zetero, Delicious,
Diigo, BibSonomy

– Hopes and Fears of information overload
– How to avoid bias- including participate in multiple networks,
always use source material, confirm who provide funding behind the
research, use aggregators
– Search more efficiently- clarify what searching use key words, RSS
feed, citation links, useful search tools, recommendations, subject
specific networks
– Share useful resources

Creation of Knowledge
Summarised by Chava Pearl, Manchester Metropolitan Unviersity

Creation of knowledge:
Wide variety of tools available to the researcher:-
Mendeley and Zotero for reference management – recommended over end note
http://www.dirt.project.bamboo.org – a variety of tools for data analysis
Voicethread and google documents for everyday communication
Drop box for file storage
Yammer as an institutional sharing facility
Check out the future rights project – Connor Gearty
Twitter – following thoughts, arguments and threads
Quality assurance
How do we measure quality? by funding, ethical approval, publication, citation, impact, social?
Be aware of the creative commons licence, BY – by attribution SA- share alike
Check out Caly Sherkey on the impact of social research
“You are only as smart as your network”
Peer reviewing after publishing online is a good way to obtain quality feedback for improvement

Paul Allchin
British Library Science reading rooms

Creation of Knowledge
The key themes I have learnt from this session have revolved around social media in the
internet crowd as a new set of information sources or formats for resources and they
heightened awareness of research collation tools for the sharing of ideas.

Creating Knowledge

Summarised by Joanne O’Brien, UCL

Project Bamboo is a great site for sifting through possible tools to be used by the digital researcher.

Hope these notes are useful!


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Advice is: dive right in. Lots of useful info on hashtags and tweeting for impact. Academic Tweeting: Your Suggestions and Tips Collected


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Reports from the event are coming soon . . .

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YouTube launch!

New Media and Academia is now on YouTube! Visit www.youtube.com/newmediaacademia to have a look at the videos made by our brave first volunteers. Do you think you can summarise some aspect of your research in a few minutes? Get in touch about submitting your own video!

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Follow @newacademia for condensed news and notifications of blog posts

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This blog has been set up to provide information about ‘New Media and Academia’, the AHRC funded public engagement conference for postgraduate researchers. More details coming soon . . .

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