Virginia Tech’s University Libraries will host its annual Open Access Week Oct. 21 through 25.

In support of International Open Access Week, the university’s week of events will celebrate the growing movement towards public access to research and scholarship.

Open access publishing differs from traditional publishing in that it provides free electronic access to research and scholarship for the public rather than limiting access through costly licensing and journal subscription fees. Sharing research and scholarship freely and electronically allows for a broader impact and further enables innovation, creativity, and discovery.

Virginia Tech is one of several major research universities challenging publishing standards and leading efforts to make research findings and scholarship more publicly available, especially when the work has been funded through federal grants.

Through Open Access Week, the University Libraries hope to bring the global discussion of open access publishing to campus.

“Events throughout the week are intended to raise awareness of open access among the campus community, including the latest options and resources for researchers,” said Julie Speer, associate dean for research and informatics. “Last year's program was a great success and we hope to continue the discussion about the importance of open, networked research.”

The week will offer a wide range of workshops and discussions, as well as a keynote address by a leading open research advocate, Stanford University Professor of Education John Willinsky.

All events are free and open to Virginia Tech students, faculty, and staff. Some events require registration through Networked Learning Initiatives.

Some of the events scheduled include

  • Networked Learning Initiatives workshop: Intro to Open Access and Copyright – Oct. 21 from 4-5:30 p.m. in 3080 Torgersen Hall. This workshop will help you gain a better understanding of open access publishing, increase your mastery of copyrights, learn how to take advantage of the libraries' subvention fund, and increase access to your work. Required registration is available online.
  • Keynote address by John Willinsky: What is it about the history of learning that calls out for open access to research and scholarship? – Oct. 24 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the auditorium of the Graduate Life Center at Donaldson Brown. John Willinsky, who is also this semester’s Virginia Tech Distinguished Innovator in Residence, will discuss why open access publishing is essential to learning. Registration is not required.
  • Networked Learning Initiatives workshop: VTechWorks, Virginia Tech’s Institutional Repository – Oct. 25 from 10-11 a.m. in 3080 Torgersen Hall. This workshop will familiarize attendees with Virginia Tech’s institutional repository. Its purpose is to highlight, preserve, and provide unrestricted access to the work of faculty, staff, and students, as well as the intellectual output of the university in its land-grant mission to serve the Commonwealth of Virginia, the nation, and the world community through the discovery and dissemination of new knowledge. This session will demonstrate how to start archiving scholarly communication, research data, and other academic and administrative content. Required registration is available online.

For a full, detailed listing of the week’s events, visit University Libraries’ Open Access Week page.

The events presented during Open Access Week are sponsored by the University Libraries, the Graduate School, the Center for Digital Research and Scholarship, and the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences.

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