Monday, 30 April 2012

The Informed Researcher - booklet

Vitae have previously published a number of natty little booklets for researchers, with titles such as 'The balanced researcher'; 'The creative researcher'; 'The engaging researcher' and 'The leading researcher'.  Now, at last, we have 'The informed researcher.'  What, as they say themselves, is  research about if not "finding, absorbing, creating and disseminating information?"

This, along with an Information literacy lens has been developed in collaboration with the Research Information Network (RIN) and the Society of College, National and University Libraries (SCONUL).

Further reading

Researcher Development Framework [from Vitae]

Friday, 27 April 2012

Infosmart - Information Skills for Creatives

Award-Winning InfosmART Portfolio Released by Glasgow School of Art Library

Glasgow, April 2012

The Glasgow School of Art Library’s award-winning InfosmART portfolio is now freely available to the UK’s art and design communities, following Innovation and Development funding from the Scottish Library and Information Council (SLIC)
InfosmART is the Glasgow School of Art Library’s portfolio of online interactive modules in information and research skills, specifically designed for creative practitioners. It has been produced for the learning, teaching and research communities in art, design and architecture, and helps artists and designers to develop and improve their research capabilities and information handling, at either undergraduate, postgraduate or research levels. It does this through an easy-to-follow 5-step programme: Define, Find, Evaluate, Cite and Use.
In 2010, InfosmART was recognised at the Times Higher Education Leadership and Management Awards, where its development team was named Outstanding Library Team of the Year. In 2011, its lead developer was named Information Literacy Practitioner of the Year for his work on the resource.
InfosmART was developed in-house by the Library of Glasgow School of Art, which is internationally recognised as one of Europe's foremost higher education institutions for creative education and research in fine art, design and architecture. It is one of only three Small Specialist Institutions within Scotland, with undergraduate, taught postgraduate, and research programmes delivered across architecture, fine art, design, and digital design. The Library forms part of Learning Resources, which also includes e-learning, archives, and collections.
InfosmART has now been released for free non-commercial use and adaptation under Creative Commons licensing at

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

Mike Leigh at Regent Street Cinema

My favourite director, Mike Leigh, will be appearing at the Regent Street Cinema next Wednesday at an event organised by Time Out and the London Film Society.  Unfortunatetly, I won't be able to make it!  He will be appearing alongside 'Another Year' star, Lesley Manville, and together they will be talking about screen acting.  Further details here.

For further information about the cinema, which is at our headquarters in Regent Street, take a look at the following websites:  Regent Street Cinema; The Birthplace of Cinema.

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Why do Wikipedia entries always appear at the top of Google results?

I had thought that Google ranks results according to the number and significance of links to a particular page, as well as calculating the number of references to your search terms in that page.

So, why when you compare the number of incoming links to the top two results for the search term  'Research' does the top entry (a Wikipedia entry) have 110 million incoming links, compared to the second entry with 947 million?

It could be that the links to the Wikipedia entry are from sites that themselves have lots of links, but I doubt it.  I think, more likely, that links to the Wikipedia domain are also included within the rank, so that individual Wikipedia pages are boosted because of the popularity of the site as a whole.  This means that any entry on Wikipedia is likely to have a high ranking.

Here are some reasons to avoid using Wikipedia.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

Tweet your way to academic success

The LSE's Impact of Social Sciences Project aims to look at the ways that the impact of research in the social sciences is achieved and at effective ways that it can be measured.  For academics in any discipline wishing to increase the impact of their research, it is well worth looking at.  The guide on using Twitter to increase your visibility is embedded below.

Follow me on twitter at: @photolbrrn

Third Text - new issue

The new issue of Third Text is now available online from the link below.  The journal is a highly regarded academic publication, which focuses on art practices including art, photography and film.  It looks specifically at work that may be, "marginalised through racial, gender, religious and cultural differences".  For more about the journal read the aims and scope.

 Third Text - Volume 26, Issue 2

Third Text is indexed in the following databases: ARTbibliographies Modern; British Humanities Index; Thomson Reuters’ Arts & Humanities Citation Index.

Google Scholar - citation data

You have probably already noticed that records in Google Scholar include links to articles etc that cite the work referred to.  Click on the 'Cited by...' link and you get a list of works which cite it.

You may have also noticed that the works with the highest number of citations are generally higher in the results list than those with fewer citations.  The reason that this is not always the case is that Google puts a higher weight on citations which have themselves a high number of citations.  This is the same way as Google works, where referring URLs are used rather than references.

Although launched on April 1st, the Google Scholar Metrics for Publications is (I think) a legitimate service from Google.  It takes the citation data already available and uses it to rank publications, in a similar sort of way as that available with the well-established Journal Citation Reports (JCR) or the alternative SCOPUS.

However, whereas JCR only looks at the most highly-ranked journals, the advantage with Google Scholar is that a much wider range of journals are included.  You can have a look at an example for 'cinema OR film.'  One major problem, though, is that you can only group journals by words appearing in their title - thus missing out Screen and Cineaste from the example given (a list with them included is available here).  This makes the service interesting, but in need of development.

In a similar vein, Google's previously announced 'my citations' service allows you to create a profile and track works on Google Scholar that cite works that you have authored.  You can then make this profile public if you wish (see Albert Einstein's profile for example), or keep it to yourself.  It is very easy to set up: go to 'my citations,' type in your name, affiliation, email address and areas of interest and then varify the list of publications listed.  It really is very easy and is recommended for academics who wish to promote their work (which is anyone who has published I guess).

Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Magazines and journals for photography - new subscriptions

It is really great to be able to announce that the library has recently taken out two new subscriptions in support of photography - foam and Photography and Culture.

The fantastic foam magazine is now available in the library in print.  It was an obvious choice, since I have had students approaching me in the library to ask whether we could get it, and it was well-supported by academic staff.  I am overjoyed to be able to add this to our magazine collection.

Photography & Culture is available online.  It was also a clear favourite with academic staff, and as one of the few peer-reviewed academic journals that focus specifically on photography, I think it is essential for our collection.  Like other similar publications such as History of Photography and Photographies each issue contains several academic research papers, supplemented by reviews of recent books and exhibitions.