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CUNY Academic Works Monthly Report: October 2016

A snapshot of CUNY Academic Works
A snapshot of CUNY Academic Works

Each October, researchers and librarians across the globe celebrate Open Access Week, an international event encouraging and celebrating open practices in research and scholarship. Here at CUNY, we have so much to celebrate that Open Access Week lasts all month long. This year was no exception. CUNY Librarians put open in action, organizing workshops and events, tabling on their campuses, and initiating one-on-one conversations with faculty colleagues to let them know about CUNY Academic Works. As a result, there’s been an increase in faculty self-submissions, indicating a deeper and growing engagement with the repository. CUNY Academic Works grew by 111 new items, and received 36,976 new downloads (56% of which were international).

This month also saw an unprecedented download spike when Academic Works went from an average of 1,000 downloads per day to 5,309 downloads on October 11th and 3,110 downloads on October 12th. After investigating this anomaly, the Office of Library Services reached out to the technical team at bepress who confirmed these downloads were from individual users, not bots. If you’d like to learn more about the process for identifying and removing bots from CUNY Academic Works usage statistics, you may be interested in the recent bepress webinar, Bot Shields: Activate! Ensuring Reliable Repository Download Statistics. (Trust me – it’s well worth your time.)

The five most downloaded works in October include:

  1. Improving Exploration And Exploitation Capability Of Harmony Search Algorithm
    Series: Publications and Research at City College of New York
  2. The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Exploring Causes and Consequences
    Series: Publications and Research at John Jay College
  3. Reframing School Dropout as a Public Health Issue
    Series: Master’s Theses at Hunter College
  4. Folk Concepts
    Series: Publications and Research at Kingsborough Community College
  5. An Analysis of the South China Sea Dispute: Focusing on the Assessment of the Impact of Possible Solutions on the Economies of the Region
    Series: Master’s Theses at City College of New York

The fourth most downloaded item, Folk Concepts, comes from Professor Jay Bernstein at Kingsborough Community College who passed away this summer. Jay was a fierce advocate for CUNY Academic Works and one of my closest colleagues and collaborators in this initiative. His absence is deeply felt—so I was very heartened to see Folk Concepts, originally published as a chapter in the $430 reference work 21st Century Anthropology: A Reference Handbook, receive so much attention this month. A large portion of these downloads come from Kenyatta University in Nairobi City, Kenya. It’s fun to imagine how this work is being used. I know Jay would’ve enjoyed this as well.

CUNY Academic Works in bepress Archive

The Office of Library Services is pleased to announce that CUNY Academic Works now offers increased preservation via a new service, bepress Archive.

Content on bepress platforms has always been protected by an infrastructure that includes multiple backups as well as long-term storage with Amazon Glacier. These services will continue, but by adding Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Solution) via bepress Archive, the Office of Library Services will no longer receive quarterly archives of content to store on local servers. Instead, we have a real-time archive of all content on an industry standard-platform that provides 99.9999999999% file durability, performs checksums for data integrity, and uses redundant data to repair any corrupted files. These additional features are especially important as researchers across CUNY look to submit their research products—including their data—to CUNY Academic Works in order to comply with mandates from federal and private funding agencies.

For more information, please see the blog post on the DC Telegraph or contact the Office of Library Services. You may also be interested in Amazon’s video promoting its service:

CUNY Academic Works Monthly Report: September 2016

A snapshot of CUNY Academic Works

September not only marked the start of a new academic year, but the launch of a new monthly series in the OLS@57 blog: the CUNY Academic Works Monthly Report. This series will provide a quick snapshot of statistics and stories from the previous month.

In September, CUNY Academic Works grew by 224 new items, and received 27,568 new downloads by users in 168 countries. In fact, 54% of downloads were international!

The five most downloaded works include:

  1. Training a New Trick Using No-Reward Markers: Effects on Dogs’ Performance and Stress Behaviors
    Series: School of Arts & Sciences Theses at Hunter College
  2. My Math GPS: Elementary Algebra Guided Problem Solving
    Series: Open Educational Resources at Queensborough Community College
  3. Resettling the City? Settler Colonialism, Neoliberalism, and Urban Land in Winnipeg, Canada
    Series: Dissertations, Theses, and Capstone Projects at the Graduate Center
  4. The Growth of Incarceration in the United States: Exploring Causes and Consequences
    Series: Publications and Research at John Jay
  5. Reframing School Dropout as a Public Health Issue
    Series: Publications and Research at Hunter College

Stay tuned for future reports, and if there’s anything you’d like to see here, just let us know!

Academic Works Collections Policy

The Office of Library Services is pleased to announce the publication of the CUNY Academic Works Collections Policy. A collaborative effort between the Scholarly Communications Librarian and the OLS Scholarly Communications Committee, this policy formally outlines the collection parameters and priorities for CUNY’s institutional repository and provides guidelines for administrations of those collections. All Academic Works coordinators were asked to contribute to the online draft of the document, as well as participate in an in-person forum held this August. The campuses were well represented by 14 attendees, and the final draft was approved on August 31, 2016. The full text of the policy is available via the CUNY Academic Works Librarian Toolkit.

Art History Pedagogy and Practice Launches in Digital Commons

Art History Teaching Resources (AHTR), in partnership with the Office of Library Services, is excited to announce the launch of Art History Pedagogy and Practice (AHPP) on Academic Works’ Digital Commons platform. Published by AHTR, a practitioner-led open educational resource for educators who address art history, visual, and material culture, AHPP is the first academic journal dedicated to the scholarship of teaching and learning in art history (SoTL-AH). The result of a two year initiative, AHPP responds to a long-standing need to advance, collect, disseminate, and demonstrate pedagogical research specific to the discipline. The CFP  for the inaugural issue, forthcoming in Fall 2016, is available on the AHTR website.

SoTL in Art History

AHPP results from a two year initiative that sought to examine the ways in which art historians devote time, effort, and energy to classroom teaching, curriculum development, and student engagement. Generously funded by the Samuel H. Kress Foundation, AHTR began preliminary research in 2015, which included a field-wide survey conducted by Randi Korn and Associates and a literature review assessing existing pedagogical scholarship in art history. These findings were synthesized in a White Paper  that demonstrated the need for SoTL-AH to be acknowledged as a legitimate area of intellectual inquiry by the institutions and communities encompassing academic art history. As a peer-reviewed journal devoted to SoTL-AH, AHPP will facilitate this process by providing scholars a forum to share research on pedagogical topics, and by encouraging further academic investigation and discourse around teaching and learning in art history


AHPP builds on the success of AHTR as a platform to exchange ideas related to pedagogy in art history.  Founded on dual goals to raise the value of the academic labor of teaching and to provide peer support across ranks of tenured, tenure-track, and contingent instructors, AHTR began as a collaboration between Michelle Millar Fisher at the Graduate Center and Karen Shelby at Baruch College in 2011. Fisher, then a Graduate Teaching Fellow with a background in museum education, and Shelby, then an Assistant Professor of Art History, organized meetings where colleagues shared teaching materials and experiences. These gatherings suggested potential for a digital forum to connect a wider community of practitioners, and gave rise to the arthistoryteachingresources.org website, which launched publicly in 2013.  Since that time, the site has had more than 400,000 hits from over 91,000 educators in K-12, post-secondary institutions, and art museums, and from academic support staff including reference librarians and curriculum designers. AHTR’s administration has similarly expanded to a leadership collective of art historians, ranging in experience from early career scholars to those well established in the field, and an advisory network assembled for expertise and leadership in art history, museum education, and digital humanities, and united by their interest in advancing pedagogical research. The unique relationship between AHPP and AHTR will allow scholars access to diverse resources about teaching and learning, including lesson plans and the AHTR Weekly on the OER, and peer-reviewed articles published in the journal.

AHPP in Digital Commons

In choosing the Digital Commons platform, AHPP is enthusiastic to extend the relationship with CUNY that was first established when AHTR was born out of the Graduate Center’s New Media Lab with support from Baruch Learning and Technology Grants.  In keeping with the site’s origins, AHTR also contracted CHIPS, a New York web development studio known for innovative work with cultural institutions including The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Timeline of Art History and 82nd and Fifth, who had redesigned the AHTR website in 2014 to create AHPP’s logo and site design.

The editors, editorial collective, and advisory board of AHPP are excited to join the Office of Library Services in the broader open access movement and for the ways in which contributions to the journal will be utilized in the fields of SoTL, art history, and beyond. AHPP worked closely with librarians at the Office of Library Services to develop editorial policies and guidelines that are transparent to authors and readers.


June 2022
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