Loughborough University
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Research students and the Loughborough institutional repository

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posted on 2005-11-18, 10:26 authored by Margaret J. Pickton
This dissertation investigated the potential role for research students in a new institutional repository at Loughborough University. The project began with an extensive search for information concerning stakeholders’ attitudes towards open access publishing and institutional repositories. It was apparent from this review that no previous research had focused on the needs and potential contribution of research students in this area. Two studies were therefore carried out. The first, an email survey of managers of existing institutional repositories, investigated student use of their repositories, advocacy undertaken, and attitudes toward research student content. Responses were received from 35 universities in the UK and abroad. The second study comprised face-to-face interviews with 34 research students at Loughborough University. Using a mixture of closed and open questions, the interviews explored the students’ experiences and opinions of publishing, open access and the proposed Loughborough repository. Repository managers were overwhelmingly in favour of permitting the deposit of research student work, albeit under specified conditions. One half of the respondents mentioned allowing, or even encouraging, the deposit of theses and dissertations. The relative newness of many repositories meant that advocacy to student authors was limited, although a number of managers were including the repository in routine research training sessions. The interviews with research students established that, as readers, they wanted to find many more types of material in the repository than, as authors, they were willing to deposit. However, complete theses, postprints and conference papers were acceptable to both groups. The ability to disseminate their work and receive feedback and commentary were the most important motivators to students depositing work, closely followed by the principle of open access. The greatest deterrents were the risk of being unable to publish elsewhere later, the ownership of copyright, and plagiarism. Based on the findings of the literature review and the two studies, appropriate recommendations were made for the Loughborough repository



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This is an MSc dissertation.


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  • MSc

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  • Masters

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