Combo Category

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5 million downloads

We are very excited to have had 5 million downloads in Iowa Research Online! We had 4 million downloads in November, so this last million happened in only about 6 months. Some of this growth is attributable to the fantastic content added recently (such as the State Historical Society journal Annals of Iowa, back to 1863).

IRO map showing 5 million downloads

While we don’t know exactly what download made us cross the 5 million mark, these items all received higher use around the time we made it to 5 million.

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Open Access Fund Articles in IRO

Two years ago, the University Libraries and the Provost’s Office launched an Open Access Fund to pay the processing fees related to open access publishing.

The fund is meant to encourage the University community to publish their research in open access platforms. The open access publishing model allows free, immediate access to research and allows authors to retain intellectual property rights to their research. To recoup publishing costs, some open access journals charge article processing fees to make the work freely available online. More information about the fund can be found here.

To date, 73 funded items have been funded, published and added to our institutional repository, with 10 published in 2015, 40 2014, and 23 in 2013. An additional 17 items have been approved and are awaiting publication. The author publishing charges for these 73 articles total $101,605.03, for an average cost of $1,391.85.

The articles come from a wide variety of colleges, with majority of articles having authors in the Carver College of Medicine and in the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences.

University of Iowa Open Access fund article counts by College, 23 April 2015Open access journals which charge author fees are more common in the sciences. Our collection of articles is similarly heavy in the sciences.

University of Iowa Open Access fund article counts by Department/School/Program, 23 April 2015

Most of the articles are in journals that are completely open access. A few are in hybrid journals. (If you have an item in a hybrid journal, you can may be able to post a version of the article in IRO without paying an additional fee. Contact your subject specialist for more information.) One article is available freely on the publisher’s site, but we cannot add it to our collection, in part because the publisher required that the authors give away their copyright of the article to the publisher as a condition of publication.

We are very happy to have been able to support open scholarship at the University of Iowa with this fund.

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IDL highlights for Black History Month

The Iowa Digital Library is fortunate to host the college scrapbooks of three University of Iowa students from the 1920s and 1930s, which provide views of the African-American community during their time on campus.

 

Althea Beatrice Moore Smith scrapbook cover, 1924-1928

Althea Beatrice Moore Smith scrapbook cover, 1924-1928

The Althea Beatrice Moore Smith scrapbook was added to the Iowa Digital Library thanks to a collaboration between the African American Museum of Iowa and the Iowa Women’s Archives.

Althea Moore and friend on steps of Old Capitol, Iowa City, Iowa, between 1924 and 1928

Althea Moore and friend on steps of Old Capitol, Iowa City, Iowa, between 1924 and 1928


 

Patrobas Cassius Robinson college scrapbook cover, 1923-1928

Patrobas Cassius Robinson college scrapbook cover, 1923-1928

Hal and Avril Chase of Des Moines, Iowa, funded the purchase of this album for the University of Iowa Archives.

Patrobas Cassius Robinson

Patrobas Cassius Robinson


 

James B. Morris Jr. photo album cover, 1937-1941

James B. Morris Jr. photo album cover, 1937-1941

James Morris was the son of James Morris, Sr., a long-time publisher of the Iowa State Bystander, an African-American newspaper.  James Morris Jr. married Arlene J. Roberts Morris, the first African-American woman psychologist to be licensed by the Iowa State Board of Psychology.

Captain James B. Morris, Jr. 1944

Captain James B. Morris, Jr. 1944

 

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IRO Highlights for Black History Month

Here are some highlights from our digital collections for black history month.

These three books are available as free PDFs online. They were published in the University of Iowa Press Singular Lives series.

Fly in the Buttermilk - coverFly in the Buttermilk: The Life Story of Cecil Reed
Cecil Reed
Priscilla Donovan

Born in 1913 in Collinsville, Illinois, Cecil Reed has lived all his life in the Midwest as a black man among whites. This self-styled fly in the buttermilk worked among whites with such skill and grace that they were barely aware of his existence—unless he wanted to get a bank loan or move into their neighborhood. Now, in his lively and optimistic autobiography, he speaks of his resilience throughout a life spent working peacefully but passionately for equality.

The Making of a Black Scholar: From Georgia to the Ivy League - cover
The Making of a Black Scholar: From Georgia to the Ivy League
Horace A. Porter

This captivating and illuminating book is a memoir of a young black man moving from rural Georgia to life as a student and teacher in the Ivy League as well as a history of the changes in American education that developed in response to the civil rights movement, the war in Vietnam, and affirmative action. Born in 1950, Horace Porter starts out in rural Georgia in a house that has neither electricity nor running water. In 1968, he leaves his home in Columbus, Georgia—thanks to an academic scholarship to Amherst College—and lands in an upper-class, mainly white world. Focusing on such experiences in his American education, Porter’s story is both unique and representative of his time.

The Making of a Black Scholar is structured around schools. Porter attends Georgia’s segregated black schools until he enters the privileged world of Amherst College. He graduates (spending one semester at Morehouse College) and moves on to graduate study at Yale. He starts his teaching career at Detroit’s Wayne State University and spends the 1980s at Dartmouth College and the 1990s at Stanford University.

Porter writes about working to establish the first black studies program at Amherst, the challenges of graduate study at Yale, the infamous Dartmouth Review, and his meetings with such writers and scholars as Ralph Ellison, Tillie Olsen, James Baldwin, and Henry Louis Gates, Jr. He ends by reflecting on an unforeseen move to the University of Iowa, which he ties into a return to the values of his childhood on a Georgia farm. In his success and the fulfillment of his academic aspirations, Porter represents an era, a generation, of possibility and achievement.

My Iowa Journey - coverMy Iowa Journey: The Life Story of the University of Iowa’s First African American Professor
Philip G. Hubbard

Philip Hubbard’s life story begins in 1921 in Macon, a county seat in the Bible Belt of north central Missouri, whose history as a former slave state permeated the culture of his childhood. When he was four his mother moved her family 140 miles north to Des Moines in search of the greater educational opportunity that Iowa offered African American students. In this recounting of the effects of that journey on the rest of his life, Phil Hubbard merges his private and public life and career into an affectionate, powerful, and important story. Hubbard graduated from the University of Iowa with a degree in electrical engineering in 1946; by 1954 he had received his Ph.D. in hydraulics. The College of Engineering extended a warm academic welcome, but nonacademic matters were totally different: Hubbard was ineligible for the housing and other amenities offered to white students. Intelligent, patient, keenly aware of discrimination yet willing to work from within the university system, he advanced from student to teacher to administrator, retiring in 1991 after decades of leadership in the classroom and the conference room. Hubbard’s major accomplishments included policies that focused on human rights; these policies transformed the makeup of students, faculty, and staff by seeking to eliminate discrimination based on race, religion, or other nonacademic factors and by substituting affirmative action for the traditional old-boy methods of selecting faculty and administrators. At the same time that he was advancing the cause of human rights and cultural diversity in education, his family was growing and thriving, and his descriptions of home life reveal one source of his strength and inspiration. The decades that Hubbard covers were vital in the evolution of the nation and its educational institutions. His dedication to the agenda of public higher education has always been matched by his sensitivity to the negative effects of discrimination and his gentle perseverance toward his goals of inclusion, acceptance, and fairness. His vivid personal and institutional story will prove valuable at this critical juncture in America’s racial history.

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1.5 Million downloads from IRO in 2014!

Iowa Research Online had an impressive 1,506,333 items downloaded in 2014. When all supplemental content is included, this number increases to 1,558,358! IRO currently has 16,209 full text items, 1,521 supplements and 118 streaming items (not included in download numbers).

While most use came from the United States, 15% of the use came from other places, including the United Kingdom, India, Canada, Germany and Australia, and 187 other countries.

Our theses and dissertations are downloaded more than anything else in IRO. All together, they total close to 60% of the total downloads!

Almost one third of the total downloads come from our books, journals and magazines. Walt Whitman Quarterly Review and Medieval Feminist Forum receive the most use.

Our highest use items are

Congratulations to all the authors and journal editors!

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Contributing in code

University of Iowa Libraries at GitHub.com

University of Iowa Libraries at GitHub.com

For librarians, particularly those in academic settings, an important part of the job is contributing to the development of the profession; traditionally, this has included tasks such as giving presentations at conferences and publishing articles in scholarly journals. But thanks to the evolving nature of our work and to innovations on the part of our developers, the University of Iowa Libraries has become active in a new area of professional development: sharing code for re-use and adaptation by other institutions.

When George Mason University’s Center for History and New Media launched Scripto, an NEH-funded open-source tool for transcription crowdsourcing projects, we were eager to adopt it for DIY History to replace our existing makeshift and labor-intensive system. Once it was installed, we became even more eager to make extensive changes to Scripto. While the tool was designed to treat transcription as an add-in activity for digital exhibits, we needed it front and center for DIY History.

DRP’s developers, Shawn Averkamp (now at New York Public Library) and Matthew Butler, solved this problem by adding new features to Scripto and creating a simple-to-use theme that focuses exclusively on the act of transcription. Other enhancements included a progress system for tracking completion status, as well as various scripts for migrating mass quantities of objects and metadata from our digital library to DIY History and back again. As it turned out, we weren’t the only ones looking for these functionalities. In the open source spirit of sharing work for the good of the community, Shawn and Matthew made their enhancements and related code available online, where it’s been reused by a number of other institutions [see below].

As we prepare to launch a redesigned and streamlined DIY History soon, we’re grateful for the open source tools that have allowed us to make progress on our own project, and thrilled to have contributed to the development of crowdsourcing sites at other libraries and museums.

“DIY History and similar projects are about community” says Matthew Butler, the Libraries’ Multimedia Consultant. “They succeed because of the collaborative efforts of transcribers, developers, librarians, and curators to make the content and tools as accessible as possible.”

DIY History | University of Iowa Libraries

DIY History | University of Iowa Libraries

The Civil War in Letters | The Newberry Library

The Civil War in Letters | The Newberry Library

Making History | Library of Virginia

Making History | Library of Virginia

Jones' Icones Online | University of Oxford

Jones’ Icones Online | University of Oxford

Virtual Volunteering | Carnamah Historical Society & Museum

Virtual Volunteering | Carnamah Historical Society & Museum

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DIY History celebrates 50,000th transcription!

cake5

As DIY History, the University of Iowa’s transcription crowdsourcing site, has inched toward its 50,000th submission, we’ve been looking forward to reaching such an amazing milestone — hence the queued-up cake gif.

But as it turned out, we weren’t quite prepared for how it went down today. On the heels of some high-profile attention from BuzzFeed and NBC News in October, DIY History just hit the big time with a Tumblr post from Kate Beaton of Hark! A Vagrant fame, which was reblogged by John Green, of The Fault in Our Stars and many other things. Once a portion of their millions of devoted followers visited our site, the 50K achievement was immediately unlocked — along with a fair amount of panic among library staff about insufficient server bandwith and a dearth of untranscribed pages (plus Colleen wept with joy)(although low threshold)(we love you Colleen!).

We are humbled and gratified by the dedication of all our volunteer transcribers — those of you who have just joined us, and those who have been with us from the beginning. Since the Libraries put its first batch of Civil War diaries up in the spring of 2011, you have fought a brave battle against inaccessibility and illegibility, rescuing the first-hand accounts of soldiers, cooks, students, railroad barons, farmers, artists, suffragists, and so many others. In lieu of the celebratory cake we wish we could give you, here is a comprehensive list of the Libraries’ hundreds of historic handwritten cake recipes. An unthinkingly time-consuming task pre-crowdsourcing, the compilation of such a list now happens almost instantly, thanks to the magic of fully-searchable transcribed text. Happy baking, and don’t forget to stock up on lard.

While you’re busy with that, we’ll be powering up our scanners to get new content on the site as quickly as possible, so please stop back soon and often. The next 50,000 pages starts now!

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Four Million Downloads!

Items in Iowa Research Online have been downloaded more than four million times! This means that scholarship created by University of Iowa faculty, researchers and students is being read around the world. We crossed the three million mark in late January 2014; it is so very exciting to have had such an increase in just over nine months that we are dancing in our cubicles.

ancers at a party at Esther Walls' apartment, New York, N.Y., 1960s

Our theses and dissertation make up over half the use, which is great evidence of the fantastic scholarship done by our graduates. The journals Walt Whitman Quarterly Review and Medieval Feminist Forum each have had two-three hundred thousand downloads. Congratulations to the editors of these journals for producing such quality publications.

Walt Whitman Quarterly Review

If you would like your scholarship in Iowa Research Online, please contact your subject specialist for more information.

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Historically mustachioed

In celebration of Movember and of Digital Research & Publishing’s sometimes very hirsute new department head, we’re reprising a few of last year’s Great Mustaches of the Iowa Digital Library:

UI President Charles A. Schaeffer, 1893 | University of Iowa Yearbooks

UI President Charles A. Schaeffer, 1893 | University of Iowa Yearbooks

J.L. Small, 1885 | Dentistry College Class Photographs

J.L. Small, 1885 | Dentistry College Class Photographs

L.K. Fullerton, 1885 | Dentistry College Class Photographs

L.K. Fullerton, 1885 | Dentistry College Class Photographs

Find your own favorites! Probably here: digital.lib.uiowa.edu/dentistry

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Tom Keegan named Head of Digital Research & Publishing

The University of Iowa Libraries has hired Tom Keegan as Head of Digital Research & Publishing. A Rhetoric faculty member and co-director of the IDEAL (Iowa Digital Engagement & Learning) initiative, Keegan has a partial appointment with the Libraries until January, when he will assume full-time duties leading DRP.

In this position Keegan will build on the Libraries’ work leveraging digital collections, resources, and expertise to support faculty and student Tom Keeganscholars. Founded in 2006, Digital Research & Publishing coordinates and maintains the Iowa Digital Library, a million-object database of digitized special collections and archival materials, plus digital content from campus and community partners such as the UI Museum of Art, the Office of the State Archaeologist, and the Writing University. DRP also offers hosting and management of the University’s scholarly output via its institutional repository, Iowa Research Online, and journal publishing services for the Walt Whitman Quarterly Review and other titles. Additional projects include DIY History, a participatory archives initiative, and University of Iowa Press Digital Editions, a collaboration between the Libraries and the Press to provide free online access to select UIP books.

Before joining the Libraries, Keegan taught at the University beginning in 2003, most recently as a lecturer for the Department of Rhetoric. His teaching and research address the use of digital humanities and publicly engaged pedagogies across a variety of curriculums. With Matt Gilchrist, he co-directs IDEAL, which encourages assignment innovation and fosters expanded access to TILE learning spaces. One such assignment, Archives Alive!, incorporates DIY History to engage undergraduate students with digital scholarship practices in learning research, writing, and presentation skills. Keegan received his Ph.D. in English Literature from the University of Iowa, and his undergraduate degrees in English Literature and Bioethics from the University of Virginia.

The new position in the Libraries allows Keegan to remain connected to the innovative teaching and curriculum projects he’s developed in partnership with the Rhetoric Department, Tippie College of Business, the UI Honors Program, the College of Education, the UI Graduate School, ITS and SITA, the Studio, the Center for Teaching, the English Department, Hancher, the Iowa City Downtown District, Public Space One, and a variety of other people and units within the UI and Iowa City communities. He is also continuing his humanities scholarship by collaborating with Libraries’ staff to develop a digital project based on spatial rhetoric in the works of James Joyce.

“I’m thrilled to be working with such innovative and talented people,” says Keegan. “Digital Research & Publishing plays a crucial role in bringing together a variety of audiences for research and learning in the 21st century.”