Supporting Students and Faculty with an Institution-led Publishing Program

Seton Hall University (SHU) serves diverse stakeholders across its three New Jersey campuses by publishing a wide array of academic materials in its institutional repository (IR). From student-led journals, to theses (which currently have 1,467,560 downloads across 192 countries), to campus-wide events such as the Petersheim Academic Exposition, the eRepository @ Seton Hall University seeks to meet faculty and student publishing needs.

We are excited that the number of downloads from the IR is fast approaching 3 million. According to Sebastian Derry, Assistant Dean for Public Services at Seton Hall University Libraries, the eRepository reflects the library’s mission by providing access to theses and dissertations as well as supporting faculty’s interdisciplinary approach to research. Electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) are the most frequently downloaded documents from the repository, with 216,000 downloads from 30,877 institutions in 226 countries. SHU’s press release about reaching the milestone of 2 million downloads in 2017 underlined Derry’s point: “This is significant for the fact that the eRepository allows the University’s research to become a viable worldwide resource.”

Journal publishing

Our institution-led publishing program, managed by the SHU Libraries, includes a journal publishing program for the law school and the wider university. In fall 2018, Locus, a new undergraduate research journal created to feature excellent examples of undergraduate scholarship, was launched by the College of Arts & Sciences. The journal has since been viewed by 52 institutions in 43 countries. This is terrific exposure for students who want to build a digital portfolio, and it gives the editors valuable metrics to better understand their readership. Faculty advisor Nathan Kahl, PhD, Associate Professor of Mathematics, was delighted with the process and has become a fan of the institution-led publishing platform.

Locs Journal of Undergraduate Research logoSHU’s Catholic mission

SHU is a private Roman Catholic University, and the repository also ties into the Catholic mission, which focuses on community service and servant leadership. The open nature of the repository is a great service to the campus, local, and global communities. SHU believes that getting involved in the community teaches lessons that can’t be taught in any classroom. The use of the repository, whether for a student-run journal or a campus-wide event such as the Petersheim Exposition, allows SHU to share scholarship and campus resources. SHU’s commitment to the study of theology is also important. In additional to departmental collections, religion-focused journals include Arcadia: A Student Journal for Faith and Culture and Vocations – A Publication of the Center for Vocation & Servant LeadershipThe Catholic Advocate, the official publication of the Archdiocese of Newark from 1951 to 1987, is currently being uploaded into the repository’s digital collections to preserve our institutional history.

Open access journals

Open access journals are available to student organizations, academic and campus centers and administrative departments.  We have had great success with Political Analysis, a student-run journal which added an online presence to its printed issues in 2016 and has over 15,000 downloads globally. The editors and authors find the dashboard metrics very helpful to determine the global reach of student scholarship.

Political Analysis Journal logoFor more information about creating online journals, see Starting, Publishing, and Sustaining an Online Journal: Beginner’s Workshop which was presented at the Digital Commons Conference at The College at Brockport in 2016. This presentation can help other institutions create a framework to launch open access journals.

Open educational resources

To promote sharing among faculty, we created an Open Educational Resources collection on the repository to highlight projects from our Digital Humanities Committee, which sponsors multiple faculty programs per year.  We have also added faculty assignments that utilized PolicyMap, a GIS Lite mapping tool, from disciplines including anthropology, political science and health care administration. Many of the faculty from these different departments had not met prior to the PolicyMap rollout. Now, because of eRepository, they can track each other’s mapping assignments in their classes. PolicyMap continues to be a thread between departments to improve digital literacy among students and faculty communication through the IR.

Conclusion

The eRepository partners with diverse stakeholders to support faculty and student needs.  The next planned project is a syllabi repository for the School of Diplomacy and International Relations that will reduce paper storage and allow virtual sharing of syllabi. We are also excited to be taking in programs from the History Department’s symposia and more academic materials from across our campuses.  We will continue to work with the Office of Research and Grant Services (OGRS) to promote scholarship output and results for Seton Hall faculty, administrative departments and students.  Regular distribution of IR statistics are sent to university deans in an annual report. These reports showcase the excellent global maps that are created by the Digital Commons dashboard.

Map of theses and dissertations global downloads for Seton Hall University
Map of theses and dissertations global downloads for Seton Hall University

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Prof. Lisa DeLuca Presents Capstone Project at National Conference

M.P.A. Student Presents at National Conference By Roseanne Mirabella

On March 9th, Master of Public Administration (M.P.A.) graduate student and Social Sciences Librarian Prof. Lisa DeLuca presented her capstone project “Spatial Literacy with PolicyMap for Public Policy Undergraduate Instruction” at the 7th Annual M.P.A. Capstone Panel at the annual conference of the American Society for Public Administration (ASPA). The national panel showcased national M.P.A. capstone projects that integrate theory and practice. The student presenters, sponsored by faculty, represent the “best of the best” as practitioners in field of public administration.

Lisa Deluca photo
Lisa Deluca

Established in 1939, ASPA is the largest and most prominent broadly based professional association in American public administration. It has a diverse membership of approximately 8,000 practitioners, academicians and students. ASPA serves as the principal arena for linking theory and practice within the field of public administration.

DeLuca’s paper focused on the use of spatial analysis for assessment of situations in political science and to understand public policy. Her analysis was based on class assignments for the course “Contemporary Issues in US Public Policy,” taught by Professor Michael Taylor in the Political Science Department. The implications for public administration of her research findings support current data visualization best practices, that using mapping tools can result in more accurate storytelling through the emergence of patterns in maps or clusters that are not easily revealed through tables or spreadsheets. Additionally, the use of spatial analysis provides for identification of previously unknown relationships resulting in new research questions or alternative proposals for public policy.

The M.P.A. degree, offered both on-campus and online by the Department of Political Science and Public Affairs, is accredited by NASPAA and ranked #17 in the country for nonprofit management by U.S. News & World Report. Students learn from great minds in both the government and nonprofit sectors. Concentrations are offered in Health Policy, Public Service Leadership and Governance, Nonprofit Management and Data Visualization and Analytics.

New Jersey Library Association Research Award Winners 2016: Beth Bloom & Marta Deyrup

Beth Bloom, coordinator of library instruction, and Marta Deyrup, head of technical services at  Seton Hall University Libraries, have won the New Jersey Library Association, Association of College and Research Libraries 2016 Research Award for their article, “The SHU Research Logs: Student Online Search Behaviors Trans-scripted” in The Journal of Academic Librarianship 41 (2015) 593-601.

M&BBloom and Deyrup have been collaborating on Information Literacy for more than a decade, having published articles, book chapters, and creating tutorials on this very critical issue. In 2011 they received a $15,000 Google grant to study how students perform on-line academic research. Their research strategy was unique in that they used a tracking product that allowed students to record and comment on their research in venues of their own choosing, without supervision. The research provided results that not only supported recent theory about students’ on-line behaviors, but that also provide stimulus for a reevaluation of how teachers approach and assign research projects. This award-winning article is a product of that study.

Congratulations Beth and Marta!