Posted by selinalock on 17 September, 2012
On Tuesday 11th September Helen Steele & I visited the University of Nottingham for the East Midlands Research Support Group meeting.
The first half of the meeting was about the creation of online learning resources for researchers (presented by Wendy Stanton & Helen Young), which you can find out more about on the eMRSG website. Some of the interesting points the group found when creating the online resources and talking to researchers were:
- Researchers prefer online tutorials to be 10-30mins and include visuals, links, quizzes and screencasts.
- They also prefer peer support, which was not an option for the current online tutorial project.
- Skills they rated highly and think researchers should develop = literature search planning, assessing quality information and in-depth knowledge of published literature.
- Tutorial creators thought they would need to present a balanced view – researchers wanted to know how to advance their career in three amazing leaps.
- Tutorial creators thought they should include high level content such as ‘how to start a journal’ but many researchers were bemused as to why anyone would want to do that!
- Calling the tutorial ‘Promotion of Research’ was perceived as too aggressive so changed to ‘Dissemination of Research’
- Content more important than aesthetics – both were important.
- The ‘Dissemination of your Research’ tutorials are now available under a creative commons license.
The second half of the meeting was a discussion of what the various libraries represented were doing to support research and the future of the group.
Main themes of research support were:
- Work closely with Graduate School, Research Office, Staff Development/Learning Development.
- Blogs, websites or Blackboard sites to bring scattered resources together as a one stop shop for research support within institutions.
- Research Data Management – big theme for the future, how to support, where funds are coming from, working closely with IT Services etc.
- Looking at different ways of engaging researchers – training sessions, Elevenses, attending appropriate committees, blogs, social media.
- Mapping training and support on to the Researcher Development Framework.
- Library support costed into research bids e.g. systematic reviews
- Institutional repository data and REF.
- OA publishing – how Finch Report will affect things – how/where OA funds placed and managed – what about institutions not receiving extra funds from Government?
- Modules or moderated courses on information literacy and research skills for PGRs.
- How to measure impact of training provided.
- Contacting new staff/researchers on arrival (if possible).
- Reference Management training and support.
- Some libraries (like our new team at Leicester) have staff specifically responsible for research support, others it is part of the remit for all subject librarians.
- Catalogue of Research Equipment (across the M5 group, as announced today here at Leicester) – could the equipment catalogue be linked to research data and research publications? (Loughborough investigating this).
- Research Support Space within the library.
- Challenges = time, resource, funding, do we know what researchers really want/need?
It was a really useful afternoon and everyone in attendance agreed that it would be useful to have a few meetings every year and keep in touch regarding developments to research support within the East Midlands. The next meeting will be hosted here at the University of Leicester in March, provisionally on Open Access Publishing Funds and the affects of the Finch Report.