Open Access Week 2017 at SOAS Library

By David Pearson|November 7, 2017|Uncategorized|

[A report by Harmanjit Sidhu, SOAS’ Ambitious Futures Graduate Trainee 2017/18]

From the 23rd to the 27th of October, the Library celebrated Open Access Week, this is a global event dedicated promoting the aims and benefits of Open Access.

What is Open Access?

Open Access is a movement working to make the products of research freely available to all. Its aims are to allow research to be disseminated widely, allowing interested parties such as students, businesses, governments and charities to access cutting edge research- without needing to have access to particular journal and book subscriptions or purchases.

Why is Open Access good news for students?

Open Access means that students are able to freely access articles and book chapters. Although here at SOAS Library we pride ourselves on having a vast repository of resources, including subscriptions to leading journals, there may come a time where you find yourself attempting to access articles that are stuck behind a paywall.

Open Access resources mean that you can find a way around this- there are a number of online repositories and tools which will allow you to search for a free, ‘Open Access’ version of the same article.

For example, check out the Open Access Button, a search engine where you can enter an article URL, Title or DOI number and instantly check whether a free, Open Access Version of the research is available. Try running a search now!

CORE collects all the Open Access content around the world in one place, if you’re having trouble accessing an article it’s worth doing a search here.

The SOAS Research Online Repository also contains thousands of freely accessible articles and book chapters produced by researchers at SOAS. See if you can spot any familiar names!

Highlights of Open Access Week at SOAS Library:

  • Thanks to everyone who stopped by our ‘drop in’ sessions on Floor E of the Library and learned about what Open Access can do for you.
  • We had over 200 entries to our competition, asking people to share thoughts on the question: ‘Should access to knowledge be free and why?’ Read what people said on our Padlet:

  • If you missed our film screening of ‘The Internet’s Own Boy’ you can view the documentary here. The film chronicles the life of online Hacktivist and passionate proponent of Open Access, Aaron Swartz.
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