Wednesday, May 20, 2015


Tell us what you think of the Library, Archives and Collections by taking the Learning Resources Survey which is now open. We will be glad of the feedback, you will be helping to build a better service for all, and you will also be in with a chance to win £75. The winner gets the choice of Artstore vouchers or book vouchers .

Friday, May 15, 2015

The Use of Twitter to Promote Research Outputs and RADAR

We asked Prof. Johnny Rodger to give us an insight into the reasons why he likes to use Twitter to help promote the research outputs that he uploads into RADAR. We see the use of Twitter and other social media avenues as new and important ways for researchers to be able to disseminate their research.

Here's what Johnny has to say:

The Scottish moral philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre spoke in a lecture in Dublin in 2009 about the writing of scholarly articles in refereed journals as a regular and recognised method of disseminating one's ideas and research, and of building an academic career. (the lecture can be seen on youtube) He also drew attention to a study which showed that the average readership for a scholarly journal article is fewer than two. -And one of these average readers, MacIntyre quipped, is usually the writer's mother...

Scholarly journals, that is to say, not only compound the problems of the ivory tower, but with their exclusive and elitist protocols, and their super-refined specialisms, they have driven a hermetic agenda that seems to disregard, or even frown upon, any generalist breadth of appeal. Keeping it in the close family might not be high in the conscious intentions of the contributor to the 'Hermeneutic Review of Relational Aesthetics' –though that could perhaps be the subject of another paper published there featuring a Lacanian Oedipal analysis –titled something like ‘Academics who see their Mother in the Mirror Stage’. But while the approval of a referees' panel is gratifying and useful for research exercise purposes, the researcher’s dilemma of finding a route to a broader readership without watering down the strength of the work is an everpresent.

In the eighteenth century David Hume considered that the writing of an essay could solve such a dilemma, as for him the essay writer performed the role of an ‘ambassador from the dominions of learning to those of conversation’. The problem nowadays of course, is where would one publish such a piece of academic diplomacy?  –The gulf between the journalistic mainstream press and the specialist academic publications has grown wider, and there seems to be no medium for debate which sits between their respective positions. The blogosphere, is of course, an easily accessible and multidisciplinary - not to say anarchic – forum, but again there, the pressure in the competitive online atmosphere to entertain, or to make the quick and easy point can all too easily override the comprehensive statement of a thesis, or rehearsal of an argument.

That is why I’d recommend the use of Twitter as method to disseminate full and unabridged versions of research work. It may seem paradoxical that having already dismissed blogging and the mainstream press for not giving enough physical or intellectual space, I recommend the social medium which can transmit only a minimal size of message -140 characters! But it is precisely its brevity which paradoxically makes Twitter suitable as the bearer of such a complex and uncompromised message as a full scholarly piece of work to a broad audience. This is so because of the indexical quality of its use. The typical – and for me, most successful and interesting short tweet will contain reference to a much more vast hinterland of information via the citing of a url which links to an academic essay. The url will be an internet address that is obtained by uploading the academic essay to a research repository -the publically accessible digital archive of a University staff’s published work. (At Glasgow School of Art that research repository is RADAR)

The twitter message itself will give a short introduction to, or description of what is to be found at that cited url address. A successful tweet can then be shared amongst thousands of users (and tens of thousands if it is in turn retweeted by those users) in seconds. Clearly all the people who view the tweet will not click on and go immediately to the cited url and read the article. Most of those who are interested will favourite or otherwise mark the article, and if it is an engaging academic article of interest to them then they will come back to read it in their own quiet time. Even if only a small percentage of tweeters actually read the article , it still has a relatively broad dissemination, and often dialogue will begin with other tweeters and then spread to email and personal contacts, such that a significant social engagement is made by the work in question. Thus the real efficacy of twitter as a mode of building readership and ‘impact’ lies in its indexical versatility: a lot of potential readers can be pointed in one direction in a very quick and simple manner –but don’t tell your mother, for as all good scholars should know, it’s rude to point.

Thankyou Johnny for a great comment on the use of Twitter. If you want to see more of Johnny's work and research, please view his outputs in RADAR here

Friday, May 01, 2015

Library Closed Monday the 4th of May

Due to the bank holiday on Monday the 4th of May the library and computer centre will be closed. The library and computer centre will reopen on Tuesday the 5th of May at 8am.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

New Art and Architecture Archive database in the Library

GSA students and staff now have electronic access to historical back-runs of some important, journal titles through the new addition of the database Art and Architecture Archive to the GSA Digital Library. 26 journals are indexed including some important titles with long back-runs, together with some new titles and those of which, up until now, we’ve only held partial runs. We’re particularly pleased to have access to Country Life, The Architects’ Journal and Architectural Review.

As well as access to the journal content, other handy features of the new database include the ability to copy and save images, export citations to the reference software Mendeley and limit searches to specific document types such as advertisements, building plans or illustrations.

Have a look through the full list below and access Art and Architecture Archive at this link

  • American Craft (Archive : 1979-2005)
  • Apollo (Archive : 1925-2005)
  • The Architects' Journal (Archive : 1919-2005)
  • The Architectural Review (Archive : 1896-2005)
  • Art Monthly (Archive : 1976-2005)
  • Art and AsiaPacific (Archive : 1993-2005)
  • The Bead Journal (Archive : 1974-1978)
  • The British Journal of Photography (Archive : 1860-2005)
  • The Builders' Journal and Architectural Engineer (Archive : 1906-1910)
  • C (Archive : 1987-1992)
  • C : a Critical Visual Art Magazine (Archive : 1983-1986)
  • C Magazine (Archive : 1986-1987)
  • C Magazine (Archive : 1992-2005)
  • The Canadian Architect (Archive: 1955-2005)
  • Ceramics Technical (Archive : 1995-2005)
  • Country Life (Archive : 1901 - 2005)
  • Country Life Illustrated (Archive : 1897-1901)
  • Craft Horizons (Archive : 1941-1978)
  • Craft Horizons with Craft World (Archive : 1978-1979)
  • Eye: the International Review of Graphic Design (Archive : 1990-2005)
  • Graphis (Archive : 1944-2005)
  • Ornament (Archive: 1979-2005)
  • Print (Archive : 1940-2005)
  • Sculptors International (Archive : 1982-1985)
  • Sculpture (Archive : 1987-2005)
  • Southwest Art (Archive : 1973-2005)

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Spreading the word of RADAR

This week we have had the opportunity to meet with researchers and librarians from inside GSA and external to GSA to discuss the merits of RADAR, Research Data Management and Open Access to data. These meetings have enabled us to share knowledge related to repositories but also promote the research being showcased at GSA.

On Monday we met with Pascale Dorph, head librarian at the School of Art and Design in Limoges, France. We were able to demonstrate RADAR and give tips and advice on the setting up of a research repository. This was an enjoyable experience to share knowledge.

Also this week we have been meeting with new researchers at GSA to help them to understand the repository and issues related to data management and open access, and the impacts these have on staff research activity. We are holding face-to-face meetings with researchers to discuss these factors, if you are interested in meeting with the learning resources team to discuss data management or the repository, then please get in touch with Robin Burgess.

More and more new outputs keep being added to RADAR so please check out our Latest Items HERE.

Tuesday, April 07, 2015

Term 3 Newsletter

At the start to a third term, here's the first instalment of a brand-new newsletter from GSA Library and Archives and Collections: 

Book Donation to GSA Library by the Antiquarian Booksellers Association
Early in March, we were delighted to be presented with a generous donation of a rare 1898 edition of John Keats – His Poems from the Antiquarian Booksellers Association.The particular appeal of the book for GSA is its design in the Glasgow Style. The leather binding pictured is designed by distinguished GSA alumna, and needlework and embroidery tutor Ann Macbeth, while the frontispiece, title page, and illustrations are Robert Anning Bell. Read more in this featured post on GSA Library's Special Collections website:
Welcoming New Staff to Archives and Collections
The GSA Archives and Collections Centre have recently received several new members of staff to work on the Mackintosh recovery project, and on the re-establishment of a working archives and collections service. These new staff are Jocelyn Grant, Archives and Collections Assistant; Polly Christie our Archives & Collections Recovery Project Lead; and Maja Shand our HLF funded Skills for the Future Trainee. You can read more about them on the Archive’s website:
Revamped Library Special Collections Website
The Special Collections pages on the Library website have been redeveloped to better showcase our rare and valuable titles. The collections both relate to the history of the School and provide examples of more contemporary creative practice and research. As we catalogue more donations, new collections will begin to appear. Browse at this link:
Have Your Say on Twilight Classes
We are collecting feedback from staff and students on what they would like to see offered in next year's Twilight Class schedule. Please take a couple of minutes to fill complete our survey and give us some feedback on what you want more of and what you want less of!  
Term 3 VLE Staff Training
We will be running VLE training for staff in Term 3.  The sessions will be VLE Basics, Assessment Tools and Collaboration Tools. Full details here:
GSA Moving Image Library
The Library has just launched a thematic blog entitled the GSA Moving Image Library that we hope will encourage GSA staff and students to get the most out of our growing DVD collection. The blog presents such esoteric categories as ‘Films without Actors,’ ‘Novel Adaptations,’ & ‘Masters, Slaves, Servants & Maids,' and we'll be adding personal recommendations:
Library Subject Guides Updated
We've refreshed the content of our library subject guides to include updated links and information on resources and collections available through the Library and Archives and Collections. Whatever your area of study or research, these guides provide a way of making key subject resources more easily discoverable:

VLE training for staff in Term 3

The following VLE workshops for staff will be running during Term 3

2pm     Tues 5th    May              VLE Basics, 
11am    Wed 6th   May              Assessment tools    
2pm     Tues 12th   May             Assessment tools, 
11am    Wed 13th   May             Collaboration tools 
2pm      Tues 19th  May             Collaboration tools,  
11am    Wed 20th   May             VLE basics

Sessions will take place in the level 2 iMac training room in the Library.  To book a  place, please email Steven Fraser:

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Library Closed Monday the 6th of April

Due to the bank holiday on Monday the 6th of April the library and computer centre will be closed. Normal term time service will resume on Tuesday the 7th of April and we will be open from 8am.