2-page proposal file

Library Resources, Copyright, and Open Source Materials
Or How to Use Free Stuff and Still Cover Your … Assets
Robert L. Turner Jr., McConnell Library, Radford University
Scott A. Turner, Math and Computer Science, UNC Pembroke
Abstract: As the nature of the classroom has evolved to become more digital, so have many of the
resources provided by the library. What has not kept up with these changes is the awareness of the
students and faculty about these resources. Online tutorials, libguides, direct linking to articles and
citation formatters are just some of the digital services available for classes which may help the
instructor support the students’ success. However, the changes in the resources have brought new
and modified problems, notably, the issue of copyright. With different ways of accessing and
disseminating materials come new pitfalls for instructors and institutions to avoid. The availability
of information is also changing with the development of more open source textbooks and journals.
These can become resources that instructors and students can draw upon. During the presentation,
participants will be asked to discuss their use of online library resources and how they can better
support their students through these services. Copyright case studies will also be presented with a
discussion of how to use library resources without violating copyright. Finally, the use of open
source material will be discussed and evaluated.
Literature Review
One of the core needs for any college or university is access to information. The library has traditionally provided
the resources that allow this access through books, journals, and numerous other methods. As classes move more
and more online (either completely or partially), this access has, by necessity, changed. Traditional services may not
work well or may not meet the students’ needs in the online environment (Thomsett-Scott & May, 2009). With these
changes in the services and their context of use, there arise new problems, such as the issue of copyright in a digital
medium, and new possibilities, like open source textbooks and journals. All of these changes must be understood to
effectively support student success.
One significant problem facing the use of online library resources is that students do not know how to use these
resources. What is worse is that many faculty members are also not aware of the services available online and,
therefore, do not include them in the course website or point their students in the right direction (Lawrence, 2006;
Shell et al., 2010; Thomsett-Scott & May, 2009). Things like online tutorials, libguides, direct linking to articles,
ways to communicate directly with librarians, citation formatters, and so forth are all services available to the
students and faculty if they know to use them.
With these resources also come problems that must be dealt with. Copyright issues may be one of the more
confusing problems that this generates. For instance, is it acceptable to upload a copy of an article as a pdf to a
course management system or should there just be a link to the source? What about using a YouTube video? There
are many aspects to consider to protect yourself (Dames, 2010; Seadle, 2006). These questions get even more
complicated when you consider the nature of the internet and that the online course material may not be restricted to
a single country, so there may be multiple sets of laws to deal with. This is a tricky topic and not understanding it
may mean that students do not get access to a resource they could have used or the instructor might be inviting
litigation because of inappropriate use.
As a counterpoint to the issues of copyright is the idea of open source textbooks and journals. This topic has
received a lot of press recently as a way to reduce the financial burden on students (Schwartz, 2012; Wukman,
2012). It can also be seen as a way to widen participation in education and promote life-long learning (Bradwell,
2009). At the same time, there are questions to be answered about who will control the quality and content of the
materials. Other issues, like whether contributing to an open source book or journal is as prestigious as publishing
in a traditional venue, may be of specific interest to faculty members.
Goals and Objectives
Upon completing this session, participants will be able to:
 Recognize the opportunities and problems integrating library resources in online learning
 Describe how online library materials can be used to support student success
 Recognize potential copyright issues in online learning
 Explore open source e-textbooks
 Discuss the advantages/disadvantages of open source journals and textbooks
Description of Practice
During the session, participants will explore the opportunities and challenges of using library resources in their
online courses. The presenters will introduce various online resources such as libguides, online tutorials, resources
for APA and MLA citation styles, etc. Participants will examine copyright case studies and discuss copyright issues
in online learning. Participants will discuss the use of open source e-textbooks and other resources.
The discussion will focus on how to effectively use library resources in a variety of disciplines. Participants will be
encouraged to discuss the why and how of incorporating online library resources into their courses without violating
copyright. Participants will evaluate alternate scholarly textbooks and journals. Discussion will also encourage
participants to examine their own institutions’ resources and share those with the group.
Bradwell, P. (2009). The edgeless university: why higher education must embrace technology. London: Demos.
Retrieved from http://www.jisc.ac.uk/media/documents/publications/edgelessuniversity.pdf
Dames, K. M. (2010). Educational use in the digital age. Information Today, Inc., pp. 18–19.
Lawrence, D. (2006). Blackboard on a Shoestring: Tying Courses to Sources. Journal of Library Administration,
45(1/2), 245–265.
Schwartz, M. (2012, October 3). Update: CA Creates Free Digital Textbook Library. Library Journal. Retrieved
October 8, 2012, from http://lj.libraryjournal.com/2012/10/legislation/ca-creates-free-digital-textbooklibrary/
Seadle, M. (2006). Copyright in the networked world: copies in courses. Library Hi Tech, 24(2), 305 – 310.
Shell, L. B., Duvernay, J., Ewbank, A. D., Konomos, P., Leaming, A., & Sylvester, G. (2010). A Comprehensive
Plan for Library Support of Online and Extended Education. Journal of Library Administration, 50(7-8),
951–971. doi:10.1080/01930826.2010.488996
Thomsett-Scott, B., & May, F. (2009). How May We Help You? Online Education Faculty Tell Us What They Need
from Libraries and Librarians. Journal of Library Administration, 49(1-2), 111–135.
Wukman, A. (2012, June 20). The Cost of College: Open Access Textbooks Cutting the Bookstore Bill by 80% Online Colleges. Online Colleges. Retrieved October 8, 2012, from