Research Bites sessions in August 2014

Join us for an informal 20 minute session. Bring your lunch, and a friend.

Just turn up, no need to book.

Social media for researchers – ResearchGate and Thursday 14th August, 12.00. Bowland North SR1
Get an introduction to how social media can work for you as a researcher. Focus on: ResearchGate and

Third party copyright and fair dealing Wednesday 20th August, 12.00. Furness LT3
What to do about third party copyright in your thesis or open access document, and how to navigate the grey area of ‘fair dealing’.

Choosing a Creative Commons licence Thursday 28th August, 12.00. Bowland North SR1
Creative Commons licences and how they communicate what others can do with your work.

If you have any questions about these sessions, or you’d like to suggest a future session, please contact Tanya Williamson or 01524 594284


Patents and Intellectual Property

Thanks to those who came along to today’s session by Jenny Brine, ‘What about Patents?’. This was a great introduction to the topic, and prompted several questions about filing patents and protecting intellectual property.

Gavin Smith from the Research & Enterprise Service has agreed to deliver two sessions in September – details of dates to be arranged.


Predatory Open Access Publishers

Following the ‘Impact Factors and all that’ presentation this week, we understandably received a few questions about how to decide where to publish, and what to make of publishers who solicit articles.

We plan to run sessions in the future which will at least begin to address this complex topic and give you ideas of what you need to consider.

In the meantime, you can look at Beall’s list of potential, possible, or probable predatory scholarly open-access publishers. Jeffrey Beall is a librarian who takes a particular interest in open access scholarly publication, particularly publishers and journals which are attempting to exploit academics and the corrupt the scientific process.

It is worth being suspicious of unsolicited emails asking you to publish, especially if they are asking you to pay a fee!

PDF features

A series of questions arose during the ‘Do you need to submit an electronic thesis?’ session earlier this week about the features of the PDF version of your electronic thesis, or indeed any other PDF document uploaded to PURE (Lancaster University’s Research Information System).

Does my PDF need to be machine readable? Yes! If you are creating your PDF from a word processor like Microsoft Word then it will be machine readable. This will be more useful to readers as they can search within the text of the thesis. The exception would be for older documents where the digital version is no longer available, so the PDF is generated from a print copy (i.e. is a scanned image).

Should I apply security features in my PDF? No. There are features in Adobe Acrobat to apply security or Digital Rights Management features to your PDF document. When submitting the PDF version of your thesis please don’t apply these features as it would cause problems for future readers of your work. You can trust us to apply any agreed embargo or restriction on your behalf.

Will Google index my electronic thesis? Yes. Once your electronic thesis is uploaded, Google and other search engines can index the information about your thesis (metadata) through Pure portal and ePrints (Lancaster University’s Respository). If your thesis is restricted or embargoed only the metadata will show. That way readers still know that your research exists.

Voluntary submission of your eThesis

During the ‘Do you need to submit an electronic thesis?’ session there were some questions about voluntary submission, and which part of the procedure apply. If you started your research degree after October 2011 you are required to submit an electronic copy of your thesis. The Electronic thesis guide gives you comprehensive instructions and information about the process.

If you wish to deposit your thesis voluntarily you will need to:

  • Ensure that you have made best efforts to seek permission to include any third party copyright material in the electronic version of your thesis. If you have been unable to gain all necessary permissions, decide if you want to make an edited version publicly available.
  • Complete the Thesis Deposit form (Other Users) which is available on the Deposit page of the guide, and send it to Annette Lawrence, Thesis Office, The Library, Lancaster Unversity, Bailrigg, Lancaster, LA1 4YH
  • Convert the final version of your thesis to a single PDF file
  • Ensure that your file is named according to the format yearnamedegree.pdf (e.g. 2007smithphd.pdf)
  • Contact us at for details and guidance on sending the electronic version of your thesis for upload.

First series of Research Bites have started

The first six sessions in the Research Bites programme are now being delivered throughout July.

We’ve already delivered ‘Do you need to submit an electronic thesis?’ and ‘Impact factors and all that’ and will be using this blog to provide answers to questions raised during the sessions.

These sessions are all bring held in Bowland North SR 25 at 12pm.

Coming up next:

What about Patents? Thursday 17th July 2014
Learn about the unique nature of patents and how to find them.

What you need to know about Open Access Thursday 24th July 2014
Learn why Open Access is important and how the Library can support you through it.

Social media – tools and tips for researchers Friday 25th July 2014
Get an introduction to how social media can work for you as a researcher.

Open session Q&A Thursday 31st July 2014
We’ll aim to help you get past your research barriers and answer any Library-related questions you have.