If you've never used this repository before these quick guides will introduce you to its core functions and assist you with finding and submitting content as well as personalising and navigating the site.
What is Scholarly Commons?
This is our institutional repository, or digital archive. It is intended to capture, store and preserve our research output and to make it available to the research community through Open Access protocols.
How is it organized?
This repository is organised into a hierarchical structure of communities, sub-communities and collections, intended to correspond to an organisational hierarchy. Communities represent the top layer, which could reflect top-level departments, schools, centres or even smaller institutions within a parent company or consortium. Sub communities are a further division of the community. Collections are groups of related documents. It's essentially a simple file system that allows for as many layers as required.
For example, we could have ten communities representing different departments. One of these communities is History another, Biology. The History community has no sub communities but it has a number of collections within it, each representing a different century. On the other hand, the Biology community is divided into a number of sub-communities: Biotechnology, Cell Biology, Structural Biology. Each one of these sub-communities will have their own collections that gather together the works of a specific research lab.
Each community, sub-community and collection has its own home page which can be customised with an individual logo and information about their work and will be able to decide its own policies towards access restrictions and at the collection level who will be allowed to be able to submit.
So what will you find here?
You will find work submitted by both students and faculty relevant to their research output: pre and post print journal articles, technical reports, conference papers, datasets, and multi-media files.
When you click on a link to a submitted item you will be taken to the item view page which lists the key metadata for that item and links to the digital files. You might consider the item view page to be the abstract and the file itself to be the full text.
Do you need to register?
Not initially. You can search, browse and read all unrestricted content without having to register. However if you want to submit an item, view restricted content or sign up for collection email alerts you will need to register, as you would with any site.
Otherwise you can start searching for material within this repository immediately
There are two principal ways of finding content within this repository searching and browsing.
The simple search box appears in the top left hand corner of each page of the site with the exception of the submission form. Enter your search term and you're away.
You will find that there is an additional search box on each community, sub-community and collection home page. This search box will allow you to carry out a simple search at that level of hierarchy or any level below it using a drop down menu.
Here are a few tips on searching:
The site search box
Search terms entered in the site search box will be searched against all indexed metadata fields ; as well as the full text for PDFs, Microsoft Word documents and RTF files.
What is not searched - stop words
The search engine ignores certain words that occur frequently in English, but do not add value to the search. These are:
"a", "and" , "are" , "as" , "at" , "be" , "but" , "by" , "for" , "if" , "in" , "into",
"is" ,"it" ,"no" , "not" , "of" , "on" , "or" , "such", "the" , "to" , "was"
Use an asterisk (*) after a word stem to get all hits having words starting with that root, for example:
will retrieve selects, selector, selectman, selecting etc
The search engine automatically expands words with common endings to include plurals, past tenses ...etc.
To search using multiple words as a phrase, put quotation marks (") around the phrase, for example:
Exact word match
Put a minus (-) sign before a word if it should not appear in the search results. Alternatively, you can use NOT. This can limit your search to eliminate unwanted hits. For instance, in the search:
training-cat or training NOT cat
you will get items containing the word "training", except those that also contain the word "cat".
Eliminate items with unwanted words
Put a plus (+) sign before a word if it MUST appear in the search result. For instance, if the word "training" is optional, but the word "dog" must be in the result you would use:
The following Boolean operators can be used to combine terms. Note that they must be CAPITALIZED ! AND - to limit searches to find items containing all words or phrases combined with this operator, e.g.
cats AND dogs
will retrieve all items that contain BOTH the words "cats" and "dogs". OR - to enlarge searches to find items containing any of the words or phrases surrounding this operator
cats OR dogs
will retrieve all items that contain EITHER the words "cats" or "dogs". NOT - to exclude items containing the word following this operator, e.g.
training NOT cat
will retrieve all items that contain the word "training" EXCEPT those also containing the word "cat". Parentheses can be used in the search query to group search terms into sets, and operators can then be applied to the whole set, e.g.
(cats OR dogs) AND (training OR discipline)
Underneath the simple search box is a link to the advanced search page. The advanced search allows you to specify the metadata fields you wish to search, and to combine these searches with the Boolean "and", "or" or "not". You can search cross all of Scholarly Commons, or restrict your search to a community or collection using the top drop-down menu. Select the field to search in the left hand column and enter the word or phrase you are searching for in the right hand column. You can select the Boolean operator to combine searches by clicking on the arrow to the right of the "AND" box.
Note: You must use the input boxes in order. If you leave the first one blank your search will not work.
The various browse options are listed on the top right of the left-hand navigation bar.
Browse by community/collection
This link will display the full hierarchy.
The other browse options
The other browse options will allow you to browse the content. You can switch between browse lists, and choose different ordering and display options or jump to a specific location within the list.
Date issued vs date submitted
The date issued is the date the work was first made publicly available, for example the date it was published in a journal.
The date submitted is the date the item was archived within Scholarly Commons. If the item has not been published before the date issued and date submitted dates will be the same.
Browse within communities and collections
Each community and collection has additional browse options within it. Browsing a community will also browse any sub-communities or collections within it.
What type of content should we be submitting?
Institutional archives are often thought to be exclusively created for pre and post print research articles. However, whilst individual communities may have their own specific submission policies you should submit any of your research output that is relevant to your subject. This could include published articles, technical reports, conference papers, data sets, multi-media files and eventually theses.
Why should we submit our work to Scholarly Commons?
Research has shown that work published in Open Access institutional repositories can gain up to 300% more citations than research published in journals that limit access through paid for subscriptions. That means increased exposure to your work and all the benefits that come with it. Increasingly, more research funding bodies are insisting that work carried out under their grants must also be deposited within an institutional or subject specific repository.
How do we submit?
You first need to ask an administrator to give you permission to submit to a particular collection or collections. Then, using the submit links from the navigation bar or from the collection homepage follow the steps: add descriptive metadata, upload the file, check the submission and agree to the distribution license.
There is an additional option to automatically populate some of the metadata using a PubMed ID or a DOI.
How much metadata should we add?
As much as possible, the more metadata you add, the greater the chances of someone finding your work. However, the only compulsory field is title.
How do we know if we are allowed to submit an article that has been previously published?
Publisher policies for self-archiving are listed on the Romeo database, which is also linked to from the first page of the submission form. When in doubt, always archive your pre-print version.
Is there any restriction on what files can be uploaded?
Scholarly Commons can accept any type of file, including HTML files. The Scholarly Commons administrators will inform you of any specific restrictions.
Will my submission appear immediately?
Some collections will have a review workflow where an editor will check your submission before it enters the archive. Otherwise your submission will enter the archive as soon as you have agreed to the distribution license.
An item's metadata is available for searching immediately, the full text will be indexed over-night and will be available to be searched the following morning.
My Scholarly Commons
The My Scholarly Commons page is your personal page and from here you can:
From here you have a number of possible options available:
Submit to a collection
You will only be able to submit to collections you have been authorized to.
View all items you have submitted
Note that this will display only items you have submitted not items you have authored. To display items you have authored you should set-up a researcher page and add them to that.
Edit your registration details
Here you can also change your password.
Edit your researcher page.
Researcher pages allow you to add detail about yourself and your interests on a publicly viewable page. You can add links to content within Scholarly Commons or external content.
View any paused submissions
If you pause a submission midway, you can come back to it here and complete it or delete it entirely.
Action any tasks
If you have been assigned a reviewer role any tasks assigned to you will be listed here. You will also receive an email notification for any new tasks assigned to you.