To develop your capstone project related to open access, it may be helpful to review the Open Access Unit Shared Reflections. The reflections were developed to explore the ways open access could be applied to the work of the POSE cohort. The reflections will provide examples of how to apply open access into practice and the steps needed to accomplish that application.

Sample Open Access Capstone Project

The following are examples of possible capstone projects for the Open Access unit. These examples may not apply to your specific experiences but are meant to provide an outline of what the capstone project should address when you are preparing to share. For more details and templates for the capstone project, review the Capstone Project Requirements part of this unit.

Capstone Example 1 – Self-Archiving Policies

Self-arching policies are permissions given by publishers to allow authors to post their work in an institutional repository or online environment to allow for free immediate access to their research. For my capstone project, I will consult SHERPA/RoMEO, an online database of publisher and self-archiving policies, to locate the self-archiving policies for 3 journals I have published with in the past. The purpose for my project is to better understand my copyrights as it relates to my past 3 articles.

For my project I will review the self-archiving policies to learn:

  • How permissive is the journal’s policy?
  • Would the journal’s self-archiving policy allow me to meet the standard Tri-Agency Open Access Policy on Publications, which requires that all funded research be made open access within 12 months of publication?
  • How difficult would it be for me to adhere to the policies if I wanted to self-archive my work?

Capstone Example 2 – Calculating My H-Index

Research assessment metrics are an efficient yet highly simplistic method of assessing the quality and impact of research. In recent years there has been a growing call by scholars to do away with them in favour of more nuanced approaches. For my capstone project, I will calculate my personal h-index using Google Scholar Profile. Google Scholar Profile provides data for authors, including Hirsch’s h-index, i10 index, and total # number of citations.

For my project I will gather my h-index and will reflect on the following:

  • What is the value of the h-index as a measure of my research reach?
  • In what ways does the h-index represent my research impact?
  • What is missing from portraying my research in this way?
  • What are the strengths of these calculations? What are the weaknesses?

Capstone Example 3 – Sharing in a Repository

While I do see the value of open access and agree with many of its tenants, I rarely take advantage of the rights to self-archive my work as outlined in my publisher agreements. This is not because I don’t value these rights but because I fail to build them into my research workflows and over time forget to take the time to upload the content to an open repository.

For my capstone project, I am going to take the time to gather my publications, develop the metadata need to share, identify the licensing information, and share my objects in cIRcle, UBC Library’s institutional repository.

For my project I will do the following:

  • Review the last 5 years of publications for self-archiving policies
  • Create a cIRcle account
  • Upload the publications that allow for self-archiving
  • Share my newly available open publications via my Twitter account and using the #POSEUBC hashtag


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