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Most useful textbook and academic posts of the week: February 14, 2020

“Never give up! Failure and rejection are only the first steps to succeeding.” ~Jim ValvanoSince this week’s collection of posts from around the web falls on Valentines Day, we hope that you find something to love in the links below, beginning with stories of inspiring women in science.

Of course, love requires risk, and it’s important to be cautious with matters of the heart, so it may be worth exploring things like public engagement, personal statements for PhD programs, and open access agreements a little more before committing yourself to them completely. Finally, collecting memories and continuing to improve your relationships is essential for long-term success, and we see these practices in action through SAGE Research Methods curation features and the review of OhioLINK’s affordable textbook initiative which close our list.

As with love and relationships, our research and writing efforts may require exploration of options, putting ourselves out there, and being heartbroken a time or two before finding out where we belong. However, as Jim Valvano said, “Never give up! Failure and rejection are only the first steps to succeeding.” Happy Writing!

Inspiring the next generation of women in science

Tuesday was International Day of Women and Girls in Science. To mark the occasion, I took the opportunity to speak with a few of the 1,600+ female early-career researchers who participated in the most recent AuthorAID online course in research writing in the sciences. The research stories of these inspiring women can be found here but I want to share a few things that particularly struck me.

Is public engagement just a nightmare?

Public engagement is usually understood as the efforts by scientists to come down from their ivory tower and engage with non-academic audiences. In other words, you explain, usually in plain in a simple language, what you do and why this is important for society. However, after years of training during which you have been domesticated to think that complex is good and there is nothing objective or definitive, this noble task might become a pure nightmare.

Don’t be too personal

Personal statements for Ph.D. programs are named terribly. They are not personal in the ways that a personal statement for undergraduate programs are. At its core, a personal statement is a written argument that makes the case for being admitted into a program, often to work with a particular person or set of people. As such, a personal statement must set forth a few claims and warrant those claims with evidence that makes the argument convincing.

ACM’s new open access agreements: A Q&A with Scott Delman

As many Scholarly Kitchen readers will know, in late January it was announced that the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) had signed new open access (OA) publishing agreements with four major US universities. There has been lots of public conversation about these agreements, but I decided to go to the source for some additional information. Scott Delman of ACM graciously agreed to respond to some questions.

Love & research: A Valentines Day reading list on SRM

Curating and sharing lists of sources on your favorite topic is one of the ways to use the SAGE Research Methods Reading List feature. Just for fun, here is a Valentines Day list on research & love.

An update to OhioLINK’s affordable textbook initiative

OhioLINK is Ohio’s statewide academic library consortium, connecting print and digital collections among its 90 member institutions and managing statewide collaborative library and student success services. In October of 2018, I wrote two guest posts for The Scholarly Kitchen about OhioLINK’s statewide affordable textbook initiatives for higher education in the state of Ohio. Little more than a year later, we now have preliminary data that illustrate some features of each major initiative, and demonstrate the value of using a hybrid approach.