Open Access Resources

Open Access Week continues with a look at a few of the many resources dedicated to providing open access to scholarly information.

A good place to start is with the Directory of Open Access Journals, which indexes scholarly journals that meet high standards in terms of both openness and editorial transparency.

When you search our own database indexes, you will find prominent open access resources for scholarly materials such as PLoS, ArXiv and the Journal of Digital Humanities. Many subscription journals will also offer some open access content. Our Research Guides contain information about Open Access materials in different subject areas.

Open Access can help along new developments in research, as well as in preserving and sharing the cultural record. The HathiTrust Digital Library brings together digitized collections from partner libraries, providing full and partial access to a wealth of books and other materials.

Not all Open Access publishers have the best of intentions. The blog Scholarly Open Access maintains a list of questionable and predatory Open Access publications that do not comply with best practices. It’s a good reminder to always evaluate sources! The best resources will make use of ethical standards and codes of conduct to ensure that the information they provide access to is high quality and can be trusted.

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What is Open Access and Why Does It Matter

Everyday on university campuses around the world scholars engage in research that is crucial for the advancement of human knowledge and that leads to important innovations and discoveries. This research is largely paid for by taxpayers, through faculty salaries and through research grants. Communicating the results of research is a necessary part of the research process, and for most of academic history, research has been shared through scholarly publications: peer reviewed journals and monograph publications.

Open Access Logo

But access to research and publications has been limited by high cost and use restrictions. Subscription fees for scholarly publications are beyond the reach of most individuals, and for most people, having access to a college or university library is the only way to get access to research publications. And colleges and universities pay dearly for that access, in essence creating a system in which taxpayers pay for research twice: once when it’s created and again when it’s published.

The Internet gives us an opportunity to significantly change the model of scholarly communication, and one avenue through which that change is happening is the Open Access movement. Open Access publishing enables free and open access to research publications online, making them available to anyone with an internet connection.

There are several models of Open Access publishing. A growing number of scholarly journals and changing their publishing models to allow for Open Access. In many instances, authors pay a fee to publish their research in Open Access journals, although articles still go through a peer review and editorial process. A list of Open Access journals is provided by the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).

Authors can also choose to deposit their research papers into digital repositories which conform to the standards of the Open Archives Initiative. This usually requires negotiation of copyright with any journals in which the research papers have also been published. Repositories may be subject-based repositories dedicated to specific fields of research, or they may be institutional, gathering all the research output at a particular university. Sonoma State University’s institutional repository, ScholarWorks, is dedicated to archiving and providing access to the research output of Sonoma State University.

Increasingly, universities and research granting bodies are implementing policies requiring that funded research be published in an open access venue. These policies are meant to ensure that the taxpayers who funded research have equal and open access to the results of that research.

The Open Access movement has the potential to significantly change the way research is communicated around the world, making it easier and more affordable for new discoveries and new knowledge to be shared, and opening the doors to faster innovation. Open Access publishing will ensure that research isn’t locked away and limited to only those select few who are part of higher education research institutions.

The week of October 20th through the 26th is International Open Access Week, an event created to draw attention to the benefits of Open Access. This week we’ll be sharing information about Open Access with the campus community. Find out more about Open Access Week and what you can do to help ensure that access to research is expanded around the world.

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Download BrowZine to read your favorite journals


The University Library is happy to bring you BrowZine, an app that lets you read your favorite journals on your tablet. Download BrowZine, select Sonoma State University Library as your library, and browse hundreds of our periodicals. You can subscribe to your favorites and get updates when new articles are available.

BrowZine is available for Apple iOS, Kindle Fire, and Android devices, and the Library pays for your subscriptions once you log in with your Seawolf ID and password.

Want to find out more? Watch this two-minute video all about BrowZine.

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Let Your Voice Be Heard

Are you registered to vote in this November’s election? This year’s ballot includes some key positions including California Governor and 53 seats in the House of Representatives. Statewide propositions include Proposition 47, which will reduce drug possession sentences to misdemeanors, and Proposition 46, which would require drug and alcohol testing of doctors.

You can register in Sonoma County or in your home county with a vote-by-mail option. You can register to vote online if you have a Driver’s License number and social security number.

The last day to register to vote is October 20 so go ahead and do it now!

You can find out more about this year’s election and the statewide and local propositions on the ballot at the California Voter Foundation’s Online Voter Guide.

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Spooky Halloween Tunes

Get ready for Halloween with this playlist filled with all your favorite classic and spooky holiday tunes!

Search through the library catalog to find albums that interest you. To check them out, bring the call number to the Information/Check-out Desk on the 2nd floor. You can bring records home to listen, but if you don’t have a record player, we have six available record players located at the viewing and listening stations on the 2nd floor.

1. Frank Zappa – Goblin Girl (You Are What You Is)
2. Michael Jackson – Thriller (Thriller)
3. Screamin’ Jay Hawkins – I Put A Spell On You (OKEH Rhythm & Blues)
4. The Coasters – Love Potion No. 9 (Young Blood)
5. Stevie Wonder – Superstition (Stevie Wonder’s Original Musiquarium I)
6. Warren Zevon – Werewolves of London (Excitable Boy)
7. Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross – Halloween Spooks (Lambert, Hendricks, and Ross)
8. Bobby “Borris” Prickett – Monster Mash (Dr. Demento Presents the Greatest Novelty Records of all time vol. III)
9. Santana – Black Magic Woman (Abraxas)
10. Sheb Wooley – Purple People Eater(Dr. Demento Presents the Greatest Novelty Records of all time vol. III)

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New Books for October

Looking for something good to read? Check out this month’s new books!

Our Popular Reading shelves are always full of the newest and best books in fiction and non-fiction.

Some of our latest titles include Jessie Burton’s The Miniaturist, a novel of the eerie work of a hired miniaturist in 17th century Amsterdam; David Foster Wallace’s Brief Interviews with Hideous Men, a collection of short stories unified by the underlying theme of male selfishness; and Don Lee’s County of Origin, a novel which explores the mysterious vanishing of a woman in Japan and the reasons why her case is left forgotten.

We’ve also added over 200 New Books to our main collection that cover topics as wide-ranging as time travel, homosexuality, historical romance, ghost stories, graphic novels, antislavery movements, and psychological fiction.

Check out our newest books on the second floor New Book shelves, or visit the New Books and Popular Reading lists online to see what’s been added recently.

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ARTstor – rad resource for you!

ARTstor is an online image library with more than images of art!

You’ll find images of photographs, documents, posters, manuscripts, and maps (among others) related to a range of topics, from African-American studies to women’s studies, from the history of medicine and natural science to music history. ARTstor allows you to download images for in-class presentations or organize them into folders for research.

Check out the subject guides for ideas.

To access ARTstor, you will need to first login from a campus computer and set up a username and password. Once you have done this, you will be able to use ARTstor’s image database from anywhere! For faculty who want instructor privileges, contact Nicole Lawson, our Public Services Librarian.

For more information on how to get started using ARTstor, check out these great YouTube tutorials.

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DVD Central and Streaming Videos

Did you know that the library has nearly 5,000 DVDs?

We’ve got documentaries, feature films, TV shows, and educational films on a broad range of subjects. You can now browse the entire DVD collection in DVD Central, located on the second floor across from the Information/Checkout desk. For easier browsing we’ve grouped DVDs by subject and title. For example, you’ll find that all feature films begin PN1997 plus Title. TV Series begin 1992 plus Title.

Some great new movies in our collection include Fruitvale Station, Twenty Feet from Stardom, and Metallica: Through the Never.

We’ve also got a new collection of streaming videos you can watch without even leaving your house. Our streaming collection includes titles from the Criterion Collection like A Hard Day’s Night, Wild Strawberries, Breathless, and Grey Gardens.

You can check out DVDs and watch streaming videos from the Library completely free with your Student ID. So why not plan a movie break for this weekend and check out something good from the Library.

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New DVDs for October

With the new month comes a plethora of new DVDs to add to our selection. Here are just a few highlights of the recent additions to our collection. Feel free to stop by and look at them in person on the 2nd floor in DVD Central. You can even check out 8 DVDs at once for an entire week!

The Fault in Our Stars
Dramatic romance film starring Shailene Woodley, Ansel Elgort, and Nat Wolff which follows the journey of two young lovers who met in a cancer support group.

A science fiction monster film about the world-famous monster featuring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, and Bryan Cranston.

Draft Day
A drama sports film featuring Kevin Costner, Chadwick Boseman, and Jennifer Garner which follows a team general manager during the NFL Draft.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier
An action adventure film starring Chris Evans, Samuel L. Jackson, and Scarlett Johansson in which Captain America leads an attack against The Winter Soldier.

A dramatic tale of a young noviate nun who discovers a dark family secret starring Agata Kulesza, Agata Trzebuchowska, and Dawid Ogrodnik.

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LGBT History Month

Celebrate the rich history of the LGBT community this October! The University Library collects and provides access to materials related to queer identity, history, and culture.

The University Library faculty and staff are proud to participate in SSU’s Safe Zone program. We are committed to making the Library a safe haven, free from discrimination based on sexual orientation, race, gender, ethnicity, religion or political affiliation.

Some highlighted Library resources:





Gaye LeBaron ‘Gays’ collection – newspaper columns on the history of the community

Outside the Library

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