What's Scholars Commons?
Launched in Fall 2011, Scholars Commons @ Laurier provides public access to the intellectual, creative, and academic work of the Laurier community, including graduate theses and dissertations, faculty scholarship, conference and symposium materials and online journals. Its purpose is to make the university output accessible to a wider audience than traditional forms of distribution. Anyone may access full items free of charge, with the exception of journals requiring subscriptions or when embargos have been placed on publications. By sharing content globally through the Internet, the university supports open scholarly communications, collaborative research, and lasting visibility and recognition for scholarship at Laurier.
Scholars Commons is a program of the Laurier library. It received Strategic Investment Funding through the Office of the Vice President Academic & Provost, and has ties to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies, Wilfrid Laurier University Press, and the Office of Research.
Mission and Vision
Scholars Commons @ Laurier is an online collection of the intellectual, creative, and scholarly output of the Wilfrid Laurier University community. Scholars Commons creates a consolidated Web presence for the dissemination, promotion, and preservation of research and scholarly publishing at Laurier. The goal is to support open scholarly communication, collaboration, and lasting visibility and recognition for Laurier scholarship.
- Authors receive monthly download reports and a permanent URL for each of their items, which can be included on CVs and web sites
- Scholars Commons will be fully searchable through search engines like Google
- Scholars Commons meets the demand of a growing number of funding agencies which require research to be publicly accessible
- Materials are openly accessible to researchers worldwide, including those who have limited access to academic resources
- Authors retain all rights to their work and Scholars Commons will work closely with researchers and academic journals regarding copyright agreements
What's an Institutional Repository?
Institutional Repositories (IRs) bring together all of a University's research under one umbrella, with an aim to preserve and provide access to that research. Raym Crow's "The Case for Institutional Repositories: A SPARC Position Paper" defines IRs and discusses their merits within an academic institution. As IRs grow in popularity, many publishers have adopted standards to allow for deposit. SHERPA/RoMEO includes an extensive listing of copyright restrictions and can be searched by journal title or publisher name.
Author Rights and Usage
Copies of open access items can generally be reproduced, displayed or performed, and given to third parties in any format or medium for personal research or study, educational, or not-for-profit purposes without prior permission or charge, provided the work is properly attributed with the authors, the title, and full bibliographic details, a hyperlink or URL is given to the original work, and the content is used for non-commercial purposes and is not changed in any way. However, as not all materials contained in Scholars Commons @ Laurier are open access, it is the responsibility of the individual user to ensure that author and publisher rights are not violated.