It has been awhile but this week’s resource is MediaPlus.
MediaPlus is a collection over 100,000 videos, audio clips and still images that cover a variety of subjects: everything from archaeology and medicine to history, philosophy, music, drama and performing arts, media studies and the social sciences.
Material on MediaPlus is freely available for use and can be downloaded, edited and shared. Just create a personal user account to start saving clips and creating playlists!
For example: Say you were researching the history of the steeplechase . A quick search brings up a number of options including this film dating from 1924 of steeplechases in nearby Eton.
Whether you just watch the film for some background to the sport or you take a screenshot to insert in your dissertation or you make a clip to show during a presentation- the possibilities with MediaPlus are endless!
Need guidance? Excellent YouTube tutorials are available that show:
MediaPlus can be found on the Library Website under A-Z Databases.
My Citations is a feature which provides a simple way for authors to keep track of citations to their articles. You can check who is citing your publications, create graphs of your citations over time, and compute several citation metrics. You can also make your profile public, so that it appears in Google Scholar results when people search for your name .
It is very quick to set up and simple to maintain – even if you have written hundreds of articles, and even if your name is shared by several different scholars. You can add groups of related articles, not just one article at a time; and your citation metrics are computed and updated automatically as Google Scholar finds new citations to your work on the web. You can even choose to have your list of articles updated automatically – but you can also choose to review the updates yourself, or to manually update your articles at any time.
First, create a regular Google account, or sign in to the one you already have. It is a good idea to use a personal account, not your university account, so that you can keep your profile for as long as you wish, even if you change jobs.
1. Once you’ve signed in to your Google account go to Google Scholar, select the link to My Citations. There are three stages to complete.
The Citations sign up form will ask you to confirm the spelling of your name, and to enter your affiliation, interests, etc. We recommend that you also enter your university email address, because that would make your profile eligible for inclusion in Google Scholar search results.
2. On the next page, you’ll see groups of articles written by people with names similar to yours.
Click “Add all articles” next to each article group that is yours, or “See all articles” to add specific articles from that group. I
f you don’t see your articles in these groups, click “Search articles” to do a regular Google Scholar search, and then add your articles one at a time.
3. Once you’re finished adding articles, you will be asked what to do when the article data changes in Google Scholar. You can either have the updates applied to your profile automatically, or you can choose to review them beforehand. In either case, you can always go to your profile and make changes by hand.
Finally, you will see your profile. This is a good time to make a few finishing touches – upload your professional looking photo, visit your email inbox and click on the verification link, double check the list of articles, and, once you’re completely satisfied, make your profile public.
5. Once your profile is public you can be searched for by name. Your profile will display the articles which have been collected by Google Scholar, the number of citations they have received (citations indices), and a map of your H-index.
You can also search for others by name, or by name of institution or place in the My citations screen: (NB note also the My Citations – Help feature). Run a search on ‘Royal Holloway’ (or any other institution) and see who else has registered on My Citations.
If you notice some of your articles are not in your Google Citations profile, you can sign in to your Citations profile, and select ‘Add” option from the pull down Actions menu. Search for your articles using titles, keywords, or your name. To add one article at a time, click ‘Search articles’ and then ‘Add article’ next to the article you wish to add. Your citation metrics will update immediately.
If your search doesn’t find the right article, click ‘Add Article manually’. Then, type in the title, authors etc and click ‘Save. (NB Citations to manually added articles may not appear in your profile for a while).
Or, how Kim learned to stop worrying, and trust the machines.
Timeful is an iOS-only app that helps you to schedule time to do the things you want to do, as well as the things you have to do. Free to download, it accesses your calendars (Google, Outlook, iCal) and once you’ve told it some things you’d like to do – finds time for them, and schedules them in.
This video explains it pretty well:
Aside from the slightly odd feeling that your phone is dictating your actions, it’s been really useful. I’ve been using it for about three weeks (on and off – you have to remember to open the app to see what it’s suggestions are) and I’ve actually got things done.
So I’ve set Timeful to help me:
Blog once a week (on which note, check!)
Tidy my kitchen up each night (ahem)
Exercise three times a week
Work on a book I might one day be writing three times a week
And – checking my stats:
I blogged successfully
the kitchen looks much better
going to the gym feels more like an achievement
and I’ve written a chapter or two
You could, of course, use it to set aside time to revise a particular topic, work on a particular essay, rehearse for a play, or anything else at all.
If you remember to open Timeful a few times a day, you’ll see that the suggestions it makes change as you go through the day, depending on what you choose to do. Suggestions appear in between your scheduled events, and one tap selects the action at that time. Then, you can go about your day, but when your scheduled event comes around, Timeful sets off an alarm to remind you. When you’re done, you can tap the action again, and it’s crossed out and added to your stats. If you ignore an event that’s suggested or scheduled, Timeful tries again another day, and you can also postpone events for another day when you know you’ll have more time.
Fitting in the demands of study, work, family, etc, can be difficult – and this can help you to identify time to work on the things you want flexibly. Think about using it during pre-exams, to identify time in between society meetings, lectures, and work to get some revision done. All you need is an up to date calendar and Timeful will save you the age-old procrastination trick of writing out a revision timetable.
Good luck! And let us know how you get on – is there another tool that you prefer?
Psychology Phd Student Hannah Bowers has kindly shared her experience of using Reddit for research.
I initially used reddit to recruit people with IBS for an online questionnaire about emotion processing and had a really positive response. I ended up with over 280 respondents, at least 93 of which were from reddit. I found posting on the ibs ‘subreddit’ the most successful, despite it being a quieter subreddit. Popular pages like r/health and r/samplesize tend to get a lot of posts, which means yours can get buried. r/ibs however has relatively few posts, yet still an audience of around 1,800. This means whenever you post, it jumps straight to the top of the page and into every subscribers ‘front page’. This combined with the very specific target audience, is why I think it was so successful.
Using reddit meant users could comment on my recruitment post, and I could see positive and negative reactions to my research, both of which gave me a really great insight into why people were or weren’t taking part.
When recruiting, many redditors asked for me to share my results. When I did, this was met with a few people who felt my findings perpetuated the idea that IBS is ‘all in the head’, despite my efforts to make it clear this isn’t what I was suggesting. This really helped me as a researcher to understand the kind of stigma people with IBS face and it allowed me to open up a dialogue, which then informed how I disseminated my findings to other populations with IBS.
Overall my experience with reddit has been great, and I would recommend it to all researchers (so long as you have a thick skin).
SimilarPages is very good for finding new content. Simply enter a URL you know and it finds related pages.
It indexes over 50 million websites and allows you to branch out further based on new sites found.
The SimilarPages Add-On is the free Web Discovery and Search Tool by SimilarPages. For any page you land on, SimilarPages add-on automatically generates a list of similar websites. All you have to do is to follow the links you are interested in.
Type a URL into the search box.
You will then get suggested sites (unless the URL is too obscure).
Not everybody will want to be totally anonymous but in our online world it is important to be informed about privacy.
Take note of the privacy options available and adjust the settings where necessary when signing up to a new service. Many sites will give you a variety of options allowing you to set the privacy settings at a level to suit you. This will include an option to keep your whole profile private, or open to only those users you choose to share your information with.
But remember the more information we share the less control we have of it (This light hearted video is a good reminder).
Evernote is a web application which is also available to download on to mobile devices, desktop PCs, lap tops and just about every computer. This means that you can literally use it anywhere and it will sync with on all your devices and the website.
Why use it?
* You can log on to the web version (http://www.evernote.com/) anywhere with an internet connection and you can share your notes so it is a great way of quickly creating a simple web page or putting a plan together.
* You can clip all or part of a webpage into a note by using the web clipping tool (this is easier to install at work on Firefox than on Internet Explorer).
* You can create checklists so you can tick the boxes to keep track of what you have done.
* You can tag notes so notes in different notebooks can all use the same tage and be found on a search.
* If you are using it on a mobile device you can add a location so you can see all notes made at that location by you.
Evernote is particularly useful for projects as this video shows:
RSS stands for Really Simple Syndication or Rich Site Summary. An RSS feed is a way for you to receive updates to different websites without having to visit them. You can also use RSS feeds to publicise information about your own work.
Check if websites/online journals you use a lot have RSS feeds (look out for the orange logos).
Collect RSS feeds as you find them.
Search an RSS directory. You may find that your feed reader has its own directory, or you can do an Internet search for “RSS feed directory”.
When you run a search online, such as on Google or in a library-provided database of scholarly content, look out for the option to create an RSS feed for that search so that you will be alerted when new items matching your search criteria are found. You may have to explore advanced options or settings to set such a feed up.
If there is no RSS feed for a page that you think would be really useful, programs like Feedity can be used to create an RSS feed for that page.
I have an aggregator. What now?
Now you need to subscribe to some feeds. With either a web based aggregator or a desktop reader usually all you need to do is:
Click on the RSS or XML logo button on the web page you find interesting.
Copy and paste the URL (i.e. the Web address) from the rss feed page into your aggregator.
Some browsers/browser extensions will recognise that there is an RSS feed on a page and offer you an RSS button in the toolbar, which will link to your RSS feed reader for you and add that feed to your collection.
When feeds start to appear in your aggregator, clicking on the headline will take you to a page with more information.