Topic 5

Topic 5: Reflection

Despite initially finding this week’s topic challenging, I did notice an improvement in my critical writing ability, particularly with regards to evaluating online information and providing a clear and balanced argument. I also experienced a change in my communication skills, as evidenced in the learning process outlined below.

Open Access: The Learning Process
Figure 1. The Learning Process (self-produced via Canva)

In response to Mark’s comment, we discussed the sustainability of open access in terms of publishing revenues. We acknowledged that advertising may be a good alternative to paywalls, but admitted that its success depends on the context (e.g., academic publishing vs. journalistic publishing), the size of the publishing company and associated web traffic.

Eloane supported the view that publicly-funded research should be publicly available, but emphasised that this still brings some disadvantages for the content producer, which may discourage researchers from engaging in publicly-funded research in the future.

Furthermore, Sharon and I explored instances where access to online information had been restricted by the government (e.g., Turkey and China), and discussed the knock-on effect this may have in widening the digital divide.

Cherie’s comment brought to my attention the role of Creative Commons, and how this may work in conjunction with open access. We also discussed the link between awareness of open access and positive perceptions of open access, and how this has practical implications for increasing awareness amongst the academic community.

Finally, Andrei shared his experiences with a specific type of open access: MOOCs. We discussed some of the problems with MOOCs, such as their potential to raise copyright issues, and suggested reasons as to why completion rates of MOOCs may be low, such as the lack of professional accreditation.

Overall, it’s evident that by interacting with others, I was able to explore various avenues of open access and consider different perspectives. To consolidate my knowledge further, I have summarised how open access links to previous topics in the Prezi slideshow below.

Open Access Overview
Figure 2. Overview of How Open Access Links to Previous Topics (self-produced via Prezi)

(311 words)


Andrei’s post

Sharon’s post


Frantsvåg, J. E. (2010). The role of advertising in financing open access journals. First Monday.

Gumrukcu, T. (2017). Turkish court rejects Wikipedia’s appeal over website’s blocking: Anadolu. Reuters.

Kaba, A., & Said, R. A. (2015). Open access awareness, use, and perception: A case study of AAU faculty members. New Library World, 116, 94-103.

Rajeck, J. (2017). The Great Firewall of China 2017 update: The good and the bad. Econsultancy.


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