Open Access Week 2017

Open access symbol of open padlock. Open Access Week runs from Oct. 23-29, 2017.

Open access at Vassar College is in full swing! Following the Vassar College Open Access Policy passed by the faculty in May 2017, the Libraries have been preparing to store and make available the scholarship produced at Vassar through our institutional repository, Digital Window. Just in time for this year’s Open Access Week, we are thrilled to capture the faculty research produced at Vassar through our open access resolution, knowing that this research is open in order to increase the readership for Vassar scholarship and contribute to a more equitable scholarly information ecosystem.

Submit your OA workIf you are a faculty member and would like to submit the final author’s version of your peer-reviewed article (sometimes called a “pre-print”) simply go to our submission instructions and follow the steps on the screen. Note: before you submit your work, be sure you are logged into your Vassar OneLogin account. (If you’re logged in already, you can use the “submit your work” button on this page to go directly to the submission form.)

Other open access initiatives at Vassar College

Although our OA policy is new at Vassar, our dedication to open access is not. We heard from many faculty members that have already contributed to open access journals, subject repositories (like for physics), and publications, and have even released books as OA scholarship! The Libraries have also released many projects in an OA way. Our digital library materials, for example, are available to the public, allowing scholars of all levels from around the world to utilize these important objects in their own work. It also allows us to contribute to larger initiatives such as the Digital Public Library of America (see many of Vassar’s materials in DPLA) and our NEH-funded grant, College Women.

Our open access work also applies to materials in our archives that have been incorporated into larger projects. The Ruth Fulton Benedict Papers is an example of an OA project that involved a commercial publisher (Alexander Street Press) and our Archives & Special Collections Library to foster a process that helped challenge the ways in which these materials could be made available. We worked with Alexander Street Press to digitize and make freely available more than 8,000 pages of diaries, field notes, articles, teaching materials, and correspondence (much of which is transcribed), as well as photographs. True to Benedict’s own principles, the materials are available to all to lay the foundation for future work: as she stated during her acceptance speech for the Annual Achievement Award of American Association of University Women in 1946, “I have faith of a scientist that behavior, no matter how unfamiliar to us, is understandable if the problem is stated so that it can be answered by investigation and if then studied by technically suitable methods. And I have the faith of a humanist in the adventures of mutual understanding of men.”

Finally, the Libraries have been a contributing member of the Lever Press, an “open access, digitally native, peer-reviewed scholarly monographs” publisher established by a group of liberal arts colleges. Lever Press has been on the forefront of new ways of producing and releasing monographs, and the Libraries are thrilled to be sponsors of this important initiative. Lever Press will host an OA Week webinar, “Open Access Monographs: Current Initiatives, Sustainable Models,” on Tuesday, 24 October 2017 at 4:00 p.m. EST for anyone interested in this work. (The webinar is free but registration is required.)

For more information about open access at Vassar, contact Rachelle Ramer, Scholarly Communications Librarian and Research Librarian for the Sciences, at raramer – at –, or email openaccess – at –

Wishing you a happy Open Access Week!

Map-a-thon for Puerto Rico Hurricane Relief

Contribute your time to open-source mapping to aid relief efforts in Puerto Rico.

  • Date: Thursday, October​ ​5,​ ​2017​
  • Time: noon-3pm​
  • Place: ​Library Classroom (Room 160), Thompson Library

Mapping project #3661: Hurricane Maria | 2017 - Puerto Rico 5 (Cidra to Santa Isabel)

Mapping project #3661: Hurricane Maria | 2017 – Puerto Rico 5 (Cidra to Santa Isabel)

Following the recent hurricane, people around the world are using the OpenStreetMap platform to donate their time to hurricane relief efforts. The Red Cross in Puerto Rico has requested help with their relief efforts, and libraries (Columbia, Rutgers, Univ. of Miami, and more) are responding! (Thanks to @elotroalex for the idea!)

No​ ​mapping​ ​experience,​ ​knowledge​ ​of​ ​local​ ​geography,​ ​or​ ​software​ ​installation​ ​is required. Just bring yourself, lunch if you’d like, and a laptop (if you’d prefer to work on your own device rather than a classroom computer).

We’ll have a training session from 12-1 p.m., but will be available until 3 p.m. — drop in at any time to get started.

Learn more about the process through our guide, Humanitarian Mapping with OpenStreetMap.

Puerto Rico map-a-thon flyerDownload a copy of our flyer to distribute on campus.

Thank you for your interest in helping this effort!  #prmapathon

An overview of the mapping process

An overview of the mapping process (courtesy Missing Maps / Learn OSM)

Blueprint for Counter Education










 “One of the most extraordinary books ever issued by an American commercial publisher,” Blueprint for Counter Education was designed as a portable, interdisciplinary learning environment for a new, politically-charged, process-based model of education. Originally issued by Doubleday in 1970, the publication consisted of three large posters and a “Shooting Script” and offered a fluid cosmology of radical thought and syncretic bibliography conceived in the classrooms of the sociologists Maurice Stein and Larry Miller and given form by the gifted designer Marshall Henrichs. In 2016 Blueprint was reissued in facsimile with an added booklet of reflections and interviews by Harvard’s Jeffrey T. Schnapp (VC’75) and the designer Adam Michaels, founder of the graphic design studio Project Projects, published by Michaels’ Inventory Press.

The Art Library editions of both the original issue of the publication and the reprint will be on view in the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center Focus Gallery, through October 2, 2017, courtesy of the Center, the Library, and the Creative Arts Across the Disciplines Initiative.

In addition there will be an Agnes Rindge Claflin Lecture by Jeffrey Schnapp and Adam Michaels about the publication and its contemporary relevance on Thursday September 28 at 5:30 in Taylor 203, followed by a reception and viewing of the exhibit in the Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center.

On the morning following the Lecture, Talking About Teaching will host a teach-in workshop for the Vassar community led by Jeffrey Schnapp and Adam Michaels beginning at 9:00 a.m. in Taylor 203 entitled: “BLUEPRINTING: PROJECTS FOR THE AFFIRMATION Of NEW EDUCATION,” supported by The Program for Teaching Development at Vassar College, the Tatlock Chair of Multidisciplinary Studies, and the Art and Media Studies Departments. Breakfast and Lunch will be included. 

A related exhibit of Adam Michaels’ work is on view in the Art Library main reading room entitled: “Inventory Press LLD and the Design of Contemporary Arts Publishing” September 27 through October 15.