We want to make the process of depositing, finding, reading and acting on our research as simple and efficient as possible and to remove barriers to access.
A good way to improve usability is to watch real users perform real tasks.
To do this, we need to pick a few tasks and some sample users. We can use personas to centre a likely user in our thoughts.
I’m starting to think about what to ask users. On the publishing and deposit side:
- “You’ve heard that you need to make your publications Open Access. Please show us how you would find out what to do.”
- We have some webpages on Open Access on the library website and a more memorable link www.le.ac.uk/openaccess and a link in the university A-Z. I’m curious where a researcher would browse or search and how successful they will be finding out what they want to know. Will they read webpages or prefer a video or PDF or to talk to us?
- “Your publisher is offering you an open access option which costs money. Do you need to pay? If so, who pays? Are there funds you can access?”
- I think this is a common confusion point. We have a Open Access fund for some research council and charity funded research.
- “Please deposit your manuscript using our Integrated Research Information System (IRIS)”
- Our main route to deposit research is via our Current Research Information System (CRIS)
On the reading and using side we’d need a little more thought – particularly for users outside of universities like ours.
We can also look at our administration workflow in the library.