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Halloween Data Visualizations!

It’s that time of year where everyone starts to enjoy all things spooky and scary – haunted houses, pumpkin picking, scary movies and…data visualizations! To celebrate Halloween, we have created a couple of data visualizations from a bunch of data sets. We hope you enjoy them! Halloween Costumes How do you decide what Halloween costume […]

It Matters How We Open Knowledge: Open Access Week 2021

It’s that time of year again! Open Access Week is October 25-31, and the University of Illinois Library is excited to participate. Open Access Week is an international event where the academic and research community come together to learn about Open Access and to share that knowledge with others. The theme guiding this year’s discussion of […]

Making Your Work Accessible Online

What is Web Accessibility? Web Accessibility is the ability for individuals with vision, hearing, cognitive, and mobility disabilities to access web content online via their preferred methods. WCAG defines web content as: Natural information such as text, images, and sounds Code or markup that defines structure, presentation, etc. The essential components of web accessibility include: […]

What Are the Digital Humanities?

Introduction As new technology has revolutionized the ways all fields gather information, scholars have integrated the use of digital software to enhance traditional models of research. While digital software may seem only relevant in scientific research, digital projects play a crucial role in disciplines not traditionally associated with computer science. One of the biggest digital […]

Introductions: What is Data Analysis, anyway?

This post is part of a series where we introduce you to the various topics that we cover in the Scholarly Commons. Maybe you’re new to the field or you’re just to the point where you’re just too afraid to ask… Fear not! We are here to take it back to the basics! So, what […]

Welcome to the new Scholarly Commons!

The staff at the Scholarly Commons are excited to welcome you to our new location in Room 220 of the Main Library! Over the course of the past year of remote work, we have been making progress on getting 220 ready for patron use by the start of the Fall semester and officially opened our […]

Big Ten Academic Alliance Open Access Developments

Last month, the Big Ten Academic Alliance (BTAA) made a series of announcements regarding its support of Open Access (OA) initiatives across its member libraries. Open Access is the free, immediate, online availability of research articles coupled with the rights to use those articles fully in the digital environment. Put plainly, Open Access ensures that […]

Comparison: Human vs. Computer Transcription of an “It Takes a Campus” Episode

Providing transcripts of audio or video content is critical for making these experiences accessible to a wide variety of audiences, especially those who are deaf or hard of hearing. Even those with perfect hearing might prefer to skim over a transcript of text rather than listen to audio sometimes. However, often times the slowest part […]

Meet our Graduate Assistants: Michael Steffen

WHAT IS YOUR BACKGROUND EDUCATION AND WORK EXPERIENCE? I graduated from the University of Iowa in 2017 with a Bachelor of Arts in History and two minors in Informatics and Museum Studies. As an undergraduate, I had several student jobs related to the LIS field, including an Exhibit Preparation Assistant, a Digital Library Aide, and […]

Automated Live Captions for Virtual and In-Person Meetings

At the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, we are starting to think about what life will look like with a return of in-person services, meetings, and events. Many of us are considering what lessons we want to keep from our time conducting these activities online to make the return to in-person as inclusive as possible. […]