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You’ve probably heard the term open access – maybe it’s the reason you were able to get the full text of that article you needed?  Maybe it’s the reason so many people read your latest article?

Open access (OA) is about making research literature freely available on the Internet with few copyright or license restrictions.  In honor of Open Access Week (happening right now!), here are the top 10 reasons to publish OA…


10. Improve discoverability

Open articles commonly show up more places than just the publisher’s website, for example, in subject repositories or ResearchGate or the Tufts Digital Library, and therefore can more readily be found by search engines and through web surfing, not just through traditional articles databases, like PubMed or Web of Science. In addition, search engines can more readily crawl the entire full text of open articles, beyond just the citation information and abstract.


9. Enlarge readership

Since open access materials can be easier to find and the full text is available to all, more people are likely to read them.  You didn’t spend all that time on research and writing to lock away your findings, did you?


8. Diversify readership 

Those who have access to paid journal subscriptions represent a limited demographic that does not necessarily correlate to those who will most benefit from and contribute to the research. Removing paywalls removes these misguided filters on readership.


7. Increase citation numbers

 Many times, open articles have the opportunity to be cited more by others due to their increased visibility. In addition, since they are often available ahead-of-print, citations can start accumulating earlier in the process.


6. Enhance collaboration

 More readers and diversity of readers can lead to more and richer collaboration. Open access can help identify critical colleagues otherwise not reached through traditional publishing communication channels.


5. Drive innovation

What does Google Scholar always say? Stand on the shoulders of giants!  Our greatest world achievements are rarely standalone accomplishments.  Scholars feed off one another, learn from one another, and grow from one another through sharing and collaboration, which is enhanced by open access.


4. Increase usefulness

Broadening the reach and impact of research makes all those tireless hours of effort that went into creating it all the more worthwhile. I’ll reiterate my early question: You didn’t spend all that time on research and writing to lock away your findings, did you?


3. Shift the economics

Publishers provide added value to a manuscript, through editing, formatting, promotion, and some discoverability services, which incur some cost. For many though, the business model has fallen out of balance.  Much research is supported by taxpayers and authors and peer-reviewers are not paid for their publications.  Open access realigns the business model so that the research conducted as a public good is available to the public.


2. Join the 21st century

 We take advantage of several cutting-edge technologies just to tell our friends how good our lunch was, why would we rely on an antiquated print-based model for communicating important research findings? While many journals are available electronically today, the present system artificially treats them as if they were just as encumbered to obtain and create as their print counterparts when they are clearly not.


1. Save the world!

Yes, this is a bold statement to make, but who knows what accelerated and enhanced collaboration and innovation can lead to? Better addressing climate change?  Ending world food insecurity?  Curbing pandemic diseases?  The only way to know is by opening the communication channels and sharing more.


Find out more at


Post contributed by Judy Rabinowitz


Pumpkin time is here! Take a break from studying and flex your creative muscles at the Library Service Desk this Thursday and Friday. Starting at 12pm each day, we’ll have all the supplies you need to create a festive pumpkin to adorn your apartment or study carrel.


Hope to see you there!

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You’ve probably noticed a number of changes to the seating in the library over the past few months! This spring, we spent a lot of time looking at how you use our space and thinking about what we can do to improve it. Overall, two main goals emerged:  to add more standing work spaces and more individual study spaces.

Here’s a floor-by-floor update on everything we’ve done:

4th floor

4th Floor Counter

We transformed unused journal shelves into a standing height counter and bought some high stools to make the space flexible. We added extra power outlets to the walls and you’ll also find a new device charging station with cords for all your devices at the far left edge of the counter. And if the seating area now looks a bit empty, it’s because we have a bunch of chairs out getting reupholstered! They’ll be back soon.


5th floor

5th Floor Standing Counter

Continuing with our quest to add standing workspaces, we built a counter on the 5th floor and put two of our public computers on it. There are outlets at counter-height so you can charge your devices while you work. We also added a standing desk like the ones on the 6th and 7th floors.


6th floor

6thfloor standing

There weren’t any major changes to the 6th floor, but we rearranged the furniture a bit and added a second standing desk as well as 8 new study carrels!


7th floor


Since the 7th floor is a quiet study floor, it made sense to replace a number of the tables in the open study area with carrels for individual study. We added 40 new carrels total. 12 of them replaced older style carrels and the rest are brand new study spots. And we purchased new chairs to go with all of them!

We also undertook a redistribution of furniture in the study rooms. We systematically went through every room and tried to rearrange the furniture in a way that made most sense—this mostly boiled down to making sure that each room had an appropriate number of chairs.


Let us know what you think! We always want to hear your ideas.


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October open workshops are just around the corner! If you’re interested in any of the workshops below, we encourage you to register here.

  • Web of Science & Scopus, October 5th @ 4-5pm
  • Point-of-Care & Mobile Resources, October 11th @ 9-10am | October 12th @ 4-5pm
  • Data Management Essentials, October 18th @ 9-10am | October 19th @ 4-5pm
  • Disseminating Your Research, October 25th @ 9-10am | October 26th @ 4-5pm

Interested in a workshop, but can’t make it due to a scheduling conflict? You can always request a workshop on demand if you and at least one other person would like to attend! More information about workshops on demand can be found here.




The semester just started but we know you’re already hard at work! Take a moment to stretch your legs and join us down at the Library Service at 2:30pm on Wednesday for a quick study break. Have a cup of tea, a snack, and enjoy a chat with your fellow students!

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A very warm welcome to all of our new students! We hope that classes are off to a good start and that you are making yourself comfortable and getting into a good routine. The library can answer any questions you might still have so just stop by the desk and ask!

If orientation seems like a blur, here are some of the more salient points about the library:

  • You can check things out! Laptops, phone chargers, skulls, models, and more! Oh, and books of course.
  • Librarians are here to help! And each school has their own liaison librarian- do you know who your librarian is?
  • The library has Open Workshops throughout the school year so you can learn new skills.
  • The library also hosts fun events, just so you can have fun.
  • Printing is done by adding money (Jumbocash) to your student I.D. card. $0.10/page B&W, $0.15/page double-sided, and $0.30/page for color.
  • The IT desk can help with many tech issues you might have and can install software on your computer.
  • Ask away! That’s what we at the library service desk are here for.

We look forward to seeing you around the library!


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As the Fall semester begins, the Hirsh Health Sciences Library is ready to launch the next series of Open Workshops! These workshops will cover many different research topics, such as learning how to begin a literature search, managing your citations with EndNote, learning about open access, and more. See our Open Workshops page for more information, including complete workshop descriptions and schedules.

We’d also like to introduce Workshops on Demand. If you and your colleagues are interested in a workshop, but cannot attend due to a conflicting schedule, you can now request a Workshop on Demand: just let us know what your group is interested in, and we’ll create a workshop that works for you!

If you have any questions about Open Workshops, or Workshops on Demand, please call the library service desk at 617-636-6705, or email us at

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Sparkle 100%

Hirsh has a collection of rare, centuries-old books and artifacts that have accumulated over the years—they are housed on the 6th floor of the Sackler building and are available to you for library use only.

This summer we undertook a most enjoyable clean-up project (for the book-lover/ history-nut) of the Special Collections room: re-classifying and cataloging hundreds of dusty, old books from their Library of Congress call numbers to National Library of Medicine, and creating new archival ID strips while conducting preservation tasks as needed.

Many thanks are due to Stack Assistants Rebecca Philio and Tiffany Wong for their help and support. The project has now reached completion and was a great success!


Tendu 100%



We’ve obtained two new LWW Health Library learning resources. Along with the Medical Education collection, you now have full access to the Clerkship/Clinical Rotations and Physician Assistant collections. LWW Health Library provides interactive online access to essential texts, images, specifically tailored real-life case studies and quiz banks. Here is a summary of the two new collections:


Clerkship/Clinical Rotations

Provides core texts needed for each of the core clerkship rotations; 39 highly recognized titles and clerkship-specific series for Internal Medicine, OB/GYN, Pediatrics, Surgery, Family Medicine, and Psychiatry. Plus exclusive, key titles for the clerkship market previously only available in print: Step-up, Recall, Blueprints, Shelf Life, BRS.


Physician Assistant

PA Core Education & PA Rotations/Specialties

Provides two collections of content for both years of the PA curriculum.

“Core” collection covers all anatomical and basic sciences required within the curriculum, including key gold standard titles. “Rotations/Specialties” collection covers the content needs of the clinical rotations requirement of the PA curriculum. The special search and navigation functionality allows users to search and browse content across all core rotations or within a specific rotation.


We have some exciting updates coming to the 4th floor!

As part of our efforts to increase the variety of workspaces in the library, we are transforming the lounge behind the café into the Hirsh Library Reading Room. If you’re looking for a quieter space to do some reading, but don’t need the silence of our Quiet Floors, this spot is for you!

We will be semi-enclosing the space by installing a glass wall with a sliding door and replacing the couches with tables, chairs, and some comfy benches. We’re also getting a brand new wall monitor!  It won’t have cable but you will be able to stream to it from your computer.


The project will start around July 25th and should only take a few weeks to complete. We’ll be documenting the progress over on our Facebook page, so visit us there for updates!

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