POSTED: 3:35 PM, March 13, 2024

Open access publishing models are a hot topic at Auburn University Libraries, so when Dr. Laurie Stevison wanted to incorporate a project on open access into her computational biology course, she turned to her librarians. Her collaboration with Patricia Hartman, biology liaison librarian, and Ali Krzton, the research data management librarian, developed into a quantitative study of the effects of open access on citation count. The resulting research article, “Does it pay to pay? A comparison of the benefits of open-access publishing across various subfields in biology”, was recently published in the journal PeerJ.

Biologists, in particular, are often confronted with expensive article processing charges (APCs) when they want publishers to make their work available under an open license (known as the “gold” model of open access). To find out whether paying these APCs is worthwhile for authors, Stevison’s interdisciplinary team analyzed five years of bibliographic records totaling 146,415 articles in 152 biology journals offering both open and subscription-access options. This large dataset was then analyzed to discover whether open articles enjoyed a citation advantage over comparable articles behind a paywall. They found that while paying APCs to make articles open via the “gold” route did yield increased citations, a more economical model of open access provided similar benefits.

“Green” open access involves placing articles into public repositories at no cost to the author. In the study, articles open via the “green” route were also cited more than subscription-access articles. At Auburn University, any AU-affiliated researcher can archive their work in the institutional repository, Auburn University repository of research assets (AUrora). Articles deposited in AUrora are indexed in Google Scholar and appear as alternate open versions of the paywalled originals in the search results. “We always encourage researchers to deposit their work into AUrora to support public access and increase their scholarly impact,” said Krzton, who manages the repository. “It’s good to see empirical evidence that institutional repositories accomplish those goals.”

Hartman, whose expertise in navigating the Web of Science database allowed the research team to download the necessary dataset, has promoted green open access on campus for years. She supervises efforts by library student workers to upload Auburn-authored research articles into AUrora and organizes informational sessions for Auburn scholars during the annual Open Access Week. Her advice for researchers is to talk to a librarian about their options for open access publishing before they submit their manuscript. “Keeping the author-accepted manuscript version is important if you want to archive your paper in the institutional repository, as you typically won’t have permission to upload the publisher’s finished PDF,” said Hartman. Although she has previously presented solo on open access and open data incentives at conferences, Krzton was grateful for the opportunity to coauthor a paper with practicing scientists. “It’s essential for librarians and others working in the scholarly communications space to consider the perspectives of authors in the disciplines,” she said. “We need to keep these conversations going.”

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POSTED: 11:54 AM, February 23, 2024
Start Date: 20240731

Auburn University Libraries’ Special Collections and Archives has just opened a new exhibit entitled Divine Images: Artistic Representations of Religious Imagery from the Thirteenth to Twentieth Centuries. The exhibit is located on the ground floor of the Ralph Brown Draughon Library and is open to the public.

"This exhibit explores various forms of religious illustration, spanning from the medieval period through the modern era,” said Greg Schmidt, head of the Special Collections and Archives Department. “We’re very proud of our student worker, Alexis Litteken from the History Department, that curated this exhibit under the supervision of Kasia Leousis, special collections librarian. These student-designed exhibits have been a great addition to our offerings and give the student hands-on experience that they can take into their post-graduation lives.”

The artwork in the exhibit combines symbolism with faith, providing an insight into the beliefs and artistic practices of the past. The exhibit was created from books and manuscripts available in Auburn's Special Collections and Archives and explores a diverse selection of religious understanding.

The Divine Images exhibit is scheduled to run through the end of July 2024.

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POSTED: 10:36 AM, February 20, 2024
Start Date: 20240731
Start Time: 02/20/2024

Auburn University Library’s newest exhibit in their first-floor exhibit area features early innovations in flight technology. “No Time to Fall: Mechanical Innovations of Flight,” features select items from Special Collections and Archives’ Hampton Aviation Collection and the Walter Scott Hoover Papers.

“Auburn University Libraries’ Special Colelctions and Archives Department holds one of the nation’s best research collections in aviation and aerospace history,” said Greg Schmidt, head of the Special Colelctions and Archives Department. “Research into the history of technology runs deep at Auburn University, and we are honored to be a part of this endeavor.”

The Hampton Aviation and Walter Scott Hoover Papers collections showcase just a few of the notable contributions that talented, visionary inventors and engineers have made to the world of aviation, from its beginnings in the 1700s to the dawn of the space age in the 1950s. Some of the items on display include: an original, nine-foot variable pitch propellor prototype that was tested at Ohio’s Wright Field; photographic prints of the first dirigible ever brought down during war; a hearing transcript from 1925 regarding the future of government involvement in the aircraft industry; photographs of early experimental airplanes; and more.  

The “No Time to Fall” exhibit is located on the first floor of the Ralph Brown Draughon Library, is open during all regular library hours, and the public is welcome. The exhibit will run through the end of July 2024.

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POSTED: 4:08 PM, November 9, 2023
Start Date: 20240102

Departments in AU Libraries will be closing for the 2023 to 2024 holiday season

The Interlibrary Loan department of Auburn University Libraries will be closed December 15, 2023, through January 2, 2024.

Due to the upcoming holidays and winter break closures of other Interlibrary Loan (ILL) partner libraries, ILL requests made by Monday, December 4, 2023, have the best opportunity of being filled before Auburn University’s holiday closure.

Starting January 2, 2024, normal request processing by the ILL office will resume. However, please note that for the filling of requests, the ILL office is subject to the reopening schedule of other partner libraries.

The Innovation and Research Commons' Technology Lending Desk will be closing for the winter holidays, from December 8, 2023 to January 2, 2024.

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POSTED: 9:34 AM, October 23, 2023
Start Date: 20231102

Auburn University Libraries will host Dr. Elijah Gaddis, College of Liberal Arts History Department, at the next Discover Auburn Lecture Series as he talks about his book, “Gruesome Looking Objects: A New History of Lynching and Everyday Things” (Cambridge University Press). The program will take place on November 2 at 3 p.m. in the Caroline Marshall Draughon auditorium on the ground floor of the Ralph Brown Draughon Library. The program will also be available remotely at:

“Gruesome Looking Objects: A New History of Lynching and Everyday Things” is about the material culture of racial terror lynching--the objects made, kept, and preserved from the thousands of African American people brutally tortured and killed in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The writing of this book led to the discovery and uncovering of archives and objects rarely consulted by historians. Gaddis will be using this talk to share insights into how we might better understand the world of things and the difficult histories that surround us.

This event is open to the public.

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POSTED: 9:09 AM, October 16, 2023
Start Date: 20231028

Auburn University Libraries will be hosting Open Access Week events October 23 to 27 to highlight the importance of open access to research.


HathiTrust Public Domain Papers: The Past is a Different Country

HathiTrust is a treasure chest of public domain online information which allows us to see the past through historical sources. The HathiTrust will be used to examine both historical events and pioneering scientific papers. By looking at illustrations from the turn of the 19th century to illustrate how different the past was, the audience will see  many things in their infancy which has become the advanced technology we use today.

Date: Monday, October 23, 2023

Time: 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Location: RBD, Wireless Lab (Rm 2041)


Open Access Mega-publishers: A Very Special Issue

With the rise of mega-journals and mega-publishers, the line between open access reputable and predatory publishers has become increasingly blurred. As mega-journals have increased journal impact factors, so has scrutiny surrounding their practices. Informal conversations about hasty peer review and aggressive solicitation of manuscripts leaves them in a gray zone on internal journal ranking used by many departments in promotion and tenure decisions. This presentation will place this issue in context and discuss the implications it may have for researchers.

Date: Monday, October 23, 2023

Time: 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Location: RBD, Wireless Lab (Rm 2041)


Providing Public Access to Research with Auburn's Repository

The "Nelson Memo" from the Office of Science and Technology Policy advises federal funding agencies to institute public access mandates for both research articles and supporting data over the next several years. Learn how you can use AUrora, Auburn's institutional repository, to make your research openly available at no charge.

Date: Tuesday, October 24, 2023

Time: 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Location: RBD, Wireless Lab (Rm 2041)


Open Access, Open Data, Open Science: How Do We Reap the Benefits While Avoiding the Pitfalls?

AU Libraries hosts special guest Rick Anderson, University Librarian at Brigham Young University, for a live webinar.

Every mode and method of doing science and of disseminating the results comes with costs, benefits, and complexities. The growing movement towards “openness” (a single word with myriad meanings and applications) tends to take it as given either that downsides of openness are nonexistent or trivial, or that the upsides are worth it by definition – a position that borders on the religious rather than the scientific. So how might we minimize the downsides and maximize the upsides?

Date: Wednesday, October 25, 2023

Time: 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.



Paywall - The Business of Scholarship

Join us for a screening of this documentary, which focuses on the need for open access to research and science. The film questions why $25.2 billion a year flows into for-profit academic publishers, examines the 35-40% profit margin associated with the top academic publisher, Elsevier, and looks at how that profit margin is often greater than some of the most profitable tech companies such as Apple, Facebook, and Google.

Popcorn and drinks provided. No registration required.

Date: Thursday, October 26, 2023

Time: 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Location: RBD Library, Ground Floor Auditorium

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POSTED: 9:47 AM, October 11, 2023
Start Date: 20231018

On October 18 at 3 p.m. Auburn University Libraries will present the Discover Auburn Lecture Series program “Music in India through the ages” with Dr. Chaitra Gururaja of the AU Music Department and the Indian Music Ensemble. The program may be attended in person or remotely at

Music has been an integral part of civilizations around the world. This lecture looks at how it evolved in India, which is the seat of one of the oldest civilizations in the world. Tracing the evolution of Indian music, Dr. Chaitra will take attendees on a musical journey with the Auburn Indian Music Ensemble using vocals and traditional Indian acoustic instruments.

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POSTED: 11:21 AM, September 25, 2023
Start Date: 20231007

During the week of October 1-7, Auburn University Libraries will be celebrating Banned Books Week. Banned Books Week, organized by the American Library Association, highlights recent and historical book challenges and bans, in which books are targeted for removal from schools and libraries. By raising awareness of censorship, the week is intended to celebrate the freedom to read.

Visit Ralph Brown Draughon Library during the week to check out displays near the Research Help Desk on the first floor and in the Special Collections and Archives suite on the ground floor. On Wednesday, October 4, from 1-3 p.m., stop by to participate in or observe a public reading of favorite passages from banned or challenged books in the lobby of the Mell Classroom Building. For more information or questions, email Abigail Higgins at

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POSTED: 8:58 AM, September 14, 2023
Start Date: 20231118

Auburn University Libraries’ latest exhibit looks into the past of the Auburn freshman experience with “Being a R.A.T.: The Auburn Freshman Experience-Flashback.” The exhibit is located on the first floor of Ralph Brown Draughon Library and is open to the public during all regular library hours.

The Rookie Auburn Tiger (R.A.T.) experience has undergone many changes since the university’s beginnings. From shaved heads and military-style hazing, to R.A.T. caps, R.A.T. bibles, and rolling Toomer’s Oaks, the first 100 years were full of traditions that were distinctly Auburn.

The exhibit was conceived and assembled by the Special Collections and Archives Department of AU Libraries. Tommy Brown, university archivist, and processing archivist Joanna Ashley selected several fascinating artifacts from the archives for the exhibit. These artifacts came from Auburn alumni that donated their items through the years. The collection continues to grow as many former students donate pieces of Auburn memorabilia from all eras of the university’s existence. Contact AU Libraries Special Collections and Archives at if you have Auburn student life artifacts just to show or donate.

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POSTED: 1:15 PM, September 13, 2023
Start Date: 20230919

Auburn University Libraries, in partnership with the League of Women Voters of East Alabama, is hosting a voter registration day on September 19 from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. in the Ralph Brown Draughon Library. Those wishing to register to vote or just wanting information on voting are welcome.

A table staffed by League of Women Voters and AU Libraries volunteers will provide information about voter registration and voting by absentee ballot. Laptops will be available so that individuals may register to vote online.  Printed mail-in voter registration forms will also be available.

Persons who wish to check their voter registration status may do so at the voter registration table.

The voter registration table will be located at the first-floor parking deck entrance to the library, adjacent to the circulation desk. 

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