Tagged / blog

BU Research Blog is short-listed for a national award!

Hurray! The BU Research Blog has been short-listed for a Heist Award in the Best Internal Communication Campaign category. The Heist Awards have evolved over the last 20 years to become the premier awards programme for marketing in the sector and exist to recognise and celebrate professionalism and innovation in education marketing.

The Best Internal Communication Campaign category is for awareness campaigns aimed at staff, students or both and the judges are looking for a project with the purpose of improving internal knowledge, awareness and engagement.

Just to get short listed is a great achievement so thank you to everyone who contributes to and reads the Research Blog and who has made it a success.

The awards event will take place on Thursday 31 May in Leeds. Fingers crossed we win! 😀

 

Happy 1st Birthday BU Research Blog!

It is exactly one year today since the Research Blog was launched at Bournemouth University!

Our first post was on the excellent RNLI slipways research undertaken in DEC by Prof Mark Hadfield and Dr Ben Thomas (read the story here). Since then there have been 957 posts added to the Blog, many of which were posted by academic colleagues from across BU. The Blog currently has 366 subscribers to the Daily Digest email.

To celebrate we’re inviting all staff at BU to get more involved with the Blog to make it more exciting, interactive, collaborative and beneficial to academic staff. There are a number of ways you can get involved:

  • To subscribe to the Blog to receive the daily digest emails; this is the best way to keep up to date with research and knowledge exchange information at BU. Find out more here: Subscribe to the Blog!
  • To comment on Blog posts to share further information, resources, and perspectives, and to make connections with your colleagues. Find out more here: Interact with the Blog!
  • To add posts to the Blog to share information, experiences, successes, advice, news, etc with colleagues, and to promote your research both internally and externally. We’re strongly encouraging all staff involved in research at BU to sign up for access to add posts to the Blog and to start blogging! Using the Blog is really easy – you need no prior knowledge of blogs or websites, just an interest in research. Contact Susan Dowdleif you’d like to be set up with access to add posts.
  • To share Blog posts, either via Facebook, Twitter or email. Find out more here: Share posts from the Blog!

The Research Blog is unique in the sector and in its first year of existence it has been a huge success in improving research communications at BU.

Be part of something cool and get more involved in the Blog! :)

Happy 1 year birthday, Research Blog!

 

The Blog is 10 months old! Celebrate by finding out how you can get involved!

To celebrate the Blog’s birthday we’re inviting all staff at BU who have an interest in Research to get more involved with the Blog to make it more exciting, interactive, collaborative and beneficial to academic staff. There are a number of ways you can get involved:

  • To subscribe to the Blog to receive the daily digest emails; this is the best way to keep up to date with research and knowledge exchange information at BU. Find out more here: Subscribe to the Blog!
  • To comment on Blog posts to share further information, resources, and perspectives, and to make connections with your colleagues. Find out more here: Interact with the Blog!
  • To add posts to the Blog to share information, experiences, successes, advice, news, etc with colleagues, and to promote your research both internally and externally. We’re strongly encouraging all staff involved in research at BU to sign up for access to add posts to the Blog and to start blogging! Using the Blog is really easy – you need no prior knowledge of blogs or websites, just an interest in research. Contact Susan Dowdle if you’d like to be set up with access to add posts.
  • To share Blog posts, either via Facebook, Twitter or email. Find out more here: Share posts from the Blog!

The Research Blog is unique in the sector and in its first ten months of existence it has been a huge success in improving research communications at BU. Be part of something cool and get more involved in the Blog! 🙂

Happy 10 month birthday, Research Blog!

Share posts from the Blog!

If you’d like to share any of the posts on the Blog with colleagues, friends, the public, you can do this quickly and easily via Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, email (plus many more!) using the Share This function at the end of each Blog post.

Simply:

  1. Click on ‘Click here to share this blog post’ at the end of the post you wish to share
  2. This will open the post in your browser, giving you the option to share the post via Twitter, Email or Facebook (as per the picture below)
  3. To share via Twitter or Facebook simply click on the icon and the post will be added to your Twitter feed / Facebook profile
  4. To share via any other media (such as email, LinkedIn, Yahoo, Delicious, etc) simply hover the cursor over the Email icon and a new window will open displaying all of the ways you can share the post. Clicking on LinkedIn, for example, will share it via LinkedIn! Easy 🙂

Sharing posts this way helps to promote the excellent work going on at BU and can also help you to establish networks with likeminded people.

                                  

The blog has been accessed by over 16,000 unique visitors in 4 months!

Wow! We’ve been monitoring engagement with the blog now for four months using the fabulous Google Analytics tool. The stats below are based on the period 25 July to 29 November 2011 (128 days).

On average during this period the blog received 16,017 unique visitors, each spending approximately 1.42 minutes on the site. The blog is generally much busier on weekdays attracting between 250 and 500 unique visitors each day. In total there have been over 40,000 page views.

53% of visitors find us via internet search engines. The top search terms led readers to our blog over the past four months are:

  • culture
  • transport
  • innovation
  • santander
  • ocean waves
  • security
  • ocean
  • bournemouth
  • graphene
  • racism
  • human rights
  • bournemouth university research blog
  • health
  • humanities
  • poverty
  • ict
  • bu research blog
  • bu logo
  • hefce ref training events
  • bu

37% of visitors are direct traffic, i.e. via the web address, the BU Staff Portal, or the Daily Digest email. This is excellent as it shows that you lovely people who work at Bournemouth University are using the blog – hooray!

10% of visitors are referred to our blog by external sites. Our top referring sites are:

At present 32% of visits to the blog are made by returning visitors and 68% are made by new visitors.

Our visitors to date have come from 142 different countries (see the map below). The top ten countries viewing the blog are:

  • UK
  • USA
  • India
  • Spain
  • Germany
  • Belgium
  • France
  • Canada
  • Australia
  • Greece

Within the UK most visitors are based in:

  • Bournemouth
  • London
  • Poole
  • Southampton
  • Bristol
  • Leeds
  • Manchester
  • Edinburgh
  • Nottingham
  • Birmingham

Our 10 most accessed pages to date are:

This is all excellent news 🙂 We’re always open to receiving feedback about the blog – please email us at any time with any comments, suggestions, etc, or add a comment to this blog post.

If you would like access to add your own stories and posts to the blog then email me (jnortham@bournemouth.ac.uk) and I’ll get you started!

We last reviewed the visitor stats on the Blog in August – you can read that previous post here: Does Anybody Read this Blog? Yes!

Viewing the snazzy pictures on the Daily Digest email!

Subscribers to the Blog may have noticed this week that the pictures no longer appear automatically on the snazzy Daily Digest email 🙂

If you have received the Daily Digest email but cannot see all of the images then you may need to unblock image downloads from the Blog. To do this follow these  simple steps:

1. Open the Daily Digest email

2. Click the infobar at the top of the message, and then click ‘Add Sender to the Safe Senders List’ (as per the picture below)

3. Marvel at the beauty of all future Daily Digests which should make accessing current research information at BU a doddle 😀

The Daily Digest is sent to all Blog subscribers every day at 10am and provides an easy to read overview of all of the posts added to the Blog in the past 24 hours.

For details on how to subscribe to the Blog read our previous blog post on subscribing.

Our snazzy new blog!

Welcome to the launch of our snazzy new look BU Research Blog, designed for us by the Centre for Excellence in Media Practice (CEMP) in the Media School! The redesign was to make the blog look more professional and easier to navigate. In the seven months the blog has been running we’ve had over 600 posts, including regular posts by the PVC and the Deputy Deans. Because of the number of posts we’ve generated, it is often easy to miss out on some of the content so the redesign should hopefully make it easier to browse previous content and find related information about R&KE activities at BU.

In addition to the main research blog, there are several other important sections to the blog:

  • EU Research Blog – your one stop shop for everything to do with EU research funding!
  • PG Research Blog – news and information for postgraduate research students and supervisors at BU.
  • Research Themes – keep up to date with current developments with the emerging 8 BU research themes. Each theme has its own section of the blog and we encourage all academics to contribute to discussions around the themes.
  • R&KEO Contacts – information (including contact details) for all staff members in the Research & Knowledge Exchange Office so you know who we are!
  • Events – a calendar of all research and knowledge exchange events, both internal and external.
  • Researcher Toolkit – information about BU-endorsed systems, methods and policies that you may need when undertaking research at BU.

Email subscribers to the blog will continue to receive the Daily Digest email every morning at 10am.

The blog is owned by everyone at BU with an interest in research and knowledge exchange. If you would like access to add your own posts to the blog then contact Susan Dowdle and she will set you up with access and get you blogging in no time 🙂

We’re always open to feedback about the blog so if you have any comments about the redesign (or any other aspect of the blog) then please let us know!

ARMS conference 2011

Corrina and I are finally back from the land down under after attending the excellent Australasian Research Management Society conference in Sydney in September. The conference theme this year was Transformation and we presented a session on the work we have done with business partnering techniques to transform research culture at BU. We also presented a poster about the fabulous BU Research Blog!

Both of our presentations went well and we received good feedback from other delegates. On the back of our sessions we have made some good contacts with peers at Australasian universities, some of whom have also subscribed to the blog.

In addition we also attended a number of other sessions which were extremely useful and informative. We will be adding posts to the blog about these sessions in due course.

We used the amazing Prezi for our presentation and you can access our slides by clicking on the blue image:

To watch the slide show simply click on ‘more’, then ‘full screen’, then use the arrow to pan through the slides.

If you are not familiar with Prezi, it is a cloud-based presentation software application that is free to use and which creates much more exciting presentations than simply using PowerPoint. You can access Prezi at: www.prezi.com.

In addition to the workshop presentation we also presented a poster about the blog for which we won 2nd prize in the poster competition. You can access a copy of our poster here:

 

Does anybody read this blog?! YES!!!!

On Friday Steve Calver ended his latest MRG post with a question: “Does anybody read this blog?” – and within an hour a reader from another university replied to say “I do!“. Which is great! So I thought I’d share some of the visitor stats so you can get an idea of who views the blog and how regularly.

We measure footfall on the blog using the fabulous Google Analytics. The stats below are based on a period of 18 days during July and August 2011.

On average during this period the blog received 166 unique visitors every day, each spending approximately 2 minutes on the site.

51% of visitors find us via internet search engines. The top search terms led readers to our blog over the past 18 days are:

  • bournemouth
  • innovation
  • bu research blog
  • bournemouth university research blog
  • security
  • digital hub bournemouth university blog
  • ict
  • health
  • hefce ref training information events
  • marie curie fellowship 2011
  • kip jones rufus stone
  • bournemouth research blog
  • transport
  • bu logo
  • racism
  • bournemouth uk
  • culture
  • eurostat
  • statistics
  • wow effect

41% direct traffic, i.e. via the web address or via the BU Staff Portal. This is excellent as it shows that you lovely people who work at Bournemouth University are using the blog – hooray!

8% of visitors are referred to our blog by external sites. Our top referring sites are:

The bottom two are interesting referrals as these are universities in the USA that have picked up on our new BU Open Access Publication Fund and promoted the idea via their own websites. This has then encouraged visitors to these sites to visit our blog.

At present 30% of visits to the blog are made by returning visitors and 70% are made by new visitors.

Our visitors to date have come from 91 different countries (as displayed in the map below). The top ten countries viewing the blog are:

  • UK
  • USA
  • Germany
  • Spain
  • India
  • France
  • Poland
  • Canada
  • Belgium
  • Italy

So why is all of this information important?

Because it shows us two important things:

1. That the blog is working internally as the main means of sharing research news and information!

2. That the blog is working externally to promote the excellent research undertaken at BU!

We’re always seeking to improve things so if you have your own webpages/blogs then please feel free to use them to promote the BU Research Blog or ask us to link to your webpages/blogs from this blog, and if you have any ideas on how to improve our blog and/or to increase readership then please let us know! 🙂

The Wellcome Trust has a blog!

The Wellcome Trust has an excellent blog which you can access here: http://wellcometrust.wordpress.com

The blog provides a place where researchers can share stories about the research funded by the Wellcome Trust. Over the past few months blog posts have been added about a huge variety of research projects covering everything from the neuroscience of language and masculinity and madness in the Victorian age to stem cells and drug screening and brain imaging.

Why not check it out and read about the excellent research being undertaken! As with our Research Blog you can choose to subscribe to receive regular email updates. There is a subscribe box on the right hand side of the home page.

First BU Research Blog Poll Results

Are journal impact factors a good indicator of quality?

Following the launch of the first BU Research Blog Poll, we received 28 responses to the above question which were split as follows:

Yes – always 2
Yes – but in STEM disciplines only 1
Sometimes 22
No, never 2

The majority of responses indicate that there may be some doubt about the usefulness of impact factors when used as a proxy for journal quality. This is perhaps because there are a number of factors that could affect a journal’s perceived quality that cannot be demonstrated through metrics alone. Also, the use of journal metrics like impact factors are not necessarily perceived as being robust enough yet to give an accurate indication of journal or article quality, hence HEFCE’s decision not to rely solely on metrics in the Research Excellence Framework (REF).

To continue the debate on this, do feel free to post a reply below, or suggest a topic for a future poll by responding to Julie’s original post. For more information about journal impact factors, have a look at the previous blog post on this subject.

In the meantime, why not get involved in the current poll which can be accessed from the top right-hand side of the blog homepage – it will take just seconds to complete and will help shape the support offered to BU academics in the future.

Like our posts? Then share them on Twitter!

If you’d like to share any of the posts on the Blog with networks, colleagues, friends, the public, you can now do this quickly and easily on Twitter via our new TweetMeme plugin.

If you have a Twitter account then you can share a post by simply clicking on the TweetMeme logo (like the one on the left). The TweetMeme logo is found at the end of every blog post. This will retweet the story via your Twitter account.

Sharing posts via Twitter helps to promote the excellent work going on at BU and can also help you to establish networks with likeminded people.

This is in addition to the ‘Like’ functionality via Facebook that we have had available on the Blog for a couple of months now.

 

 

Like our posts? Then let us know!

We’re interested to know what you like about the blog, which posts you find useful and what you’d like to see more of.

The best way to do this is by commenting on the blog posts (see our previous post on how to do this).

As of today you can also like individual blog posts using our newly installed Facebook like plugin.

If you like a blog post and have a Facebook account then simply click on the like icon at the start or end of the post.

This will enable us to do more of the posts you like and find useful 🙂

Launch of our snazzy new Daily Digest email!

Subscribers to the Blog will today have noticed our snazzy new Daily Digest email.

The Daily Digest is sent to all Blog subscribers every day at 4pm and provides an easy to read overview of all of the posts added to the Blog in the past 24 hours.

For details on how to subscribe to the Blog read our previous blog post on subscribing.

If you have received the Daily Digest email but cannot see all of the images then you may need to unblock image downloads from the Blog. To do this follow these  simple steps:

1. Open the Daily Digest email

2. Click the infobar at the top of the message, and then click ‘Add Sender to the Safe Senders List’ (as per the picture below)

3. Marvel at the beauty of all future Daily Digests which should make accessing current research information at BU a doddle 😀

BU Research opinion polls!

You may have noticed our new opinion poll section on the BU Research Blog homepage.

We are interested to know what you think about RESEARCH – whether that’s research at BU, the external research environment, good practice for undertaking research, particular research projects… Basically anything to do with research!

Responding to the poll takes seconds and responses are anonymous. Once you have responded to the poll you can see how other BU staff have also responded!

Once a poll has finished we will be writing a blog post about the results. Depending on the poll question, the results could impact on how we manage and administer research at BU in future.

We will be changing the poll question every few weeks. The first poll is now up and running and asks whether journal impact factors are a good indicator of quality.

If you would like to suggest a topic/question to be added to the poll then let us know by commenting on this blog post!

To read more about journal impact factors, read Anita’s excellent post on impact factors.

Search the Blog!

All blog posts are achived meaning the blog has a wealth of information about research!

You can search for old posts in a number of ways:

…From the main homepage there is a search function on the top right of the page, just beneath the subscribe field. This is a free text box which will search all of the previous blog posts for the search term entered. e.g. if you search for REF then a number of posts are found.

…The second way is via the tag cloud (Popular Post Topics), also on the homepage. All posts are tagged with a selection of keywords based on the content. The larger the keyword appears in the tag cloud, the more posts there are about it. Simply click on a word and you will see all of the posts that have been tagged.

…The third way is via the Archive. At the top of the blog there are five tabs. Click on the Archive tab to see the Archive. You can then see a list of previous posts and search the archive in a number of ways, including by month and by category.

🙂 Happy blog searching! 🙂