Tagged / BRIAN

Password? Not another one!

The increasing volume of academic activity on the internet coupled with a growing obsession about privacy and data protection means for many academics a rapidly expanding number of online accounts and associated passwords. This is, of course, over and above our regular dose of accounts and passwords as citizens of the virtual world. The average adult in the UK must have at least 25 internet accounts, for the bank/building society, supermarkets, phone companies, social media, airlines, trains, insurance companies, eBay, the website of the parents’ council of your children’s school, your electricity provider, the council tax, etc.

I feel as an academic, the burden is even worse. Every single time another scientific journal invites me to review a paper it opens an on-line account for me. Every time I apply for a grant from a funding body to which I have not previously applied, I am required to set up an account with a new password. When you apply for 20-odd grants every year and review manuscripts for a similar number of different journals the number of accounts and passwords add up rapidly. Then there are the other accounts and passwords related to work for sites such as this BU Research Blog, BRIAN, Survey Monkey, for the university for whom you act as external examiner, for Drop Box, the British Library, ORCIC, ACADEMIA.EDU, ResearchGate, Researchfish, Linkedin, and the list goes on.

These last few months I was reminded how non user friendly some systems are. First, I received new secure email account for my part on a REF sub-panel. The account name chosen for me is different from what I would have chosen and what I am used to at Bournemouth University. The importance of confidentiality for the REF work is clear so my password has to be different from anything I use elsewhere. Secondly, a few weeks later I attempted to put my name done for the tri-annual conference of the International Congress of Midwifery in Prague next year. It turns out you cannot join the conference without opening an on-line account first. The account name was automatically chosen for me and so was the password. Unfortunately, both are impossible to remember, neither the account name nor the password (which was case sensitive) were ones I would have selected personally.

There is some hope as some journals allow you to choose your own account name and password. Elsevier has brought most of its journals into one account, with your own email as the account name and all with the same password. Similarly a group of English-language journals in Nepal called Nepal Journals OnLine (NepJOL) use one account name for all participating journals. For the rest of my account names and passwords I can only follow the advice given by Stephen Fry on an episode of QI: “Write it down somewhere on a piece of paper”. The underlying idea is that the people who try to steal your internet account details sit in a bedsit in London or Hong Kong and won’t come to your office or living room to steal a piece of paper with computer addresses. The people who try to break into your house or office are looking for objects with a street value, such as your TV, phone or laptop, they are generally not interested in a piece of paper with some scribbles on it.

Prof. Edwin van Teijlingen

Centre for Midwifery, Maternal & Perinatal Health

“The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about.”

Oscar Wilde had his views on popularity, but he didn’t live long enough to see BU’s staff profile pages.

Since going live with the new staff profile pages on 2nd October, we have had 17,598 visits to the site.  Given below are some interesting statistics on who is looking at us and what they’re looking at:

Country / Territory  – Visits

1. United Kingdom – 54.02% 

2. United States – 7.56%

3. India – 2.94%

4. Germany – 2.03%

5. Canada –  2.13%

6. China – 1.64%

7. Australia – 1.97%

8. Malaysia – 1.53%

9. Netherlands – 1.18%

10. Greece – 0.77%

Rest of the World – 24.2%

Top 10 Pages (Based on page views)

1. People  –  9.69%   

2. Home  –  8.89%

3. Search Results  – 6.46%

4. Keywords  – 1.05%

5. Dr Hossein Hassani –  0.76%

6. Professor Stuart Allan – 0.58%

7. Dr George Filis –  0.51%

8. Professor Timothy Darvill – 0.48%

9. Dr Roman Gerodimos  –  0.39%

10. Professor Jens Holscher  – 0.38%

It is also useful for us to know how visitors found our pages and on what devices they are viewing the pages:

Channels             Visits

1. Organic Search  79.94%  – this is through Google, Bing, etc.

2.  Direct                    9.84% – they have a link set up to the page

3.  Referral                9.30% – from another web site but mainly BU’s web site, Research Blog, etc.

4.  Social                     0.87% – Twitter, Facebook, etc.

5.  (Other)                 0.02%

6.  Email                     0.02%

Usage across devices is as follows:

  • 85.64 % Desktop
  • 8.4% Mobile
  • 5.95% Tablet

The above shows that we are networking on a global scale and that the majority of visitors are searching the site rather than just viewing one individuals page.  It also demonstrates that the time taken to create our new profile pages has been worthwhile and highlights the importance of keeping your BRIAN account up to date.

If you have any queries about BRIAN or the Staff Profile Pages then please direct these to BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk

LOVE your drafts, DON’T delete them, ADD them to BRIAN!

open access logo, Public Library of ScienceDon’t delete your drafts!  You will hear this A LOT over the next couple of years as the open access movement gathers even more momentum and the role of green open access and institutional repositories is moved to the fore of the next REF (likely to be REF 2020).  HEFCE’s consultation on open access and the post-2014 REF closed last week and, although the results are not due out until early next year, it is highly expected that most of the proposals will go ahead.  This is likely to result in significant changes to how research papers are published and the full-text is made freely available.

Key changes likely to happen are:

  • All journal papers and conference proceedings submitted to the next REF will have to be freely available in BURO from the point of acceptance/publication (subject to publisher’s embargo periods).
  • A journal paper / conference proceeding that was not made freely available in BURO from the point of acceptance/publication will not be eligible to be submitted, even if it is made available retrospectively.
  • The version made available in BURO should be the final accepted version but does not have to be the publisher’s PDF.
  • This is likely to be applicable for outputs published from 2016 onwards.

It is excellent to see the Funding Councils promoting the open access agenda and embedding it within the REF.  Making outputs freely available increases their visibility and is likely to increase their impact, not only within the academic community but in the public sphere too.  It ensures research is easily accessible to our students, politicians and policy-makers, charities and businesses and industry, as well as to potential collaborators in other countries which can help with building networks and the internationalisation of research.

Talking to academic colleagues around the University it is apparent that the normal practice is to delete previous drafts, including the final accepted version, as soon as a paper is approved for publication.   This needs to change!  Many publisher’s will already allow you to add the final accepted version of your paper to BURO (just not the version with the publisher’s header, logo, etc) and this is set to increase in light of the HEFCE consultation.  Rather than deleting the final version, add it to BRIAN so it will be freely available to everyone in the institutional repository, BURO.

We need to get into the habit now of doing this now.  BRIAN is linked to the Sherpa-Romeo database of journals so you can easily check the archiving policy of the journal.  All you need to do is:

1. Log into your BRIAN account and find the paper.

2. One of the tabs is named ‘full text’.

3. If you click into this tab you will see a link near the Sherpa-Romeo logo to check your ‘publisher’s policy’.

4. Click on this and you will see the archiving policy for this particular journal, clearly stating which version of the paper can be uploaded. Ideally you are looking for your journal to be a green journal which allows the accepted version or (even better but quite rare, unless you have paid extra to make it freely available) the publisher’s version/PDF. See the screen shot. 

5. Click ‘back’ and then click on the ‘full text’ tab again and you will see a link (in a blue box) to ‘upload new file for this publication’.

6. Upload the file and follow the onscreen instructions.

7. Your full text will then automatically feed through to BURO and be available open access in the next few days.


In point 4 I mentioned about paying extra to the publisher at the point of acceptance to make it freely available upon publication.  This is often referred to as the gold route to open access publishing and at BU we have a central dedicated budget for paying these fees.  You can find out about the GOLD route to open access publishing here: Gold route

So the overriding message is:





Celebrate International Open Access Week – the GREEN route!

open access logo, Public Library of ScienceThis week is International Open Access Week.  Now in its 6th year, this global awareness week aims to promote open access as a new norm for scholarship and research.  Research shows that making your research freely available dramatically increases the number of citations and leads to more people downloading the research papers, this increasing the academic and societal impact of your research.

The green route to open access is where a version of the paper is self-archived in a repository, such as our institutional repository BURO.  This process relies on researchers uploading their own papers.  Repositories offer a number of benefits.  They increase the availability of some published journal works with restrictions on reprinting or text mining, and may enable work to be propogated across the internet and used for novel applications. Repositories also allow authors to keep track of who is downloading their data.

BU has had an institutional repository since 2007 which contains full-text versions of outputs by BU authors.  This provides an excellent showcase of our research outputs to our students as well as making them freely available to a global audience.  You can upload the full-text of your output via BRIAN:

1. Log into your account and find the paper.

2. One of the tabs is ‘full text’.

3. If you click into this tab you will see a link near the Sherpa-Romeo logo to check your ‘publisher’s policy’.

4. Click on this and you will see the archiving policy for this particular journal, clearly stating which version of the paper can be uploaded.

5. Click ‘back’ and then click on the ‘full text’ tab again and you will see a link (in a blue box) to ‘upload new file for this publication’.

6. Upload the file and follow the onscreen instructions.

7. Your full text will then automatically feed through to BURO and be available open access in the next few days.

Find out about the GOLD route to open access publishing here: Gold route

The number two FAQ for BRIAN is ‘where did my grants go’?

To follow on from yesterday’s topic, the second FAQ that we are asked for BRIAN is ‘where did my grants go’?

When you have added grants to BRIAN and you want to view them, click on ‘Grants’ from your home page.  If you are presented with the following screen:

This is either because you have not entered any grant data or it may be due to the filters at the bottom of your page.  If you scroll down the page, you will see the following filters:

You need to select either Primary or Secondary Investigator to view your grants.  Unfortunately, there isn’t a ‘view all’ option at present.  I’m reliably informed by Symplectic that this will be available in the next version.

I hope this helps.  If you have any queries, please contact us at BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.  We’re here to help.


The number one FAQ for BRIAN is ‘I can’t see _____’. Find out the answer below


A couple of months ago we upgraded BRIAN to a new version, which should be more easy to navigate through.  However, in making it super whizzy and giving you different ways to view your data, it’s not always easy to see the obvious.  So, the number one question we get asked is ‘I can’t see where to enter x’.  The main thing being grants and professional activities.

The reason for this is because there are new tabs at the top, which show different data.

It would seem logical that all your data is under ‘my profile’ but it isn’t.   ‘My Profile’ is just a summary page of what you have previously entered under publications and grants.  In order to enter data against your BRIAN account, you need to ensure that you are on the home page, which is symbolised by a picture of a house.  The home page will enable you to enter publications, grants and professional activities.


I hope this helps.  If you have any queries, please contact us at BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.  We’re here to help.

Staff Profile Pages to be updated

The staff profile pages are being updated to tweak a few things such as changes to research themes, viewing and scrolling on mobile devices, ensuring photos don’t overlap with index, adding a few icons, to name but a few. 

This will take place from 4pm on Tuesday (22nd) until 8.15am on Wednesday.  It will mean that any content put into BRIAN will not update overnight.  The ‘refresh now’ button on the profile pages will also be disabled at this time.  The profile pages will be refreshed after 8am on Wednesday with any content that you’ve added to BRIAN.

There is still an outstanding issue with some links to BURO not working but this will be resolved in due course.

Thanks for your patience.

BRIAN training on Wednesday 9th October – Are you attending?


If you would like to know more about BRIAN or the new staff profile pages, please check your diary to see if you can spare an hour on Wednesday.  We are running 4 sessions of 50 minutes duration, two at Lansdowne and two at Talbot.  We have computer rooms for all sessions so that you can work on your own profile during the training.

The Lansdowne sessions are being held in the EBC in EBG02 at 10:30 and 11:30.  We currently have 11 and 3 attendees respectively.

The Talbot sessions are being held in CG21 at 14:00 and 15:00.  We currently have 4 and 3 attendees respectively.

We recognise that not everyone is free to attend a session on a Wednesday so we will arrange more training if there is the demand.

If you would like to attend on Wednesday and have not already done so, please email BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk to confirm your attendance.  The email tells us how many to expect and is not a pre-requisite for attendance. 

We look forward to seeing you on Wednesday! 



New staff profile pages launched

We are pleased to announce that the new staff profile pages were deployed yesterday (Thursday). 

The profile pages have a fresh, professional appearance.


If you have a BRIAN profile and access to an external page, please have a look at your profile.

The easiest way to navigate to your profile is to open the application (or click on the ‘academic profile’ link from the intranet home page).  Next, click on ‘People’ in the page header and then on the start letter of your surname.  Finally, click on your name.  Your profile will then appear.  You can also search for your name. 

If you have any feedback on the new staff profile pages, please email us at BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk

New staff profile pages will be released tomorrow

BRIANThe new staff profile page application is being transitioned into live operation during the morning tomorrow.  The new pages should be accessible by noon.

There is nothing BRIAN users need to do.  However, the staff profile pages draw most of their information from BRIAN so ensuring your BRIAN profile is up to date and you have populated the new fields, eg the research field, would be good preparation to ensure your new profile page looks great.

One area of the new profile pages that is still being worked on is the link to documents in BURO.  Documents that are available in BURO can still be accessed from the staff profile pages.  Our work is to remove the link to those documents that are no longer available in BURO.  This work should be complete next week and will mean that BURO document links will only be displayed for accessible files.

Please have a look at the new pages once they are live and let us know what you think by emailing BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.

10 features of the new Staff Profile Pages you need to know

BRIANHere are the top 10 features of the new Staff Profile Pages (SPP) application that is to be released this week.

1.  Improved header information.  The header contains information on your title, job title and contact details.  This is always present at the top of every page.  Icons are also displayed to indicate the research themes to which you are linked and the keywords selected.  Social media and website links are also displayed.

2.  Improved searching.  Previously the search facility was quite poor.  Now, it is possible to search for partial matches for people’s name and publications.  In addition, SPP will prompt with ‘Did you mean?’ suggestions.  This is very useful where users are searching for staff but don’t quite enter the name correctly.

3.  Displaying favourites.  Within BRIAN you can highlight a publication (or grant) as a favourite.  This is achieved by clicking on the heart icon next to the item.  We suggest staff select a maximum of five favourites.  These items then appear on the home page of the SPP in chronological order.

4.  Displaying your current research activity.  We have just introduced to BRIAN the ability to record your current research activity.  If completed in BRIAN, this is displayed on the home page of SPP.  Having this information makes you profile feel contemporary and up to date so we encourage your to complete this area within the Professional Activities area of BRIAN.

5.  Immediate profile refresh.  The frustration that changes in BRIAN cannot be viewed in the profile page until the next day has been removed by the ability to refresh a page immediately in SPP.  There is a small area at the base of the SPP pages which tells you when the page was last refreshed and, by clicking on the icon, allows you to refresh the page.  This means that any changes you make in BRIAN are immediately visible so that you can see how the change looks.

6.  Browse by research theme or keyword.  You can click on a research theme or keyword and see all the people who have that association.  To make this feature useful, please ensure your RTs and keywords are up to date.

7.  Existing links to your page continue to work.  While the application has changed, people who have bookmarked the URL for your profle can lick on this old link to access your new profile.

8.  Two-way link with PhD students.  The method of linking to PhD students is much improved with the ability to hyperlink from a supervisor to the student and from the student back to the supervisor(s).  To achieve this, it is necessary to enter the student’s username when adding a PhD student to BRIAN.

9.  Improved scrolling.  Where there are many publications to display, the header is always visible on the screen so that the user knows which section is being viewed.  It also allows the user to easily switch section without scrolling.  Also, at the bottom of the screen, there is a button that returns the user to the top of the screen.

10.  Publication format.  The format for publications conforms to the BU standard.

While these 10 features of SPP are great, some of them (items 1, 3, 4, 6 & 8 ) require you to enter the information into BRIAN.  To a large extent, the SPP pages will only be a good as the underlying information in BRIAN so please spare a few minutes to update your BRIAN profile, add a recent picture etc.

BRIAN training sessions in October

BRIANWith new academics, a new version BRIAN and the new Staff Profile Pages (SPP), it is a good time to invite you to a 1 hour training session on BRIAN and SPP on Wed 9 October 13.  The session is suitable for new and more experienced users.

We are hosting 4 sessions, 2 at each campus:

Lansdowne: 10:30 and 11:30 in EBG02

Talbot: 14:00 and 15:00 in CG21

If you would like to attend and have not already indicated this, please send an email to BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk with your preference.

If you cannot attend these sessions, don’t worry, we will arrange more sessions in the future as required.

In the interim don’t forget there is online documentation for the new BRIAN version.

Already know BRIAN well?

If you have a good knowledge of BRIAN, please consider becoming a local expert so that you can offer help and assistance to colleagues with queries about BRIAN.  We are looking for a representative in each school to act as a local point of contact.  If this is something that appeals to you, please contact us at BRIAN@bournenouth.ac.uk.



Coming soon – new staff profile pages

BRIANWe are pleased to be able to announce that the new staff profile application should be released next week.

There are staff profile pages for all academic staff and some other staff including a number of PGRs.  The staff profile pages are the method we use to expose information from your BRIAN profile to the wider world.  As such it is an important platform to explain who you are, what you have done and what you are currently working on.

The current staff profile page application has been problematic.  The chief complaint has been that some publications do not appear in the profile and those that do are sometimes not correctly categorised.

We have worked with the development team in IT to create a new application that remedies these faults and also provides pages that look crisp and professional.

There are many benefits from the new pages.  For example, the pages allow for much improved searching including partial matches and ‘did you mean?’ functionality.  Users can also search for anyone linked to a research theme or keyword.  Searches can be undertaken for publications.

We plan to migrate to the new pages next week.  We just have some final tweaks to finish before the application is fully ready and the launch can be scheduled.

Other than ensuring your BRIAN profile is up to date and complies with the minumim content suggestions, there is nothing that BRIAN users need to do.

We will explain some of the other benenfits of the new pages in following posts.

BRIAN update completed successfully

BRIANYesterday’s upgrade of BRIAN was completed successfully.  The system is now fully usable.

Updated guides and videos will be available soon.  In the interim, if you have any queries, please email BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.

Details of grants can now be recorded in BRIAN.  This document explains how to manage grant information: BRIAN – Managing grants – Sep 13

The research themes have been updated too.  As a result, there is a new theme available ‘Ageing, Society and Dementia’ which you may wish to add to your profile, if applicable.  It would be good if you could check your choice of research themes in BRIAN to ensure they still reflect your interests.

We are now working on the release of the new staff profile pages and will tell you more about this shortly.

BRIAN being upgraded today

BRIANA quick reminder that BRIAN is being upgraded today.  The upgrade starts at 10.00 so please do not use the application after that time today. 

The work is scheduled to take most of the day.  We expect BRIAN to be available tomorrow morning.



Upgrading BRIAN on Monday 23rd September

BRIANBRIAN will be upgraded on Monday 23rd September.  This upgrade beings a new look and feel to BRIAN with a vibrant red banner to emphasise the many changes and improvements. 

This message is for information.  There is nothing you need to do.  All of the existing data will be transferred as part of the upgrade.

Please do not log into BRIAN on Monday 23rd.  In preparation for the upgrade, please do not make any changes to the data in BRIAN after Sunday as doing so may mean your changes are lost. 

There are some configuration changes to be made to add the grant component and research areas, and checks to be performed so please do not log into BRIAN until Tuesday 24th.

At the same time as we have been preparing for the BRIAN upgrade, we have been developing the new Staff Profile Page application.  This will be a major improvement on what we have today.  More on this next week once BRIAN has been updated.

The importance of keeping your job title up to date

It is important to maintain your job title because this information is used in your external profile page.   If you have no job title in the system the external profile page will show ‘n/a’ which is not very helpful.  There are 88 profiles that show ‘n/a’ as the job title. 

If you do not currently have a job title, please take a moment to add one.  If you have changed role recently, please ensure your job title is up to date.

Job titles are maintained using the facility on the intranet home page to ‘Update your contact details’.  From here, you can open the Contact Details Editor screen.  On the Contact Details Editor screen, the lowest field, ‘Title’, holds your job title.  Add a job title or amend the existing entry if required and click on Update.

If you have any queries, please email BRIAN@bournemouth.ac.uk.

PS.  If your title (eg Mr, Mrs, Dr, Professor etc) is incorrect, you will need to email HREnquiries@bournemouth.ac.uk to request a change.

Don’t get left behind with the new BU Research Themes


As posted by Matthew Bennett yesterday, the Research Themes have changed.  Information about the changes to each Research Theme can be found here.

Research Themes are captured on BRIAN and so it is important to ensure you are still linked to the correct theme(s) in BRIAN when the new version is released later this month. 

Over the next week, we will be emailing users affected by the revision to the themes to confirm which of the new themes are most relevant to them.  We will map those affeced across to the new themes.  If the new theme is no longer relevant then we will inform them how to change this.

If you don’t already identify any research themes in your BRIAN profile, this is a good chance to add that information.  The new Staff Profile Pages, which will go live in October, will be based around Research Themes and so it is important that you have identified at least one.