Across the country, colleges and universities are struggling to meet demand for accessible forms of course materials for students with an array of disabilities. At present, each institution is addressing this problem individually, at great expense, and often without full campus coordination, much less consortial collaboration. Locating digital files is difficult and entails numerous sources. The resulting accessibility enhancement/conversion work creates a large corpus of digital files in varying forms to manage on each campus. Over the course of one year, this planning project will bring together experts from disability/accessibility services with librarians, IT professionals, advocates, and legal counsel, to develop shared infrastructure within which universities can support their...
RELATED RESEARCH PROJECTS
Institute of Museum and Library Services
Mapping Information Access is a collaborative academic research project to study and understand the landscape of information access and availability in public schools and libraries in the United States.
There are more than 18,000 public school districts and more than 9,000 public library systems in the US. Each of these institutions is as a central node of information access for the communities they serve. Administrators must balance ideals of free speech and information with concerns about social norms, age-appropriateness, and budgets. These decisions then shape the flow of information to students, patrons, and other constituents. Yet the contours of this flow are not well understood. There exists no comprehensive record of the sorts of challenges faced, or decisions made,...
National Science Foundation
Scholarly publications today are still mostly disconnected from the underlying data and code used to produce the published results and findings, despite an increasing recognition of the need to share all aspects of the research process. As data become more open and transportable, a second layer of research output has emerged, linking research publications to the associated data, possibly along with its provenance. This trend is rapidly followed by a new third layer: communicating the process of inquiry itself by sharing a complete computational narrative that links method descriptions with executable code and data, thereby introducing a new era of reproducible science and accelerated knowledge discovery. In the Whole Tale (WT) project, all of these components are linked and accessible...
IN THE NEWS
Jon Gant, research associate professor and director of the Center for Digital Inclusion, will speak Monday at Michigan State University’s Quello Center for Telecommunication Management and Law.
His talk, “Hugs, Handshakes and High Fives: Strategies for Evaluating the Impact of Digital Inclusion Using Data from the Broadband Technology Opportunity Program,” will provide an overview of lessons learned from evaluation studies of broadband initiatives in the United States.
A great deal of funding has been devoted to stimulating the development of broadband Internet infrastructures and services in the US. Federally funded initiatives have been studied and evaluated through dozens of studies. Gant...
Assistant Professor Emily Knox has been elected to the Board of Trustees of the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF). Her one-year term will begin at the annual meeting of the board during the American Library Association (ALA) Annual Conference in June.
“Once again, the Freedom to Read Foundation board brings deep financial, professional, and marketing expertise to our work,” said James LaRue (MS '81), director of the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom and executive director of FTRF. “We are grateful to have their counsel as we litigate, advocate, educate, and fundraise to defend the fundamental rights of free expression, privacy, and access to information.”
Knox’s research interests include information access, intellectual freedom and censorship, information ethics, information policy, and the intersection of print culture and reading practices. In...
Assistant Professor Emily Knox will speak at the Information Ethics Roundtable on April 8 at the University of Arizona. This annual interdisciplinary meeting addresses the ethical questions raised by life in an information society. The 2016 Roundtable will focus on the relationship between intellectual freedom, access to information, and privilege.
Knox will copresent her paper, “Values, Culture, and Censorship: The 2015 Banned Books Week Poster Controversy,” with Shannon Oltmann of the University of Kentucky's College of Communication and Information, at 2:00 p.m.
From the abstract: In April 2015 the American Library Association’s Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF) released its poster for September’s Banned Books Week. The poster featured a brown-skinned woman with long hair holding a book with cutouts for her eyes. The design was intended to look like a “Do Not Enter” sign and included the word “...
GSLIS and the Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) are pleased to announce a partnership to offer an online graduate-level course on intellectual freedom for library and information science (LIS) students around the country. The course, in its third year, will be taught by GSLIS Assistant Professor Emily Knox, who was awarded a 2015 Instructor of the Year award by the Web-based Information Science Education (WISE) consortium for the course. It is a project of the Judith F. Krug Memorial Fund.
“Intellectual Freedom and Censorship” is a two-credit course that will meet online Tuesdays August 23-October 11, 2016. It is open to any student enrolled in an LIS degree program. As part of the collaboration, FTRF staff and volunteers will lend their expertise as guest speakers, and FTRF and ALA Office for...
Assistant Professor Emily Knox will participate in a panel discussion on “Libraries and Public Access to Books” at the Tucson Festival of Books on Saturday, March 12. Knox and fellow experts will explore the topic of information access and the ways libraries have shaped conversations surrounding issues of access.
The panel discussion is part of the Lawrence Clark Powell Lecture, organized by the School of Information, which is part of the College of Social and Behavioral Science at the University of Arizona.
The Tucson Festival of Books, held annually at the University of Arizona, is a community-wide celebration of literature that brings authors, scholars, poets, and entertainers to the city. The goal of the festival is improve literacy among residents; all proceeds from the event support local literacy initiatives.
Knox joined the GSLIS faculty in 2012. Her research interests include...
William H. Dutton, Quello Professor of Media and Information Policy at Michigan State University, will deliver the Spring 2016 Windsor Lecture at 4:00 p.m. on Monday, March 14, in GSLIS Room 126. His lecture is titled, "Information Power Shifts and the Fifth Estate." A reception will be held in the GSLIS east foyer immediately following the lecture.
The concept of the Fifth Estate provides a fresh perspective on the political role of the Internet. Digital democracy researchers most often view the Internet as a tool for supporting traditional democratic institutions, such as in polling, voting, and consultation. However, the Internet is also reshaping access to information in ways that enable networked individuals to develop a new form of social and political accountability, which I have called the...
Illinois English professor Ted Underwood wants to know how the language describing male and female characters in works of fiction has changed since the late eighteenth century. He’s using data mining tools to gather information from thousands of books to answer that question.
The problem, though, is that books published after 1922 are still under copyright protection and their content can’t be shared freely online.
“There are hundreds of thousands of books out there, and we don’t talk about them,”...