This presentation will describe the process of planning, compiling and editing an open access book on ‘Social Media in Higher Education’. At the end of 2017 I sent out a Tweet asking my followers if they were interested in contributing a chapter to a book on the use of social media in higher education. I received an enthusiastic response with several people liking the idea and wanting more details about the book and what they should include in their chapter. As a result, I then wrote a blog post on the proposal giving the potential authors further guidance about what was expected and deadlines for their first draft. Eventually I received 21 draft chapters which I then edited into a final manuscript.
In August 2018 I submitted the manuscript to Open Book Publishers (OBP, 2018) who then peer reviewed the book and agreed to its publication. OBP has established a Platinum (i.e. without any charges to authors, or payment of fees or charges to readers and third parties) Open Access publishing model and is the biggest open access academic publisher of monographs in the UK and amongst the leaders in the English-speaking world. Mithu Lucraft (2018) reported recently on the many advantages Open Access publishing has but there are related issues to consider, such as production costs and sources of finance. Whilst open access has moved forward in journal publishing it still remains early days for books.
In the second part of my talk I will reflect on my experience and give some advice to others thinking about writing or editing an open access book. I will give some useful tips on how to coordinated the whole editing process, from contacting the authors, keeping to deadlines and the technical issues of maintaining consistency and quality across the different chapters in the book. I will also give some advice on using social media to promote the book.
Finally, I will give an overview of the finished book. I will describe the various themes that emerged during the editing process (Professional Practice, Teaching and Learning, Leadership, Building Networks, Innovation and The Personal Journey) and how I integrated media into the digital format of the book. I will also give an overview of the number of downloads and copies sold by the publisher.
Open Book Publishers (2018). doi: https://www.openbookpublishers.com/section/14/1[Accessed 27.11.18]
Lucraft, M. (2018). The benefits of open access books are clear but challenges around funding remain. LSE Impact blog. doi: http://blogs.lse.ac.uk/impactofsocialsciences/2018/05/02/the-benefits-of-open-access-books-are-clear-but-challenges-around-funding-remain/ [Accessed 27.11.18]