You may recall that just after the New Year, the Electronic Theses and Dissertation (ETD) series in Scholarship@Western, Western Libraries Open Access Institutional Repository (IR), reached a significant milestone: 1,000,000 downloads. That’s a hefty number and you well might wonder how significant it is. Other repository managers throughout the Digital Commons also wondered at their own IR numbers, leading BePress to undertake an all-encompassing statistical analysis regarding IRs in the Commons, an analysis known as benchmarking.

Benchmark Saw1

In Benchmarking they chose to focus on three areas:  demand, breadth, and growth.  

To determine demand, BePress calculated the average number of downloads per object for the calendar year. BePress filters out multiple visits from the same user, internet robots (bots), automated processes, crawlers and spiders, and spam-bots, all things that can give inflated numbers. Because of their sophisticated method of filtering, the result is a truly reliable download count. In 2013 the Scholarship@Western average was 97 downloads per object, the following year 90. Comparing S@W to the nearly 400 other repositories in the Digital Commons,  our demand is benchmarked at a healthy level in the  50th – 79th percentile.  There is high demand for our ETDs and Journal articles, primarily.

The second area benchmarked is breadth, which speaks to the variety of subjects  and specialties in the repository that have had at least one new object added to them over the course of the calendar year. S@W stands strong in the 80th – 89th percentile with lots of student work, content from journals, faculty publications, and conferences.BenchmarkSaW2

Saving the best for last, our final benchmark puts us in the 90th percentile. Growth, which was calculated by tallying  the number of full-text objects added during the calendar year, weighs in at an astounding 300 percent. 2013 saw 1570 new uploads in the Repository, and 2014 there were 4573.  Since our growth number is very high, it is potentially affecting the demand statistics for this year; demand may likely rise next year, once the items have been in the repository for a longer period of time.

Like many Canadians,  I have jumped on the Blue Jay bandwagon,  as at this moment in time they are the winningest team in the American League East in Major League Baseball.  BlueJays2#GoJays And like repository managers, baseball fans have a ton of statics available to them at their fingertips. While the Jays roster racked up RBIs, HRs and, SBs, last month Scholarship@Western saw 70341 full-text downloads and 216 new submissions posted.

Just as Josh Donaldson, with 115 RBIs is considered by some to be the Most Valuable Player, S@W’s most valuable papers in July were:

The Long-standing all-star : Evaluating the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) and the Mini Mental State Exam (MMSE) for Cognitive Impairment Post Stroke: A Validation Study against the Cognistat (2175 downloads)

A rookie: Female Under-Representation Among Philosophy Majors: 
A Map of the Hypotheses and a Survey of the Evidence (387 downloads)

A Consistent Performer: Control and Power Supply for Resistance Spot Welding (RSW) (383 downloads)

And showcasing the talents of not only  Edwin Encarnacion the Blue Jays DH, named American League player of the month following  26-game hitting streak, but also the S@W Sluggers of the month:

Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository (44909 downloads)

The International Indigenous Policy Journal (3483 downloads)

Totem: The University of Western Ontario Journal of Anthropology (2618 downloads)

Benchmark Saw3


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