Open Data in Academic Teaching, Learning, and Research

Open data refers to data sets that can be accessed by anyone. Open data is part of a larger movement in scholarly sharing, and every academic discipline benefits from the availability of open data. This faculty learning community will be a community of practitioners and early adopters who understand that there is a need and a challenge to bring greater awareness of open data and data sharing to MTSU.

Open data and analytics are a key component of today’s business, communications, science, health, education, social science, humanities, and technology environments. Researchers are working in an environment in which they use open data and are required to create it. Open data can support preliminary research on the topic and make researchers more competitive for external funding. Students should expect to understand and use open data in their professional lives. The size and scale of research data available is growing daily and data sets are multifaceted. It is therefore challenging for professors and students to use the data effectively and make meaningful and valid interpretations of the data.

The FLC will meet at least monthly throughout the academic year. Participants will also talk to campus constituencies about current uses of open data on campus in teaching and research.

The goals of FLC participants will be to:

  • Develop a better understanding of what open data is, how to find it, how to use it, and how to teach about it.
  • Determine current applications of open data in MTSU curricula.
  • Ascertain if support is needed for faculty and students using and creating open data.
  • Share knowledge and best practices of open data use on campus.
  • Explore and share how open data can accelerate preliminary research and support external funding proposals.
  • Provide training to faculty to use open data in courses.
  • Share pedagogical approaches to teaching students about open data.
  • Disseminate findings and best practices of open data in the curriculum beyond the MTSU community.


Mary Ellen Sloane, Science Librarian, James E. Walker Library

If you are interested in participating in this particular FLC, please complete the application.