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Dedicating my talk to Dr. Jean Claude-Bradley
Prof. Jean-Claude Bradley memorial event
By: Jay Bhatt
I cannot believe that Jean-Claude is no longer present physically with us but I know that his
various contributions, his thoughts, his ideas, and his inspiration to try out news things in
respective fields will stay with us forever.
Jean-Claude is known for his innovative spirit in its application in both teaching and research.
What I learnt from him is the invaluable positive connection between innovation and academic
environments which is bound to inspire new teaching and research methods . My association
with Jean-Claude began within the first or second year since I started working as an engineering
librarian here at Drexel. I vaguely remember one day that Jean-Claude called me after he
received my email that I had posted on Biomedical engineering faculty listserv. He was one of
the joint faculty members in the school of biomedical engineering, science and health systems
and therefore, he also used to receive my emails about new library services or resources that I
used to announce. He told me if I could come to his office and that he wanted to talk to me
about a course that Dr.McEachron and he were going to be teaching in the Biomedical
Engineering department. It was sometime in the year 1999 or 2000. I went to see him; he told
me that he became aware of many new electronic databases through my announcements. The
new course would require students to find scholarly research papers and use them to answer
assignment related questions. The difference was that students would need to use SMIRP
system to record their responses.
What is SMIRP? (A collaborative web based tool, for the rapid design and implementation of a
pedagogical construct) http://www.ifets.info/journals/6_1/bradley.html There was internal
competition among students since each assignment would require students to pick a question
for them to respond. If a student picked a question, for example, ‘What is Junk DNA’, other
students could not pick the same question to answer. He thought students would find these
new databases very useful in responding to questions. Each student must explain why the
resource was used, how it provided answer to the question, and the citation they used to
answer the question picked. So, in a way Jean-Claude and Don McEachron inspired me to think
about connecting with students and faculty from the perspectives of active and engaged
learning theories very early during my career as an engineering librarian here at Drexel . This
experience was the beginning of my learning about Jean-Claude’s intense passion of application
of E-learning technologies into student teaching and learning.
I am including a snap shot of my archived email from Jean- Claude from 2003:
Thanks. The main focus of SMIRP this fall is to accelerate and streamline
the automated publication from the laboratory to Dspace and Chemweb. This
has been working well so far. I got contacted by a researcher from India
who saw our publications in Chemweb so I think the dissemination is
effective for those looking for that type of information. I will forward
you the email.
We should talk shortly to catch up. What are your major plans for the fall?
Department of Chemistry
He would often ask questions by email. One such question he asked me on on Thu, 11 Sep
> My students tell me that there is no longer any way to do citations
> searches. Is this true?
> Jean-Claude Bradley
> Associate Professor
> Department of Chemistry
> Drexel University
> voice 215-895-2647
I am not sure where students learnt about this but this question motivated me to contact him
right away – in his office and showed him various tools of citation searching.
Blackboard Learn was known as WebCT in the past. Jean-Claude’s emphasis on motivating
students to learn to use authoritative web based resources and databases was enough to spark
an interest in presenting our thoughts on how library resources can be integrated into WebCT.
This resulted into our session on Techniques for Integrating Library Resources into WebCT
during the Second Annual Northeast Region WebCT Conference in 2004.
RSS, blogs, podcasts were the next to arrive. We continued our collaboration and together we
explored a variety of Web 2.0 tools that would help faculty members current with new
information as it is made available. E-Learning and emerging technologies – are two of the
many high tech passions that drove Jean-Claude to try out new things.
During the 2008 symposium on scholarly communication hosted by Drexel University Libraries,
Jean-Claude articulated his expertise on How Web 2.0 is Changing Scholarly
Communication. It was an enlightening experience for all of us in the audience that day.
Photos still available at:
Google Scholar was the next to arrive sometime in 2004. He wanted faculty and students to
learn Google Scholar, library subscribed electronic databases, and how they should be used
teaching, learning and research. So in May 2005, he asked me to give a presentation on the
same as part of the College of Arts and Sciences E-Learning Seminar Series, and again as an e-
Learning coordinator, he took a lead inviting Peggy Dominy (our science librarian those days)
and myself to talk about’Peer Review in the Google Age’.
Those days he came with an idea of starting ‘the Drexel RSS Club’. His idea was to explore new
and emerging technologies for innovative teaching and research applications. He would
organize sessions such as the one on Peer Review in Google Age.
His announcement to the Drexel community would say:
“There will be a special session of the Drexel RSS club meeting on Thursday, February 23, 2006
at 11:00 EST. Locals are welcome in 4020 Macalister. We can also take a few online participants
via Netmeeting - contact Jean-Claude.Bradley@drexel.edu for details or to RSVP.
Peer Review in the Google Age: Brief presentations by the following speakers with links to their
thoughts on the subject
Jean-Claude Bradley, E-Learning Coordinator for the College of Arts and Sciences and Associate
Professor of Chemistry, Drexel University
Peggy Dominy and Jay Bhatt, Librarians at Hagerty Library, Drexel University
Heather Morrison, Librarian at Simon Fraser University
Open Notebook Science, his archive of experiments on wiki, and his firm belief in open access
in scholarly scientific communication are some other initiatives he continued to focus on.
Jean-Claude introduced the term ‘Open Notebook Science’ in his blog post in September, 2006.
The blog was ‘ Drexel CoAS E-Learning’ and the post was titled ‘Open Notebook Science’
“To clear up confusion, I will use the term Open Notebook Science, which has not yet suffered
meme mutation. By this I mean that there is a URL to a laboratory notebook (UsefulChem wiki
post –Exp025 (like this http://usefulchem.wikispaces.com/Exp025 ) that is freely available and
indexed on common search engines. It does not necessarily have to look like a paper notebook
but it is essential that all of the information available to the researchers to make their
conclusions is equally available to the rest of the world. Basically, no insider information”
He further explained the concept in a post in Nature Precedings blog titled ‘Open Notebook
Science Using Blogs and Wikis" at http://precedings.nature.com/documents/39/version/1
I remember that he was a keynote speaker during ALA conference in Philadelphia. He was
speaking on his famed topic of Open Notebook Science. There were so many attendees in that
session that many were standing in the back and listened to him.
Jean-Claude got me started me so many new technologies; one of them was LinkedIn.
He was the first one to send me a request and also wrote a recommendation in August 2004.
He will be missed but his drive, energy and encouragement will live in my heart forever.