Inter-Library Loans – research materials delivered to you

Are you currently researching a topic for a dissertation? If so our Inter-Library Loan service maybe able to help you! This service brings you material which is not held in our Library giving you access to a wide range of academic books and journals on request.

If you’re a member of staff or a PhD candidate you can make your ILL request online.

If you’re an undergraduate or taught postgraduate you can make your request in a few simple steps:

  1. Fill in a paper Inter-Library Loan form. Get yours from the Information Desk on the Ground Floor of the URS Building, or download and print an ILL form. Don’t forget to get your request authorised by your supervisor/tutor. They can sign your request form or email us from their University email address.
  2. Attach an ILL voucher to your form. This is a blue sticker available from your school. Alternatively, you may pay for your request at the Information Desk on the Ground Floor of the URS building – a loan or article costs £3.
  3. Hand in your form to the Information Desk and we’ll do the rest.

If you have any questions about requesting an Inter-Library Loan please get in touch with us either at the Information Desk at the URS Building or you can send us an email: ill@reading.ac.uk

Holly Thomas, Library User Services.

Overwhelmed by reading? – info tip

If your resolution this term is to be more efficient when studying, a good area to focus on is your reading and note-making. Independent reading and taking notes are likely to make up a large part of your study time at university, so a few small adaptations to your reading strategies could potentially save you a lot of time over the term.

Reading with a purpose

The Study Advice team has a guide on managing academic reading which includes ideas on how to select material, deciding how much to read, and reading techniques. We also have a brief video tutorial on reading academic texts that introduces the kind of reading needed for academic work and appropriate strategies.

To get started, use this simple three-step plan to make your reading more active and targeted:

 1. Understand the purpose for your reading:

2. Think about what you need to find out:

Ask yourself what you already know about the topic, from previous lectures, seminars or wider knowledge. Use this to identify your gaps and what you need to find out – it can be useful to phrase this as a series of questions so you can then search for answers to those questions.

3. Identify where you can find this information:

Your reading list is often a helpful place to start – the Library has a guide to understanding your reading list. But to get the best marks you will most likely need to go beyond your reading list – see the Library guide on doing your literature search for information on where to look, effective search tips, finding the items you need. For targeted resources and more advice on finding information in your subject, take a look at your subject resources pages or contact your subject liaison librarian.

An open notebook and pensNote this!

Efficient reading goes hand-in-hand with good note-making, so if you feel you are being slowed down by taking too many, or too few notes, have a look at our guide to effective note-taking and our video tutorial on critical note-taking.

The secret is not trying to capture everything you’ve read (or you’ll just end up with more notes than there are pages in the book itself!) but to keep good records so you know where to find the information again when you need it. Watch this short video tutorial on finding bibliographical details you need for note-making and referencing. If you find it hard to keep track of your references, consider using reference management software, such as EndNote.

Spending too long reading?

Reading is a potentially open-ended task – there is always one more book or journal article in the Library that you could read. If you feel your reading is taking too long, have a look at the Study Advice guides on managing your time and our video tutorial on how to make more hours in the day

If you find it difficult to focus on your reading, list the things that distract you and take steps to deal with these distractions. For example, disable pop-up notifications on your phone if you know social media can easily draw your attention away from your reading. Another helpful strategy is to think about the time of day when you are most focused and productive, and use your best thinking time to tackle the most difficult texts.

Putting limits around your reading time and stopping it from becoming an endless task can also improve your efficiency and your motivation! Make an estimate of how much time you need to do your reading, break your reading down into manageable chunks, and schedule it into a weekly study timetable. For more advice on how to make one, watch our video tutorial on making a study timetable.

Need more help?

If you need more advice on how to manage your reading and improve your note-taking techniques, contact the Study Advice team to book an appointment.

This is one of a series of tips to help you save time and effort finding or using information.

This tip was written by Dr Michelle Reid and Erika Delbecque, Study Advisers.

Writing or speaking? Captivate your audience with multimedia – info tip

Planning a poster, presentation or report? Adding an image, video or audio clip can help your audience understand your ideas and engage them with your argument.

The Library has a number of sources of multimedia which you can use in your coursework assignments and teaching. Why not explore some of the resources listed below in order to enrich your projects with pictures, audio and video that illustrate your point?

Multimedia can be a persuasive addition to your argument – but remember to consider it critically, as with any source, and reference images and clips appropriately giving credit to the original source.

Images

Our main resource for images is Britannica Image Quest – it includes over 2.7 million images from various collections including National Geographic, Getty Images, National History Museum and more.

University image collections

The University also has several image collections available – Special Collections have many images of the objects in their collections on their website which can be used in unpublished and non-commercial works. Special Collections covers many areas including Samuel Beckett, early English coins, early anatomy books and publishers’ archives. Please contact them if you want to know more about using these images.

Video & Audio clips

Our main collection of videos and clips is Box of Broadcasts (BoB), where you can view over 2 million TV & radio broadcasts from free-to-view channels from the 1990s to the present day. Create a clip from a film, documentary or news item, or search and view clips and playlists from academics at other UK universities. Videos can be streamed for use in teaching materials or student coursework, but only in the UK.

Get on the right side of the law!

All the resources listed here have guidance on how you may use the content on the access page to help you operate within the rules! For further guidance on using multimedia for educational purposes legally, see the University’s advice on copyright.

Citing multimedia

Like everything you refer to in your academic work, you need to cite the author of your image or clip and where you got it from – see our advice on how to cite different types of material or the BUFVC’s guide on citing audiovisual materials.

There are lots of other resources for images, video and audio available – some specifically for certain subjects. See what’s available on our image and sound page.

Need further advice?

For more guidance contact your subject liaison librarian.

This is one of a series of tips to help you save time and effort finding or using information.

This tip was written by Natalie Guest, Multimedia Manager.

Library refurbishment: extra study space and update on works

Whiteknights map

Download the new Study Space Maps now from www.reading.ac.uk/library/refurb

Here is an update on new study spaces available later this month and works taking place inside the Library.

New study spaces around campus

The Library@URS offers around 600 study spaces during term time. While the space is convenient for studying, we do recognise that it can be difficult to find space during peak times (occupancy rates suggest this is typically 10:00– 16:00).

Following student feedback, the University will be able to offer additional study space beyond the Library@URS from Monday 15 January 2018:

  • Study space at Eat at the Square: Eat at the Square will be open after lunch 15:00-18:00 every Monday to Friday during term time. It will provide approximately 280 spaces, with refreshments available to purchase from The Grumpy Mule.
  • Extended Chancellor’s Building opening hours: Opening hours for the Chancellor’s Building have been extended to offer additional space 18:00–21:00 every Monday to Friday during term time. (This is in addition to opening Chancellor’s at weekends if URS becomes full – see below).
  • New study spaces to be created in Halls: In case you missed our announcement last November, more than 100 new study spaces will be available across our Halls of Residence. We are aiming for these to be ready by the end of February.
  • AVAILABLE NOW – Study Space Map: We have also produced a Study Space Map highlighting spaces across our Whiteknights and London Road campuses. Download the map today at our Library refurbishment page (top link in ‘FIND STUDY SPACE BEYOND THE LIBRARY’ box).

The above new services join our existing Library@URS arrangements and space-finding tools. To recap, these are:

  • Library@URS arrangements
    • Library@URS anti-desk-hogging service: Does that jacket really need its own space? Please speak to staff at the Reception or ground floor Information Desk if you see unattended spaces ‘booked’ with belongings.
    • Chancellor’s Building as overflow space: The Chancellor’s Building can be opened as relief space if URS becomes full at weekends – please speak to staff at the URS ground floor Information Desk for more information.
    • Extra URS space over weekends and vacations: Rooms 2s14, 2s21, 2s25, 2s26 and 2s27 will be available when the Large Lecture Theatre is not in use over weekends and vacations (due to fire regulations). In term time, the rooms are available from 18;00 Friday until 08:00 Monday. The rooms will be immediately available during vacations and summer terms, ensuring the maximum study space capacity can be used at exam revision time.
  • Digital space-finding tools can be easily accessed through the Library refurbishment page:

Noisy works within the Library

As ever, the Library building remains open for borrowing books and learning materials while refurbishment work takes place.

Please note there may be noisy works over the next few weeks as the next phase of work includes the cutting of concrete slab on the Ground and Basement Floors.

Where to find out more

Don’t forget that Library staff are on hand to answer your questions and help you out –  please speak to staff at the Library@URS Reception or Ground Floor Information Desk if you need assistance or have any queries.

Please visit the Library refurbishment webpage for further information on the project, including the latest news, links to space-finding tools and FAQs.

Rachel Redrup, Library Marketing Co-ordinator
for UoR Communications

 

Noisy chat in Library@URS? Text us!

Lower part of face with forefinger placed to lipsAre others chatting too noisily in the Library’s URS building? Alert us by text, without identifying yourself to others or leaving your seat!

First check your URS study area really is designated as ‘quiet’ or ‘silent’, or that noise in a ‘group study area’ is excessive. If it is, text:

  • NOISYCHAT‘ and your location to 07796 300114 
  • eg NOISYCHAT 2n19 Silent Study.

We’ll come and investigate. We support your right to to work quietly, as protected by Library Rule 13.

For more information, and a list of URS building locations, see our Noise in the Library webpage.

Rachel Redrup, Marketing Co-ordinator
for Robin Hunter, Facilities Manager

Help make the most of Library@URS space

Students studying in the URS Building

Group study space in the URS Building

Looking for a space when URS is busy? Help us to help you make the most of our study space.

Weekend and vacation study space

Students can access extra study space in the URS building over the weekend and during vacation time. Rooms 2s14, 2s21, 2s25, 2s26 and 2s27 will be open for use from 18:00 on Fridays until 08:00 on Mondays during term time, as well as all throughout the vacation. The rooms are closed during term time weekdays as the Large Lecture Theatre is in use in the URS Building.

The Library has also made arrangements to open the Chancellor’s Building to provide more space on Saturdays and Sundays between 10:00 and 18:00 if the URS Building reaches capacity. Users are requested to talk to Library staff at the URS Ground Floor Information Desk if they are having difficulty in finding a space.

Library's 'Looking for study space?' card in red and greyAnti-desk hogging service!

Please help us share study space in the URS building fairly. While it’s fine to pop over to the Library building for a book and return to your desk within a short time, we think it unfair for students to reserve desks with their belongings for long periods when other students want to use that space.

If you find unattended study places apparently ‘booked’ with clothes, stationery and the like, please ask Library staff for support at either the URS Reception desk by the main entrance or the URS Information Desk next to the Course Collection on the ground floor. We will give you a timed warning card you can place on the abandoned stuff. Put the belongings to one side and sit down. If the owner returns within the hour, they are entitled to the space back. If not, you can sit there. Also ask staff to help explain, should anyone return after an hour to complain.

Where unattended stuff hasn’t been moved overnight, staff will remove it to URS Reception. If it is not claimed by the next morning, it will be taken to Palmer Reception, the centre for all lost property in the University.

Noisy chatLower part of face with forefinger placed to lips

Are others chatting too noisily in the Library’s URS building? Alert us by text, without identifying yourself to others or leaving your seat!

First check your URS study area really is designated as ‘quiet’ or ‘silent’, or that noise in a ‘group study area’ is excessive. If it is, text:

  • NOISYCHAT‘ and your location to 07796 300114 
  • eg NOISYCHAT 2n19 Silent Study.

We’ll come and investigate. We support your right to to work quietly, as protected by Library Rule 13.

For more information, and a list of URS building locations, see our Noise in the Library webpage.

Katie Moore, Trainee Liaison Librarian

Paying Library fines – Campus Card portal upgraded

It is now possible to pay Library fines using the upgraded Campus Card portal.

Following the upgrade some users may need to delete their internet cache before they can access the new mobile friendly site.  So remember clear your cache to pay your cash!

Fines can also be paid:

  • at the Library building Self-Service Point fines payment machine (up to £12)
  • at the URS building Information Desk
  • by ringing us on 0118 378 8770 with a credit/debit card.

Rebecca Ashley, Library User Services
for Nathan Harvey, Campus Card Systems Manager

We can help you keep your New Year resolutions – info tip

Ahhh, it’s New Year, when so many of us wake up and resolve never to do *that* again… But it’s also a chance to look back over the year, and think about what we could be doing differently. If you’re resolving to change your ways this year, the Library and Study Advice can help!

Making this year the year you meet new people?

Maybe you’ve decided you really ought to meet some actual real life people and not just their avatars? You could start with your friendly, professional Liaison Librarians. They can help you with finding resources, using referencing software, e-resources and any other library queries. Find their details on the Liaison Librarians page, and maybe book a meeting. Get to know the experts and what they can do to help you study more successfully and more effectively.

Resolving to spend less time studying?

If you feel like you’re spending all your time studying, you may need to think about how you can make sure you’re using your time most efficiently. Study Advice have a guide to managing your time with suggestions and strategies to make more hours in your day. Two things that often eat up your time are reading and note-taking – see if our strategies can help you conquer these time-eating monsters! Finally, we have some new video tutorials on various time management topics, including overcoming procrastination – and they’ll only take up a few minutes of your precious time.

pile of booksWant to get on top of your references?

Making sure your referencing is correct can be confusing, so if you’ve resolved to get on top of this have a look at our comprehensive guide on citing references. It has all the information you need to understand what to do and when to do it. It might also be a good time to set up a reference management program to keep track of all of your references in the future. We offer support, guides and training on EndNote, but do be aware that there are other programs you can use.

Or make sure you prepare for exams in good time?

Resolved to be more prepared for exams this year? Start by looking at the tips in the Study Advice Preparing for Exams guide on planning your revision. Get started now, and you could be the most relaxed person in the exam room! It’s also a good time to sit back and watch our brief video showing you how to place a hold on a Library book. Be the person who knows how to get their hands on the revision reading they need when they need it…

Do you want to boost your marks this year?

If 2018 is the year you’re going to get that 2.1, or that First, or another First (but this time knowing why you got it), you’ll probably find it helpful to book a one-to-one chat with a Study Adviser. We can look at how you’re studying and suggest ways to develop your skills, or go through your feedback with you to see what you might need to focus on. Or you could have a look at the Study Advice guides and video tutorials – 24/7 advice for successful studying! And while you’re getting to know us, check out how to find the Liaison Librarian for your subject; they can help you find the best resources for studying in your subject area.

And finally, if you want to make sure you stay well-informed?

Did you miss our study seminar on writing an excellent essay? Wondering why people are talking about Hodor the Duck? A good way to keep up-to-date with what’s happening in the Library and Study Advice is to follow us on social media. You can find Study Advice on Twitter at @UniRdg_Study, and the Library at @UniRdg_Library. The Library is also on Facebook at /universityofreadinglibrary and Instagram at @unirdg_library.

happynewyearSo, no excuses to miss all the good things coming your way in 2018. Happy New Year from all of us to all of you!

 

This is one of a series of tips to help save you time and effort finding or using information.

This tip was written by Kim Shahabudin, Study Adviser and Katie Moore, Trainee Liaison Librarian.