Hello again and welcome back! 

Following on from Welcome last week, we wanted to ensure that we said ‘welcome back’ to the Library to all of our continuing students too. 

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We’re here to help you with all of your Library questions

We know last year was difficult for everyone and especially for those of you who grappled with online and remote learning. Many of you have been away from campus for a while so, please ask us for assistance if things feel unfamiliar.  

We are pleased to say that many of the measures that were in operation in the Library over the past year have been disbanded! 

 

Study space bookings 

Since 3 September, study space bookings are no longer required for individual study spaces and group study is available again. The 1st Floor Group Study Rooms can, once more, be booked in advance. See our recent blog for more information 

 

Click & Collect 

Click & Collect has ended and you can now browse the shelves and borrow items without having to place holds in advance of your visit. More information about how and when to place a hold on an item can be found on the Placing & cancelling a hold webpage. 

We’ve retained the one-way system, sanitisation stations and enhanced cleaning as these have all proven to be useful over the last year. Additionally, University health and safety policy is still single occupancy usage of lifts and, if you are able to wear a face covering, we encourage you to use one when moving around the building.  

Find out more about keeping safe on the Student Essentials pages.  

 

Library tours  

Have you seen our Instagram tour yet? Library tours continue to be available online and there are several other options too. 

 

Opening hours back to 24/6+  

We’re back to our normal term time 24/6+ opening hours. This means the Library closes Saturday evening at 21:00 and reopens Sunday at 8:30, apart from that we’re open all hours. Please note that the Library Café closes at 22:00 on weekdays and IT Service desk hours can be found on the DTS website. 

 

Don’t forget to make the most of expert help!  

The Study Advice and Academic Liaison Librarian teams have been expanding the range of online materials available to help you make the most of the Library. Visit the Library website to see our new Training and events guide and links to our newest YouTube videos and other resources. 

 

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Bookmark the Library blog to stay up-to-date with any changes

 

Further information 

We’ll continue to provide updates on the Library services on our websiteblog, and social media to keep you informed but if you have any questions, please get in touch via library@reading.ac.uk or see our contact information for other options.  

Your Library Team

UoR Library Welcome tours

Full library tour to show the building and key location for Autumn term 2021 lasting 6.58mins on Instagram

Visit the Library via our Instagram tour

There’s been a lot happening this week across the University so if you want to slow things down, try out our self-paced tour. Go through, online at your own pace and in your own time.

Or, if you prefer something a bit more whizzy, take a look at our Instagram tour.

Expandable maps arranged as a welcoming smile.

Mini folding maps – your friendly Library guide

Alternatively, visit the Library in person, pick up an expandable map and take a look around the building yourself.

We like to think we have something for everyone so if you’re new to the University of Reading, or if you’re a returning student and haven’t been onsite for a while, come and see us for help with all your Library needs.

A table with Library, study advice and other University information displayed along with a table top stand displaying relevant information.

Learn what your Library offers, and how we can help you from the display in our foyer

Your Library Team

Education students, welcome to UoR Library!

Femail teacher at door of school classroom furniture

Photo by LinkedIn Sales Solutions on Unsplash

Early September, children return to school and we welcome postgraduate students learning to teach them with our Institute of Education. Greetings!

Why not come to meet your Education Academic Liaison Librarians and Study Advisers at the ‘marketplace’ in RUSU’s Cafe Mondial, 10:00-12:30 on Friday 3 (secondary students) or 12:00-13:00 Wednesday 8 September (primary students). We’ll also be around all year to support your studies of course!

Check out our Education subject and referencing guide online to discover online and physical resources – much is online, linked to your reading lists, with printed theory and Teaching Practice Collection resources in the Library building.

You can see what the Library is like right now on YouTube. Do visit the Library on Whiteknights campus once you receive your Campus card. Please note that our opening hours extend in a few weeks time when full term begins. Watch our Library website for changes to accessing collections and our modern study spaces, or follow us on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram)!

Your Academic Liaison Librarians for Education

 

Get set for dissertations with live and video training!

Young asian girls crouch at running race start lineSet to start your dissertation this summer? No? Get on track by joining this week’s live webinars introducing reference management tools EndNote and Mendeley, or catch up with our new videos summarising topics discussed at last week’s Master’s Dissertation Fayre!

Join reference management workshops

Book through the Actions tab on RISIS to join Extra EndNote and Mendeley reference management workshops:

  • EndNote Online – Tue 15 June 11am
  • Desktop EndNote – Wed 16 June 11am
  • Mendeley – Thu 17 June 11am

View Master’s Dissertation Fayre videos

Showdy figures study in purle background of caption "Masters Dissertation Fayre 2021 Monday 7th to Firday 11th June.Last week all students attending live webinars and giving feedback said they would recommend the sessions to others. One said, “Everything has been helpful; despite writing two dissertations I have not had sessions like these before. Learning to focus my research (‘systematic searching’ and ‘finalising research questions’ were great) and [learning to] plan my study more carefully are the sorts of things I’ve been needing to improve.”

So help yourself to these newly recorded video versions provided by the Library’s Liaison and Study Advice Teams. Aspects covered include:

Ready? Get set. Go!

Rachel Redrup, Academic Liaison Librarian

 

Masters Dissertation Fayre – final day!

Take up our last training offers to help you produce a great dissertation, this final day of our Masters Dissertation Fayre!

This morning at 11am, our Study Advisers discuss writing your discussion chapter.

Book before 12pm to attend a 2pm session with Academic Liaison Librarians providing you with specialist knowledge and need-to-know advice on getting the best out of:

You can read more about the topics on offer via the Study Advice Webinars libguide https://libguides.reading.ac.uk/webinars/summer-term.

Book your Master’s dissertation webinars this week!

Put your studies on track for success with a series of webinars for Master’s students working on their dissertations! The Master’s Dissertation Fayre, run by the Library’s Study Advice and Liaison teams, is back after the success of last year.  Students loved our range of topics covering all elements of dissertation planning and writing, from choosing a research methodology to writing your literature review.  This year, we’re offering all that and more!

Webinars are running online at 11am and 2pm each day from Monday 7 – Friday 11 June. These friendly and helpful sessions are open to all Master’s students, and you can book a place online.

Topics include:

  • Critical writing
  • Avoiding plagiarism
  • Systematic literature searching
  • Finalising your research question
  • Using company information databases
  • Writing your literature review
  • Literature searching tips
  • Reference management tools comparison – Endnote vs Mendeley
  • Writing your discussion
  • Using primary sources/archives online
  • Finding statistical sources

We’re looking forward to seeing you virtually, and hearing your feedback.

Academic Liaison Librarians and Study Advisors

Library news and reminders

Visiting the Library for study space or click & collect?

The one way system in the Library

To help to keep us all safe, please continue to follow the Library Covid- 19 Code of Conduct; it is important that you

  • wear a face covering,
  • practice social distancing
  • stick to the study space allocated by the booking system
  • follow the one-way systems and other procedures in place in the Library and on campus.

 

Finishing your studies soon?

If you are finishing your studies at the University soon, please return any outstanding print or other media as soon as you can. If you are not local to campus and are in the UK, please use our Freepost service to return your loans. If you are not in the UK, please get in touch with us for guidance on alternative ways to get your loans back to us safely.

Return loans in the Book Drop flap to the right of the Library front doors

 

New events!

You may have noticed a new addition to the library homepage. We have created ‘New Events‘ to provide a one-stop-shop of information! Although we are still not yet able to provide in person events, there are plenty of learning and study opportunities on offer. Look out for forthcoming webinars and further online support from Study Advice and the Academic Liaison Librarians. We’ll be posting more information about these events on our social media soon, but in the interim, see the Study Advice Webinars LibGuide for details.

New events section on the Library website.

 

Vacation loans

If you are leaving campus for the summer vacation, our vacation loan period should make like easier!

We have renewed all loans, with the usual exceptions such as Inter-library loans, for continuing students until Tuesday 28 September, so why not make the most of the opportunity for some really great summer reading, by taking part in the UoR Reading Challenge and borrow some items before you leave!

June 2021 summer reading challenge- read a book set in a country that you would like to visit.

Library User Services

Interested in Arts and Health? Take a look at our new guide

Paint brushes in a glass jarIf you are planning your Masters dissertation, or you are heading into your final year this Autumn and your thoughts are starting to turn to topics for your dissertation, you might be interested to take a look at our new guide covering Arts and Health. It draws together useful resources for undertaking research in this interdisciplinary area, which is the focus of the University’s Health and Arts Research Initiative.

The guide has been compiled by our Academic Liaison Librarian for Pharmacy in conjunction with Dr Ranjita Dhital, Lecturer in Pharmacy Practice and Co-Chair of the Arts, Health and Wellbeing Special Interest Group of the Royal Society for Public Health. It includes details of recently purchased books bought specifically to support research in this area, as well as relevant databases, and key websites.

So if you are studying Art, Architecture, Film, Theatre & Television, Food & Nutrition, Pharmacy, or Psychology, take a look at our new guide to whet your appetite for possible dissertation topics.

Jackie Skinner
Academic Liaison Librarian for Pharmacy

 

Dissertation videos, guides and 1-2-1 support

It’s February which means if you’re a final year student, you’re probably frantically trying to complete your dissertation. Over the past few weeks, the Study Advice Team and your Academic Liaison Librarians have been running webinars to support you to find resources and write up your projects and dissertations. But don’t worry if you missed them, we have a plan….

Plan #1: watch our videos

We have recorded short videos on all aspects of dissertation research and writing which summarise what was discussed in the webinars. These short videos cover tips on critical thinking for dissertations, writing your literature review and discussion chapters, and managing the final stages. We also have a video on finding resources online, if you’re at this stage of your research.

Plan #2: check out our guides

We have a range of study guides that support you with various aspects of your dissertation:

  • Our Study Advice dissertation guide covers everything from planning your project to finishing off your dissertation. And our guide on literature reviews will support you to write this important chapter.
  • We also have a suite of Study Advice videos on major projects and dissertations, if you’d rather watch a video than read a guide.
  • Our Library guide on systematic reviews will be of interest to those of your conducting this type of research. We also have a guide to help you with searching databases.
  • Managing your references – whether you need help referencing a resource in a particular referencing style, or using reference management software, our online guides can help you with referencing and your dissertation bibliography.

Plan #3: book a 1-2-1

You can book a 1-2-1 appointment with a Study Adviser or your Academic Liaison Librarian to discuss your own specific questions. Remember we are not subject experts, but we can help you with the following:

  • If you need some support with managing your time for your dissertation, academic writing style, using evidence or overcoming writer’s block and procrastination, you could book a Study Advice appointment
  • If you’re struggling to find the resources you need, navigate the library databases or manage your references, book an appointment with your Academic Liaison Librarian. You can find your Librarian’s contact details and request an ALL appointment online.

Study Advice and Liaison Librarian Teams

Using the Library over the Christmas holidays

Paper angel on top of book tree in the Library foyer

Be like our book angel and stay on top of your library books this Christmas!

Whether you’re heading home soon or staying on campus over the vacation, this summary of available Library services can help you plan ahead. We wish you happy holidays and effective studying – stay safe everyone!

Library opening

Term ends on Friday 11 December, so after this date the Library will be operating reduced opening hours. This will affect the times that you are able to book study space, Click & Collect loans, book IT Service Desk appointments and use the Library Cafe.

From Saturday 12 December till Monday 21 December, the Library will be open from 08:30 to early evening on weekdays only. There are no weekend services available.

Along with the rest of the campus, the Library closes completely on Tuesday 22 December until Sunday 3 January for the University Christmas closure.

From Monday 4 January till Friday 8 January, we resume vacation-hours opening, and from Saturday 9 January we’ll be open for term-time hours again.

Borrow until January 2021

To help borrowers heading home early due to UK government guidance, we’re lending everything to all Library members until Tuesday 12 January. Any items borrowed or renewed from Monday 30 November will issue until 12 January. These vacation loans include standard, 7-day, overnight loans and journals.

Store and Closed Access requests

If you need materials from the off-site Store or from our Closed Access shelves, be aware of the final dates of collection and make sure you place your request in time.

  • Store collections finish for Christmas on Thursday 17 December – get your request in before 08:30 on this day.
  • Closed Access collections will finish for Christmas on Friday 18 December – get your request in before 13:45.

We will next collect from Closed Access on 4 January and from Store on 7 January (these dates might be subject to change if there is a shortage of available staff). For more information, see Requesting items from Store and Closed Access.

Online help

All our expert staff are available online to help and advise you throughout the vacation (except during the Christmas closure period).

If you have a general enquiry, email library@reading.ac.uk or phone 0118 378 8770.

More info

Check our Current Library Services guide for up-to-date information, especially if there are changes to current government guidelines.

Library User Services

COVID-19 update: Your Library this summer

Refurbished Library building with extensive glass front and silvered cladding, behind young, llight green trees

You can borrow print items from the Library building with our ‘Click & Collect’ service.

Library services online

All of our existing support and electronic resources will continue to be available and delivered to you online over the summer. This means that you can still:

Loans and returns

Return loans in the Book Drop flap to the right of the Library front doors

We will renew all books for the entire summer vacation so do not worry as you will not have anything overdue or running up fines! All items will be due on 30 September 2020. If you have already returned items via our Book Drop (right of Library entrance) be assured they will be removed from your Library account as soon as we are able to get back in the building to process them.

We are investigating whether we can accept postal returns of books over the summer and will provide more information if we are able to do so.

Click & Collect service for print items. For those of you writing dissertations, we understand accessing materials is very important. We are providing a service for you to request items (from 13 July 2020). You can still ask your Academic Liaison Librarians whether they can source an alternative option for you.

Further information

Any updates on access to the books or changes to any services will be publicised on our website and Library blog so keep an eye out for news.

Stuart Hunt, Director

5 tips for starting your dissertation

So, you may have just finished your exams but now you have to turn your attention to your dissertation. Where do you begin and how can you ensure you stay on track? Below are our Study Advice and Library tips to help you get started and stay focused.

Tip #1: Have a plan

Having a plan not only helps you to stay on track but weekly goals keep you motivated. Work backwards from your hand-in date and remember to build in extra time for proof reading and final touches. Our videos on managing your time offer some tips to get you started.

Tip #2: Start with something small

To help you get going, start with a task that you can get done easily. This might be something simple, like setting up a Word template or printing off a couple of key articles. Being able to complete one task can give you a sense of achievement and motivate you to tackle more challenging ones.

Tip #3: Think about the information that you need…

….and how to access it! If you are carrying out a literature review, or analysing documents or literature, make sure that you are familiar with the key online resources in your subject area. You can find out more about what’s available to you, as well as contact details for your Academic Liaison Librarian, on your Library subject guide. Look at the COVID-19 page in the guide for top tips on how to access resources when off-campus.

Tip #4: Think more, read less

It’s important that you think critically about you’re reading. This requires you to see the links between various theories and consider what they mean for your research question. So, when taking notes remember to not only record a summary of your reading but more importantly note what you think about what you have read. This will help you when you come to write up. Our video on critical note taking offers some advice on this.

Tip #5: Attend our webinars

In Week 7, the Study Advice and Library teams are offering a series of webinars just for Master’s students. These will help you to get to grips with:

  • developing your research question,
  • planning your literature review,
  • finding information, and
  • managing your references.

Our short webinars run at 11:00 and 14:00 each day, Monday 1 June – Friday 5 June. To find out more and join the webinar check out our Master’s Dissertation Fair guide.

Study Advice and Academic Liaison Teams