Enterprise upgrade 16-17 July: some services disrupted

Computer keyboardThis summer we are upgrading Enterprise, our Library Catalogue, to give us a more robust, reliable system and take advantage of some new features. During the upgrade, on Monday 16 July, between 16:00 and midnight, some services will unavailable.

You will still be able to …

  • Search the old Library catalogue, Unicorn to access book locations and some e-resources.  Or use Summon for online access to journal articles, book chapters, and much more!
  • Pop into the Library to get books, or ask at the URS Information Desk about your account, paying fines etc. until 17:00.

But you won’t be able to …

  • Access your online Library account to renew your loans or pay fines.

The upgrade is planned to have finished by Tuesday 17 July, but we will still designate the system as ‘at risk’ on that day as the Systems Team test the upgrade. We will let you know if Enterprise will be unavailable for longer than initially planned.

Jackie Skinner, Web Manager for
Sam Tyler, Library Systems Manager

Library refurbishment: latest news and progress

Image of refurbished University Library surrounded by seating, trees and hedges.Work on the University’s major refurbishment of our University Library is progressing well, with the project currently on track to meet its target completion date in late 2019.

Much of the work over recent months has focused on the Library’s exterior, in addition to the basement, Ground, 1st and 3rd Floors. Work will continue in these areas and other floors over the coming months, which will inevitably include periods of noisy work. Over the next few weeks, noisy works are expected around the Ground Floor and the exterior of the Library, with a cherry picker on site to carry out important works.

Books on shelves, purple pillar, grey carpet

You’ll find your books on the 3rd and 2nd Floors now, allowing contractors to refurbish the 4th Floor.

One of the biggest phases of work recently has been the move of books from the 2nd and 4th Floors to the 3rd Floor (which was reopened in early May). The moves were completed ahead of schedule on Wednesday 6 June, with the Library catalogue updated daily to show the correct locations for moved books. The 3rd Floor is not currently furnished with study space while refurbishment work continues but Library staff are available on this floor to help with any enquiries about finding books, using the catalogue, or subject queries. With the books now removed from the 4th Floor, it is now closed for refurbishment.

Much of the work taking place over the summer vacation has been designed to meet our goal of reopening the refurbished Ground and 1st Floors in September 2018, including some study space. This will be a key milestone for the project ­– however, please note that work will continue on these and other floors, and will include periods of noisy work. The URS building will therefore continue to be used in its current capacity for the remainder of the project. (See the University’s ‘Study space across campus‘ page regarding overall space strategy.)

For the latest information and updates, please visit the Library refurbishment webpage and Library blog.

Rachel Redrup, Library Marketing Co-ordinator
for University Communications

Latest round of book moves complete

As of 6 June the latest round of book moves are complete. All the books and other materials have been moved to the 2nd and 3rd Floors so that work can start on refurbishing the 4th Floor, which is due to close on 11 June.

Where are items now located?

2nd Floor

  • 000s – computer science
  • 300s – social sciences, law
  • 800s – literature
  • 900s – history, geography, archaeology
  • Journals in all subjects

3rd Floor

  • 100s – philosophy, psychology
  • 200s – religion
  • 400s – languages, linguistics
  • 500s – science
  • 600s – technology, business, typography
  • 700s – arts
  • European Documentation Centre (EDC)
  • Music CDs
  • Teaching Practice Collection

Need help finding something?

If you need help locating an item or subject in the new arrangement please ask at the Information Desks.

More information

There are a few works to be completed on the 3rd Floor, but these won’t restrict access to the books and are due for completion on 1 September 2018.

Keep up to date with the latest study space and Library refurbishment news on our Library refurbishment webpage.

Katie Moore, Trainee Liaison Librarian

Summer Vacation Loans

Summer Vacation Loans

From Thursday 31 May the standard loan period for undergraduate and taught postgraduate students is extended until Tuesday 2 October or until the end of your course, whichever is earlier. Standard loan periods for other Library borrowers remain unchanged.

All other loan periods and fines for late return remain the same! So please take care when borrowing 7-day loans, Course Collection items and journals. Make sure you check your University account regularly for due dates.

Remember

  • Standard loans – yours all summer if you are an undergraduate or Masters student!
  • 7-day loans – remain the same so keep renewing! If an item cannot be renewed or is recalled, be prepared to post it back to us.
  • Course Collection items and journals – remain the same so keep checking your account!
  • Fines – pay online via the Campus Card Portal or call us.

Summer Vacation Opening Hours

From Saturday 9 June until Sunday 23 September, the Library Building and URS Building will be operating summer vacation opening hours. But wherever you are this summer, there are still a number of Library services and resources available for you. Check out our tips for searching and accessing a wide variety of e-resources from off-campus. You may even be able to study at and borrow from a university library nearer to you by registering with the SCONUL Access Scheme.

 

Holly Thomas, Library User Services

 

Introducing new words and colours – making the Library easier to use

Plan of the new 3rd Floor showing the new, bright coloursAs part of the refurbishment we have taken the opportunity to review the words and colours we use to designate each section in the Library. We have gathered feedback from students and will be trying out some new approaches over the coming months to see if we can make it easier for you to find the items you need.

As part of the latest set of moves we are making the following changes.

New words

We have found that some of the terminology we use is no longer understood. For instance, the word ‘Folio’ for describing the size of book is no longer commonly used, so having a ‘Folio size’ book section meant nothing to our users. To remove this and other jargon we will be changing the names of our sections to the following:

  • Folio will become Large Books
  • Periodicals will become Journals
  • Middle Folio will become Oversize

We are still investigating the best way to display this information in the Library catalogue. Watch this space!

New colours

At the same time we will be introducing new, brighter colours for each of the sections to make them more noticeable so that you are less likely to end up in the wrong place:

  • Books –  bright blue
  • Large Books – bright pink
  • Journals – orange
  • Teaching Practice – bright green
  • Oversize – dark grey

These colours will be used on the latest versions of the floor plans (currently in preparation) and on the labels on the end of each shelf. On the 3rd Floor we will be introducing a new style of shelf label that incorporates the section heading with the numbers, to see if it helps our users find the correct location. On the 2nd Floor we will also be introducing the new colours by changing the section heading labels to the new, brighter colours.

Tell us what you think

During the coming months we will evaluating how well the new words, colours, and shelf label design work for you. We’ll be employing various User Experience (UX) techniques to test them, but we would also like your feedback. If you have any comments about these changes please email signage co-ordinator Jackie Skinner, jackie.skinner@reading.ac.uk.

Jackie Skinner
for Paul Johnson (Associate Director, Collections, Research & Space)

3rd Floor book moves

What’s changing?

Work on the 3rd Floor of the Library is progressing. The next phase involves moving stock from the 2nd and 4th Floors onto this floor to prepare for the 4th Floor closing for refurbishment.

When will it start?

The anticipated start date for this is between Wednesday 9 May and Friday 11 May, with a timeframe of 7-8 weeks. This is subject to approval from Building Maintenance. We’ll keep you updated on this blog and on Twitter (@UniRdg_Library) and Facebook (@universityofreadinglibrary).

Can I still access my books?

Yes! In keeping with our strategy to maximise access to stock throughout the Refurbishment Project, all books will remain accessible as far as possible throughout the move. Each shelf will be unavailable for around thirty minutes whilst the stock is being moved. The Library catalogue will also be updated to reflect the new locations, usually within a day.

Where will I find my books after the move?

The stock will be split by Call Number as follows:

2nd Floor

000s – computer science

300s – social sciences, law

800s – literature

900s – history, geography, archaeology

Journals

3rd Floor

100s – philosophy, psychology

200s – religion

400s – languages, linguistics

500s – science

600s – technology, business, typography

700s – arts

EDC

Teaching Practice

Where can I get help?

Library staff will still be available at the Information Desks and Ground Floor Help Point – please contact them if you can’t find what you’re looking for. The 4th Floor Information Desk will  move to the 3rd Floor from 14 May.

More information

Work will continue to take place on the 3rd Floor, which is anticipated to be due for completion on 1 September 2018. The work will not impact access to books.

Keep up to date with the latest study space and Library refurbishment news on our Library refurbishment webpage.

Katie Moore and Caitlin McCulloch, Trainee Liaison Librarians

Library and URS at Easter

Library closed Thur 29 March to Tues 3 April

The Library and URS Building will close at 17:00 on Wednesday 28 March for the University Easter closure period. We will reopen at 08:30 on Wednesday 4 April. You can always view our full opening hours on our website.

Help while we’re closed

If you need help while we’re closed you can chat online via the blue ‘Virtual Enquiry Service’ box on the Library homepage! This service is staffed by professional librarians working remotely to answer your queries from our website and other information we’ve supplied.

Borrowing over Easter

Revising this Easter vacation? It’s not all bad! The Library makes getting those crucial textbooks even easier for you. It will be ‘business as usual’ with loan periods remaining the same in vacation as all term.

So keep checking your account and renewing your loans unless someone else recalls them. No items will be due back over the closure period and we’ll email you if your loans are recalled! You can return items at the Library even when we’re closed or you can even post them back to us. If you’re ever unsure, you can contact us.

Study spaceEaster chicks

All of the group study rooms in Library@URS will be open from 6pm on Friday 23 March until the start of next academic year (except during the University’s Easter closure period). If you ever need to find study space just check our Study Space map to find a place or use the Free Room Finder online tool which displays rooms available for immediate use.

Holly Thomas, Library User Services

 

 

Be fair and share books and space!

Library's 'Looking for study space?' card in red and greyHelp make the Library work effectively by respecting everyone’s right to resources and limited space. It can be as easy as checking when your Library loans are due back or clearing a desk space for other users. And don’t forget there are alternative study spaces on campus too.

Here are some simple suggestions on how to keep on top of your Library account, save time and money, and help provide a pleasant and productive working environment for all:

Please help us share study space in the URS building fairly. It is fine to pop over to the Library building for a book and return to your desk within a short time. However, 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 returning after an hour and 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.

Check out our ‘Using the Library’ and ‘Policies and Rules’ pages for more information.

Alternative Campus Space

Check the ‘FIND STUDY SPACE BEYOND THE LIBRARY’ section of the Library Refurbishment Project homepage for alternative space.

Holly Thomas, Library User Services

How did you use Course Collection and Holds?

White ghostly imagined people sitting at wooden desks. Shelves of books in background.

After refurbishment, Course Collection and the Hold Shelf will return to the Library building and look something like this.

In spring 2017, whilst it was still in the Library building, we surveyed how students used the Course Collection and Holds Shelf. Here’s what you told/showed us could improve things now, whilst both collections temporarily occupy the URS building, and provides insight for their return to a refurbished Library building.

Research methods

We used two different techniques: we collected your opinions using a graffiti wall asking what users of the Course Collection liked about it and what they felt could improve it for them; we also did some behavioural mapping – observing how the space and services were being used. Although Library Refurbishment plans were already established, we felt observational techniques could inform whether plans were on the right track and give us practice on evaluating use of the new spaces for after refurbishment.

Results confirm refurbishment plans

You told us that you liked the Course Collection’s quiet, warm environment, conveniently close to the main entrance, toilets and café (for that all important caffeine fix!) Our observation exercise confirmed this, showing many users chose the space to work quietly – something we weren’t expecting! The planned Library refurbishment includes new toilets and refreshment areas throughout the building, so should bring this convenience to several study areas.

You also told us you’d like more study spaces in the Course Collection, and more sockets. Observation showed that the most Course Collection popular seats had plug sockets for laptops etc and/or were by a wall or divider, suggesting you can concentrate better when you can’t see anyone working opposite. Library refurbishment will deliver more Course Collection study spaces, all with sockets. There will also be individual comfy study carrels to accommodate that desire to study undisturbed.

Hold shelf improvements

A surprise to us was that a third of those went up to the Hold Shelf didn’t collect a book. It was really useful for us to discover where we could improve your experience of finding your hold and understanding what to do. We have now displayed flow-chart posters beside the Hold Shelf to indicate what to do if you do not initially find your hold, and added more labelling to the Enterprise Library catalogue where books are on hold.

Map of Course Collection annotated with coloured lines and arrows

UX technique employs coloured lines on a map to indicate how different people use an area

Our experience of ‘User Experience (UX)’

Observing how library spaces are used has been both fascinating and incredibly useful. We’re reassured our refurbishment plans will improve your experience of using the new Course Collection space and we’ve gained insight into where we can make service and system design more straightforward for you. We’re hoping to use observational techniques in the future to continue to improve library services and spaces. If you’d like to know more about User Experience (UX) techniques at University of Reading Library, please contact Natalie Guest: n.guest@reading.ac.uk.

Natalie Guest, Library user Services and
Rachel Redrup, Marketing Co-ordinator

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.

Keep renewing your loans over Christmas!

With textbooks in increasingly high demand even after the end of term, we’ve made sure our policy ensures fair access to all. It will be ‘business as usual’ with all loan periods remaining the same in vacation as all term. This means that items will not be issued to cover the whole Christmas vacation.

Just keep renewing your loans unless or until someone else recalls them … so keep checking your University account! You can even return loans by post if you prefer. If your account is blocked please contact the Library and we will discuss the situation with you.

This means you can place holds on books on loan in vacations. The threat of fines on non-returned books should help Library users return them for you!

What about Christmas holidays and Uni Closure?

We know the short Christmas break also spans public holidays and the Christmas University Closure period (Friday 22 December to Monday 1 January – see our Opening hours page for more information), so we’ve made special allowances. Any journals, 7-day loans or Course Collection items borrowed from Saturday 16 December until the Christmas University Closure will be due back on Tuesday 2 January (by 10:00 for Course Collection items). No items will be due back between Saturday 16 December and Monday 1 January.

Happy holidays!

Holly Thomas, Library User Services

 

 

Get your Store and Closed Access requests in soon!

Pine tree covered in snowLast collections before Christmas closure

If you want items kept in areas not accessible to Library users or members of the public before Christmas make sure that you get your requests in on time!

  • Off-Site Store will need to be requested before 08:30 on Thursday 21 December.
  • Closed Access items will need to be requested before 10:30 on Thursday 21 December.

Normal service will resume on Tuesday 2 January with the first Closed Access collection on that day and the first Store collection on Thursday 4 January.

For more information and detailed instructions on how to make Closed Access and Store requests, check out the ‘Requesting items from Store and Closed Access‘ information page.

Holly Thomas, Library User Services