Bring Campus Cards to open Library gates from 22 Oct

Security barrier with sign saying 'tap here' on it

Tap your Campus Card at Library building security gates to enter or exit study and stock areas.

Get ready to carry your Campus Card with you when visiting the Library building to open the new access gates, installed as part of the University’s major Library Refurbishment Project. We initially kept them open so you had time to get used to new Ground Floor areas. Gates become operational from Monday 22 October to increase your security and prioritise study space for University members.

Library members: you will be able to enter and exit, just by tapping your Campus Card (the same one you use to borrow) at the gates …. so there’s nothing you need to do other than carry it with you. You already need your Campus Card to enter the Library@URS building overnight, at weekends and in the revision period when we restrict access to Library study space.

Visitors needing access to print material, and anyone experiencing any problems gaining entry with your card, please see staff on duty at the Help Point (to the left of the gates) who will be happy to help!

You do not need your cards to use the Library Café and Ground Floor toilets which you will find before you reach the barriers.

Rachel Redrup, Library Marketing Co-ordinator
for Sue Egleton, Associate Director (Systems & User Services)

Easier borrowing at new Self-Service Points!

Two Self-Service Points and book drop bin

Following the re-opening of the Ground Floor and 1st Floors of the University Library Building, you can now borrow and return loans at new, updated Self-Service Points which make the process much easier!

New features include:

  • Checkout a stack of books at once. No need to scan each individual item!
  • Email a receipt of checked out items to yourself, no need for printed paper receipts.
  • As soon as you log in, you can check what you have out on loan and any holds available for you.

If you need help, please ask a member of day-time staff to give you a quick demonstration of how the new machines operate.

Please note that our older Self-Service machines are still in operation in Course Collection at Library@URS.

Further refurb information

To keep up to date with the latest study space and Library refurbishment news, please visit the Library refurbishment webpage and this Library blog.

Matthew Pearson, Library User Services 

 

 

Teaching and study space in Library@URS

From 1 October, the University has temporarily converted two more Library@URS rooms for teaching. Although less study space is available here on term-time weekdays, remember you can use alternative study space available across campus, as well as the new group and quiet study areas recently opened in the Library building.

Changing rooms!

With the temporary closure of some teaching rooms in the Palmer building for remedial work, two of the rooms on the second floor of the Library@URS (2s21 and 2n09) have been converted to teaching rooms. When these aren’t in use for teaching they can be used for study. However, owing to fire regulations regarding the safe capacity of the URS building, more group study rooms on the second floor will be closed while teaching rooms and the Large Lecture Theatre may be in use.

All group study rooms will be open for use from 18:00 on Fridays until 08:00 on Mondays during term time, as well as all throughout the vacations and summer term. All other quiet and silent study rooms on the north side of the building will remain open throughout. You can still use the group study rooms on the Library@URS ground floor.

Study space in the Library

The Library’s newly re-opened Ground Floor offers quiet study seating options, while the 1st Floor provides a range of group study seating options. Please bear in mind that Library refurbishment continues on these and other floors until autumn 2019 and it will sometimes be noisy or disruptive. Read more about the newly opened spaces in the Library here.

Alternative study spaces across campus

In addition to Library spaces, there are still around 1,500 study spaces available across the Whiteknights and London Road campuses. These are listed on the Student Services pages about alternative study space available across campus or the ‘Find study space beyond the Library’ section of the Library Refurbishment Project page. Do bookmark this on your laptop or mobile to find it easily later!

Further information

To keep up to date with the latest study space and Library refurbishment news, please visit the Library refurbishment webpage and this Library blog.

Katie Moore, Trainee Liaison Librarian 

Library building areas reopen after refurbishment

Parts of the Ground and 1st Floors of the University Library building have reopened as our refurbishment progresses!

New Library Café

The ground floor has a brand new Library Café, which offers hot drinks made by a barista and a ‘grab and go’ menu – including sandwiches, fresh soup and toasties. Two Freestyle machines offer water and a range of soft drinks.

If you would like to sit in the café, there are a range of seating options – including comfortable cushioned benches with plug sockets for phone and laptop charging. You will be able to order from a broader range of food and drink options.

A limited menu of coffee, pre-packed sandwiches and snacks is available this week (Welcome Week) and the cafe will be open from 9.30 am to 4.30 pm. From Monday 1 October, the café will stay open later and close at 9.30 pm with the fuller menu available.

Some Library study areas

The Library’s ground floor offers other study seating options, while the first floor offers a range of group study seating options.

Students are welcome to use these study spaces (no food in these areas please!), but please bear in mind that Library refurbishment continues on these and other floors until autumn 2019 and it will sometimes be noisy or disruptive. Therefore, study space and services remain in Library@URS for the whole of the academic year 2018/2019. Library@URS provides a quieter environment for study while still being close enough to borrow and use the Library’s printed materials. Students may also use the variety of alternative study space around the University.

Further information

To keep up to date with the latest study space and Library refurbishment news, please visit the Library refurbishment webpage and this Library blog.

Rachel Redrup, Marketing Co-ordinator
and University Communications

Library refurbishment: toilets, stairs and landscaping changes

When using the Library building after Monday 30 July, please be aware of the latest changes due to ongoing refurbishment. These affect where to find toilet facilities, accessing upper floors and approaching the Library building entrance.

Use stairs behind lifts

Red barriers on slate floor with balconies above

Please use lifts and adjacent stairs in the centre of the building.

Do not be alarmed if, on entering the Library, you no longer see a flight of stairs directly in front of the current entrance. These have been demolished as part of Ground Floor refurbishment. Until newly installed stairs are ready to use at a later stage, please use the existing stairs behind the lifts in the centre of the building. Ask at our Info Point for directions.

Toilets on the 3rd Floor

Red arrow points to door labelled as gender neutral toilet next to book shelves

New toilets are on the 3rd Floor, behind the book area, on the east side.

Take your first opportunity to try out the new gender-neutral and accessible toilets at the far end of the recently re-opened 3rd Floor! (See our 3rd Floor plan.)

Opening these new facilities means we have closed the Ground Floor toilets, so that contractors can work on with creating new single-sex toilets as part of Ground Floor refurbishment. This section is due to open in autumn this year.

The nearest single-sex toilets to the Library are located in the URS and Edith Morley buildings. Please ask Library staff at the Ground Floor Help Point who can point you in the right direction.

Image of refurbished University Library surrounded by seating, trees and hedges.Landscaping refurb: outside seating and planters to be replaced

Also after Monday 30 July, contractors will be fencing off the outside seating and brick-built planters directly outside the Library building. These are to be removed in anticipation of new landscaping to complement Library refurbishment.

Please walk between the fencing and hoardings to access the Library entrance. Watch out for occasional traffic directed by contractors’ when gates are opened.

More information

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

Rachel Redrup, Library Marketing Co-ordinator

Water restored in Library

The leak in the Library building has now been fixed.

Drinking water and toilets are both available on the Ground Floor of the Library building during opening hours.

More information

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

Katie Moore, Trainee Liaison Librarian for
Robin Hunter, Facilities Manager

Library refurbishment: noise expected from external works (updated)

We’re making good progress on our major refurbishment of the Library. While work continues on the inside of the Library building, much attention will be paid to the Library’s exterior over the coming weeks.

How will this affect you?Image of refurbished University Library surrounded by seating, trees and hedges.

As the works will involve the use of heavy machinery, we anticipate high levels of noise around the outside of the Library building. One major phase of work will be the creation of new ramps and steps into the building – this involves working with concrete, and so will necessitate drilling at times.

In addition, work will continue to transform the exterior facades of the building. Some of the work will involve loud machinery, which is likely to be audible from nearby buildings such as Edith Morley. Night works will also take place at various points over the summer.

We apologise for any inconvenience this will cause, and are extremely grateful for your patience at this time.

More information

For the latest refurbishment news, please visit the Library refurbishment webpage.

Katie Moore, Trainee Liaison Librarian
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

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

Study space on campus: Spring update

Whiteknights mapHere’s some info to help all you students, working hard on assignments/projects/dissertations/revision, find study space facilities across campus.

600-800 Library@URS study spaces

There are around 600 study spaces in the URS building term-time weekdays, which increases to around 800 at weekends and during vacation periods when the Large Lecture Theatre is not in use (there is a limit on the total occupancy of the building for fire safety). The closed rooms will therefore be reopened permanently during Library@URS opening hours from 6pm on Friday 23 March until the start of next academic year (except during the University’s Easter closure period).

900 more spaces across campus

As well as the URS Building, there are more than 900 other study spaces across the Whiteknights and London Road campuses. To help make it as straightforward as possible for you to find study space during this period, we’ve summarised the resources available as follows:

  1. Study Space Map

The University has had great feedback from students who have used this Study Space map to find alternative study space, in addition to that offered in the URS Building;

  1. Free Room Finder

The Free Room Finder online tool displays rooms available for immediate use and you can search based on campus area, time needed, and/or capacity required;

  1. PDF study space list

Updated every term, this list highlights spaces across our campuses that can be used for study (subject to scheduled teaching or departmental use);

  1. Live list of available PCs

This PC availability webpage shows where there are PCs available on campus in real time;

  1. RUSU’s The Study and The Study@TOB2

Study spaces available for all campus card holders;

  1. Extended Chancellor’s building opening hours

This building is available to use as study space from 6-9pm Monday to Friday during term time and also at weekends (between 10am and 6pm) at the discretion of the Library supervisor if study space in the URS Building becomes full. If you are having difficulty finding a study space in the URS building at the weekend please talk to Library staff at the Library@URS Ground Floor Information Desk;

  1. Additional study space at Eat at the Square

Eat at the Square will be open after lunch from 3-6pm Monday to Friday during term time, providing additional study space as well as refreshments from The Grumpy Mule;

  1. Central Room Booking service

Students can book rooms on campus in advance, for example, for group study;

  1. Anti-desk-hogging service in the Library@URS building

Help Library staff make the most of Library@URS space: If you see unattended spaces ‘booked’ with belongings, speak to staff at the Reception or the Information Desk on the Ground Floor;

  1. NOISYCHAT service in Library@URS building

Please text Library staff quietly if you experience noise in a silent study area and they will investigate as soon as they can.

Study space in Halls

The University has been working to create more than 100 new study spaces across our Halls of Residence, which includes refurbishing spaces so that they are more suitable for productive study. The spaces will be located in Wessex Library, St George’s Computer Room, Wantage Computer Room, Stenton JCR, Childs JCR and Mackinder JCR. It originally hoped these spaces would be ready by the end of February – unfortunately, although the refurbishment work is complete, we have experienced some unforeseen delays with our furniture supplier, which now means that the spaces will be ready in late March. The supplier is working hard to deliver the furniture within the next couple of weeks, and we will of course let you know when the spaces are ready to use.

In the meantime, there are other spaces in Halls that can be used for study, including the Bridges JCR, Benyon JCR and Sherfield Bar. Please call the Halls Hotline if you’re not sure where these spaces are or want to check opening times.

More on Library Refurb

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

University Communications/Library Marketing Co-ordinator, Rachel Redrup

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