Extended loans for library books

We have a little bit of good news which will hopefully alleviate any concerns you may have about library fines during the current lockdown period. To help you stay at home and cut down on non-essential trips to the Library we are extending the due date on all Library books until 28 February.

This will apply to all loan types: standard, 7 day, and short loan. We’ll extend everything already out on loan and from today all new loans will go to this date too.

Metal letter-box type flap (labelled Book drop) in glass and metal section of building

Return your items in the book drop, located to the right of the entrance.

We’ll still keep the recall process in place for items that are in demand. So do continue to place holds on anything you need and we will try to get the book back for you.

If you get a recall notice for a book you have on loan the due date will be brought forward as normal and you’ll need to return it to us in the usual way via the external Book Drop. If you have any difficulty doing this please get in touch with us on 0118 378 8770 or library@reading.ac.uk and we will do our best to help you.

Sue Egleton, Associate Director Systems & User Services

UoR Library welcomes new and returning students!

We’d like to wish all of you joining us for your first term a great big welcome, and welcome back to all our virtual & on-campus returning students, from all the staff at the University of Reading Library!  We have lots of online support available to help you get started with using the Library, or to refresh your memory if you’ve forgotten over the Christmas break, as well as staff in the Library building who can help if you are on campus.

Image shows a mug with hello written on it, and a mobile phone. Text reads Welcome! We have various virtual library activities going on this week and beyond for both our new and returning students. See our new student Libguide for more info!

 

New student Libguide

An online guide telling you about how everything is working in the library including useful videos, answers to questions, where to get help and all our virtual events.

Introducing your library

We have a recorded webinar, to guide you through some basics about using the Library, and how we can help you in your studies at UoR.

Self-paced online tours

We know there’s a lot happening at the moment, so for those of you on campus who want to just take things at your own pace we’ve created a self-paced online tour which will introduce you to the physical building.

Virtual Escape Game

An online time travel escape game that you can play solo or with friends to introduce you to some Library basics via some unusual events in the Library!  Time yourself as you play and let us know how speedy you are on social media!Image shows lots of clocks set to different times. Text reads Virtual time travel escape game! Play solo or with friends over an online chat. See the new student Libguide for how to play!

UoR Library reading challenge

A month by month reading challenge including both e-books and hard copy books.  Why not take some downtime from your studies and try something you might not have otherwise read?  Share your reading finds with us on our social media channels.

UoR Library virtual crafts

Take a quick 3 minute break to learn how to make an easy origami bookmark!

If you join in with anything don’t forget to let us know on social media!  You can find us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Ruth Ng, Academic Liaison Librarian

Library open for study space and Click & Collect

Open sign in rainbow colours

The Library is open – stay safe!

During the new national lockdown the Library is open every day for bookable study space and to collect print materials via our Click & Collect service.

The Library will be open for study space; Monday – Thursday, 08:30 – 19:00 and Friday – Sunday, 08:30 – 17:00

Click & Collect is open; Monday – Thursday, 10:00 – 19:00 and Friday – Sunday, 10:00 – 17:00.

For more information about how the library is operating during the pandemic, please look at our Current Library Services guide

 

Natalie Guest, Document Delivery Co-ordinator / Academic Liaison Librarian

Off-site Store collections suspended

Due to the latest restrictions, there will be no collections from the Library’s Off-site Store until further notice.

If you require material that is held in the Store, please contact the Library at library@reading.ac.uk, or by phoning 0118 387 8770, and we can discuss the possibility of sourcing an alternative copy for you.

Closed Access collections will continue as normal.

Library User Services

New Year Study Advice: have a plan

Computer-generated laptop,, file, calendar, diary imagesCovid-19 has brought with it new ways of working and learning for all of us. A term in, it’s time to reflect on what has worked and what new strategies we need to try to keep on top of our studies. Our Study Advisers have some new videos to help you and some top tips to starting the New Year on the right track.

Tip #1: Make a plan

If you don’t have a study timetable, now’s the time to make one. Follow these 5 steps to make a workable weekly plan and ensure you keep on top of your studies this term:

  1. Make a note of everything you need to complete each week. For instance: watching videos, attending seminars, working on assignments, and reading around your subject.
  2. Allocate time. Work out how much time you have for each task each week. You should see studying as a full-time job, so aim to allocate 35-40 hours a week to studying.
  3. Schedule in time. Using a weekly planner, add in your fixed appointments, then begin slotting in your other study activities. Use the times that you are motivated for study and mix up reading, writing, and listening task within a day.
  4. Making it easy to stick to. Try to have a set routine, starting study at the same time each day, plan in regular breaks and move things around if your plan is not working for you.
  5. Plan backwards from assignments. Give yourself weekly targets to work towards. Try using a termly planner and put it up near to where you study.

Tip #2: Take more effective notes

With lecture content now likely to be recorded, you need to develop different note taking skills to what you might be used to. If you’re finding that watching this content is taking longer than you hoped it would, try these things before, during and after watching:

  • Before: Access the slides and familiarise yourself with the content. Decide if you will write on the slides or pre-format a document with some headings on.
  • During: Decide whether you will hand write notes or create them online (perhaps using OneNote). Watch the video without pausing, if you miss something critical just jot down the time and re-watch that bit. Your notes must have a meaning to you, so just note down anything that springs to mind when your lecturer is talking.
  • After: Spend a few moments summarising what you have just learned. Consider how it fits in with what you already know and other areas within the module. Pattern notes or a mind maps work well for this. Remember to file your notes away in an organised way,

For more

Watch our new short videos on Organising your studies  and Taking notes from videos and see our Covid-19 Guide

Visit our Study Advice website for more resources, to book a 1-2-1 or attend a webinar this spring term.

Study Advice

Study space bookings – changes for 2021

Through feedback from Library users and observation we have noticed that it’s sometimes unclear for users where they should sit and that spaces are booked but not occupied. So in order to improve your experience when visiting the Library to study and ensure that we can continue to operate in a Covid safe way we’re making some changes to our study space booking system and allocating a numbered space to each booking and sending you a reminder the day before. During the Autumn term we’d already started checking your bookings on our system when you arrive at the Welcome Desk to keep study areas from becoming over-populated. It’s important that we have plenty of space for you to effectively social distance in the building, and to guarantee only people who have a genuine booking gain entry.

CLose up picture of a desk showing a label with number

Sit at the desk labelled with the number and area in your booking confirmation email

From 4 January 2021 all study spaces in the Library will have a number. When you book a Study space you’ll be allocated a specific desk to sit at – yours for the duration of your booking. The desk number and area will be on the booking confirmation email you receive. Desk areas are indicated by signage in the building and desk numbers by a label on each space.

You’ll receive a reminder email the day before your booking, if you don’t need the space any more the email will contain details on how to cancel it to make it available for another user. The same option is available in the original booking confirmation email too.

To book and use a study space please follow these steps

  • Book your space online – please only book for yourself, all our study spaces are for individual study as per government guidance.
  • Bring your Campus Card and booking confirmation email to the Library, and please wear a face covering unless exempt
  • Check your study space area and seat number – ask us if you are unsure where it is
  • Sanitise your space with the supplies provided
  • Once seated you can remove your face covering, but please use it whenever you’re moving around inside the building
  • Please vacate your space on time – someone else will be arriving to use it after you

Not received your confirmation email? Don’t book again! Please contact us and we can check your booking is there and re-send the confirmation email. If the space you booked is unavailable, please ask us for help either in person at the Welcome Desk on the Ground Floor or call us on 0118 378 8770.

We want the Library to continue to be a welcoming and safe space for you to study – please continue to help us by following our study space etiquette guidance. We know space is limited but with your help all Library members can have a fair chance to use our facilities.

Sue Egleton, Associate Director (Systems and User Services)

E-resource access over the holiday closure

We have now migrated to our new authentication system, and you may have noticed that the method for logging into e-resources has changed. The University Single Sign On page will now look the same as the page you see when you log into other University services such as your emails or other Office 365 services. This also means that you will need to use a different username to log into e-resources. Where previously you only used your two-letter and six-digit username (e.g. ab123456) to log in, you will now need to add the suffix of your email address (e.g. ab123456@student.reading.ac.uk). This is the same username you will already use to log into services such as Blackboard. Your password will not change. Open laptop

This change will not affect how you log into your Library account to renew loans, place holds etc, this username will remain as e.g. ab123456 without the email suffix. 

We have been testing resources to ensure that they are working with our new system. The majority are now tested and working. If you do encounter any ‘Forbidden error messages during the holiday closure period, we do have alternative routes set up. If you are experiencing issues in Summon, you can access the majority of our E-resources using the A-Z databases listUsing the links here, you should be prompted to log in before you reach the platform. Once you are logged in you can then search the website for the resources you wish to access. Alternatively, if you search for a platform from a search engine you can log in via the institutional (or Shibboleth) login. Please see our webpage on using the institutional login for instructions on how to do this. You can then search by keyword, title or author to access our subscribed content.  

There is a known issue with EBSCO databases and Summon, so please do access those databases via our A-Z databases list. We are working with EBSCO to resolve this issue, and we are hopeful for a solution in the new year.  

As always if you experience an issue, please do report it to the E-resources Team, via our e-resources problem report form, or by emailing eresourceshelp@reading.ac.uk, and we will get back to you as soon as possible after the Christmas closure period. Please do try the alternative routes mentioned above.  

Lindsay Warwick, E-resources Team

Library closed until Monday 4 January

A Christmas tree bauble

The Library building has now closed for the University Christmas closure period. Our building and services reopen on Monday 4 January at 08:30.

We hope you have a relaxing and responsible Christmas break, and look forward to 2021 – we hope it will be an easier year!

Online resources still available

While the Library building and services are closed, our online resources are all still available – you can access them as usual via the Library website.

Renew your loans until January

No items are due back during the closure period. However, please make sure you renew your books before they are due. Most loans are due by Tuesday 12 January –  including Short Loan and 7-day items. We don’t want you to rack up a fine while you’re away!

Happy holidays everyone!

Library User Services

 

Disability guide for UK Disability History Month

This UK Disabilty History Month, check out the Library’s guide to disability and inclusion-related topics. The guide takes the same format as our other subject guides but focuses on materials across from the Library and Special Collections, as well as point you towards other useful online resources, libraries and archives.

Suggest more diverse library resources

You can help us diversify Library collections further by suggesting books, DVDs, topics or authors for purchase in an area you feel is currently underreprested. We’ll do the rest! Just complete our Diversify our collections suggestion form.

You can see Diversity fund titles purchased in current and previous academic years on our dedicated Library Diversity fund reading lists.

(If you would like to suggest other items for the Library, please complete our regular book suggestion form.)

Library Diversity & Inclusion Group

Changes to e-resources login – progress

We are currently migrating e-resources OpenAthens authentication access from a local server to one hosted by OpenAthens themselves.

Please bear with us. Whilst transferred access to some resources has been smooth, access to others has needed fixing. Our E-Resources Team is testing all resources, but if you discover a ‘forbidden error’ message yourself, please let us know: email eresourceshelp@reading.ac.uk or submit an e-resources problem report form. We’d really appreciate it!

Unfortunately this week there is also a separate security issue with Google Chrome following their security update. Publishers are in the process of updating their links but if you encounter this error, we recommend trying the link in a different browser like Edge or FireFox.

Why change servers?

The change comes because OpenAthens no longer provide support for locally hosted versions of this system and the local hardware has reached end of life status, but the change will also bring in some additional positives such as more seamless access to e-resources and a more consistent way of logging in. Open laptop

What will be different?

From 14 December, you will start to see changes with how you log into e-resources. The University Single Sign On page will change and look the same as the page you see when you log into other University services such as your emails or other Office 365 services. This also means that you will need to use a different username to log into e-resources. Where previously you only used your two letter and six digit username (e.g. ab123456) to log in, you will now need to add the suffix of your email address (e.g. ab123456@student.reading.ac.uk). This is the same username you will already use to log into services such as Blackboard. Your password will not change. 

This change will not affect how you log into your Library account to renew loans, place holds etc, this username will remain as ab123456 without the email suffix. 

More info

For further information on the server migration and details of how it may affect personalisation features such as alerts and saved searches, please see our previous blog post. 

As always, if you are having any issues accessing e-resources, you can contact us via eresourceshelp@reading.ac.uk or by submitting an e-resources problem report form. We are always happy to help. 

E-resources Team 

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

Borrow until January for Christmas!

A Christmas tree made of books

Our Christmas present to you! Borrow all vacation, 30 November to 12 January.

To help borrowers heading home early due to UK government guidance, we’re lending everything to all Library members from Monday 30 November until Tuesday 12 January.

These Christmas vacation loans will include standard, 7-day, overnight loans and journals. We hope this will make things a little easier for everyone!

What about holds?

If other Library members have already placed a hold on a 7-day or standard loan item, we will only lend you the item for 7 days. If someone is already waiting to use a Short Loan item we will only be able to lend you the item on overnight loan, so that everyone gets the chance to use the material they need.

If you need an item before January, you can still place holds as normal and we will contact the borrower and try to get it back for you.

We may need to recall your Library books during the vacation if another person requests them, so please check your email regularly. If you have difficulty returning items or any other questions, then please email library@reading.ac.uk for help and guidance.

Vacation hours

See our opening hours for full details of Library opening times over the vacation. No items will be due back between Monday 21 December and Sunday 3 January, the University closure period.

Rebecca Ashley, Library User Services