Easier path to view full-text via Summon

We will shortly be amending the process to access online material you discover via a Summon search from our homepage. The change will also affect some links in Talis and the “Find Item @ Reading” button you may see on some platforms. 

When you use these links, you will now be directed to the Item Finder page – from here you can click the prominent blue ‘Read full-text article’ to be taken through to the article. 

The item finder page, including the prominent blue button you will need to click to access the full-text


This change will improve the linking for some platforms which were incompatible with the Summon sidebar.

If you have any questions, please contact the E-resources Team at eresourceshelp@reading.ac.uk

Sophie Dorman, E-resources Team

Problems accessing some e-resources- resolved

The issue we were having with our secondary authentication system has now been resolved, and you should be able to access e-resources as normal.

If you encounter any problems, please try clearing your browser cache in case your browser has “remembered” any errors, and if the problem persists contact the E-resources

Open laptop

Team by emailing eresourceshelp@reading.ac.uk or submitting a problem report form.

We apologise for the inconvenience this has caused you. Thank you for your patience as we worked on a solution.

Lindsay Warwick, E-resources Team

Problems accessing some e-resources

There is currently an issue with one of the authentication systems we use to authenticate users. This is not our primary authentication system and only a relatively small number of links are affected, but you may find that you encounter error messages with some links.

Open laptopThe links that are currently problematic, are identifiable by the prefix we are using in the weblink. It may look like this- https://login.dblibweb.rdg.ac.uk/login?url=. We are working as a matter of urgency with the company who manages this authentication system to resolve the situation and hope to find a solution soon.

The majority of our E-resources are not using this system, and you should still be able to access them via the A-Z database, in Summon and on Talis. However, if you do encounter an issue, please do contact the E-Team at eresourceshelp@reading.ac.uk or via our e-resources problem report form, we may be able to provide you with alternative access.

Apologies for any inconvenience this may cause.

Lindsay Warwick, E-resources Team



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

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 

Authentication server migration 14 December

Laptop and book seen from above, person's left hand on book and right on keyboard. onAfter the end of term on the 14 December 2020, we will be migrating our OpenAthens authentication for e-resources access from our locally hosted version (a server on campus) to a server hosted by OpenAthens themselves. We will remain members of the UK Federation so you will still look for “Institutional Login” style links for login on the resources. We are migrating now as OpenAthens no longer provide support for locally hosted versions of this system and the local hardware has reached end of life status. Some additional positives are that we can stop having different access routes for on/off campus access and you will be able to use your full IT Account credentials (full email address and password) as you already do to access many University of Reading systems.

You should not notice a break in access to resources or a change to your experience of them but we wanted to inform you of the migration in case you wish to back up any personalisations you may have made on individual platforms. These features may include the ability to save highlighted phrases or quotes, add notes, save annotated images, create alerts, save searches or simply bookmark a certain chapter.

With the help of your Academic Liaison Librarians we have identified key platforms that we know use such features and contacted the relevant suppliers to ensure a smooth transition with no loss of your data, wherever possible. Our investigations lead us to be reasonably confident that the migration will not affect any personalisation you may have set-up on most supplier platforms. However, we would strongly recommend downloading or making a note of any saved searches, alerts and notes, etc before the migration date 14 December 2020, so that in the unlikely event the changes we make do affect personalisation, your research will be unaffected.

We are aware that user accounts on the Ebook Central platform will have to be moved over to the new authentication system manually after the migration has occurred. If you notice that your annotations or bookshelf are missing after the migration, please contact us at eresourceshelp@reading.ac.uk and we will work with Ebook Central to restore these.

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.

Sophie Dorman, E-resources Team

A world of exploration on your screen

A pile of globes

We currently have a trial to The Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers) online archive. A large number of the archives from the UK’s learned society for geography and professional body for geographers have been digitised. Spanning 1478 to 1953, the archive contains more than 150,000 maps, charts and atlases, complemented by manuscripts, field notes, expedition reports, scrapbooks, correspondence, diaries, illustrations, and sketches. Books, diaries and photographs from some of the foremost geographers and explorers are included, such as Gertrude Bell, John Hanning Speke, David Livingstone, Robert Falcon Scott, Richard Francis Burton, Ernest Shackleton, and Edmund Hillary. The archive is likely to be of interest to those studying/researching many different subject areas, ranging from Geography to Post-Colonial & De-Colonization Studies.

Access to The Royal Geographical Society Online Archive is available on- and off-campus until Thursday 10 December.

Please send any feedback you may have to Charlie Carpenter, Academic Liaison Librarian for History, at c.a.carpenter@reading.ac.uk.

Sophie Dorman, E-resources Team

Accessing resources in Summon

Open laptopDuring week 6 (week beginning 2 November 2020we will be making some changes you may notice in SummonWe are working towards a more consistent approach for logging into e-resources, and this is a step towards that. These changes should mean that there will be fewer resources for which you will need to find the institutional login on the platform.  

These changes may take up to a week to come into effect, but you should still be able to access all our content as normal. The only change you should experience is the order in which you log in to online resources.  During this period, you may still need to log in via the institutional login on the platform as you have been doing if you are accessing off-campus. However, as the updates take effect you may find that for some of our resources in Summon, you will now be prompted to log in via our Single Sign On page before you reach the online resourceOnce you have logged in, you will be directed to the content and will be authenticated so you can access everything we subscribe to on the platform.  

These changes do not affect what you use to log in to e-resources, you will still just need your IT username, e.g. ab123456 (not your full email address), and password.  

We do not anticipate any problems with access to resources in Summon. However, should you experience any access issues, we do have alternative routes that you can use to navigate to e-resources. You can use Enterprise (first search box on the library homepage) to search for e-books and online journal titles, and our databases a-z list, which contains database level links to our subscribed platforms.  

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.  

Lindsay Warwick, E-resources Team

Accessing Library E-resources

IT recently updated how you log into their systems so that you now use a combination of your IT username and email address, i.e. ab123456@student.reading.ac.uk as your username. This change affects how many of you log in to a variety of University systems such as your University email accounts and Blackboard.Open laptop

However, this change does NOT affect how you access Library E-resources, which include Talis. If you are accessing an E-resource via our Single Sign On page, you just need your IT username (ab123456) and password to access.

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.

Lindsay Warwick, E-resources Team


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

Online Master’s Dissertation Fair: 1-5 June

Web page screen shotWondering how to start researching and writing your dissertation? Why not drop into the Master’s Dissertation Fair, run online by the Academic Liaison and Study Advice Teams!

Choose from a selection of different webinars at 11:00 and 14:00, Monday 1 to Friday 5 June offering advice on all elements of your dissertation planning, searching for literature, and writing. From choosing a research methodology to using reference management tools, these friendly webinars provide tips from the experts to put your dissertation on track for success.

​No need to book, just follow the links in the Master’s Dissertation Fair guide. Please connect 5-10 minutes prior to the session to ensure your access is working correctly.

More help available

Alternatively, you can also book a 1-2-1 session with a Study Adviser or Academic Liaison Librarian.

If you prefer self-paced online resources from Study Advice, try their suite of guides and video tutorials on literature searching, dissertations and major projects,

Discover key resources in your subject area in the liaison team’s guides: note the new COVID-19 tab showing additional relevant resources made available online during the lockdown period.

Study Advice and Academic Liaison Teams

‘Library recommends’ … fun productions and healthy walks

Feet in trainers and grey trousers walk on grey wooden path

Fancy treading the boards inside or out this Bank Holiday with Library online access?

Need something enjoyable to relax with this weekend? Why not take up these suggestions from Library staff, who point out that you can also use Library resources to enhance your wellbeing, not only for serious research!

Entertainment for staying in

We can all access some excellent film, theatre and television resources with our University username and passwords to take our minds away from worry. Particularly good are Box of broadcasts and Drama Online, the latter also giving us COVID-time access to National Theatre productions. Below, Sarah and Kim review their favourite productions.

One Man, Two Guvnors (National Theatre)

In this play by Richard Bean, recorded by National Theatre Live, 15 September, 2011, Tony Award-winning James Corden plays Francis Henshall in the hilarious West End and Broadway hit. I recommend this play as one of the funniest things I have watched in ages. James Corden gives the role 110% as the play descends into a chaotic, high energy farce. With various members of the audience on stage, James’s character, Francis, tries to serve dinner to his two guvnors without either catching sight of the other and with the ‘help’ of the waiting staff, who keep falling down stairs, popping up at the wrong time and generally providing a perfect spectacle of mishaps! If you enjoyed ‘The Goes Wrong Show’, you’ll love this.

Go to: https://www.dramaonlinelibrary.com/plays/one-man-two-guvnors-nt-iid-190503 Select ‘Log In’ at the top right of the page, then ‘Log in via your institution’, search for ‘University of Reading’ and log in with your University or Reading username and password.

Sarah Hatcher, Library User Services

Good Omens (BBC Radio adaptation 2014)

Good Omens is a surreal and insightful story about the end of the world, written by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman and with a host of supernatural and incredibly human characters. You may already be aware of the recent Amazon Prime-BBC television adaptation which aired last year (and can still be streamed online). But BBC Radio 4’s radio dramatisation starring Mark Heap and Peter Serafinowicz as Aziraphale and Crowley was broadcast a few years earlier, and is a really great adaptation – including not only some excellent performances (Heap is brilliant) and cameos (Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, notably), but some great scenes from the book which didn’t make it to the television adaptation.

You can listen to the radio adaptation (and find the BBC television broadcasts too) on Box of Broadcasts – a TV and radio archive service, that includes a whole host of fantastic programmes, great for researchers and those of us wanting to catch up on favourites alike. I find listening to the radio while working from home really helps my concentration, as I’m not a fan of silence, and so I’m enjoying discovering and re-discovering programmes using Box of Broadcasts. For the next few weeks, you can also enjoy the service from across the EU, so if you’re not based in the UK at the moment, you can still listen and enjoy!

Go to: Box of Broadcasts. If you’re a new user you may need to register using your University username and password. Good Omens Episode 1 is here.

Kim Coles, Academic Liaison Librarian

Guidance for going out

A valid reason for going outside during lock-down is for health-giving exercise. Judith and Jackie advocate making use of online map resources to search out a new local experience.


Getting bored walking the same old route every day? We all know how important it is to get regular exercise, but after a while you want a change from the routine. Jackie was fed up with her usual local walks so decided to see if she could find some alternative routes with Digimap to explore more widely without getting lost! Digimap is an online collection of maps of Great Britain, including current and old Ordnance survey maps, geology and aerial photographs.

You too can use Digimap Ordnance Survey to create and print a map of your local area – take it on your daily walk to discover new routes, whether you’re in an urban area or the countryside. If you’re feeling adventurous, print out a map from Digimap Historic to discover the area as it was in the past! Using the Roam service, search for your town or village, then zoom in. You will need to register the first time you use it but then the (lockdown) world is your oyster! Enjoy exploring!

Judith Fox, Academic Liaison Librarian/Map Librarian;
Jackie Skinner, Academic Liaison Librarian

More about Library resources

Look out for further Library information on the Library website, University Library News blog, Twitter and Facebook.

Kim Coles and Rachel Redrup, Academic Liaison Librarians