Library website migration

The Library webpages have moved over to the University’s new content management system (CMS) – you may already be familiar with the new interface as many areas of the University website have already been migrated.

Partial image of the new Library website.

The migration means that the look and feel of our webpages have changed, but access to all our guidance, resources and other information should remain available. If you can’t find the information you’re looking for, please email us at library@reading.ac.uk so that we can help you stay on track with all your information needs.

Your Library team

New year, new habits – making the most of your Library

Happy New Year and welcome to the Spring term. Our Library teams look forward to continuing to support you with your studies.  

If you’re a January starter, we recommend that you look at our top recommendations in the Information for new students LibGuide. If you’re returning to Campus, we’d like to share the following reminders on how to make the most of the services, resources and facilities. 

 

Support with your studies 

Do you need help with an aspect of your studies? Your Academic Liaison Librarian and the Study Advisors will be happy to assist. Take a look at the Training and workshops webpage for more information, links to guides, training materials and more!  

 

Study areas  

Study space is available on all floors of the Library, including individual silent study on the 5th Floor. If you are using this study area, please remember that it is entirely silent so you may prefer to use the individual quiet study areas, located on all other floors, or the range of group study spaces.  

‘Want to know more? 

  • Watch our YouTube video about study areas in the Library or see our Instagram tour to find your favourite space.
  • Find out about additional study space on campus. Visit the Essentials webpages https://www.reading.ac.uk/essentials/Study/Study-space to discover more and, if you’re a postgraduate student, you can also enquire with your department to find out if they can advise on other suitable locations.  

 

Please note: you may find it useful to familiarise yourself with other locations as, at peak times, you may need to find alternative study space. We are currently operating at a slightly reduced study space capacity due to the increased need for ventilation within the building. This provision is aligned with University health and safety guidance. 

 

Stay safe 

If you are using study space in the Library, help us to keep open and stay safe by: 

  • Not moving furniture – study areas have been specifically configured to comply with capacity allowances in relation to ventilation requirements. 
  • Keeping windows open, on ventilation mode, if studying in a space next to a window.  
  • Wearing a face covering (unless you are exempt) when using the Library.  

Masks and other face coverings should cover the nose and the mouth and should remain in place at all times. 

  • Following the one-way systems, using the sanitisation stations and not using the lifts in groups.  

Single occupancy of lifts and other measures are all still in place so please refresh your knowledge of our Covid-19 safety information. Look out for our signage and notices displayed throughout the building to assist you.  

  • Not eating in the Library.  

Help us to keep the building clean, safe and tidy by eating in the Library Café or other suitable spaces on campus. Please do not bring hot food into the Library at any time as this creates unpleasant smells, and is disruptive for other Library users.  

  • Using lidded containers, when bringing drinks into the Library.  

Non-alcoholic hot and cold drinks are permitted – we have recycling facilities for single use cups and plastic bottles.  

 

Visiting the Library between midnight and 8:00? Remember to bring your campus card for entry via the keypad next to the right hand side entry door.  

 

Recalled items 

The Library is a shared resource, so please look out for our recall emails and courtesy reminders. If someone places a hold on an item that you have out, a recall notice will be sent to your University email account. Recalled items must be returned so that other users needing a particular book can gain access. If you still need the item, simply place a request once it has been returned so that the next available copy can be held for you. Further information on recalls can be found here.

 

Opening hours 

24/6+ opening hours resumed on Sunday 9 January – full details of the opening hours may be found here. 

 

Do you follow us on social media? If not, this may be the perfect time to begin so that you can stay up to date and make the most of your Library! 

 Social media icons

 

Your Library Team

New Year: have a plan

File, calendar, notebook with pencil and laptop graphic

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. Study Advice have some videos to help you, a new webinar series and some top tips to starting the New Year on the right track.

 

Tip #1: Reflect on the last term
Regular reflective practice is an important part of doing well at university. It involves looking back on a recent period of study, evaluating your approaches, and setting yourself targets for further development. Before you start planning for the coming term, think back on how the term just gone went:
• What did you enjoy the most? Can you think of why you enjoyed it so much? Equally, what did you enjoy the least, and why?
• Was there anything you did particularly well at? What did you do that worked so well?
• Was there anything you could have done better? If you had to do something similar this term, how might you approach it differently?
• Did you get the support you needed last term? If not, do you know where to find it?
Tip #2: 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. Note down 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 tasks 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 #3: Read actively
It’s called ‘reading for a degree’ for a reason: no doubt you’ll be asked to read lots of articles, book chapters and other material to support your learning. But if you find that you read without knowing why you’re reading, you don’t think about what you’re reading or you fail to make connections along the way, then you’ve fallen into the trap of passive reading. Instead, consider why you’re reading, what question might it answer? And consider if you agree with what’s been said. How does it fit in with your course material and other ideas you have come across? In short: think more and read less.
Tip #4: Be more proactive
• Start working on your assignments sooner, even if it’s just setting up a way of organising your lecture notes according to which assignment they’ll be useful for.
• Make sure you’ve done enough preparation before going to your lectures. Give yourself enough time to engage with the required reading, screencasts, or other materials. Take active notes where you are not just summarising the content, but also processing your own thoughts, identifying key terms you don’t understand, and noting down your questions. Using your notes this way will help you participate in class more actively!
• Look for support sooner: don’t ever think you will be penalised or judged for needing support. Students succeed because they use the support available to them, not because they are ‘naturally’ good students.
For more
Watch our new short videos on Organising your studies and Reading academic texts; and see our Time Management Guide
Visit our Study Advice website for more resources, to book a 1-2-1 or attend a webinar this spring term. Our webinar on the 12th January is: ‘work smarter not harder’ and is essential if you want to use your study time more effectively.

Study Advice

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.

Extra EndNote and Mendeley reference management workshops

We are offering additional online workshops on using EndNote and Mendeley to follow on from the EndNote / Mendeley comparison webinar which is taking place as part of the Masters’ Dissertation Fayre.

The workshops will take place at the following times:

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

Book your place

Sign up to any of these workshops through the Actions tab on RISIS. They will take place on MS Teams and will consist of a live demo with the opportunity to ask questions.

If you can’t make any of the specified sessions but would like to know more, take a look at our reference management guide or contact your Academic Liaison Librarian.

Jackie Skinner
Academic Liaison Librarian

 

Accessing dissertation resources remotely – workshops

Working from home? Need guidance on accessing the material you need for your dissertation? Then sign up for one of our sessions run by your Academic Liaison Librarians.

Given current circumstances these three identical sessions will focus on getting hold of material you need for your dissertation while away from the University and unable to visit libraries or archives in person. In these workshops we will…

  • Look at finding the books and journal articles you need for your research by locating any online content available (both via the University Library and beyond) and how the Library may be able to help if the item you need isn’t available online.
  • Outline strategies for finding alternative sources for your research.
  • Show how some primary source documents, such as archives, may be accessed online via the University and beyond, for those who need this type of material for their research.

The sessions are open to undergraduates and taught postgraduates from any School/Department who are submitting a dissertation this year and will be delivered live online via Microsoft Teams.

Book your place

To sign up, please click on the link to the session you’d like to attend and complete the booking form.

We look forward to helping you access the material you need for your dissertations during this difficult time!

Jackie Skinner
Academic Liaison Team

Take the pain out of referencing with EndNote or Mendeley

Student studying in the LibraryHave you been marked down for inconsistencies in referencing? Are you fed up with writing all of your references by hand? There are programs that can take the pain out of referencing by storing your references and helping you create bibliographies in Microsoft Word.

We’re running workshops throughout the year covering two of the options available – whether you’re working on essays, your dissertation, or starting your PhD, come along and find out how much time you can save! You can book onto either of these beginners sessions on RISIS under the Actions tab.

Desktop EndNote

Desktop EndNote is a comprehensive reference management system and is designed for postgraduate researchers and staff. You can download accurate references from many databases, such as Web of Science. Use the ‘Find Full-text’ feature to automatically download and attach PDFs for those references. In addition, you can select from thousands of referencing styles or create your own – great if you’re writing for publication. It’s available on all campus PCs through Apps Anywhere, and can be downloaded free on your own computer via the IT Self-Service Portal. We’re running online workshops at the following times this term:

  • Wed 14 October 2020 14:00-15:00
  • Wed 4 November 2020 14:00-15:00
  • Wed 25 November 2020 14:00-15:00

There’s also an online version of EndNote which we recommend to undergraduates and masters students.

See our EndNote guide to find out more.

Mendeley

Mendeley is designed to make storing references and PDFs as simple as possible. We mainly recommend it for undergraduate and masters students. Its main feature is the ‘watched folder’ – any time you add a PDF to a selected folder, Mendeley will automatically retrieve the details. You can also drag and drop PDFs directly into your library or use its Web Importer for details of websites and other sources. If you work a lot with article PDFs, Mendeley is a good option for you. It has both online and desktop versions – both are free to use, but only the desktop version works with Microsoft Word. Workshops are taking place at the following times this term:

  • Wed 21 October 2020 14:00-15:00
  • Wed 11 November 2020 14:00-15:00
  • Wed 2 December 2020 14:00-15:00

See our Mendeley guide to find out more.

Book your place

Sign up to any of these workshops through the Actions tab on RISIS. The sessions will take place online.

If you can’t make any of the specified sessions but would like to know more, take a look at our reference management guide or contact your Liaison Librarian.

Jackie Skinner
Academic Liaison Librarian

EndNote and Mendeley workshops

Open laptopFollowing on from our successful Masters Dissertation Fair we are offering extra EndNote and Mendeley workshops to support students wanting to learn how to use these reference management tools. These will take place online via Blackboard Collaborate at the following times:

  • EndNote Online workshop – Mon 15 June 11:00-12:00
  • Mendeley workshop – Tue 16 June 11:00-12:00
  • Desktop EndNote workshop – Wed 17 June 11:00-12:00

Book your place through the Actions tab on RISIS.

Which one should I use?

For a standard literature review, or literature-based dissertation, consider either EndNote Online or Mendeley. Both are suitable for storing references and working with Word to insert citations and build a bibliography. If you like working with PDFs then Mendeley is probably the tool for you, as it can automatically populate reference details directly from PDFs. EndNote Online works well with databases such as Web of Science for downloading accurate references. It also has automatic access to key referencing styles, including a customised Harvard style which matches the requirements for many departments.

If you are doing a systematic review, or considering going on to further research, then Desktop EndNote is the most appropriate tool for you. It allows you to easily download references from most databases and automatically attach PDFs with its Find Full-text feature. You can also access hundreds of referencing styles and even create your own!

Read on for more info about each one…

EndNote Online

EndNote Online is free to use and can be accessed from anywhere. Register for an enhanced version via the Web of Science to access our specially-created ‘Harvard for Reading’ style, which matches the reference format requirements for many departments. Collect accurate reference details from many databases as you search. It works particularly well with Web of Science as both products are owned by the same company. Once a reference is downloaded use the ‘Search for item at Reading’ button to find PDFs and then attach them to your references, keeping everything stored in one place.

See our EndNote guide for more information.

Mendeley

Mendeley is designed to make storing references and PDFs as simple as possible. It has a nifty ‘watched folder’ feature – any time you add a PDF to a selected folder, Mendeley will automatically retrieve the details. You can also drag and drop PDFs directly into your library or use its Web Importer to capture details of websites and other sources. If you work a lot with article PDFs, Mendeley is a good option for you. It has both online and desktop versions – both are free to use, but only the desktop version works with Microsoft Word.

See our Mendeley guide to find out more.

Desktop EndNote

Desktop EndNote is a comprehensive reference management system. You can download accurate references from many databases, such as Web of Science. Use the ‘Find Full-text’ feature to automatically download and attach PDFs for those references. Use the Word plugin to insert in-text citations and watch the bibliography grow automatically. Select from thousands of referencing styles or create your own – great if you’re writing for publication. Download it free on your own computer via the IT Self-Service Portal.

See our EndNote guide for more information.

Book your place

Sign up to any of these workshops through the Actions tab on RISIS. Before the session you will be sent a link to the Collaborate session. If you can’t make any of the specified sessions take a look at the links above for guides and videos, or contact your Academic Liaison Librarian.

Jackie Skinner
Academic Liaison Librarian

EndNote and Mendeley workshops – book your place now!

Laptop and book seen from above, person's left hand on book and right on keyboard. on There are still places available on our final reference management system workshops for EndNote and Mendeley this term. These will take place online via Blackboard Collaborate.

  • Desktop EndNote workshop – Wed 20 May 2-3pm
  • Mendeley workshop – Wed 27 May 2-3pm

Book your place through the Actions tab on RISIS.

Desktop EndNote

Desktop EndNote is a comprehensive reference management system. You can download accurate references from many databases, such as Web of Science. Use the ‘Find Full-text’ feature to automatically download and attach PDFs for those references. Use the Word plugin to insert in-text citations and watch the bibliography grow automatically. Select from thousands of referencing styles or create your own – great if you’re writing for publication. Download it free on your own computer via the IT Self-Service Portal.

See our EndNote guide to find out more.

Mendeley

Mendeley is designed to make storing references and PDFs as simple as possible. It has a nifty ‘watched folder’ feature – any time you add a PDF to a selected folder, Mendeley will automatically retrieve the details. You can also drag and drop PDFs directly into your library or use its Web Importer to capture details of websites and other sources. If you work a lot with article PDFs, Mendeley is a good option for you. It has both online and desktop versions – both are free to use, but only the desktop version works with Microsoft Word.

See our Mendeley guide to find out more.

Book your place

Sign up to either of these workshops through the Actions tab on RISIS. On booking you will be sent a link to the Collaborate session. If you can’t make any of the specified sessions but would like to know more, take a look at our reference management guide or contact your Academic Liaison Librarian.

Jackie Skinner
Academic Liaison Librarian

Get Library help with exams and dissertations

figures at table beween book shelvesThis time of year, we know many of you are busy preparing for exams or working on those dissertations. Why not take a moment to check out the advice and support that we have on offer; it could save you time in the long run!

Our Study Advisers have a series of video tutorials and study guides providing essential advice on effective revision techniques or dissertation writing. Or why not visit us on the Ground Floor of the Library and collect your free year planner to help you plan your revision, or those dissertation and major projects

Your Academic Liaison Librarian can point you towards the best sources in your subject to find good quality literature supporting your work. Take a look at the guides they have created to your subject resources.

We can also offer you individual advice:

Find out more on our Library website or come along to our Study Advice Desk on the Ground Floor of the Library and find out how we can support you.

Sonia Hood, Study Advice Manager and Rachel Redrup, Academic Liaison Librarian

Boost your referencing with EndNote or Mendeley

Student studying in the LibraryHave you been marked down for inconsistencies in referencing? Are you fed up with writing all of your references by hand? There are programs that can take the pain out of referencing by storing your references and helping you create bibliographies in Microsoft Word.

We’re running workshops throughout the year covering two of the options available – whether you’re working on essays, your dissertation, or starting your PhD, come along and find out how much time you can save! You can book onto either of these beginners’ sessions on RISIS under the Actions tab.

Desktop EndNote

Desktop EndNote is a comprehensive reference management system and is designed for postgraduate researchers and staff. You can download accurate references from many databases, such as Web of Science. Use the ‘Find Full-text’ feature to automatically download and attach PDFs for those references. In addition, you can select from thousands of referencing styles or create your own – great if you’re writing for publication. It’s free on all campus PCs through Apps Anywhere, and new this year you can download it free on your own computer via the IT Self-Service Portal. We’re running workshops at the following times this term:

  • Wed 6 November, 14:00-15:30
  • Wed 27 November, 14:00-15:30

There’s also an online version of EndNote which we recommend to undergraduates and masters students.

See our EndNote guide to find out more.

Mendeley

Mendeley is designed to make storing references and PDFs as simple as possible. We mainly recommend it for undergraduate and masters students. Its main feature is the ‘watched folder’ – any time you add a PDF to a selected folder, Mendeley will automatically retrieve the details. You can also drag and drop PDFs directly into your library or use its Web Importer for details of websites and other sources. If you work a lot with article PDFs, Mendeley is a good option for you. It has both online and desktop versions – both are free to use, but only the desktop version works with Microsoft Word. Workshops are taking place at the following times this term:

  • Wed 13 November, 14:00-15:30
  • Wed 4 December, 14:00-15:30

See our Mendeley guide to find out more.

Book your place

Sign up to any of these workshops through the Actions tab on RISIS. If you can’t make any of the specified sessions but would like to know more, take a look at our reference management guide or contact your Liaison Librarian.

Jackie Skinner
Academic Liaison Librarian

Tools to help you master referencing – workshops this term

A light bulb indicating an ideaHave you been marked down for inconsistencies in referencing? Are you fed up with writing all of your references for your dissertation by hand? There are programs that store your references and help you create bibliographies in Microsoft Word. We’re running sessions throughout the Summer Term covering a couple of options available – whether you’re preparing for your dissertation or starting your PhD, come along and find out how much time you can save! You can book onto any of these beginner sessions on RISIS under the Actions tab.

Mendeley

Mendeley is designed to make storing references as simple as possible. We mainly recommend it for undergraduate and masters students, but it can also be used by researchers. Its main feature is ‘watched folders’ – any time you add a PDF to a selected folder, Mendeley will automatically retrieve the details. You can also drag and drop PDFs directly into your library or use its Web Importer for details of websites and other sources. If you work a lot with PDFs, Mendeley is a good option for you. It has both online and desktop versions – both are free to use, but only the desktop version works with Microsoft Word. Workshops are taking place at the following times:

  • Wed 15 May, 14:00-15:00
  • Wed 29 May, 14:00-15:00

Desktop EndNote

Desktop EndNote has many more features than Mendeley and is designed for postgraduate researchers and staff. You can store a huge number of references and PDFs. In addition, you can select from thousands of referencing styles or create your own – great if you’re writing for publication. It’s free on all campus PCs through Apps Anywhere, but is costs around £96 to install on your own computer. We’re running workshops at the following times:

  • Wed 8 May, 14:00-16:00
  • Wed 22 May, 14:00-16:00

EndNote online

We’re not offering any workshops this term on EndNote online, but if you are interested in learning more about this free, web-based reference manager then take a look at our EndNote online guide. You can also contact your Liaison Librarian for 1-1 help.

Book your place

Sign up to any of our sessions through the Actions tab on RISIS. If you can’t make any of the specified sessions but would like to know more, take a look at our reference management guide or contact your Liaison Librarian.

Jackie Skinner, Liaison Librarian