Meet Your Librarian – Leanne Workman

Could you introduce yourself, and let us know your job title?

Hiya, I’m Leanne (Workman). I am the library information consultant for the Sciences. I look after the subjects: Biological sciences, Computer Science, Earth Science, Electronic Engineering, Information Security, Mathematics, Physics and the Centre for Professional Studies!

 How long have you been at RHUL Library?

Aha a bit of a complex question! Technically I have been here in this post since May 2016, but I worked in the library in a different role from 2012 to 2015. (I was also a Masters student here, so I should know the place quite well by now!)

Leanne Workman

 What is your role within the Library?

So my role is to work with all of the students, lecturers and researchers in the departments I look after to ensure that the Library has the resources they all need. I also provide information skills training (us library folk like to call it “information literacy”!) Basically we want to make sure our library users can recognise when they need info, where to find that information (i.e. what resources are available both inside and outside of the Library) and be able to evaluate & use the information well thereafter. I would like to think of us as the Jedis of the Information World!

Have you always worked in Libraries?

No, not always! I’ve worked in various administration & customer services roles, which tbh I did not find all that thrilling! I was a warden and tour guide at Windsor Castle for three years just after graduating, which was great fun! But it was when I volunteered in the Royal Archives for about a year that I worked out I love digging around for information, researching and organising  it all, so it got me thinking that perhaps this was something I could do for a living! From that I applied (and got) a graduate trainee information assistant role at the National Art Library in the Victoria and Albert Museum (you can see I really only choose very pretty buildings to work in/nearby!) After that, I started at Royal Holloway as an Information Assistant and the rest, as they say, is history…

What did you want to be when you were little?

Well, this is embarrassing *blushes*… I remember very distinctly wanting to be a Native American and to live with Pocahontas (whilst simultaneously being a ballerina of course and/or a nurse – until I realised I fainted at the sight of blood and rethought my career choice!)

 Do you have any heroes and if you do, why are they your heroes?

I don’t really have any heroes- sorry that’s such a lame answer!!

What did you study?

I studied History at University of Essex. I then went on to do a Masters here in Gender History and I am currently studying for my Library and Information Studies Masters at Aberystwyth University (you could say I’ve got the ‘study bug’!!)

 Do you have a favourite book, and why?

Ah man it is like asking a parent to choose their favourite child!!

….

……..

I am of the Harry Potter generation and I am still a HUGE fan so I think I will say that! But tbh, I just love a good book!!

 If you had a superhero alter ego, what would they be named, and what would your super power be?

This is a tricky one as I am also a small-time, closet comic geek! I think I would like to be a cross between Buffy the Vampire Slayer (though I rather think I am more like Giles the Librarian than Buffy!) and Phoenix from the X-Men (telekinesis, telepathy and ability to manipulate matter on a subatomic level? Darn yes!)

 Describe working in the library in 3 words

CAKE! Fun; information-sharing! (I think I am technically cheating with the last but :P)

 What advice would you give to a new student?

Use the library- seriously. [That’s not just in the inner library geek coming out here!] The studying side of life is soooo much easier when you use the library & you get better grades top! We have lots of stuff you’ll need, and if you’re not sure where to find information, please just ask! We’re only an email or an email away (or pop by!) And it is our job to help YOU 🙂

Meet the Library Liaison Team: Emma Burnett

Could you introduce yourself, and let us know your job title?

I’m Emma Burnett and I work as an Information Consultant within the Library’s Academic Liaison team.

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How long have you been at Royal Holloway Library?

Just over 3 years.

What is your role within the Library?

I work with several departments (Economics, European Studies, Geography, Philosophy, Politics & International Relations and Social Work) and try to ensure that the Library has the resources they require. Another key part of my role is providing information literacy training. Information literacy is a skill for life, not just for University. It involves recognising your need for information, having the ability to know where and how to access that information, managing the information once you’ve found it and using it in an ethical manner. For more information, please see http://libguides.rhul.ac.uk/infolit

Have you always worked in Libraries?

Since I joined the real world, after taking a post-university gap year to see the world, yes.

What did you want to be when you were little?

I wanted to be a vet! I’ve always loved animals, especially cats. I have 2 gorgeous cats at home.

Do you have any heroes and if you do, why are they your heroes?

I don’t really have any heroes but I do very much admire Margaret Atwood. I’ve seen her speak a few times and she’s got such an incredible mind.

What did you study?

I hold a degree in European Studies from the University of Hull, which included a year in Italy. I also have a Masters in Librarianship from the University of Sheffield.

Do you have a favourite book, and why?

I have many favourites! Remains of the Day is one of them. I studied this at A Level and think it’s a beautifully written novel. Also a great film (if you haven’t ever seen it, you can watch it for free on BoB https://learningonscreen.ac.uk/ondemand/index.php/prog/000809CD?bcast=94981462).

If you had a superhero alter ego, what would they be named, and what would your super power be?

Completely drawing a blank here, sorry! My favourite superhero(ine) is batgirl, as she was a librarian too 🙂 batgirllibrarian

What project/event are you most looking forward to in the upcoming year? (Library related!)

Teaching information skills sessions in our new library training room.

Describe working in the library in 3 words

Lots of tea!

What advice would you give to a new student?

Use the Library’s vast array of resources! These are a huge privilege of being at University so take advantage of them and you’ll reap the benefits in your studies.

Check out the Subject Guides to find out who your librarian is, and read more interviews here.

5 Things Freshers Need To Know About RHUL’s Library

Using the Library and its resources could well help you get a better grade. Fact. So here are some tips to get you started and make sure your library experience is more this:

GoodLibraryExperience

than this:

BadLibraryExperience

So here are the top things you need to know to get started with the libraries on campus.

1. Where is the Library?

There’s a lot going on in Welcome Week and finding the libraries might not be the first thing on your Fresher’s bucket list. When your first essay drops, though, the library is the place to be on campus so you’re better off getting ahead of the pack and finding it early.

1.Lost

Don’t worry: campus takes a bit of getting used to but you’ll have it worked out in no time. The main things you need to know are that there is only ONE library containing over 600,000 volumes. The Library is in the Emily Wilding Davison Building in the centre of campus.

2. Ok, that’s a lot of books – how do I find the stuff I actually want?

2.TooMany

Academic libraries are way bigger than school or public libraries, and it’s not just books – we’ve got journal, electronic resources, databases – you can even borrow laptops! So how do you find what you actually want?

Well, that’s where LibrarySearch comes in. This is the tool that searches all of our collections  and helps you locate the resources you need. So don’t get in a spin over our collections, read our guide to searching for items and you’ll be sorted.

2.TooMany2

And if you want to make sure you’re finding the A* quality resources to make your essays really sparkle, you can always ask your friendly library information consultant.

3. Perfect book found, now how do I actually borrow it?

3.BorrowBooksHermione

Don’t worry – you’ll have a lot of reading to do and we don’t expect you to work through those big textbooks in the library. That’s why undergraduates can now borrow up to 25 items at any one time. (You’re welcome.)

Borrowing couldn’t be easier – your College Card doubles as your library card while you’re with us (so make sure you bring it with you every time you visit the library). All you need to do is pick the items you want to borrow and check them out on our self-service machines (don’t worry, staff are on hand to help if technology hates you).  Best of all, it’s completely free to borrow items (just bring them back on time, or – fines!)

4. This is all great, but I still need HELP, where do I turn?

4.OMGNeedHelp

Hey, this is what librarians are for – helping you get the resources you need is what we do.

Every department is assigned a librarian to help support you, and you can read handy guides from each of them online here: http://libguides.rhul.ac.uk/home

And if that doesn’t answer your question you can always pop in to see us – the helpdesk in the library is staffed from 9am to 9pm. Alternatively, you can email us at library@rhul.ac.uk or start up a live chat with a librarian right now.

5. Sounds good, anything else I should know?

Go on then! One more information morsel for you:

As a member of the University of London, we have full access to Senate House Library and all of their e-resources. You don’t even have to go into London to register, you can do it online. Want to know more? Read our guide on accessing Senate House Library.

We hope that’s been a helpful introduction to us and our services. Come in and chat to us any time to find out more, or visit our website: www.rhul.ac.uk/library

And remember, getting the job done isn’t hard…

Sign-off

Enjoy your time with us!

Resource of the Week: MediaPlus

It has been awhile but this week’s resource is MediaPlus.

MediaPlus is a collection over 100,000 videos, audio clips and still images that cover a variety of subjects: everything from archaeology and medicine to history, philosophy, music, drama and performing arts, media studies and the social sciences.

MediaPlus

Material on MediaPlus is freely available for use and can be downloaded, edited and shared. Just create a personal user account to start saving clips and creating playlists!

For example: Say you were researching the history of the steeplechase . A quick search brings up a number of options including this film dating from 1924 of steeplechases in nearby Eton.

Whether you just watch the film for some background to the sport or you take a screenshot to insert in your dissertation or you make a clip to show during a presentation- the possibilities with MediaPlus are endless!

Need guidance? Excellent YouTube tutorials are available that show:

MediaPlus2

MediaPlus can be found on the Library Website under A-Z Databases.

For further guidance contact your Information Consultant.

Happy browsing!

Resource Of The Week: Digimap

digimap-rgbThis week’s resource is the wonderful Digimap.

We subscribe to 5 Digimap collections: Ordnance Survey, Historic, Geology, Environment and Marine.

To begin, you just need to visit the Digimap site and log in as shown in the video below (turn on subtitles for captions):

You will then need to register to use the collections. Details of how to do this can be found on Digimap’s support pages. you will need to read and accept the terms and conditions of each one.

Each collection has two options:

  1. Roam – this is the easiest option. With Roam, you can view, annotate, print and save maps.
  2. Download – if you need to download data to GIS or CAD.

Which collection you need to use will depend on what information you need from the map. For example, if you want to know the rock types in a certain area, you will need to use the Geology collection. If you want to know how a city developed in the 20th century, you would choose Historic. The best way to discover the differences is to have a go using the collections by trying a Roam search for Poole in each one.

Digimap has an excellent YouTube Channel, with videos to help you get started.

If you have any questions about using Digimap, please contact Emma Burnett.

Have fun using Digimap!

Resource of the Week: Naxos Spoken Word Library

This week’s Resource of the Week is Naxos Spoken Word Library.

This database is made up of 100s of audio books covering a wide range of areas such as fiction, history, business, drama and much more. You are able to browse by collection, author, recent additions or search for an author/title.

The audio books are available to stream online and many copies are available in abridged and unabridged versions. You can also save your place in the audio book by setting up boomarks.

There are also audio books available in French, German and Portuguese.Capture1

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Resource of the Week: Romanticism: Life, literature and landscape

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This week’s resource of the week is Romanticism: Life, Literature and Landscape.

This databases provides access to rare and priceless literary sources, and is indispensable for anyone studying William Wordsworth or the Romantic period.

It provides access to original documentation such as verse and prose manuscripts, correspondence, diaries, travel journals and much more. It also offers a wider insight into the social, political and natural environment that shaped the work of Wordsworth. 

Romanticism: Life, Literature and Landscape also has a number of visual resources including an in-depth look at some of the most significant works of art during this period. You can also explore the Lake District with maps and photographs and delve into the literary life of William Wordsworth and members of his immediate family,

Access this database by clicking on the links above, or find it in the eResources A-Z list.
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Resource of the Week: London Low Life

This week the resource of the week is London Low Life.

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This is a fascinating resource which gives you an insight into life in London during the 18th, 19th and early 20th Century. Included in this resource are digital images of rare books, interactive maps, essays and online galleries.

Explore this resource and see London as you have never seen it before!

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Want to access exam papers? We’ve got your back…

So you’re looking for some past exam papers in prep for the forthcoming summer term, a.k.a exam term? Well, the College institutional repository is the place to find them and this is how you can access them…

1. Are you on campus? If yes, carry onto 2.
If no, please use CampusAnywhere (If you don’t do this, you might not be able to see the papers.)

2. If you’re using Moodle: click on the Past Exam Papers link on the right to go through to past papers for that course code only.

past papers

3. To search the Past Papers database directly, go to the Library homepage, and click “Exam Papers”.

4. Check you are logged in by looking in the top right hand corner. If you can’t seem to access the exam papers, check the top right hand side and see if you are logged in as a guest. If you are, log out and then log in using your Royal Holloway username and password.exam papers login

You can browse by Department or search for your course code using the search function. And the good news? All exam papers can be downloaded as PDFs.

If you have any questions, please let us know! Happy revising and good luck in all of your exams!

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Resource of the Week: KNOVEL

Resource of the Week is *insert drum roll here* Knovel!Knovel 1

It is totally the go-to resource for engineers, but it is also excellent for those studying biology, physics and computer science! This electronic resource provides technical information with specialised search tools and has three elements: an epic e-book collection, a nifty equation solver and a materials property database.

The e-books

Knovel’s e-books cover a wide range of subjects from biochemistry & biology to electronic engineering and nanotechnology. You can browse the different subjects we subscribe or search for items on a specific topic using the search box.

Its power lies in its ability to search the full text of books – so if you searched LibrarySearch for example, the search terms you entered will just be matched to title words or the subject headings, so you’d need to keep your searches simple and broad. With Knovel however, the search you put in will be matched with the content in the e-books, so you can be pretty specific and you’ll be taken straight to the part of the book it is on.

The equation solver

This is totally a hidden gem! You can find the equation solver under the ‘Tools’ heading at the top left hand side.

Knovel Equation solver

It contains hundreds of equation worksheets combined with browser-based calculation software with export capabilities. You can browse by subject and filter by keyword once you’ve picked a subject.

Data search

Data search allows you to search for property data of thousands of materials including metals and composites. You can find the link to the data search function under the search bar on Knovel’s homepage.Data search

You can search by material name, property name or both then manipulate the data easily. You can specify numerical values and/or ranges plus units of measurement. The results are usually presented in tabular or graphical form and some of the graphs are interactive, allowing you to manipulate the data further.

I find that it is really this search tool that make Knovel the bee’s knees of science e-resources!

For further help and guidance, don’t forget to check out Knovel’s own help pages and of course you can always contact your very own sciences librarian (me!) here: Leanne.workman@rhul.ac.uk

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