Tag Archives: library

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.

work_profile-web

How long have you been at Royal Holloway Library?

Just over 2 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).

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!)

Piloting an Information Literacy Award to second year Geography students. And the new Library, of course!

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.

Accessing the Library over the Winter Break

The Libraries are open until 23rd December, but the Library Service is closed on campus and online from 24th December – 3rd January inclusive. 

Books or DVDs that you borrow or renew from the last week of term will be due back once the Spring Term starts – please log into your Library Account before the end of term and check your due dates.

You will be able to access all electronic journals and electronic books over the Winter break – please use LibrarySearch or the Subject Guides to do this. For help over the break, take a look at your subject guide, or our YouTube Channel.

We are upgrading our system! This means that from 30th December until 6th January you will not be able to:

  • Place hold requests (hold requests that you place before 30th December should be carried over, but if you find that you need an item, please place hold through LibrarySearch after 7th January)
  • Pay your fines online (if you have an outstanding amount that needs paying before you can renew books, please do this before 30th December. We will be happy to look into any fines accrued over the upgrade period – please let us know when we’re back in January.)
  • Borrow or return books (if you’re back on campus on 4th/5th January, please bring any books for loan or return to the Library helpdesks)
  • View location or loan information about print books and DVDs on LibrarySearch (information may be out of date while we switch systems, so to find out whether a book is on the shelf please call or visit the Library once we are open on 4th and 5th January.)

Our new system also means that we will need more time to process and complete book orders: if you have requested a book after 30th October, it might not be ready at the start of the Spring Term. If you urgently need a book, please ask your Librarian for an alternative method to get hold of it, or consider visiting another library, such as Senate House.

The Inter-Library Loans service will be closed and not accepting requests between 11th December and 11th January. If you are waiting for an item, please contact ill@rhul.ac.uk for more information, and if you need an item urgently you may need to visit another Library to access it.

Apologies for any inconvenience. Our new Library system should be more efficient and user friendly, but if you have any questions about using the Library over the Winter break, please contact library@rhul.ac.uk.

 

Library@ – find study spaces on campus!

We know there is a lot of pressure of study spaces at this time of year. To help address this, the College, the Library and the Students’ Union are working together to provide you with additional quiet spaces to study during this time.

For more information, please see the website.

Getting better search results

We just received an email on narrowing down search results – “I’m searching for books on the idea of performance but I always get thousands of results which are based around performance meaning how well something is performing such as a business etc. Do you have any suggestions for how I can search for more relevant materials?”

So I thought it might be useful to put the answer into a blog post – as we’ve all been there.

Things to Try to get better search results

1. Change your keywords.

If your search for ‘performance’ brings back unrelated items, try changing what you search for. Synonyms might include ‘drama’, ‘theatre’, ‘performing arts’ etc.

Try adding more keywords e.g. ‘audience participation’, or a particular theorist, theory or performer you’re interested in.

LibrarySearch and other databases have list of subject headings – click on these to find more examples of keywords.

moreoptions
Where to find the subject headings in LibarySearch

 

Select the headings which are relevant, and choose the checkbox to include or exclude them from your search.
Select the headings which are relevant, and choose the checkbox to include or exclude them from your search.

2. Combine your keywords.

Databases will accept certain combinations of words and use them to make your search more effective.

3. Change the database.

LibrarySearch is pretty general – if you’re after items on a particular subject, go to your subject guide and try the Finding E-resources link for a list of more specific databases.

4. Who’s cited what?

When you finish a recommended article, or book, go to the back and take a look at what they referenced when writing it – then look these up and carry on!

You can also use Google Scholar to see who’s cited the article or book you’re reading now – and see what they said on the topic.

Look for the ‘Cited by’ part, and click it to get information on other articles and books.

Click 'Cited By' to see other articles which reference this one above.
Click ‘Cited By’ to see other articles which reference this one above.

Try LibrarySearch to get hold of articles or books, and if it’s not there, don’t panic – we can get it!

5. Ask your Librarian!

Whether it’s a presentation or PhD thesis, you can always arrange a meeting with your librarian to go through the subject and searching with you, so don’t be afraid to ask.

Literature Online (LION)

Literature Online has a new look! So what better time to feature it as Resource of the Week. If you’ve never used Literature Online, it’s got some really useful features and a huge collection of over 330,000 works of English and American literature covering poetry, drama, and prose from the 8th to the 21st centuries. LION also includes thousands of critical articles, essays, biographies and encyclopedia entries.

How to find it:

On your subject guide

OR

Go to the Databases A-Z
Go to L
Click on the Literature Online link

Quick Search: searches all content, including texts (poetry, prose, drama), literary works, criticism and reference.

LitOnlinequicksearch

Text Search: find full texts of poetry, prose and drama, but author or literary movement.

Use the ‘Look up’ function to get more reliable results.

LitOnlinetextsearch

View texts by this author to read full texts of their works. You can also search for works in a particular genre, or by an author in a certain time period, or of a particular nationality.

LitOnlinetextsby Bryon

Author search: find biographies, full texts, criticism and reference on a particular author

LitOnlinesearchwithinausten

Use the ‘search within text’ function to search for instances of words of phrases in a particular work

LitOnlinesearchwithinresults

Criticism search: find full texts of articles on a topic of your choice.

LitOnlinecriticism

Reference search: find biographies of authors, bibliographies on certain topics, and more. Use the ‘look up’ function to be more specific.

Tick ‘biographies’ to search for biographical information on authors.

LitOnlinereferencebiography

For more hints and tips, go to the Literature Online guide.

 

[screenshot]

New Study Space in Founder’s Library

Summer update 1: 32 new study spaces

Where?

In the First Floor East Reading Room of Founder’s Library. This is one up the stairs, and on the left (or right, if you’re using the lift).

map

 

The lovely Victorian reading room on the right (First Floor West) remains intact and beautiful as ever.

This photograph is very wonky (!), but it's of the Victorian Reading Room in the West of the Library (up the stairs and right).
This photograph is very wonky (!), but it’s of the Victorian Reading Room in the West of the Library (up the stairs and right).

How?

Old metal shelves in that section have been removed, leaving behind wooden shelves and a lot of space for seats.

https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10154513630890298.1073741826.228847215297&type=3
Empty metal shelves in First Floor East.

The metal shelves were dismantled, and replaced with new seating, which made it look a  bit like this for a while:

No more metal shelves! Taken from the Music collection, facing out into the corridor (Victorian reading room through the green doors at the end of the picture).
No more metal shelves!
Taken from the Music collection, facing out into the corridor (Victorian reading room through the green doors at the end of the picture).

And once it was tidied up, this was the finished product.

FFEfinal

desk

So where did the books go?

The French Literature Collection (840-849) has been moved from Founder’s First Floor East & Founder’s Ground Floor East to Founder’s Basement West (where the Founder’s print journals used to be, just below the linguistics collections).

AND in order to create much needed space in the Music book and scores collections, these have been spaced out in both sections of Founder’s First Floor East – on the shelves in the photo above. (Music previously occupied just the back section).

Why?

The Libraries always need more space, and in recent years there haven’t been many changes to Founder’s Library. This should make it a bit easier to find somewhere silent to study in the Libraries. It’s also given the Music collection lots of room to spread out – no more peering up at the high shelves for scores!

Your Librarians

liaison

Did you know that every subject has its own librarian? The Liaison Team is here to help you with queries, finding books, searching databases, visiting other libraries, referencing, and general library questions too. We’re a pretty friendly bunch, and we’re easy to contact – so drop us a line if you’ve any questions to ask!

Helen: Head of Academic Liaison, European Studies, Geography, Politics and International Relations

Russell: Classics, Criminology & Sociology, Geography, History, Modern Languages, Music

Kim: Drama and Theatre, English, Media Arts, Royal Holloway International, Management, Politics & International Relations, European Studies, Philosophy

Adrian: Biological Sciences, Earth Sciences, Computer Science, Mathematics, Information Security, Psychology, Economics, Social Work

Nancy: Research, Open Access, Physics

For more information, and contact details of your librarian, visit the Library’s Subject Guides, and check out the series of interviews we did last term.

Library loves…Dissertations

April is the final push to many dissertation deadlines, and we know that this is a very busy time. For those of you finishing, or even for those of you just starting, this month is about all things dissertation (not forgetting projects and portfolios too!).

Here’s a list of things the library can help with:

  • More Books: if you need a book, just fill in the book suggestions form. In the Autumn Term we bought over 100 individual titles based on your requests, and it’s never too late to ask.

MoreBooks

  • Visiting other libraries: if you want to borrow/visit another UK university Library, SCONUL is a great national scheme that allows you to do so for free. Fill in the online form, and take your approval email with your RHUL RCS card to other libraries taking part in the scheme and you’re in!
  • Inter-Library Loan: did you know you can request to borrow books, journals, journal articles, even doctoral theses from other libraries? There’s lots of information here, and if you’re after something in particular, this can be great.
  • Referencing and bibliographies: referencing is important, but it can be time-consuming. We know you’d rather spend that time reading up and writing, so don’t forget that the Library can help with referencing styles and referencing tools – in fact, we’ve a whole guide dedicated to it! Keep watching the blog for in depth information on the different tools available so you can choose the best one for you and your dissertation.

 

"Bibliography" by Alexandre Duret-Lutz. C BY-SA. Flickr.
“Bibliography” by Alexandre Duret-Lutz. C BY-SA. Flickr.

 

  • Opening hours: Bedford Library is already open 24/5 (8.30 Sunday – 21.00 Friday, 8.30 – 21.00 Saturday) but from Sunday 20th April to Friday 30th May the library will be open 24/7. This is a very busy time for us, so please take care of the space, and yourselves: keep things clean, free up study spaces for others if you don’t need them, keep the noise down, and remember to go home from time to time!
  • Space to Study: if you’re looking for another place to study on campus, be sure to check the Space to Study webpages. We’ve teamed up with departments across campus to free up more study space you can use when inspiration strikes, and the list will continue to grow!
  • Your Librarians: every subject has its own librarian, and our job is to help you find information, get hold of the right books and journals, and help you with those tricky bibliographies. Drop us an email, or pop into Bedford Library for a chat – it’s what we’re here for!

And finally – don’t forget that there’s another department dedicated to helping you write the best essays and build the best study skills. Visit the Academic Support webpages for access to the online skills4studycampus course, help with time management, essay structure, and much more.

Follow the #librarylovesdissertations hashtag and click on librarylovesdissertations tagcloud on the blog for further updates.

Best of luck!

It’s January! And the Library Loves Resources!

Happy New Year!

This month the Library is all about its resources, and keep an eye on our blog, Twitter and Facebook for updates, hints and tips on some of the great resources you can use in your assignments and projects.

We’ll be re-blogging and adding new content throughout the month, but for a sneak peek scroll down to our tag cloud on the right-hand bar, and click ‘librarylovesresources’

What’s more, every other Wednesday for the whole of Spring Term, we’ve teamed up with academic support and are holding drop in sessions in the Bedford Library Teahouse, so come along on and ask us any questions you have about using library resources and academic writing:

Wednesday 15th January 2pm – 4pm

Wednesday 29th January 2pm – 4pm

Wednesday 12th February 2pm – 4pm

Wednesday 26th February 2pm – 4pm

Wednesday 12th March 2pm – 4pm

Wednesday 26th March 2pm – 4pm

JISC Historic Books

JISC Historic Books is a database that provides access to scans of historic editions of books:

What does it contain?

BL 19th Century: Over 65, 000 recently digitised first editions from the British Library’s 19th century collection, comprising over 25 million pages of previously rare and inaccessible titles.

ECCO: Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO) is a digital collection of more than 180,000 titles published in Great Britain and its colonies during the eighteenth century.

EEBO: Early English Books Online (EEBO) contains the scanned images, and plain text digital versions where available, of over 125,000 books published in English up to 1700.

Content from all three collections can be searched at once, or individual collections can be selected and browsed.

How to access the resource:

– Under E-resources on the English and Drama & Theatre subject guides.

OR

1. Go to The Databases A-Z guide on the library subject guides.

2. Go to J

3. Select JISC Historic Books

Help:

The Library has put together a basic video tutorial here:

And the website has its own Quick Reference Guide.