We’re here to help (even when we’re not)

Christmas scene with dining table

The University may be closed for the Christmas period but if you are studying, writing assignments or revising, library resources and help are always available. We may not be in the building, but the library team can help you with your semester 2 preparation.

Use your Library Subject Guide

If you are not sure which resources are best to use for your subject or what you can access off-campus, visit your Subject Guide . The guides bring together links and help for the specialist information sources in your discipline.

Visit the Library over the vacation

Between Christmas and New Year, the Philip Robinson Library will operate as self-service from 10.00 pm on Friday 20th December 2019 until Thursday 2nd January 2020. If you need access to books and journals, or a quiet place to study, all you will need is your University smartcard. Visit the website for the Library vacation opening hours.

Have a question? Check the FAQs

We have an extensive database of frequently asked questions available on the Library website. You can search by keyword or browse by topic area and find answers to the most common questions. So whether you want to know how to access newspapers from the Library, how to book a group study room or get help with EndNote, check the FAQs to see if we have already answered your question.

Contact Library Help

If you need help or have a question, use Library Help to get in touch with us. You can live chat with a librarian outside of the University to get immediate answers, or send us a message and we will get back to you when the University reopens.

So remember, you can access all of our online resources, journals and ebooks from the Library website and we will be back in the Library on 2nd January 2020. Enjoy the festive season!

Early English Books Online update

Early English Books Online (EEBO) has moved to an enhanced platform on Proquest.

The content remains the same, but you should note various improvements to the interface. Key changes include:

  • Additional search and filter options.
  • The new platform adapts fully to all devices, including phones and tablets.
  • Improved viewing of results, with larger thumbnails and images.
  • Text Creation Partnership transcriptions are now included.
  • Improved export and personalisation options.
  • You can now cross-search EEBO with other Proquest content, such as Early European Books.

You will still be able to access the old EEBO platform until the end of June 2020, but we would encourage you to familiarise yourselves with the new platform as soon as possible.

Find out more about the new platform, together with further enhancements planned for early 2020, on the Proquest EEBO site or for more detail, visit the EEBO lib guide.

Trial: Migration to New Worlds

The Library has trial access to the database Migration to New Worlds until 1st February 2020.

This contains digitised materials from 26 different archives, and covers worldwide migration to North America and Australasia between 1800 and 1980. The content includes correspondence, photographs, pamphlets, ships logs and oral histories, and is arranged thematically to help you navigate.

As always, your feedback will be very welcome: you can either email it, or leave a comment on this blogpost.

If you are off-campus, please login to RAS first of all, and then access Migration to New Worlds from a browser within RAS.

A quick guide to finding the best study space for you

Did you know that across our four locations, we have over 3,000 study spaces? With so many, it’s easy to choose the best spot to revise or write your essay.

Image of silent, quiet, collaborative and bookable study spaces

Our Study spaces and rooms page has more information about the types of spaces available. Check out current study space availability information on the web or via the Newcastle University app. Find free cluster spaces with the Find a PC function, also available on the app.

As well as study spaces, we have spaces where you can relax and catch up with friends between lectures. Make yourself comfortable in our new social space on level 2 of the Philip Robinson Library, or visit the refurbished café.

So if you need a change of scenery, go and take a look and find a space that’s just right for you.

Crafts at Christmas

Dates of Crafts at Christmas events

December. A time for fighting over the last Quality Street, consuming a glut of mince pies and wearing your gaudiest Christmas jumper (or is that just us?)  If you need a distraction from the fact that you haven’t started your Christmas shopping yet (still just us?), our Crafts at Christmas events are for you.

The Library’s Crafts at Christmas events have been running for the past four years now and have always been popular. The emphasis has been on recycling unwanted items, such as withdrawn books, old music scores and off-cuts from our bindery. We’ve made everything from paper wreaths and hanging heart decorations, to book trees created from old prospectuses.  This year, you can decorate a bauble, make some bunting or create a 3D card.

The baubles are provided by Robyn Hare, the University’s Glass Blower (yes, the University really has a Glass Blower!). You can see her at work in the video below.

In previous years, we’ve held these events at the Philip Robinson Library and the Marjorie Robinson Library Rooms, but this time we’re holding sessions at three of our libraries. So, you can join us at the Walton Library, as well as the Philip Robinson Library and Marjorie Robinson Library Rooms. There’s no need to book, just turn up, bring your imagination and help us raise money for the ‘If You Care Share’ Foundation. We look forward to seeing you! 

Thinking about using EndNote to manage your OSCOLA references?

EndNote is a useful tool for keeping in-formation with your references, but the OSCOLA_4th_edn style in EndNote does require some manual inputting and amending of references to ensure that footnotes and bibliographies comply with the published guidelines for the OSCOLA referencing style.

Therefore, the first step you must take before you start using EndNote and OSCOLA is to tap into and become very familiar with the OSCOLA 4th referencing style (to find out more go to our referencing library guide). We also strongly advise that you don’t quick-step around it – give yourself enough time to start learning how to use EndNote and that you read the following instructions we’ve prepared for you EndNote X9 and OSCOLA 4th for Newcastle Law School which includes how to input manually different types of law sources into EndNote.

Waltzing with EndNote

What is EndNote?

The official blurb on EndNote is that it is “…the industry standard software tool for publishing and managing bibliographies, citations and references.”

Have you drifted off yet? Don’t – read on!

EndNote takes a little getting used to and we recommend you familiarise yourself with it at the start of your research process. But as Library Staff, we wouldn’t spend a significant amount of time demonstrating and training our academic staff and students on what EndNote is, and how to use it, if we didn’t think it was valuable. It will save you a huge amount of time in terms of writing up your assignments.

Essentially, you can use EndNote to create and organise a personal library of resources relevant to your research. You can import references from Library Search, and a huge range of databases such as ScopusWeb of ScienceIEEE Xplore and Business Source Complete. You can ask EndNote to locate the full-text PDFs of the resources you are going to use in your research, and you can annotate them as you wish too. Did you know you can instruct Google Scholar to import references into EndNote? No? Try it. Finally, if you already have materials stored in your home folder (H:\) then you can attach them to a manually-created reference within EndNote, bringing all your research together in one place.

In addition to organising your references (and this is the clever bit) you can then get EndNote to ‘talk’ to your word processing software, e.g. Microsoft Word, and insert the citations into your work for you in your chosen referencing style, e.g. Harvard at Newcastle, Vancouver, APA or MLA. If you don’t want to do that, then EndNote will also allow you to create an independent bibliography of your references, saving you an awful lot of typing.

Using EndNote

Intrigued? You should be. Take a look at our EndNote Guide. It contains all the introductory information you need, step-by-step workbooks to train yourself on the use of EndNote (the Desktop and Online versions), videos, useful FAQs, and contacts for help, should you need it.

Finally, Newcastle University provides support for EndNote but it is not compulsory to use. You may prefer MendeleyZoteroRefWorks or another piece of bibliographic management software. That’s fine, whatever makes your referencing lives easier. Go on, give them a try.

Henry Stewart Talks Business; Management Collection

HS Talks Logo
HS Talks Logo

HS Talks – The Business & Management Collection includes 1,200 online multi-media videos, online lectures, case studies and case study interviews by leading experts in academia, industry and commerce. Topics cover a whole range of business education including Finance, Accounting & Economics; Global Business Management; Management Leadership & Organizations; Marketing & Sales; Strategy; Technology & Operations.

The collection is categorized into 6 broad subject areas and further organized into 90 series, each overseen by an editor who is a key expert in the field. Speakers are chosen based on their expertise and each talk is produced together with the speaker especially for the collection. The collection is reviewed and updated monthly. Once you have selected a subject area or applied your keyword you might like to filter using some of the options such as length of video or date published.

Academics can also easily embed into the VLE for students to access. You can either do the whole video or sections. HS Talks provide a in-depth guide to take you through this step by step. 

There are 4 different types of videos on HS Talks. These include :

  1. Traditional format lectures with high quality graphics: the lectures are primarily designed to deliver ‘information’. The lectures have multiple associated features including printable slide handouts and speed-up/slow down options.
  2. Extended form case studies: accounts of real world experience describing what was done, how, when and with what consequences.
  3. Bite-size case studies: these short descriptions of real world commercial activities come with suggested topics for consideration and discussion.
  4. Case Study Interviews: interviews with experts from commerce and industry, from start-up entrepreneurs to large corporation executives, confront the challenges they encounter. Each interview is accompanied by suggested topics for discussion and individual and group projects.

Some of the talks come with additional PowerPoints which can be downloaded.

There is a quick start guide available from HS

Strictly Referencing: When is a website not a website?

A common mistake made in referencing is grouping all sources found online under the category and reference type of a website. Your aim should be to reference the information you have in front of you rather than where it was sourced. Simply grouping items found online as a website would be the equivalent of referencing a book by the publisher details rather than the author and title.

For example, a government publication found online would be referenced like this in Chicago.

United Kingdom. Department for Education. Cloud computing: how schools can move services to the cloud. London: The Stationary Office, 2016. Accessed: November 4, 2019. https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/cloud-computing-how-schools-can-move-services-to-the-cloud. 

An electronic journal article might appear like this in APA.

Gillum, J. (2012). Dyscalculia: Issues for practice in education psychology.  Educational Psychology in Practice, 28(3), 287-297. doi:10.1080/02667363.2012.684344

While a video posted on the Tate website would look something like this in Harvard.

TateShots (2016) Grayson Perry: think like an artist. Available at: https://www.tate.org.uk/whats-on/tate-modern/talk/what-makes-artist-grayson-perry-conversation-sarah-thornton (Accessed: 11 November 2019). 

Identifying the type of information you are using as well as the source, are essential skills of evaluation and developing a critical approach to information. In many cases you will be unconsciously using your judgment to assess the value of information for your purpose. So when you are using any source of information, ask yourself what it is you are looking at, what details are recorded about it and whether it measures up as a quality piece of information. You’ll find more guidance about evaluating information on our Evaluating Information guide.

Walton Library – MCQs and Clinical Skills Equipment

These DNA models are part of the Walton’s clinical skills equipment collection. Ask at the desk to loan one today.

While exams may seem a long way away, it’s important to be prepared for them. You can minimise stress and maximise efficiency with a good revision timetable and organised notes.

You can also find helpful material to aid your revision at the Walton Library. Your subject support guide is full of information and resources, tailored to suit your programme of studies. There are boxes of flash cards covering a number of subjects available to borrow from our long loan collection – ask at the service desk if you are interested in loaning a set. You may also find it helpful to broaden your revision from notes and textbooks to include clinical skills equipment and books from our MCQ (Multiple Choice Question) section. This could be the difference between a good and a great exam result! You’ll find more information about both of these collections in this blog post, as well as where to find them and how to loan them.

Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) books

Books in the MCQ collection are located in the quiet study area. You can identify them by the green stickers on the book spines.

There are a variety of topics covered in our Multiple Choice Question (MCQ) section. Within the collection, you’ll find books to on a number of subjects from anaesthesia to surgery. There are also books to aid revision for specific exams – including OSCEs, PACES and MRCS.

If you’d like to browse the MCQ collection, go to Library Search. You’ll need to click the ‘Advanced Search’ link and then change the “Any field” drop down menu to say ‘Collection’. In the text space, enter “MCQs” and you can view the entire collection. You can narrow down your search by adding a subject, author or title if you’re interested in a specific topic.

You can search the entire MCQ collection by changing the search filters to “Collection” and adding MCQs in the text bar.

You can find the MCQ collection in the quiet study area of the Walton Library. They’re easily identifiable by the green stickers on the book’s spine.

The books are long loan – meaning you can have them for up to 20 weeks, providing they’re not requested by another Library user. If the MCQ book is already on loan, follow these instructions to place a request.

If there is a book you think would help your exam revision, use our Books on Time service and recommend it. Find out more about this service here.

Clinical skills equipment

At the Walton Library, there is a wide selection of clinical skills equipment available to loan. There are medical tools, like tendon hammers, sphygmomanometers and otoscopes. Anatomical models, such as skulls and teeth. Plus eye charts, DNA models and even a spine! (A model one, that is.)

You can borrow a skull from the service desk or the STC room at the Walton Library!

The main bulk of clinical skills equipment is located behind the service desk at the Walton Library. Ask a member of staff and they’ll retrieve it for you. You can have up to three clinical skills items on loan at any time. Unfortunately, you can’t place requests on the items if they’re all out on loan.

There are also a small number of skulls available to loan from the Student Texts Collection (STC) room. You can loan them using the self-issue machine in the STC.

You may have also noticed a collection of anatomical models on a table in the collaborative study area. These models are free to use within the Library for as long as you like – but they can’t be taken out of the Library.

Clinical skills equipment items are available as a next day loan. This means that if you borrow a skull at 9AM on a Monday morning, it needs to be returned before the Walton Library closes on Tuesday. Items in the clinical skills equipment collection are non-renewable.   

Beyond the Walton, there is exam and revision assistance available from the wider Library services and the University. You may find it useful to check out the Academic Skills Kit (ASK) to learn more about different revision strategies and exam techniques. You can also use ASK to find out about available counselling and chaplaincy services to help combat exam stress. Follow this link to ASK!