New home for the Library Blog

We started this blog back in May 2015 to help you keep up to date with everything that is happening in the Library. It has served us well and has proven to be a useful way of communicating changes, new services and updates.

With this is mind we have decided to update our blog and move it to a new home. As such, this will be the last post on this site.

We will be posting all future posts on our new blog.  All the old content has been moved onto the new site, so you don’t need to worry about missing any of the old posts.

Thank you for all your support of our this blog and we look forward to welcoming you to our new blog very soon!

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MyBeckett Upgrade Summer 2018

We upgrade the MyBeckett system every year to make sure it’s in the best shape possible to support you and we need time to complete the upgrade and to test the system so that MyBeckett is in full working order when it comes back online for you to use. We carry out the upgrade over the Summer to minimise disruption during the teaching year. This year MyBeckett will be upgraded and unavailable to staff and students between the following dates/times:

Start –  Sunday 5 August 2018 20:00 BST  

End – Tuesday 7 August 2018 17:00 BST

 

MyBeckett Upgrade 18

What if I need to access links I normally get through MyBeckett?

Although you won’t be able to access Turnitin or your Modules and their content during

this time, there are still plenty of University services which will be fully available:

Services

Resources

What happens after the upgrade?

When the upgrade period is over, the login page will display as normal and you will be able to access MyBeckett.

Should I use ResearchGate?

ResearchGate is a popular social media tool that can help you connect to other researchers, follow developments in your subject area and get your own research to a wider audience. However, there are copyright and privacy issues that you need to know about before investing your time in this or similar websites. You also need to make your research REF eligible, but the good news is that there are Leeds Beckett systems and teams to help you do both. Our Research Services Team explain further…

research services team

“Websites like ResearchGate aim to be easy to use and attempt to pull information from other online sources to save you having to input data manually. Whilst convenient in the short term, this automation lessens the ease of control you have over your data.

A simple solution is to link your ResearchGate profile to your Leeds Beckett staff profile. Having this single source of truth means you won’t need to upload anything to ResearchGate or spend time replicating information there. This will save you time and ensure that your publication list is up to date, providing you’re already using the University’s systems.

Even more importantly, if you use Symplectic to save your publications in the Leeds Beckett Repository within three months of acceptance they will be REF compliant. Your work will be Open Access but we’ll ensure copyright law and publisher rules are upheld, a service ResearchGate doesn’t provide.

Questions remain about the business model of ResearchGate and this should be of interest to anyone using it. The site is free to use and has had $85 million+ of investment from some big hitters of the technology world. Being free to use is great, but when are those investors expecting a dividend and where is it going to come from? If you’re using such sites, you (your contact details, demographic information and the content you upload) may be the product on offer. Therefore, you should be aware of the privacy implications and make sure you’re happy with the terms and conditions before signing up.

In summary, ResearchGate could be beneficial to you personally, but activity on social media doesn’t help you comply with the key mandate placed on the University – the REF. Therefore, we recommend you use the Leeds Beckett Repository (via Symplectic) and then link any social media, such as ResearchGate, to your staff profile.”

What to do next –

  • Decide if you have the time and interest to keep an account up to date, respond to requests and connect with others
  • Ensure your research is REF compliant by uploading accepted manuscripts in Symplectic within three months of acceptance. See our webpage for details
  • Contact the Research Services Team if you need more information.

Your student email is changing

On 7 September your University email changed from one provided by Google (Gmail) to a new Microsoft Outlook email.  You can access your new Microsoft email account via MyBeckett.  Your email address and password remains the same.

There is no need to move your old Gmail emails as the University has used a service to move all of your content (including contacts and email categories) to your new account.

You can still access your old Gmail account until 15 December 2017 (and we’ll send you emails reminding you of this) but from 7 September all new emails will be in your new Microsoft Outlook email account.

You will need to update your own devices to ensure they access Outlook rather than Googlemail/Gmail. Our IT support pages provide instructions on how to do this and if you encounter any problems please ask Library staff for help. Our FAQ “I have added my student email to the Outlook app – why am I not receiving any new emails” should help.

You can still access Google Drive using your University email address and password or via MyBeckett.

Please note that the use of email, software and apps provided by Leeds Beckett University must be used in accordance with our data protection and IT policies. Don’t open any attachments or follow any links that you think might be suspicious.

 

Access Microsoft Office 365 for free!

As a Leeds Beckett University student you can access Microsoft Office 365 for free for as long as you are studying with us.

This gives you:

  • Full versions of Microsoft Office 2016 (including Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Access, Publisher, OneNote) on up to 5 Windows and Mac PCs
  • Unlimited access to the online and mobile app versions of Microsoft Office, Sway and Forms
  • Up to 1TB of cloud storage on OneDrive
  • Access to your University email address with 50GB of mailbox storage

Log in to the Office 365 portal with your University username and password to access this.

Our IT Support pages include information about downloading the software, systems requirements and frequently ask questions and you can also Contact Us if you need more help.

Develop your academic confidence with support from successful students

Please note this programme is now closed for semester one 2017-18. If you need help with your academic skills please see the Skills for Learning website, attend one of the workshops or contact your Academic Librarian.

Skills for Learning are offering study mentoring in academic skills to Level 4 (first year) students during Semester One 2017-18.

During (up to) four regular meetings with one of our specially selected and trained study mentors, you will get helpful, friendly advice about things such as: planning assignments, using the Library, academic writing, and referencing.

If you’d like more information about the scheme please email skillsforlearning@leedsbeckett.ac.uk.

 

Library closure Sunday 27 August

Every year we have to implement Library closures in order to carry out essential electrical maintenance on some of our University buildings. This year the work is taking place over Sundays in August.

This essential work helps to ensure the smooth running of the Library and also help us to maintain our 24/7 opening. To help minimise disruption we never close both Libraries at the same time. This year we plan to close as follows:

 

Sunday 27 August

06:00 – 13:00 sheila Silver Library, City Campus closed. Headingley Library open

Don’t forget our Library website always gives you access to over 140,000 quality online resources!

We are very sorry for any inconvenience this closure may cause.

Change of date – MyBeckett upgrade

Mybeckett

We recently publicised that we were due to carry out an upgrade to MyBeckett starting on Monday  31 July.  Unfortunately a technical issue with the new version has meant that we have decided to postpone the upgrade until early January 2018.

Even though we are unable to carry out the full upgrade we will still be making some changes to the system:

New / updated tabs for students

Jobs

The new Jobs tab gives students access to Jobs, Placements and Opportunities resources and key contacts. It’s been redesigned and replaces the current Employability tab.

Support

Replacing the current Help tab, the Support tab brings together Academic Support and ‘Student Life’ Support options and contacts e.g. Money, Accommodation, Wellbeing etc.

New / updated tabs for staff

Staff Home

Last year, we developed the Course tab for students – a personalised homepage on MyBeckett containing some key Course related information.

This year, staff will have access to a Staff Home tab, giving access to key information when you log in. This tab will replace the current Home and Groups tabs.

Research

Staff will be given access to a new Research tab to complement a similar tab that is already available for Research Students. It will help you to get involved in Research, find information about resources, manage and update your information, and provide links to Library Research support.

Other changes

The scheduled Turnitin and PebblePad upgrades will still go ahead as planned, as part of this upgrade Turnitin will be unavailable on Saturday 5th August between 15:00 and 21:00.

The existing Blackboard App “Mobile Learn” will be unavailable from 1 August and will be replaced with a new updated App available on all iOS, Android and Windows devices.

Library behind the scenes – more than just tidying the shelves!

“In the summer, do you just tidy the book shelves for a few weeks?”

This is a question I’ve been asked more than once. And to be fair, it’s not an unreasonable one.  Exams are over. The libraries and lecture theatres are largely empty. People go home. Many academic and support staff go on holiday –  it’s not surprising that there’s a perception of things slowing down, of taking it easy between the end of one academic year and the start of the next. For the Library Collections and Acquisitions (C&A) team however, summer is one of the busiest times of our year.20170608_150754 - Copy

It really begins in mid-May, when we start to think about two things in particular – the Financial Year End, and the “stock usage reports”.

The first involves a process of chasing-up with our various suppliers any unfilled or outstanding orders, in order to getting the materials into stock quickly, or cancelling orders that won’t be fulfilled, so we can free-up the money and invest it elsewhere before year-end. Ebooks are always a good option, as they are generally accessible within three days of the order being placed, and are always in high demand by both on-campus and distance learners. So year-end (actually July 31st, but in practice, for us, somewhat earlier) is heralded by a period of cancelling and ordering, of re-allocation of funds and of careful targeting of the remaining resources budget.

At the same time, we run the stock reports which show us which items in our Libraries are being used, and which are not. These usage statistics are cross-checked with Reading Lists and double-checked by Academic Librarians. We want a “hard working” Library collection, which reflects the courses and subjects being taught on each campus, and gives access to content in formats our users can engage with. Different subject areas have different needs and preferences – for example, a Law student might need up-to-the minute statutes available to consult on-line; whereas in Cultural Studies, a twenty-year-old classic edition might be the definitive text on a particular topic.

Materials no longer needed, unused works, or those superseded by newer texts and editions, are then withdrawn from stock. We don’t throw them away – the overwhelming majority are sold on to a charity called Better World Books, which in turn generates income for the Library whilst also supporting international literacy initiatives.

Meanwhile, we’re thinking about the new books, eBooks, CDs, DVDs, and so on that will fill these spaces and further enhance the usability, accessibility, and relevance of the Library collection. We place approximately 600 orders per month- averaging over 1,000 new items coming into the Library on a monthly basis all year round, with late August and early September the busiest times of all, just ahead of the start of the new Academic Year. We collect and input Reading Lists, identifying stock gaps and order new materials, with over 3000 Lists guiding individual users via their My Beckett page to the right materials they need for their studies. . Each year the module codes change, modules disappear or are added, new courses start…C&A are responsible for administrating this highly complex system.

The summer is also the time when we review our processes and workflow, and trial new approaches and working styles – things like faster, more efficient ways to order; more streamlined methods of receiving stock; new ways of accessing content; reviewing the performance of our suppliers; and looking to see what working practices and technologies are out there which could help us to improve the service we deliver.

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And then, when we’ve done that, we tidy the shelves…

Eric Jackson, Collections and Acquisitions Manager

 

 

 

Team Photo:

Back l-r Eric Jackson, Phil Todd, Paul Scholes, Dawn Elson.

Front – Amy Campbell, Ellie Windle, Sarah Dacre, Donna Easton

WannaCry ransomware attack

We are sure you have heard the “WannaCry” ransomware attack over the weekend of 13th / 14th May which has affected more than 200,00 computers across 150 countries.  IT Services are working to protect University networks and may mean that services, such as your P: Drive and the internet may be taken down to further update our network.  Whilst we will try and keep you updated with as much notice as possible, the situation may mean that we are unable to warn you of services and/or the network going down.

Please ensure you are saving your work regularly and keeping back-up copies of everything you are working on.  Full details of our advice on saving your work can be found here: http://libguides.leedsbeckett.ac.uk/it_support/saving_your_work

Please check Twitter for further updates.