Exam success

Exams start soon and there is lots of help available from the Library:

  • because we’re open 24/7 you can revise at whatever time of day suits you best
  • if you need silence to revise we can help with that too – there are silent study areas in each Library
  • if you need a PC to work on remember you can use the IT Labs if there isn’t a class in progress (see the timetables outside the rooms) or borrow one of the self-service laptops
  • we have lots of books on exam techniques (see our display on the ground floor of the Library)
  • have a look at our Exam Success Wake for advice and links to help you with your revision
  • you can request a tutorial to help you revise and prepare for exams and there are also resources on exam preparation and revision and time management on the Skills for Learning website

But please:

  • find out where your exam takes place (and what time!) before the day so that you know where you are going – there is information on the Student Hub pages, plus advice on what to do if you are ill and what you need with you for the exam
  • make sure you take regular breaks – water coolers in each Library can help you keep hydrated
  • look after your wellbeing – see our Pinterest Board for ideas or listen to our relaxing music playlist plus a motivational list too for you to listen to depending on your mood!
  • don’t chat when others are working in silence
  • don’t use the PCs for social networking when others need to work
  • and don’t “save” study spaces by leaving your belongings on them

Good luck! And remember to Contact Us if you need any help

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Don’t get lost on your dissertation journey

There are many steps in writing the perfect dissertation and Library staff are on hand to help you on your journey, especially if you’re just starting out.

Skills for Learning are running a themed week of workshops 20-24 November covering topics such as Finding Information for your Dissertation, Organising your Research using Pro-Study and Referencing Refreshers.

25DE18F2-E049-441F-9BF0-291BC29A8F95As part of the week Library staff will be out and about offering advice, support and signposting help on all aspects of writing your dissertation. There will also be a chance to win a £20 Blackwell voucher.

On Tuesday 21 November Academic Librarian, Karen Fisher, will be in Broadcasting Place 13:00-15:00.

On Thursday 23 November  Karen Croft from the Skills for Learning team will be in Headingley Library from 11:30 – 13:30.

One of our Information Services Librarians, Karen Carney, will also be on hand to offer advice and support.

And there are lots of Library staff not called Karen who can also help you!

The Library website includes information about finding past dissertations in the Library or obtaining Interlibrary Loans if you need to read something as part of your literature review that isn’t available in the Library.

You can also use our Beckett Books Extra scheme to request a book that you think should be in stock – just click Recommend on the web page.

Searching Discover gives you access to thousands of resources for whatever topic you pick or you can use the Subject Guides to point you in the right direction. These are created by your Academic Librarian who has expert knowledge of all the journals, databases and other material available to you.

As well as workshops Skills for Learning has lots of guidance on their website and they can also help if the subject you’re studying means you need to produce a dissertation based on a product. Their Dissertation IT Kit provides a really good guide on how to produce a professional looking document and avoid the potential formatting errors.

You can book an appointment with your Academic Librarian for one-to-one support on finding resources for your dissertation or project – see their contact information on your subject guide. And, of course, you can always contact the Library 24/7 and we’ll do our best to help.

Those scary essays!

Thank you to everyone who stopped by our Halloween stalls the other day, where our (hopefully not too scary) staff asked you what’s the scariest thing about writing essays.halloween HY

Some of you found the most frightening part getting started and acknowledged leaving it to the last minute. Our Little Book of Time Management might help with that.

The majority of you said that finding information was the scariest bit so you’re in the right place with the Library! Your Academic Librarians and the Skills for Learning Team offer tutorials and workshops in finding information and writing literature reviews. The Library website has subject guides to get you started and Discover gives you access to thousands of resources.  Our YouTube tutorials help you make the most out of this fantastic tool.

essaysUnderstanding the question and planning and structuring the essay can also be tricky. The Skills for Learning website has information to help with this and the Essay Writing workshops cover it in more detail. You’ll also find hints and tips in one of our essay writing books.

Not surprisingly referencing and concerns about plagiarising or using Turnitin can be scary too. Make sure you have a copy of Quote Unquote to help you out and take a look at our online guides to using Turnitin.

Remember that you can always ask Library staff to send you in the right direction for all aspects of writing your essay and help avoid all those ghouls and ghosts.

Don’t let your essay become a nightmare!

You might think (or hope!) that essay writing was something just for school but lots of university assignments require you to write an essay in some form; defined by Skills for Learning as “an extended piece of writing which attempts to answer a question or respond to a statement”.

To tie in with Halloween the Library will be offering help with essay writing so that it doesn’t become a nightmare for you. Look out for us in Headingley Library from 11:00 on Monday 30th October and in the Rose Bowl on Tuesday 31st also from 11:00 where we will be helping you overcome your fears by telling you all about the support available. Here’s a sneaky peak of the help on offer – if you’re scared of spiders, skeletons (or essays!) you may want to watch with a friend!

Also during the week there will be Skills for Learning workshops on essay writing, finding information and referencing to help you get started with your assignments. You can find lots of material online, pick up a book in the Library (or read an e-Book from under the covers!) or make an appointment with your Academic Librarian. There is even a Little Book of Essay Writing with lots of useful hints and tips, and software such as Inspiration or Pro-Study on the Library PCs to help you organise your work before you start writing.

In addition, Academic Librarian, Karen Fisher, will be in the Cultural Studies social learning space in Broadcasting House on Wednesday 1 November 11:30-12:30 offering extra help to students based there.

We also asked Holly Phillips, Academic Skills Tutor for her advice: “The most important thing is that you take a clear position in response to the question that is being asked, then the rest of the essay focuses on the evidence to support that position. Ultimately, the essay is an argumentative genre of writing where the author is trying to get their reader to accept their position. Make your case clearly, directly, and support it using the very best evidence you can find!”

Worth following to turn your nightmare essay into a dream high mark!

 

Celebrating Libraries Week

Libraries Week takes place 9-14 October and is a chance to showcase some of the amazing things that your Library offers such as:

And if you decide to take a break from studying why not listen to our latest Spotify playlist “The Great Library Songbook” full of library and literature related songs! Or come along to Leeds Beckett Book Club’s meeting on Wednesday 11 October to discuss The Famished Road by Ben Okri.

 

 

 

Positive about Dyslexia

This week is Dyslexia Awareness Week 2017, and this year’s theme is ‘Positive about Dyslexia’. The Library has a wide range of support available for students with dyslexia to help you succeed at University.

If you think you might have dyslexia but you have not yet been diagnosed, you can complete QuickScan – an online questionnaire which identifies whether you have any indicators of dyslexia and provides advice on the next steps to take. This is accessed via the Support tab in MyBeckett (under Disability Support).

Students who have dyslexia can register with our University’s Disability Advice service who arrange tailored support on an individual basis. When you have registered with Disability Advice, you can use the Disability Resource Areas in the Libraries. These are comfortable silent study spaces for students with disabilities or dyslexia which contain a range of equipment, including larger desks and PCs with dual monitors.

IMG_20170925_132111595The Library has a wide range of books and eBooks about study skills and disability in higher education, including dyslexia. Look out for some of these on our Dyslexia Awareness Week book displays. There is also a collection of reference books on these topics in each Disability Resource Area.

Students registered with Disability Advice can borrow books for longer and place 10 items on hold at once instead of the usual 5, so you can use the Holds system to have books retrieved for you if you have difficulty locating them on the shelves.

We have an ever increasing collection of eBooks. If you find eBooks difficult to use due to dyslexia, we have information on how you can customise the settings to make them more accessible. This includes changing the text size and colour, changing the background colour, and listening to eBooks in audio format. Eligible students can also have their reading list titles obtained in accessible format through the Library’s Alternative Formats service.

A variety of assistive software is available, most of which is installed on all PCs in the Library. This includes Read & Write, which has tools for reading on-screen text aloud (text-to-speech), advanced spelling and grammar support and applying a digital coloured overlay to your computer screen. You can access a web-based version of Read & Write for Google Chrome off campus. There is also software for mind mapping to help you organise your ideas visually, and we have recently subscribed to Pro-Study software which helps you to collect, categorise and organise research from various different sources. We particularly recommend this for students with dyslexia. You can also use SensusAccess to convert documents into more accessible formats, including audio, so you can listen to them rather than reading. If you’d like to know more about the assistive software available in the Library you can come to a workshop – see our Software page for further details, and if you are looking for free software and apps we have several recommendations.

If you prefer to read printed text on a coloured background, coloured paper for printing is available on request free of charge at the Advice Point on the ground floor of each Library. You can choose from six different colours.

For help with study skills including academic writing, Skills for Learning offer online resources, workshops and tutorials.

Photo of SueStudents with disabilities or dyslexia can book a one-to-one appointment with the Library’s Learning Support Officer (Disability and Dyslexia) for help with a wide range of disability related issues in the Library, including using Library resources, assistive software, equipment and more. You can also contact Library staff for advice by phone, email and online chat.

Have you discovered the Library yet?

A161122-2 Library City Campus-296 cropOur two University Libraries, Sheila Silver Library in the Leslie Silver Building at City Campus and Headingley Library in the James Graham Building at Headingley are open 24/7 365. They have different types of study space so you can choose to work in silence or in a group study area, or book a Student Meeting Room.

We also have over 140,000 electronic resources including eBooks and journals, available on and off-campus, easily accessible via our Discover search engine.. And it’s really easy to find the books and journal articles recommended for your course. Just click on the Resources List link alongside your modules in MyBeckett.

Our Skills for Learning team offer workshops and tutorials in academic communication, IT, maths, research and referencing. They are also running a peer mentoring scheme so you can get support from experienced students to help build your confidence.

Hopefully you will have already met your Academic Librarian for your course and have started to find your way around but there’s lots more help available for you. Take a look at the Get Started tab in MyBeckett and on our Library news pages.

You can also Phone Us or Chat with Us 24/7 – just see the Contact Us page on our website. And follow us on Twitter (@BeckettLibrary) for all the latest information.

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.

 

Summer support from Skills for Learning

Skills for Learning workshops have finished for the summer but there’s still lots of help available from the team.

We recorded some of the workshops from last year so you can revisit key topics, or visit them for the first time, including critical thinking, literature reviews, presentation skills and reflective writing. Or why not listen on the go to one of the podcasts to develop your academic communication or research skills?

The Skills for Learning website has sflwebsitehundreds of pages of resources on topics as diverse as problem solving, fractions, sampling, and workplace learning. Plus the Little Books series which you can download or buy from the Library with titles including the Little Book of Time Management and the indispensable Quote Unquote guide to Harvard referencing.

And if you need one-to-one support please contact the team to arrange a tutorial.

Staying on for postgraduate study

If you have a place to study on a postgraduate course here at Leeds Beckett after you finish your undergraduate degree there’s help available from the Library to keep your study skills on track:A161122-2 Library City Campus-161crop

  • Access to the Library to borrow books expires as you graduate and you’ll need to return any loans and pay any outstanding charges. However, if you want to borrow resources to help prepare for your new course you can apply for interim Guest User membership.
  • Our Academic Librarians have created a web page for people preparing for postgraduate study. This is aimed at students who have been out of education for a while but you should find some useful hints and tips and reminders of how to get the most out of the Library and continue to develop your academic skills. Each subject area also has its own page packed with links to key resources so take some time to browse these if you’re about to study something new.
  • Similarly the Skills for Learning team has grouped together some of the key resources on their website to support students studying at postgraduate level. You’ll still need your username and password to access these off campus but this should be live until 30th September.
  • The Alumni Tab on MyBeckett will appear once you finish your undergraduate course but this signposts you to lots of resources and information about being a postgraduate student if you’ve decided to stay with us.

 

We look forward to seeing you in the Library once again!