Happy Holidays!

We’re in a festive mood across the campus libraries. Lights, sparkles, baubles, books, it’s all happening!

christmas-tree-all

While Caboolture, Gardens Point and Kelvin Grove opted for a more traditional approach, the Law Library turned to its collection of Law Reports in ‘Chancery’ red and ‘Kings/Queens Bench’ green.

From all of us at QUT Library, we wish you a happy and safe holiday season and we look forward to seeing you in 2017!

QUT libraries will be closed from 24th December to 2nd January. You can check our website for more information.

Remembrance Day

The 11th of November marks the anniversary of the Armistice which ended the First World War. Each year on this day, a minute’s silence is observed at 11am, in memory of those who died or suffered in all wars and armed conflicts (Australian War Memorial).

The red Flanders poppy is the symbol of remembrance that commemorates the First World War. Wild red poppies flourished in churned up mud and soil in the battlefields of the Western Front during the war. In 1921, the red Flanders poppy became the British Legion’s official emblem. Today, red poppies feature in sprays and wreaths laid at memorials, at memorial services and military cemeteries. Cloth poppies are worn in memory respect of those who gave their lives.

Available through the QUT Library, this documentary, Not Forgotten, presents individual stories from the First World War and unlocks “the experience and the legacy of the Great War on a personal, family, community and national level, and ensuring that 90 years later, these names are not forgotten.”

We will remember them. Lest we forget.

All in this together: tips for using library spaces

students in library spaces KGExam period is right around the corner. By now, you need to be starting to think about your approach to exam preparation. Using library spaces and rooms might be part of your strategy – we think it’s a good one!

The library offers study spaces of different types – for study groups, for conversation and collaboration, for topping up your power supply or time to study on your own. Whatever your needs – on the floor, in a room, at a desk or on a couch, you’ll likely find your ideal study space. Rooms are available for bookings made in advance of your study sessions.

Exam stress is real and you don’t need any extra when you’re trying to concentrate on exam revision. When using spaces in the library, particularly the collaborative zones, it’s a good idea to exercise a little consideration for your peers. Many of you will have exams and so many of you will be in the same boat – all in this together.

We’ve come up with some top tips for being a considerate peer in library spaces during exam preparation and exam period:

  • Try not to listen to loud music. Instead, bring some earphones.
  • You may like to bring a meal or snacks into the library. Totally fine with us! But maybe don’t be the student who brings the smelly or over-powering food.
  • Don’t sit at a desk with a computer when you’re not using it. Another student might need it.
  • Don’t put laptop cords across walkways. This causes a trip hazard. Not cool.
  • Return library books on time. And this includes the course reserve items. Don’t be a scrooge!
  • Planning when and where you’re going to study? Luckily, Gardens Point Library will again be extending opening hours during the study and exam period. From the 28th October until 10pm on 18th November the library will be open from 7am – 2am Monday to Friday and 9am – 2am on the weekends. There are ample study times for you to choose from, yay!

For more top exam & study space tips, these other past blog posts have you covered.

Now go ace that exam prep and those exams!

Bring out your data

Bring out your DATA to make your research datasets reusable, visible, discoverable and citable. Archiving and safely securely storing your data are important established steps in the scholarly communication process; increasingly, publishing and sharing your data is too.. Depositing data in QUT’s Research Data Finder is now easier than ever.

Publishing and sharing your research data, under a Creative Commons licence, is good practice and has benefits for you as a researcher since it enables you to get credit for your datasets.  Many funders now have data sharing requirements and, increasingly, journals and publishers have a data sharing policy. QUT supports researchers in securely storing and safely sharing research datasets.

Research Data Finder has a new look and increased functionality. It now contains over 230 records of research datasets. Examples include:

Sharing research data or information about data (metadata) can unlock opportunities for you as a researcher and can help drive innovation. QUT’s Management of Research Data policy encourages open data practices at QUT wherever possible, as there are many benefits to researchers and universities.

Contact the Research Data Librarian for more information on using Research Data Finder and the University Copyright Officer for information on licencing your dataset.

Don’t leave personal items unattended

Picture of Gardens Point level 5

Gardens Point Library , Level 5.

When you’re in the study zone, in a comfortable spot and smashing the ‘to do’ list, we understand it is tempting to make a quick trip to the bathroom, or go out to grab a coffee. But this can be when items are taken and we are always sad to hear when theft occurs in the library.

This is your friendly reminder to not leave your bag, laptop, or books on tables unattended. If you need to go for lunch, coffee or the bathroom, make sure you take your belongings with you or ask a trusted study-buddy to stay and mind your things.

If you think something has been stolen you will need to report it to campus Security. They can file a report and any information you give creates a record to help them return your property to you and maybe prevent future thefts.

If you’ve lost something (or found something) visit the library Helpdesk and see the librarians. You can also log an online form to report your missing item.

Don’t risk adding stress to your load. Losing a laptop or a library book can be a real pain and inconvenience to your study. Keep an eye on your stuff.

If you see something that isn’t quite right then let a staff member know. Also remember we are obliged to report unattended bags to security so take your things with you when you leave – it also frees up study spaces for other students!

International Data Week

data

From 11th – 17th September, it is International Data Week. The theme for International Data Week is about mobilising the data revolution, exploring how to improve our knowledge and benefit society through data driven research and innovation.

While data scientists, researchers, entrepreneurs and industry leaders from across the globe gather at Denver, Colorado for the international conference, events closer to home are being held for researchers and those interested in what’s behind research data, such as managing research data, sharing and publishing research data.

Higher degree research students and new QUT researchers are encouraged to attend research skills workshops. Workshop details on the research support calendar.

QUT, together with the State Library of Queensland and ANDS (Australian National Data Service), will also host Sprint to the Finish for 23 (research data) Things. This event is an opportunity for those completing 23 (research data) Things to share what has been learned. The Sprint will also include a tour of The Cube, one of the world’s largest digital interactive learning and display spaces dedicated to providing an inspiring, explorative and participatory experience of QUT’s Science and Engineering research.

Sprint to the Finish is open to anyone, however you will need to complete at least Things 1-5 of the course. Register for this event on Eventbrite.

Mid year re-boot: preparing for Semester 2

Uni breaks are never long enough, right?

Semester 2 is just around the corner. Staying on top of your study load means being proactive and getting a plan in place ahead of time. Do the thinking now, before you’re too busy, and halfway into your first assessment piece.

Re-boot for next semester in 3 steps.

  1. Prepare your study space and materials.
  2. Start to make a plan and create a study schedule.
  3. Re-connect to get motivated.

Prepare your study space and materials

Your ‘to do’ list:

  • clear your study space – put old assignments and files away; archive them or transfer to an external hard drive, off your normal computer. Why not add a few fresh touches, like a photo, motivational quote or a plant?
  • top up your stationery supplies or update needed software
  • gather unit outlines for Semester 2 units and set up new files
  • make sure you’re enrolled in required units and registered for your classes
  • prepare a book list and acquire required textbooks

Start to make a plan and create a study schedule.

When you have registered for your classes, you’re starting to gain a sense of what your routine will look like during semester. This is a good time to be proactive and start to plan your approach to the semester. You can be more flexible for when the unexpected happens if you have a plan and study tasks scheduled regularly.

Start by blocking out time for your classes, plus any important dates and commitments you know about.

day-planner-828611_1280

 

For more planning tips, check out our blog post about setting up for study success.

Get motivated

Re-connect and catch up with friends and peers

Why not sign up to a study skills workshop? Or you may like to brush up on study skills using the online modules in Blackboard. Once logged into Blackboard, either go to the community site directly and click ‘Enrol’, or use ‘Community Finder’ and search with the name ‘Library Back to Study’. By enrolling in the community site, you will have ready access to these resources from your Blackboard home page.

Set some goals – What would you like to improve on this semester? What changes would you like to make to your assignment work or exam preparation? Effective goals are ‘SMART‘: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, Timely.

Need help through the semester? Ask a Librarian – online, at the Library Helpdesk, or by email and phone.

We’re here to help.

Time for exam preparation!

study with laptopWe’re now approaching Week 11 of semester and if you haven’t yet started your exam preparation, here are some tips to get you cracking!

  • Gather information about your exams. Keep this information within reach such as in a calendar on your phone. What are the dates and times? Which campus and rooms? What are you allowed to bring into the exam room?
  • Block out time in your schedule for exam preparation to avoid last minute panics.
  • Gather and organise your study notes. Check your unit outlines, lecture topics and unit objectives for the main topics. Organise your notes into main topics and sub-topics. Summarise.
  • Go to last lectures for any exam hints!
  • Study actively – re-write main points in your own words; mind map key concepts; do revision questions from your textbook or go over tutorial exercises.
  • Turn off social media notifications during exam study time. You can check them in your breaks.

Need somewhere to study? Gardens Point library will have extended opening hours for Semester 1 exam period.

From 3 June 2016 to 24 June 2016 the library will be open:

  • Monday – Friday: 7am-2am
  • Saturday – Sunday: 9am-2am.

QUT students and staff will have extended access to all Gardens Point library study spaces and collections. Further information is on the library website.

How to take a break and not fall behind

The first few weeks of semester can be overwhelming. Assignment deadlines are coming up fast. Unit readings are piling up. While these things might be happening, taking a break, even for a couple of days, can make a positive difference to your productivity and outlook.

reading by the water

The mid-semester break is an opportune time to decompress and process what you’ve learned so far. By taking a step away from study, you can return with fresh eyes and motivation that will help you through the rest of the semester. A break doesn’t need to cause stress. A break that is planned well can help ensure you don’t fall behind.

Before the mid-semester break, ask yourself, ‘What do I absolutely need to get done this week?’

Prioritise what you need to have completed before the mid-semester break. Is it an assignment? Some research? An assessed activity or quiz? There might be small, niggly things that you could complete in little time. If there are big things, break them up into bite-sized chunks. This will help you focus and work through them.

List 3-5 next steps for yourself for each unit.

Save time reviewing your progress and figuring out where you left off. Do the thinking before you take a break. What are the very next steps you need to take to progress an assignment, revision, tutorial activity, etc? Keep these steps small so you can pick up momentum more easily.

This is what I mean…’research for accounting assignment’ can seem big and daunting. Instead, try breaking it down, like this…

  • Review my assignment task and identify key requirements.
  • Review my reading notes and mind map key concepts and ideas.
  • Identify the resources I need to search. Formulate a plan.

By being more specific about what you need to do next, you can know exactly what you need to get on with when you return from your 303study break.

Catching up on readings? Be strategic about it!

Readings overload? You will rarely need to read every single word. Before you start to read, understand the purpose of why you’re reading something. This will determine the strategy you take.
Are you looking to deepen your understanding? Looking for clarification? Answer a specific question?

For more about how to read more strategically, check out the study skills workshop ‘Read it, note it, recall it’ available on Blackboard. Once logged into Blackboard, either go to the community site directly and click ‘Enrol’, or use ‘Community Finder’ and search with the name ‘Library Back to Study’. You’ll find the workshop materials under ‘Resources’.

It’s okay to take a break! Here are some ideas…

Take a picnic blanket and a book (or your unit readings) and head outside. One of my favourite spots is by the water at Sandgate, easily reached by the Shorncliffe train line. Fish n chips, anyone?

Go explore a part of Brisbane you’ve never been before.

Chill out in the Games Lab at the Kelvin Grove Library. Consoles and controllers can be borrowed from the Library Helpdesk on Level 2.

Did you know there are free fitness classes at Southbank? Why not take a friend?

Have a fabulous break!

What do you do to take time out from study?

Set up for study success this semester

The first week of semester is about meeting new mates, your tutors and lecturers and gathering unit information – assignment due dates, classes, exams. Staying on top of your study load and setting yourself up for success from Week 1 can be achieved with a little planning and bookmarking study support resources for when you need them.

Plan your semester

Planning is not about having your time set in stone, but more about seeing the bigger picture so you can afford to be flexible as things pop up during semester. Unexpected setbacks happen and when they do, a plan will help you to adjust your time so you can quickly get back on track.

To get started, you’ll need:

  • the academic calendar
  • an online calendar, like your QUT email calendar or Google Calendar – whichever works for you and you will refer to regularly

The academic calendar shows important dates related to your semester, such as mid-semester break and exam periods. Place or save the academic calendar somewhere you can access quickly, like your computer desktop. Next, input all your important dates over the semester, assignment due dates, exam study period, as well as your social and family commitments such as weddings or birthday parties. You’ll then start to see where you might need to start work on your assignments a little earlier if the due date clashes with your cousin’s 21st bash, for example. In your online calendar, block out time for your classes. Then add your regular work, family or other commitments. Setting up recurring appointments in an online calendar are time savers when planning your study load from week to week.

Now you have an idea of what your semester looks like and how much time you have for your coursework and assignments.

Handy tip: Bookmark the library’s Assignment Calculator to help you allow enough time for completing your assignments.

Keep study support within reach

Can’t make it to campus for a study skills workshop? Library staff have been busy over the summer preparing these workshops for online access through Blackboard. Once logged into Blackboard, either go to the community site directly and click ‘Enrol’, or use ‘Community Finder’ and search with the name ‘Library Back to Study’. By enrolling in the community site, you will have ready access to these resources from your Blackboard home page.

Topics include reading and note taking, undertaking research and returning to university study, with helpful hints and strategies.

Need help through the semester? Ask a Librarian – by phone, at the Library Helpdesk or online.

We’re here to help.