Those unspoken library rules you know (and some you might not)

Rules are everywhere. Some of these rules we just “know” and other rules are learned: keep to the left when riding the escalator, turn off your mobile phone at the movies, or wait in an orderly line to place your coffee order. In the Library it works much the same, there are some rules which are set in black and white and others which we can fill you in on. Here is a friendly reminder about some of the QUT Library rules that you might not know about.

  • You are allowed to eat and drink in the library – just be considerate of the others sharing your space and make sure your food isn’t smelly or noisy to consume.
  • You are responsible for your own belongings so do not leave them unattended. Check out our blog Don’t Leave Personal Items Unattended for more information.
  • If you have a laptop, don’t sit in a space with a desktop computer – let someone who doesn’t have a computer use this space.
  • You can book a study room for up to 2 hours, but if you don’t show up for your booking 15 minutes past the hour the room is free for anyone to use.
  • You can borrow as many books as you like! Just keep an eye out on when they are due back.
  • You can talk in the library. Each of our campus libraries has collaborative areas where you can talk till your heart’s content. But be mindful of our silent study areas where talking (including phone conversations) is a no no.

If you aren’t sure about any of these rules you can always contact our friendly library staff for assistance!

Open science, open data – the World Science Festival Brisbane

“It’s not enough to do it; it must be communicated” – Virginia Barbour, Executive Director, Australasian Open Access Strategy Group, on a key concept in science.

Providing open access to research, including publications, data, software, methodologies and all other research outputs, is a growing worldwide initiative, as is the drive to solve real-world problems and stimulate innovation.  The lack of access to research publications and their accompanying data is inhibiting national and international collaboration, public debate and research, however, times are changing.

Originally applied only to data, the F.A.I.R. principles now apply to all research outputs, as proposed at a November 2016 meeting of the G20 Science, Technology and Innovation Ministers Meeting.  Research findings that are F.A.I.R. are Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable.

“With F.A.I.R. access, Australian research will be more visible, the broader community will have better access to well-founded knowledge, Australian researchers will be able to more easily collaborate locally and globally, including with industry, and the Australian research enterprise will be more accountable to the community it serves” – F.A.I.R. Access Working Group

Dr Salvatore Mele from the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) reports that research in the field of physics has always been openly available, with researchers posting each other hard copies of publications that were submitted for review.  During the World Science Festival, which is being held in Brisbane from 22-26 March, the world-renowned Large Hadron Collider will be on display at the Queensland Museum.

Managed by CERN, the data collected from use of the Collider are published in the CERN Open Data Portal, and are accompanied by the software and documentation required to make sense of the data being shared.  Here at QUT, researchers can publish their data and accompanying material through our data repository, Research Data Finder.  We’re doing our bit to accelerate open science by providing access to open data!

Take a look at datasets that have already been added, including ‘Fusion transcripts in prostate cancer using RNA sequences derived from Australian and Chinese men’ by Dr Jyotsna Batra and Dr John Lai, and perhaps add one of your own at QUT Research Data Finder.

NEW: Sage Research Methods Video: Now on trial until May 5th

SAGE Research Methods Video has over 480 videos, including hours of tutorials, expert interviews, video case studies and mini-documentaries covering the entire research process.

Instead of reading about it, see research design and method in action! Search by type of method, professional discipline, or video type. Videos will help to bring methods to life. Stimulate class discussions by assigning videos for pre-class viewing, or use a clip in class to provide an alternative viewpoint. Videos can also be embedded into course management systems for exam preparation. Whether you are learning, doing, supervising or teaching. Students, academics and professionals can find extra help and support, to guide them through every step of their research project, or to succeed in their research methods course.

Is this something you wish to have in our collection or have a say on? Please review the resources and provide feedback here. For questions, please contact your Liaison librarian.

Welcome to Semester 1, 2017!

Kelvin Grove Library

We never thought the time would come but another year has rolled around and Semester 1 has taken off to an incredible start. For those of you who may have missed tours of their respective campus library during orientation week do not worry. Come and look around any of our four libraries yourself during our opening hours. You can meet our wonderful Library Advisers working on the Library Helpdesk, check out our collection of print books and scope out a favourite study spot for the semester!

If you prefer to work from home you should take some time to orient yourself to the QUT Library homepage. This is where you will find information for your assessment, whether that be from ebooks, books, journal articles, or other sources of information. We also have an incredible number of resources you can use to help you further develop study skills and prepare you for life as a student.

Don’t forget! You can contact QUT Library at any time to get your questions answered. There are so many ways to get in touch, you can email us, call, chat online, or come say hi in-person at a branch library.

So, from all of us here at QUT Library – welcome to semester 1, 2017! And good luck with your studies this year.

Happy Library Lovers Day!

The 14th of February is a day for lovers, Library Lovers to be exact! Libraries around Australia have embraced the day as a chance to remind policy makers about the wonderful work librarians do and the important role libraries have in society.

Take a moment to say thank you to your local librarian or visit a library you haven’t been to before. Share your #librarylove on social media, even if it is just a shot of your personal collection.

Remember, the QUT Library website is a great place to start looking for information for your research or general study skills.

Love Your Data Week 2017

From the 13th to the 17th of February, along with other academic and research libraries, data archives and organisations, QUT Library is celebrating the value and importance of research data, which are (we believe) crucial for advancing our knowledge of the world around us.

The theme for the 2017 social media event is ‘data quality’ and each day focuses on a different aspect of research data management:

13 February – Defining data quality

14 February – Documenting, describing, defining

15 February – Good data examples

16 February – Finding the right data

17 February – Rescuing unloved data

QUT researchers are also getting into the swing of things!  Here’s what Associate Professor Adrian Barnett from the School of Public Health and Social Work, Faculty of Health has to say about issues he’s faced in the research data management process:

“A huge issue is data access. I’ve seen PhDs and postdocs ruined because individuals and groups won’t release or share data, even though it’s almost always data collected from the public and the goal of the research is always to improve public health. And oftentimes, the groups are doing nothing with the data, they just don’t want to share it just in case.

People also wear themselves out collecting too much data. At the project design stage, there’s often a lot of thought that a particular variable or new data source would be great to collect. If multiple people with different “pet” variables are involved, the data collection becomes massive and eats all of the project budget and time. An analysis is then hastily done because there’s no time or energy left. Answering a few questions well is the better option than answering a lot of questions badly.”

Dr Tony Beatton, a researcher from the School of Economics and Finance, Faculty of Business who’s completing a PhD on the economics of happiness and whose research is founded on the application of primary-source datasets to has this to say:

“Given clean, accurate data, a researcher can look for patterns that explain human behaviour.  To do this, we need:

  1. A desire to use data as the basis for examining research questions;
  2. Access to quality data, which the QUT library certainly enables;
  3. Technical skills in mathematics and statistics, which enable us to;
  4. Apply the data plus our technical skills and knowledge of the literatures to examine important research questions.

The truth is in the numbers which manifest in the data.”

If you’re a researcher, leave a comment below on your experience with data, or any tips, tricks and resources that you wished someone had shared with you!

Visit the Love Your Data blog each day for stories, resources and activities and if you would like to join the conversation or to view more, go to Twitter (#LYD17, #loveyourdata), Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest.

One Librarian One Reference – Wikipedia and Librarians

Whether or not you use it, Wikipedia is a wealth of knowledge and information on just about every aspect of the world we live in, from the composition of an atom to the synopsis of your favourite television program. Students are often warned about citing Wikipedia in an academic setting because entries are created and edited by you, the user, which means anyone could create an unreliable entry which could be mistaken as fact. Anyone familiar with the internet would consider it dangerous to trust a source of information created by a group of anonymous users however Wikipedia has garnered for itself a reputation for being the first point-of-call for many knowledge seekers.

In the age of fake news, how can I tell Wikipedia is accurate?

Take a look at this article for some tips on how to tell if the wiki page you are reading is a reliable source of information. One of the first things you should do is check the citations of the article which are the little blue numbers which appear above a sentence in Wikipedia. The number will lead you to the source of the information cited in the article. If the article is credible, the information will be from an academic journal or other reliable source. QUT Library’s Finding Information page has some helpful resources to help you evaluate online sources.

How are Librarians helping the cause?

This is where the hashtag #1lib1ref comes in – this is a worldwide initiative where librarians (and you!) come together to edit Wikipedia pages by searching for uncited statements and adding a citation using a reliable source. You can read more about it on the WikiMedia page.

It’s time to graduate!

It’s the season to graduate! And to celebrate QUT library is showing off the spectacular Registrar’s mace on Level 4, V Block, Gardens Point campus.

The QUT mace was designed and built by Mr Alan Place, a former part time lecturer in fine arts.

It has three sections, each symbolising the different levels of tertiary education:

  • The knob at the base represents the bachelor’s degree, the start of a professional career.
  • The handpiece in the middle represents the master’s degree.
  • The flame-shaped head, symbolising the torch of learning, represents the doctorate.
  • The open top acknowledges that education is an ongoing process.

In the middle ages, the mace was preferred by soldier churchmen (in particular Odo, the Bishop of Bayeux, who was the half-brother of William the Conqueror) as it was a crushing instrument which did not draw blood. Over time the mace became a symbol of authority.

For those who are graduating remember that alumni membership to QUT library is free and allows you to access books and a selection of online resources.

QUT Library congratulates everyone for a wonderful and productive year and offers best wishes to those who are graduating at this time.

Exam Preparation

“Study hard” by Bartosz Maciejewski (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The end of semester is here and we are well into examination period. We know that this time can be stressful and tricky, you may have multiple exams to study for or exams and assignments to complete at the same time, but with a few tips and tricks under your belt (as well as some planning) you’ll be set to ace your exams in no time.

Firstly, take a look at our exam preparation page. It is filled with useful information about how to tackle different exam types, as well as general study tips about time management.

You can also take a look at our exam preparation blog post from earlier this year to get some hints for what to do in the days leading to your exam. Also, don’t forget – Gardens Point Library has extended opening hours until 10pm Friday 18th November for all your late-night study needs.

If you’re feeling a little overwhelmed you can always contact QUT Counselling Services or read this tip-sheet about managing exam stress and anxiety.

QUT Library wishes you good luck! And if you need any help, don’t hesitate to ask.

Halloween stories in the library!

Halloween is almost upon us and what a perfect time to delve into the spooky areas of our library collection to see what you can borrow to scare your friends!

The House on the Hill by Kyle Mewburn & illustrated by Sarah Davis is available to borrow from the Kelvin Grove and Caboolture Curriculum Collections. It is a rhyming picture book for students in primary school, but there is no reason adults can’t enjoy it too.

American Horror Story is a spooky television series to get into if you haven’t already and nothing beats a few episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

Of course, nothing beats reading a good book from the king of horror – from Carrie to The Shining and The Dark Tower series, there is always something to read from the prolific and deliciously unsettling Stephen King.

Don’t forget we have many Ebook collections for you to find a thrilling scare and if you’re looking for online videos we have access to The Darkside a film retelling various Indigenous ghost stories from around Australia.

Do you have any suggestions for scary Halloween stories? Let us know your favorite author or story in the comments.