Preparing for exams

16.LaidBack1.Dupont.WDC.23jul06 by Elvert Barnes (CC by 2.0)

16.LaidBack1.Dupont.WDC.23jul06 by Elvert Barnes (CC by 2.0)

Grab the lifeboats, exams ahead! Some tips to help you weather the storm during exam period.

Find a comfy and study-appropriate spot

I get easily distracted by daytime TV. So if I need to concentrate, I turn off the TV and go to a place that tells my brain and body it’s time to get to work. All campus libraries have a heap of study spaces to get you in the right frame of mind:

  • There are lounges, booths, study carrels and other nooks suitable for working with your mates or reading by yourself at all the branch libraries.
  • Individual and group study rooms can be booked online.
  • The Researchers’ Centres are where postgrads can escape for a quiet spot
  • Run off to the Botanic Gardens at Gardens Point or the oval at Kelvin Grove for some fresh air – and grass between the toes. How comfy is that?

Know where to get help

  • Not sure where to start? Studywell has tons of links for strategies to tackle your exams and what to expect in different types of exams.
  • Ask the Librarians at the Library Helpdesk for help with finding textbooks, your course readings and planning your study time.
  • During exam period Study Solutions appointments are not bookable but you can still get one-to-one help. Just ask at the Library Helpdesk and we will arrange it for you. A Study Solutions staff member will be available from 9-5 Monday to Friday.

Look after yourself

Get some sleep, don’t forget your pencil and good luck!

Changes to level 1 at Gardens Point Library

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Construction Lego Mini figures by John Robb (CC by 2.0)

Work begins on consolidating past issues of QUT Library’s print journal collection from Tuesday 27 May 2014. The changes will mean Level 1 Gardens Point Library will be permanently inaccessible to staff and students.

To access past journal articles, complete a copy request form and articles will be delivered to you via email. If you’d like to browse and read current journals, come in to one of the branch libraries and grab a comfy chair.

  • Gardens Point has journals from the current and previous year.
  • Kelvin Grove has journals from the current and previous two years.

Elephants coming soon to QUT Library!

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National Simultaneous Storytime is an annual campaign which encourages the reading and enjoyment of books for young Australians with the simultaneous reading of an Australian children’s book at events across the country.

Join QUT Library’s special storytime event, the reading of Too Many Elephants In This House by Ursula Dubosarsky and illustrated by Andrew Joyner.

Time: 10:30am – 12:00pm

When: Wednesday 21 May

Where: Curriculum Collection, Kelvin Grove Library, D block, level 4

Readings by Adele Amorsen, Faculty of Education and School of Early Childhood students. We have lots of elephant activities too! We welcome all QUT staff and students, children, parents, grandparents and carers.

Going out on your teaching prac? Get the materials you need to wow your class

Harmonica class at St. Elizabeth’s Orphanage (public domain via Wikimedia Commons)

During May QUT Library is providing a special service to help education students prepare for their teaching fieldwork placements. Librarians specialising in education and curriculum will be available at a special hot desk in the Curriculum Collection:

Monday – Friday 4 – 6 pm, until May 16th

The Curriculum Collection is located on the fourth floor of Kelvin Grove library and includes everything from high school maths textbooks and teacher resource books to young adult fiction, posters and charts, children’s picture books and finger puppets.

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You can search for items in the collection using Quickfind and selecting Kelvin Grove Curriculum in the Available Copies refinement tool (see image). We have also made a guide to help you navigate the collection and find different types of resources.

And while the Curriculum Collection has been developed primarily for education students, all students (and staff) are welcome to visit and borrow items. Revisit the books of your childhood, or borrow something for your own children. Where’s Wally? is out at the moment (yes, I may have checked…) but Where’s Wally? in Hollywood is on the shelf…

 

World Book and Copyright Day

UNESCO celebrates World Book and Copyright Day on April 23, an annual event where libraries around the world promote reading and the enjoyment of books.

Copyright is closely linked with the book publishing industry but is also relevant to us all when we are looking for content to reuse in the things we create. It is important to give credit where credit is due and provide the correct attribution details when you use the words, images or ideas of someone else.

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Painting of a bison in the cave of Altamira by Rameessos (Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons)

When I am looking for free images to use in my work I like to use Google Advanced Image SearchFlickr Advanced Search or Wikimedia Commons. These tools allow you to limit to Creative Commons licensed or public domain content.  Creative Commons is an organisation that supports the sharing and use of creativity and knowledge and even has tools that make creating licenses for your own content easy.

These tools are good because they make it easy to find what you need without worrying about the complicated stuff.

 

 

QUT helps break down the digital divide

QUT is one of 300 libraries from 24 countries joining Knowledge Unlatched (KU) in support of a shared cost approach to Open Access publishing of specialist scholarly books.

Everyone, anywhere in the world can freely access the Knowledge Unlatched Pilot Collection of books from OAPEN, HathiTrust and the British Library. The collection of 28 new books is the first step in creating a sustainable route to Open Access for Humanities and Social Sciences books.

The Executive Director of Knowledge Unlatched, Francis Pinter says that “libraries and publishers can work together to fund the publication of high quality specialist scholarly books and make them Open Access. This ensures that in the digital world we are not just replicating the old print model, but that we can indeed do better and contribute to breaking down what is fast becoming a new digital divide.”

Contact Paula Callan, Scholarly Communications Librarian, for further details on Knowledge Unlatched, and for support with scholarly publishing and open access.

Finding online video for your study

I like reading as much as the next librarian but sometimes words on a page (or a screen) just aren’t enough. At uni reading textbooks is the usual way most of us learn about a new topic because they give us a broader theoretical overview of subject information. The next step is to learn how to put theory into practice. That’s where video can be helpful. Watch others demonstrate key skills such as counselling a client in a psychological setting, treating a patient in hospital, working with a class of school kids or performing live on stage.

 

QUT Library provides access to a range of online streaming videos that demonstrate all these professional scenarios and can be used for personal study by students, or for showing in workshops and lectures by academic staff.

The full range of online video resources is listed here. For academic staff, your liaison librarian can help you to identify relevant videos for teaching and to embed individual videos and video clips in Blackboard for students to view.

Managing your time

I don’t know about you but when I have a lot of different things going on at the same time it helps me to take a moment to stop, step back and think about the best way to tackle it all.

With O-week a distant memory, week two of semester wrapped up and everyone about to plunge head-long into week three people are busy:

  • wrapping up last week’s lecture notes
  • working out where to find course readings, lecture slides and lecture recordings on Blackboard for all their units
  • finding the textbook in the bookshop or library
  • meeting new people in class and catching up for study groups (or a drink)
  • starting to think about what assignments are coming up
  • preparing for the next lecture
  • jobs, toga parties, kids and life in general

Setting up a weekly and semester planner is a good way to set out (and remember) all your classes, workshops, labs, tutes, assignments, exams, shifts and deadlines. Sometimes I also like to sit down the night before a big day and make a daily To Do list to help me know where I have to be when, and what I have to have done. Be willing to be flexible in your plans but make sure you stay focused on what is most important.

And don’t forget to make time for yourself. Sit in a park and read a book. Drive down the coast and have a swim. Go for a walk along the river and eat an ice cream. Spending time away from study is a good balance to the time, stress and energy that you will be giving to the semester ahead.

Chat to a librarian online

library chat

Whether you are studying on campus, at home or at a café, QUT Library is available to help you. For the times when you need advice from a librarian but are not able to visit our Learning and Research Desks, we offer an online chat service, “Chat to a Librarian”.

You can chat in real time with a librarian during semester at these times:

  • Monday – Friday: 10am – 9:45pm
  • Weekends and Public Holidays: 12pm – 4:45pm

It’s easy to get started. Hit the chat button on the Library Home Page, fill in some basic information and you can start chatting with one of our friendly librarians.

You can use the chat service to get help with finding information for your assignment, assistance using databases, and advice on referencing.

If you need help outside the times that the chat service is open we have loads of information to help you anytime that you need it. To find the answers to some common Library questions try the AskQUT Library FAQ. For help with referencing try QUT cite|write and there are some great tips on assignment research and writing available on Studywell.

We look forward to talking with you soon.

QUT Library is social…

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Keep up to date with what’s happening in the library by following us on your favourite social media platform.

The Library tweets information about new resources, upcoming events, academic skills and general interestingness. If you have a Twitter account follow @qutlibrary to stay informed.

Our YouTube channel has a range of videos that will help you explore library resources and improve your study habits. There are videos on everything from finding a book on the shelf by call number to time management to referencing correctly.

The QUT Library blog (which is actually what you’re reading now) is a great place to find information that can help you as you progress through the semester. Our blog posts are designed to tie in with academic milestones, so you’ll want to visit the blog to get your exam study tips.

If you prefer to get your information visually then come and take a look at our Pinterest and Flickr pages. Our Pinterest boards are designed to provide you with some inspiration in your subject area and our Flickr sets let you see all the different library spaces.

QUT Library is in a variety of online spaces, so no matter where you are, come and have a look at what we have to offer.