So, learning to knit ISN’T going to help with my essay?

Procrastination-001 by  Ludie Cochrane (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Procrastination-001 by Ludie Cochrane (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Sorry procrastinators and those who thrive on the adrenaline rush of last-minute essay completion – the results are in and it’s not good news. A study out of the University of Warwick Business School has shown that students who hand in assignments at the last minute face a five per cent drop in marks when compared with those who submitted 24 hours or more before it was due.

The paper, Time of submission: An indicator of procrastination and a correlate of performance on undergraduate marketing assignments, which was presented at the European Marketing Academy conference investigated 504 first-year students’ and 273 third-year students’ end of term assignments

Work handed in ahead of schedule was far more likely to be awarded a distinction than work not handed in until much closer to the deadline. The average mark dropped by the hour until those handing in the paper at the last minute produced the worst results. Those that literally handed work in at the last minute could see as much as a five per cent drop on score, from 64.17 to 59.00 — taking them a whole grade lower.

Image provided by David Arnott and Scott Dacko, of Warwick Business School http://www.wbs.ac.uk/news/leaving-essays-to-the-last-minute-ruins-students-grades/

So what can you do about your procrastination habit?  How do you stop yourself from meandering into the depths of pointless activities, random hobbies (not that there isn’t value in knowing how to knit) and delaying the inevitable task ahead?

It’s all about time management.

  • The nifty QUT Library Assignment Calculator can keep you on track to complete an assignment with plenty of time to spare – including reminding you to take breaks and have some fun along the way!
  • For a more long-range view of how to manage your time across the semester, the QUT Library Semester & Weekly Planning guide can help you see at a glance what’s looming and help you juggle all your competing priorities.
  • For specific essay help, the Library Writing an Essay guide as well as our most popular resource, the Writing Structure Overview, specifically address the requirements of essay writing.

Also, check out our related QUT Library Blog post Writing great Assignments for more tips and save the knitting until semester break.

Strategic analysis at your fingertips

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Image courtesy of Elsevier : http://www.elsevier.com/online-tools/research-intelligence/products-and-services/scival

SciVal is a web-based strategic analysis tool that is based on Scopus data. SciVal makes it easier to analyse research performance at an individual, group or institutional level. It has three modules that offer quick, easy access to the research performance of 4600 research institutions and over 200 countries worldwide.

  • Overview module: You can get a high-level overview of the research performance of QUT and other institutions based on publications, citations, authors, research areas and collaborations.
  • Benchmarking module: You can determine your strengths and weaknesses by comparing performance metrics of researchers or defined research groups against those of other individual researchers, teams or institutions.
  • Collaboration module: You can identify and analyse existing and potential collaboration opportunities across the world. You can identify suitable collaboration partners for specified research areas and see who other researchers and institutions are collaborating with.

Recently, SciVal introduced new functionalities in their continuing efforts to simplify use of the database.  A few of the more interesting and noteworthy additions include:

  • You can now share entities (like a ‘group of researchers’) with other SciVal users at QUT.
  • It is much easier to define groups of researchers.  Previously, you had to define each researcher and then create your group.  You can now define your researcher and add them to the group – all in one step.
  • You can now assign tags to researchers or other entities you create.

Find out more at http://libguides.library.qut.edu.au/databases/scival

Contact your Liaison Librarian for further assistance.

Ahhhhh new book smell

So, who doesn’t love that giddying aroma of a new book?

For those that like to dig beneath the romanticism to some bare bones facts here is what you’re actually smelling: varying amounts of Vinyl acetate ethylene; alkyl ketene dimer and hydrogen peroxide just to name a few of the chemicals behind that addictive perfume.

In total, books will actually give off several hundred volatile organic compounds!

'The aroma of new books' By Compound Interest (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

‘The aroma of new books’ By Compound Interest (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

For a constant supply of New Books – and their smell- sign up to our monthly feed of new titles and be the first to know what’s new!

Happy National Science Week!

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“Don’t Try This At Home!” by Mark (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

Gardens Point Library will be running a series of activities from 18-22 August to celebrate National Science Week. There is an amazing display in the entrance of Gardens Point Library that includes puzzles, microscopes, anatomy models and molecular models.

There will also be a number of challenges and special presentations at various times, including an egg drop challenge, unmanned aerial vehicles, solar observing (outside) and engineering challenges (towers and bridges). All things that you can’t (or shouldn’t) just do at home! Many of the activities are being run by the STIMulate Team (maths, science and IT support for learning).

So, come along and take part!

Program of Activities 

      QUTLibrary_NatScienceWeek_2014 (Click for full page view)

 

QUT part of a winning formula to break down the digital divide

MKnowledge Unlatched (KU), proudly supported and partnered by QUT, is the 2014 winner of the IFLA/Brill Open Access Award.

Together with 300 libraries around the world, QUT works with KU to fund the publication of high quality specialist scholarly books and make them open access. Anyone, anywhere can freely access the KU Pilot Collection of books from OAPEN, HathiTrust and the British Library.

The IFLA/Brill Open Access Award was created in 2013 for initiatives in the area of open access monograph publishing. This year the jury voted unanimously for KU, recognising it as the most outstanding and game-changing initiative in the field.

The jury said that they are ‘deeply impressed with the simplicity and elegance of the original concept, with the daring scope of the project, bringing together libraries, publishers and other organisations from around the world, and with the highly successful outcome of the pilot phase that tested the concept’.

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

 

So, what’s YOUR favourite chemistry compound?

 

‘The Periodic table’ by Larry (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

 

Calling all Chemistry compound aficionado’s! Here’s your chance to give your love of Chemical compounds an outlet into the world and onto the big screen!

QUT’s latest project for The Cube is Chem World which aims to provide an inspiring and hands-on experience of chemistry and its fundamentals. Think rockets and fireworks. And you can be a part of it! Just tell them a bit about your favourite chemistry compound and suitable submissions will be included in the project. You’ll also be acknowledged on The Cube panel and will receive a VIP invite to the launch event. Chem World will be launched on Friday 15 August during National Science Week at QUT. More info and the online entry form can be found on The Cube’s Chem World page .

So get thinking and weighing up the pros and cons of your all time favourites.

And for those who are perhaps looking to start somewhere a little more basic, the Library’s Chemical Sciences Subject guide is a great introduction to the Library’s resources in this area.

Get ready for study

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New in Semester 2? Welcome! Returning after Semester 1? Welcome back!

Whether you are new to QUT or returning refreshed from break and ready to tackle another semester, QUT Library has plenty to offer you. Now is the time to:

We look forward to meeting you in the Library and helping you get off to a brilliant start!

Tips and tricks for the new look Quick Find

summon

Quick Find is a search tool which allows you to search across the QUT Library catalogue and a range of databases. It finds resources which are seamlessly accessible to you as a QUT student or staff member. quickfindReturning students may notice that Quick Find has a new look. Here’s what’s new with QUT’s Quick Find as well as some tips and tricks for how to use it.

What’s new?

  • Your selected search filters now stick when you change your search terms.
  • You can now filter results by study area, making it easier to find the most relevant resources.
  • Quick Find now suggests related topics.

Tips and tricks

Use the advanced search to create more detailed or specific searches. The advanced search is great if you already know some of the details of the resource you’re looking for, such as the author’s name or the publication date.

citeYou can save resources by clicking on the folder icon in the top right of each record. You can then access these resources in the saved items folder which can be found to the right of the search box and export or email them to yourself. This is a really handy way to keep track of useful resources.

Generate citations by clicking on ‘Cite’ in the preview pane, then selecting your referencing style of choice. This is a quick way of gathering all the information required for your reference list, but always make sure to double check the citation using CiteWrite to ensure it is correct.

 

Learn coding with the world’s best

As of June, 2014 C and Java are the two most popular programming languages in the world. With Java alone used by 9 million developers and many people trying to tap into the booming app market, there is no denying that learning programming languages is worth the challenge. Luckily, tech gurus (and coding newbies) love to share. It’s all about learning new tricks and remembering all the bits we’ve not used for months.There are tons of free, easy to access and learn-at-your-own-pace sites that make it possible for you to get started coding.

The Stack Overflow landing page: https://stackoverflow.com/

  • Stack Overflow – This is the place to ask the world your programming questions. It is in effect the greatest interactive programming FAQ. With over 7 million questions asked, if you can conceive of it, it’s probably been asked, answered, and curated by a community that rivals Wikipedia. Everything from conceptual understanding, to the most obscure and complex piece of code you’re ever likely to come across. Best bit? It’s 100% free. No strings.

The following are a bunch of great resources you can, and should, call upon when you embark upon your coding journey.

  • Code Academy is a great place to kick things off. It’s interactive and playful; learning while doing.
  • Khan Academy is one of the original non-profit MOOC’s for budding learners, made popular by their philosophy and expansive high quality content.
  • Code School is a marvellous site devoted to teaching a few specific languages. The pathways offered by Code School allow you to jump around and they link well with the more interactive Khan Academy lessons.
  • Lynda.com is a huge database available for QUT students and staff (others will need to pay to join) that provides a large array of videos for training. The section on coding offers hundreds of hours of content.
  • Coder Dojo is an international network of free coding schools for people of all ages. There is one in Brisbane – it’s the first in Australia!
  • HSBNE (Hacker Space Brisbane) is a wonderful conglomeration of interested parties with disparate skills but often overlapping interests. It’s a great place to tinker, bring your ideas to life and be part of a well-established social group that meets at regular events to learn new skills. This group is heavily focused on prototyping and engineering.

And in case you aren’t quite ready to lay down some code but are interested in how all this internet stuff works, then this video is for you: The Web Is Not The Net.

What’s a sanction and how do I deal with it?

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1865) By Sir John Tenniel (Public domain via Wikimedia Commons)

You thought everything this semester was done and dusted – but wait, what is that you see in your email inbox? A sanction! In all the rush to meet deadlines you may have forgotten to return some items to the Library. We’d like to make sure everything is available and ready for interested users.

So, what is a sanction?

  • When a Library item becomes 28 days overdue an academic sanction will be applied to your student record.
  • Sanctions prevent you from receiving examination results, graduating and obtaining academic transcripts.

What should I do?

  • To remove the sanction you need to either return the item or pay a replacement cost.
  • Replacement costs can be paid online by credit card via QUTPay, or in person at any QUT Branch Library, excluding the Law Library.

QUT Library is committed to ensuring equitable access to resources and we ask that you return or renew your items by their due date. You can renew them yourself by logging on to your My Library Profile on the QUT Library Website.

Full details about overdues, penalties and sanctions are available via the QUT Library website.