Library

30 August 2016

Why do citing and referencing and how not to freak out

It’s that time of the semester where lines start to form at the Research and Learning point. Many of the questions we get are about citing and referencing: “Do I need to include a reference for this?”, “Am I doing this correctly?”, “What on earth is ‘Turabian Style’?”. There’s no doubt citing and referencing can be confusing. Don’t freak out! Romany Manuell is here to help...

Why do I need to do it?
Well, I don’t want to make you panic, but when writing a piece of work at university, you actually have some pretty serious moral and legal responsibilities in terms of giving appropriate credit to the ideas of others.

Throughout your time at university, you will be developing your own “academic voice”. When you cite and reference correctly, your readers will be able to hear that voice, and see where you have used the work of experts to support your ideas. If you’ve integrated your sources well, it will also allow your readers to see how well you’ve understood the material, and if necessary, they will be able to track down the items you have mentioned. In a sense, you are also showing respect to those researchers who have come before you, as you are acknowledging their hard work by referring to it. Have a look at the Library’s Academic integrity modules - they contain examples of what to do, as well as what to avoid (e.g. remix and retweet plagiarism).

You can gain more understanding of citing and referencing by watching this video:

What do I need to do?
Firstly, you need to find out what style of referencing you should be using. This information is usually in the Unit Guide for your subject, but if in doubt, ask your tutor or lecturer. Common styles at Monash Uni include APA 6th, Harvard, and Chicago/Turabian (but many others are also used!). The Demystifying citing and referencing tutorial explains the basic principles behind all the different styles of citing and referencing, and is great if you’re feeling a little unsure or just want to test your knowledge.

How can I remember everything?
The Library fully understands how complicated citing and referencing is...particularly all the finicky formatting rules! We can’t remember every rule, and you’re certainly not expected to either. You’re going to have to look up the requirements of the style using the Library’s Citing & Referencing Library Guide and find the appropriate example to follow. You can also check out some faculty-specific resources, such as the Faculty of Business and Economics’ Q Manual, MADA Creative Integrity and FIT Academic Integrity.


There are some things you can do to make the citing and referencing experience a bit easier. To protect your privacy, the Library doesn’t keep a list of the items you’ve borrowed, so maintain your own list by using the e-Shelf in Search. Make sure you are logged in to Search, and click on the tiny star next to an item to add it to your e-Shelf:

Then, you’ll always have the details of the items you’ve used when it’s time to write up your Reference List or Bibliography! Even if you don’t use e-Shelf, try to keep your references organised right from the start by adding them to a Word document, or trying out a bibliographic software package such as EndNote.


You can always get help with citing and referencing from a Learning Skills Adviser or Librarian at your Library’s Research & Learning Point - you’ll find the listed times for your library here.

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23 August 2016

Assignment tips: how to use research and give it your voice

So you’ve done all your research and you’ve found a lot of great information, but how do you use it in your assignment while still presenting your own ideas? How can you toe the line between using the research for authority, while still having the assignment project your ‘voice’? This blog post will answer your questions!




Image: Pixabay, CCO Creative Commons licence
When writing an assignment, it’s no use simply summarising what all the experts out there think. The person who marks your assignment wants to know what argument you are putting forward, which will be supported by the research you have done. Be confident that what you have to say is important!

What are your thoughts?

The best place to start is by reading through the literature. When you read the author’s opinions, what do you think? Do you think “that sounds unfair” or “I totally agree with that”? Perhaps you think of something that hasn’t been addressed by any authors but is important to discuss. From these thoughts, you can start to develop what you are going to argue - this is called your ‘voice’.


However, it is important not to just waffle on about what you think without any support from experts and authoritative sources. What you say should be supported by what you have read, this gives your argument authority. Remember that your lecturers are experts in this field - they know what the literature says and probably even wrote some of it!


Organise those thoughts

Now you know what you want to say, and you have research to back up your opinion. It’s time to structure these ideas so that your ‘voice’ comes out clearly. Let’s look at some steps to success:
  1. The first sentence is called a topic sentence and sets the tone for the paragraph's main point. It should therefore reflect your voice and ideas. It’s usually not a good idea to begin a paragraph with someone else’s ideas. For example, you shouldn’t start with a quote.
  2. After you've written a topic sentence that states your point for the paragraph, you can now explain further. The resources you have found should be used as evidence to support your argument. The resources you are using to support your arguments and topic sentence must be relevant, as well as of high academic quality. Use the Library Guides in your subject area to direct you to academic databases and strategies rather than just relying on Google!
  3. Make sure to link this argument back to the main topic to bring it all together. You need to make it clear how your point is relevant to the overarching topic. Explain how your evidence supports your point, argument, or explanation.
  4. The dominant voice in each paragraph should be yours. You need to show that you are interpreting the research not just regurgitating it. If you start and end each paragraph with your points and ideas, you make your voice clearer.


Using the expert's thoughts

You have three choices when you want to incorporate information from another source. You can quote, paraphrase, or summarise.


  • Quoting should not be overused, as it shows the least amount of interpretation. If you do use quotes, make sure to explain them and what their relevance to your argument is.
  • Paraphrasing means you express the author’s ideas in your own words. It does not count if you copy over the quote and then change a few of the words to synonyms! Paraphrasing should demonstrate your understanding of what the author is saying. Writing out key ideas in your own words makes it less likely you will plagiarise and helps develop your own academic voice as well.
  • Summarising involves reducing the amount of words used by the author but still expressing their main points. You can add your own comments to provide analysis.


You can read more information about these techniques on the UNSW website.


For each of these techniques, you can introduce the author’s thoughts using ‘reporting verbs’, For example, “argued”, “claimed”, or “observed”. You can find a handy list of these online.


And of course, any sources you use in your assignment must be cited and referenced appropriately. This helps differentiate between what is your voice and what is from your resources, as well as avoiding plagiarism.


Don’t forget the friendly librarians and learning skills advisers at the research and learning point! Drop-ins are available if you have any questions on how to incorporate research into your assignments.

Image: Pixabay, CCO Creative Commons licence


Michelle De Aizpurua, Librarian
Emma Price, Learning Skills Adviser
Damian Gleeson, Learning Skills Adviser

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22 August 2016

Caulfield Library update: available study spaces and computers

The good news is large sections of levels 3 and 4 of Caulfield Library have been completed, and are now open for use. While new furniture is still to arrive, these areas offer an insight into what the interior will look like upon completion of the library’s refurbishment.



Architect's render of level 3 west 
From week 6, levels 1 and 2 (except for the entry) will be closed for construction. The entry into the library will be moved closer to the bridge link to Building K.

There has been a reduction in seating and student computers. There are currently 400 study seats and 70 computers, down from 750 and 160 respectively. Wireless and power are available in the library so it’s advisable to bring your own device.

Alternative study spaces

Check the alternative study spaces on campus, including the 24/7 computer labs.

For all students:

Building C Level 1 lounge = 140 spaces
Building T Level 1 Computer labs T125 and T126 = 60 spaces
Building S Level 2 Student lounge and Overseas Student Services lounge = 20 spaces
Building B Level 1 Monash Connect = 20 spaces
Building B Level 2 Foyer areas = 60 spaces
Building K Level 3 Foyer areas = NEW

For postgraduate students, there are spaces available via swipe card access:

Building C Postgraduate lounge = 120 spaces NEW
Building T Level 2 Labs and study spaces = 110 spaces
Building H Basement = 30 spaces
Building H Level 2 Syndicate rooms and casual seating = 55 spaces

Printing 

With reduced computer availability in Caulfield Library, a number of computers have been dedicated to express printing. Do plan ahead when you need to print something and especially when you are meeting a deadline. Expect a printing queue so allow sufficient time.

Service points and collections

The information point will be next to the new temporary entrance on level 2 and the research and learning point for drop-ins will be located on level 3. The collections will be housed on levels 3 and 4.


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15 August 2016

Strategies for efficient reading


It can be challenging to find enough time for all the reading you need to do at uni. However, by staying organised and using the right reading strategy, you can get more out of the time you have...
by Clinton Bell, Tami Castillo, and Damian Gleeson


Getting organised


Before you start, you should plan what you’re going to read. Some readings may be assigned by your lecturer, but you’ll also be expected to read independently for assessment tasks to revise or help you understand your subject.

Make a note of what you need to read, and set aside time to do so. Prioritise readings by importance as well as due date - some readings are essential, while others may be helpful but not strictly necessary. You should also work out how you will access the readings - it might be hard to borrow an important textbook just before an exam!

For many units, the Library publishes reading lists which can help you find and access your readings. If you sign in you can, make notes and mark off the ones you’ve completed. If you’re reading for an assessment, it’s a good idea to write down the publication details (title, authors, publication date, etc.) of what you’ve read. You’ll need them later for your reference list.

There are different ways to read a text, depending on what you want to get out of it. Usually you want to do one of three things: get a general understanding of a topic, find a specific piece of information, or learn something in detail. Using the right strategies for each can save you a lot of time!


Getting a general understanding

Sometimes you need to understand the general ideas behind something, but don’t need to know all the details. In this case you can skim over parts of the text instead of reading every word. You might also do this to help you decide whether you should take the time to read something in detail, for example when researching for an assignment.

Many texts provide an overview of the important ideas for you. Look for an introduction, abstract, or executive summary at the start, and a conclusion or summary at the end. You can also look at the section headings or table of contents to get an idea of what the text covers.

Another approach would be to read the first paragraph of each section and the first sentence or two of each paragraph. Usually the main idea of each section and paragraph is presented at the start, so this will let you get most of the meaning without getting into details.


Finding specific information

If you’re only looking for a specific piece of information, you don’t want to have to read a bunch of other stuff to find it. Fortunately, most texts have tools which help you skip to the information you need.

For most electronic documents, you can find a word or phrase by pressing Control+F on Windows or Command+F on a Mac. For paper textbooks, use the index at the back of the book to find the right page - it lists the concepts in the book with the pages they are mentioned on. If there’s no index use the table of contents and the section headings to find the right general area, then read in detail.
It may also help to use a reference work instead of your normal textbook. Reference works are designed for quickly looking up information, instead of reading from start to finish. Dictionaries and encyclopaedias are examples, but there but also more specialised reference works such as drug handbooks for nurses or databases of materials for engineers.


Learning content in detail

Often you will need to develop a detailed understanding of what you’ve read. In this case you do need to read all of the text carefully, but it can be useful to start by reading for general understanding, like we discussed above. Once you understand the concepts, you can go back and read more thoroughly - it’s easier to remember the details that way.

Detailed reading can take a long time, so make sure you plan for it. It’s also a good idea to set aside time to revise, since it’s hard to remember everything from one reading.

For more on the different reading styles, you can check out our quick study guide or have a look at these questions to help you build effective reading strategies from the ground up! You can also book into a Library workshop via the Library Class Booking System (search for ‘reading’ to find relevant workshops), or chat to a Learning skills adviser at your Library’s Research & Learning Point for more advice.


Happy reading!



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12 August 2016

Engage your students with high quality images

We live in an increasingly visual culture, where a powerful image can be an effective way to create engagement with teaching presentations and elearning content. A quick trawl of the web would suggest that loads of visual materials are available freely at your fingertips, but these may not necessarily be academically sound or of high quality. Carlie Nekrasov breaks down how to find images through the Library's database.

Some of the questions to ask before using a random image in an academic context include;
  1. What are the copyright requirements? i.e. what are the terms/conditions associated with using particular images?
  2. How do I cite and reference them?

There is a better way

Forget about attempting to navigate these questions via a Google Images search. The library provides access to hundreds of thousands of high resolution images within databases that have been copyright cleared for educational use (which means they can be used for teaching purposes or within moodle sites, just not in a wider context such as in publications and/or open access materials). We have also created a dedicated Digital Images Library Guide.


Once you bookmark these resources it becomes easier to source images for teaching purposes as you are not required to hunt down permissions and agreeable terms/conditions.




The Digital Images library guide is a whole guide dedicated to the use of images within the academic environment, so dive in and take a look here. It is a treasure trove for researchers and teachers, including information on image search engines, databases, open access images, citing images, tools for editing and how to comply with copyright.


Explore the library’s most extensive image databases:
ARTstor is a stellar image database containing an extensive collection of millions of images from 290 collections around the world. So if you are putting together a presentation on ancient cultures, ARTstor has you covered with a high resolution image of an ancient Egyptian mural painting circa 1400 B.C.


Other gems available via this database include; Kandinsky paintings, photographs of Andy Warhol’s brillo boxes and classical medieval manuscripts to name just a few. Along with arts subjects there is also access to images related to science and technology, geography, and many more subject areas. The keyword searching feature helps you to refine your results, and the easily exportable citations in various styles and functions enable you to use it with PowerPoint and embed image details with captions directly into your presentations.


Click here to explore the database.


Bridgeman Education provides access to over 1.2 million digital images ready for you to use and copyright cleared for educational use. Some of the subject areas include art, history and culture from global museums, galleries, private collections and contemporary artists.


Click here to explore the database.



Further help?

Contact the MADA Subject Librarian or the Copyright Advisor for further advice on where to find images and how to use them when creating academic materials.


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11 August 2016

Understanding altmetrics

Interested in gathering an overview of who is viewing, sharing and talking about your research within and beyond academia? Want to know how to use this knowledge to improve your reach and possible engagement? Cassandra Freeman explains how altmetrics can help your research reach further.



What are altmetrics? 

Altmetrics have evolved from measures of scholarly impact based on author and article citation counts and journal impact factor, known as Bibliometrics. It began with the introduction of article level metrics by PLOS (Public Library of Science) in 2006, to recognise that scholarly communication was changing as academics were moving into an online environment and engaging more with social media. As a result, impact should be measured at the article level with views, downloads, mentions and shares of an article tracked and shown in addition to citation counts. 

The term altmetrics, a shortening of “alternative” metrics, was first used in a 2010 tweet by Jason Priem, a doctoral student who went on to co-found one of the main altmetrics tracking services, Impactstory. Priem liked the emphasis placed on article level metrics, but felt it still did not recognise that academics produce a diverse range of research outputs in addition to journal articles, and the dissemination and online engagement with these outputs should also be tracked and counted.  Altmetrics, therefore, can be used to mean “Impact measured based on online activity, mined or gathered from online tools and social media”, or metrics for alternative scholarly outputs.


Where can you view altmetrics?

It can take time to utilise the tools to gather all the metrics associated with a research output, and to get an overview and analyse the numbers from so many sources. Publishers and companies that provide products for academic institutions now offer this service. Currently, there are three main tracking services. Two of these are Altmetric.com and PlumAnalytics, commercial products that offer more detailed analytics of altmetrics for academic institutions and researchers for a subscription fee. EBSCO PlumAnalytics categorise their metrics into 5 main categories of usage, captures, mentions, social media, and citations. Basic information provided by the Plum widget for articles can be freely viewed in the CINAHL and Business Source complete database.

Altmetric.com is a product of the Digital Science publishing company, who also developed the secure repository service recently launched at Monash called Figshare. The repository is key to the availability and discoverability of research outputs, as not only journal articles can be deposited and made public (if publisher compliant) but also videos, slides, data, posters etc. which if the researcher chooses to make public are given a citable DOI (digital object identifier). It is the identifiers that can then be tracked for mentions, shares and usage across social media platforms.

Monash.figshare users can now also view the Altmetric.com badge ‘donut’ on their dashboard to view the altmetrics of any of their publicly viewable research outputs. The donut provides a weighted score, based on volume, sources and author. For a detailed explanation of the donut read more here


The Altmetric.com badge is a free tool that can also be embedded into a researcher’s own personal webpage, and the free Altmetric bookmarklet  can be added to a browser so that anyone can view the altmetrics of any research output with a permanent identifier. Some e-journals and online databases including Wiley online, Springer and Taylor & Francis, also have the Altmetric badge next to selected article results. The Monash Library Search has a Metrics tab using the donut for articles with participating publishers and a DOI.  Almetric.com has also recently launched the badge for books and chapters.

The third company is a service called Impactstory, co-founded by Jason Priem, mentioned above. Researchers can now join for free with their ORCiD. Described as a hybrid research service, it provides researchers with a profile page and can also be linked to other accounts such as a Google Scholar profile and ORCiD for automatic import. Once a profile has been created, researchers can manually add the URLS of any videos they have produced, link to webpages, or add the DOI of articles they have published. Impactstory will then track their research outputs and update the altmetrics associated with them.

Another free service called Kudos has been gaining more attention, and recently signed an agreement with SAGE publishing to assist their authors with the dissemination of their research. Kudos provides authors with trackable links to their articles and also provides a platform for researchers to use plain language to explain their work. An example of how they do this can be viewed here.

Altmetrics are reliant on discoverability, correct attribution and promotion. Ensure you register for an ORCiD to create your own unique researcher identifier, publish open access, deposit your research outputs in monash.figshare, and make them public if possible. Develop an online profile and think about a social media strategy to start promoting your research. Think about using the free Altmetric.com tools to see who is already sharing your research for possible collaboration or targeting policy makers.

Altmetrics are not a replacement of traditional research impact measurement tools, rather they can be used in addition to other metrics. For more information about altmetrics and measurement tools, see the Monash Research impact and publishing library guide.

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Further reading:

http://altmetrics.org/manifesto/

What constitutes valuable scholarship? The use of altmetrics in promotion and tenure.
EDUCAUSE Review 51, no. 2 (March/April 2016)

Policy impact and online attention: Tracking the path from research to public policy on the social web.
LSE Blog

Social Media Metrics in Scholarly Communication Exploring tweets, blogs, likes and other altmetrics
Special issue of Aslib Journal of Information Management:

Images:
Photo 1: KROMKRATHOG Freedigitalphotos.net
Monash Library Search record


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10 August 2016

Academic resources: Navigating the databases


Your assessments take all kinds of different forms - variety is the spice of life, after all! The requirements can sometimes seem a little confusing - especially if one assessment asks you to use ‘academic’ sources, another ‘scholarly’ sources, and a third ‘refereed’ sources. What do all these terms mean? And where can you find such sources? The Library's Romney Adams is here to untangle the terminology, and hone your detective skills...

First of all: ‘Academic’, ‘Scholarly’, and ‘Refereed’ sources all mean the same thing. Remember how I mentioned that variety is the spice of life? These three terms just mean that your lecturer or tutor are after sources that have undergone something called Peer Review. This is a strict editorial process which ensures material published in academic journals is of a high standard, and suitable for others (such as yourself!) to cite and use in your own research and writing. If you'd like to know more about what Peer Review actually involves, check out this short video from North Carolina State University (it features dinosaurs!). When people speak about academic sources, people often think primarily of journal articles. But books can also be academic sources. Many students enjoy the convenience of being able to access and read journal articles online, but academic books can also be a great resource - particularly if you're new to a discipline, or unfamiliar with a certain area of research. However, textbooks are not typically used as evidence (in-text citations) to support arguments in your assessments. Of course, each of Monash’s libraries house thousands of physical books on our shelves, but many are also available as eBooks, which you can read online. Ask at your Library’s Information Point if you're unsure how to use Search to find eBooks, and check out this video to build your skills in being able to determine whether the source you’re using is an academic resource. If you like, you can test your knowledge with this interactive tutorial.
Nothing in life is free, and the same is true for journal articles (well, unless it’s published in an Open Access journal). Have you ever found the perfect article for your assessment in Google Scholar, only to be asked to pay to read it? It's very annoying, but the good news is that as students of Monash, the Library pays the access fees for you!
We subscribe to literally thousands of databases which give you access to academic collections, including journal articles and eBooks. With so many databases to choose from, it can be tricky to know where to start - but don't be overwhelmed! To ease into things, use Library Search, our resource discovery tool which searches our physical and online collections. You should be able to find some great academic resources to get you started, and when you're ready to build on this, you can start searching individual databases. Databases hold discipline-specific resources, and are reviewed and updated by your Subject Librarians and Electronic Access Librarians throughout the year, so you can be sure you'll be searching (and retrieving!) the content that is most useful for you. We love databases so much, that we even blog about them sometimes!
We suggest starting with Search, but it doesn’t retrieve results from every single resource we subscribe to, so make sure you’re researching thoroughly by searching directly in databases too. To determine which databases will be useful for you to use, head to the Library Guide for your discipline (e.g. Biology, History, Commercial Law).


Search and our subscribed databases hold a variety of resources - not all of them are academic, so it is important you build your skills in information evaluation to make sure you’re using the right materials to support your own arguments and claims in your assessments. Review the clip embedded above to get started, or chat to a librarian at your Library’s Research & Learning Point - they’ll be able to put you on the right track! Or, if you want to go more in-depth, check the Library Class Booking System for workshops on effective searching.
Photo 1 from: https://www.pexels.com/photo/startup-planning-notes-mac-book-7357/Photo 2: Screenshot from following video: http://www.monash.edu/library/transforming-libraries/matheson-video



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Caulfield Library works advance to next stage


Preparations for the next stage of the Caulfield Library redevelopment are now underway and the whole project is well on track to be completed by the start of semester 1, 2017.



By week 6 of this semester, study spaces in the completed section of level 3 will be available to students, in addition to the spaces on level 4.

However, it is unavoidable that there will be disruption to study spaces on other levels, as well as the collections and the service points from 15 August until 26 August.

The entry into the Library will remain on the level 2 walkway but is moving approximately 10 meters to the west closer to the bridge link to Building K.


  • Levels 1 and 2 (except for the entry) will be closed for construction.
  • The information point will be relocated next to the new temporary entrance on level 2.
  • The research and learning point will be located on level 3 (at head of stairs).
  • Collections will be housed on levels 3 and 4.
  • The lift will be available only for users with mobility issues during this time.

Library staff are available to assist at the information point. Temporary way finding signage is also in place.

In case of an emergency, library users are advised to use the signed emergency exits to the west of levels 3 and 4 rather than going down the central stairs


Check alternative study spaces open to all students:

  • Building C Level 1 lounge = 140 spaces
  • Building T Level 1 Computer labs T125 and T126 = 60 spaces
  • Building S Level 2 Student lounge and Overseas Student Services lounge = 20 spaces
  • Building B Level 1 Monash Connect = 20 spaces
  • Building B Level 2 Foyer areas = 60 spaces

For postgraduate students, there are spaces available via swipe card access:
  • Building C Postgraduate lounge - NEW = 120 spaces
  • Building T Level 2 Labs and study spaces = 110 spaces
  • Building T Basement = 30 spaces
  • Building H Level 2 Syndicate rooms and casual seating = 55 spaces








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9 August 2016

Navigating the new Matheson: A student's perspective



As we are all aware, the Matheson Library is currently undergoing refurbishment, and while various updates are still in the works, this semester the library boasts a host of changes. I am a student at Monash and doing some casual work at the Matheson Library. Let me give you a guide to the new facility...by Jamie Julian

Access
Access to the library has changed significantly while the refurbishment works continue through semester 2. The most important thing to note is that there is only one entrance and exit. This is located on the Robert Blackwood side of the building and takes you into the lower ground level. Painful as it is, we must go around.
Once you’re in, to access the General Collection where most books are, the two elevators on the South side (on the left as you enter) are operational from lower ground up to levels 2-5. However, if you are of the more impatient type (like myself), there is also a set of stairs in the corner behind the new Mac and PC section that renders entry to ground level as well as general collection levels 2-5.
Accessing the North side (to the right as you enter) for printing, music and multimedia, serials and various other sections is a bit more of an issue. There is only one functioning lift and the main staircase is currently being rebuilt. Nevertheless, from lower ground level there is yet another set of stairs hiding behind the new hot and cold water station. From here, you can access levels ground, 1 and 2.
When accessing the ground floor on the north side, remember to keep an eye out for events happening in the brand new gallery area. On the ground floor there is a gallery that the library is using to hold events and, in the future, to mount exhibitions. The gallery can be used by students if it’s not booked for an event. I have had two close calls of almost walking right through the middle of an event, but no serious incidents yet. Make sure you read the sign on the door before entering!  
If this all seems a bit confusing, then don’t stress! Shortly, the library will have digital wayfinders. They’re huge screens with yellow - er, bronze, frames so you won’t be able to miss them. From these you can look up the quickest route to your intended destination and be able to find whatever you need.


Printing
Printing is  a well-known nightmare when it doesn’t work! With the newly refurbished areas, there is currently operational printing on the ground and second floors on the North side (the system is extremely temperamental, so I use the term operational somewhat loosely). On lower ground, the PCs should be connected to the printers in the next couple of weeks. It is important to note here that you will not be able to print from the Macs  until the new printing service is installed in 3 – 6 months, so make sure you hop onto a PC to print!
For students wishing to print in colour, there is only one colour printer located on the ground floor. Also you must manually select the colour printer option to print in colour.
One benefit of the current printing system is that when you send a job to print, it is sent to all of the print stations. This means you can collect your print job from either the lower ground, ground or second floor printers. So if there is a queue for one, I usually knick up to another and hope there is no one using it (I recommend second floor as it’s the quietest).
Last thing about printing is, it’s not free! 12c for one black and white page, and 50c for colour. To top up money on your student card, you do so at the autoloader machines on the lower ground floor near the South side elevators (back left corner). There are also staplers and some other useful resources in the same area.
I found printing to be quite a process the first time, but straightforward and extremely useful after you’ve done it once. Also, remember, if you are ever having trouble, ask the Library staff at the information desk near the entrance.


Drop-in sessions
The Research & Learning point for daily drop-ins with the librarians and learning skills advisers is now on ground level in a fresh, newly-developed space. Drop-ins run every day from 11am-3pm. Make the most of it whilst it is still relatively quiet!

IMG_4803.JPG
The new Research & Learning Point on the Ground floor

Study spaces
The most tangible difference between the old Matheson and the new, is the study space created on the lower ground floor. Do any of you past students remember the dingy old basement? Forget it. The new basement has completely transformed the atmosphere of the library, with new group study spaces and discussion rooms available for you to book. Furthermore, the slight difficulty in access to the Matheson also means that there is a good chance you will always find a spot for you or your group to study. Individual and shared study areas are spread throughout the entire library, the majority of which now have multiple power points installed for all your charging requirements. There are many more PCs and the library now offers desktop Macs. Amazing!


A few exciting additions on the way
  • New self-loan machines are currently being installed. No more queuing!
  • Wireless printing will save everybody the stress of finding a PC. This is coming after the exams.
  • And the café! This one could not come soon enough. A café will stand on the left-hand side of the (real) entrance to the library which will mean you can buy a nice coffee without having to leave the library.


Final parting tips
  • The self-loan machines were already pretty great, and the new ones are even better. However, make sure the spine of the book is pressed up against the side when scanning it in, otherwise the book is not desensitised and it will trigger the security barriers on your way out.
  • If the book you have borrowed does not have a 2016 overnight, 7-day or 14-day loan sticker on it, it will automatically renew for up to one year unless someone requests the book. So check your emails!
  • Fines do not need to be paid until they exceed $25.


Evidently, there are a myriad of changes taking place at Matheson. If you haven’t had time to keep abreast of what’s been happening, then hopefully this post will have been helpful!
I hope everybody finds the library as useful as I do! Good luck, and enjoy the new spaces!


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About the Blog

Welcome to the Monash University Library blog. Whether you are engaged in learning, teaching or research activities, the Library and its range of programs, activities and resources will contribute to your success. Here you will find useful information, ideas, tips and inspiration. Your comments on any of the articles are welcome.

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