Library

Showing posts with label study. Show all posts
Showing posts with label study. Show all posts

15 August 2017

Attention postgrads! Your guide to specialised Library expertise

Postgraduate study is exciting, but challenging too - it requires you to step up your skills to reap the rewards. Librarian Romney Adams assures us that specialist library expertise is available.


If you’ve studied at Monash as an undergrad, you may be aware of some of what the Library has to offer. But did you know we have a whole variety of expertise and resources available just for postgrads? 

Firstly, don’t worry if you’re undertaking your studies by coursework, or research - all of the resources I’ll mention are available to all of our postgrads.

Although you may be studying by coursework, you’ll usually have some kind of research component to your degree - and while the Library has access to literally millions of items for you to use, sometimes we just don’t have that one paper that could inform your research. If that’s the case, never fear - our Document Delivery team is ready to go! Staff in this area will investigate getting the material you require from another institution - either within Australia, or overseas. This small group is the friend of many a researcher - simply fill out the document delivery form, and they’ll handle the rest!

You may know about our Research & Learning Point, where you can chat to a Librarian or Learning Skills Adviser for 10-15 minutes to get insight into the research and structure of your work. For postgrads, this offer goes a little further. If you’d like to have a more in-depth chat about your work, email your Subject Librarian or Learning Skills Adviser and ask for a consultation. These usually last between 30-60 minutes, and will give you the chance to discuss your work with a professional who has expertise in your area. They’ll be able to work with you to determine a good search strategy, some useful databases for you to use, and can usually offer a different approach to your research that you may not have considered. Or perhaps it’s your written communication you wish to fine-tune? We can also talk to you about refining your argumentation, structuring your work, and improving your synthesis of information. Not sure who your Subject Librarian or Learning Skills Adviser is? You can find a list of contacts on the Library website, or ask at your Library’s Information Point.

If your degree is research-focused, have a look at the Graduate Research Library Guide, which gives you a fantastic overview of and introduction to the work you’ll need to undertake over the course of your degree. This includes information about conducting your literature review, communicating your research, and managing your research data. Keep an eye out in myDevelopment for Library-run Graduate Education Workshops to register for as well. We really are here to work with you every step of the way!

We have some faculty- or discipline-specific resources available too, most notably the Systematic Review Library Guide. Systematic reviews are complex, and therefore a little daunting, but this Guide has been developed by staff from the Medicine, Nursing, and Health Sciences (MNHS) team, and contain a wealth of information to take you through the steps. Not in MNHS? Ask your Librarian if there are any specific postgrad resources available for your faculty.

Enjoy your time as a postgraduate at Monash - and make full use of the Library’s specialised expertise while you’re with us.

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1 August 2017

All about the Research and Learning Point


Did you know there is a desk at every library, where you can talk about your assignments with knowledgeable staff? By Romney Adams, Clinton Bell, Romany Manuell and Bei-En Zou



It’s called the Research and Learning Point, and the opening hours for each library branch can be found here. Note that from Week 4, evening drop-ins until 7pm are offered at Hargrave-Andrew and Matheson libraries.

This service point is different from the Information Point where Library staff loan you books or assist you with printing. The Research and Learning Point is staffed by librarians and learning skills advisers, who are experts in researching information and presenting it effectively.

Best of all? You don’t need to make an appointment. Just drop in after catching up with friends, on your way to grab coffee, or in-between classes! We’ll work with you for up to 15 minutes, and make sure you’re on the right track… just be sure to bring the assignment sheet, and/or a copy of your work with you.

So, what are some of the queries librarians and learning skills adviser handle? Let’s ask them now...

What can you ask a librarian?


Librarians get asked a lot of questions! The most common questions have to do with finding high-quality, authoritative information. Maybe you’re working on an assignment and can’t seem to find a journal article on your topic. Or, maybe what you’re looking for is in a book you never knew existed! Librarians can talk to you about the keywords you’re using, and can suggest places you might like to look (in databases, or on the shelves).

Librarians are also referencing experts! We can help you with your reference list and talk you through some of the finer points of the different referencing styles.

What can you ask a learning skills adviser?

Not sure how to get started on that essay? Wondering how to best structure your assignment? Need some tips for the oral presentation that’s coming up? Wanting to get better results and manage your study time more effectively? Learning skills advisers are here to assist you in developing your skills in all aspects of your academic work! No matter what style of assessment you have, we can show you the way to plan your approach - we even have some tips for exam preparation.

We’re not all about assessments though. As well as time management tips, we can also work with you to develop your critical thinking, note-taking, and effective reading skills, which will be beneficial to you throughout your degree!

What’s available online?


If you can’t make it to a Research and Learning Point, don’t worry! Through Research and Learning Online you can find information and interactive tutorials on study skills, doing assignments, and graduate research and writing, as well as examples of assignments from each faculty. If you're in a hurry, there are also Quick Study Guides you can print out.

Our Library Guides webpage also has a lot of useful information, including the popular citing and referencing guide, which gives examples of correct references in many of the styles used at Monash. You can also find lists of important databases and journals for your study area, as well as guides to Turnitin and EndNote.

So, visit your Research and Learning experts - in person or online - before the assessment crunch begins!




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31 July 2017

Beyond Google

Many students get into the habit of turning to Google when they need information for their assignments and it's not a bad place to start if you need an idea or two. The problems begin when you start using such general information to inform a university assignment, says librarian Sophie Wright.  


Much of what Google has to offer just will not be good enough. In addition, as with anything you find on a Google Search, the information you read could be fake. You need well-researched scholarly sources, such as academic books and journal articles in order to write from an academic perspective.


How do I find better information?

You may ask: but where do I find this information? And how do I navigate my way through the thousands of results returned in Search or databases to find resources specifically on my topic? This is a librarian's area of expertise and we are here to support you in this journey.

Being smart about how you go about locating resources for your assessment has many benefits. The main one is the hours (potentially hundreds over a standard Bachelor's degree) that you will save if you choose to invest just an hour or two learning some tips and tricks for information searching. Secondly, you will increase your marks. Your lecturer will be looking very carefully to see what you have read to inform your arguments and conclusions in your written work. Sometimes you will be expected to pay close attention to prescribed readings from your reading list. Other times, you will be expected to locate your own resources.

Can I take a class?


There is a bit to do here - but do not fear we've got you covered. Firstly, please come along to a free class run by the Library called Beyond Google. This class will teach you the basics to get you up and running and finding the resources you need straightaway. We'll take you through it step by step and answer all your questions.

Alternatively, we have prepared some Quick Study Guides to help you on you way. If you are an online student you would gain a lot from completing our tutorial on Developing a Search Strategy.

Remember, librarians are available at the drop-in sessions Monday to Friday to answer any specific questions you have as well. In many academic courses we offer programs in consultation with the lecturer which cover finding information as part of the curriculum. We also have other free classes running in the library to help you, depending on your study needs. We look forward to meeting you soon!

In summary- some options for you:

Beyond Google: Classes on searching & databases - Sign up here

Quick Study guides on the library website - Here

Online tutorial on developing a search strategy - Here

Attend a 15 minute drop-in with a librarian - At these times / places

Attend another class on study skills in the library - Sign up here

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24 July 2017

Time management tips: How to get organised

Juggling readings, assignments and revision can be one of the most challenging parts of university. Here’s how to get organised and make the most out of your time! By Clinton Bell


You probably already know procrastination is a bad idea. If you put off doing assignments or don’t revise regularly, it’s easy to fall behind and end up with way too much stuff to catch up on. Unfortunately, even if you know you should study, it can be difficult to make yourself do it - especially if you’re busy with other things.

If you find yourself struggling to make time for study, or you feel like you just have way too much going on, try planning your time with a study schedule! There’s an example of how to make one on the library website.

Making a schedule has several benefits:
  • It helps you work out how much time you have, and plan your study around your work, social life, and other commitments
  • It’s easier to keep track of tasks and due dates if you have them all written down in one place
  • You’re less likely to procrastinate if study is a regular part of your routine. Scheduling study in advance can also make you feel more committed to actually doing it
  • Having a plan can help you feel less stressed and more in control of your study.
When making your schedule it’s important to prioritise. Consider how important things are as well as when they’re due - if an assignment is worth a lot of marks you’ll probably need to spend more time on it. If you need to do something which requires other people, special facilities or equipment, you may also need to work around when those things are available.

For large assignments, it can be helpful to split the task into smaller goals. For example, you might aim to write one paragraph of an essay each night. Splitting the task into chunks can make it less intimidating to get started, and can also help you stress less - if you’re meeting your goals you know you’re on track to get the assignment done.

As well as planning your time, it’s important to use it effectively. Using good study methods and improving your skills can give you better results in less time:
Time management can be challenging, but with good planning and study skills you can get everything done on time. So best of luck with your study in semester 2 - and remember, come see us at a drop-in session if you need help!




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17 July 2017

Kashgar: a digital exhibition


John Gollings, 2005 Kashgar Old City
New technology has enhanced an evocative exhibition at Matheson Library.


Arts, the Library, and an IT student have come together to present a digital exhibition of original photographs, enhanced with new technology, to welcome the viewer into a remote part of China.

Kashgar is an exhibition of evocative photos by Australian photographer John Gollings, collected as part of a Monash Asia Institute international research project to document, measure, and define the most significant cultural monuments and spaces of Kashgar in Western China.

Gollings’ photographs lead the audience on a personal journey through China’s largest oasis city, nestled between sun-scorched deserts and towering mountain peaks, where the long-distance trade routes of numerous old Silk Roads once converged. A constant feed of tradeable goods, merging cultures and varying religions kept the thriving markets of Kashgar alive for thousands of years, now for you to experience through a selection of photographs from the Library’s John Gollings’ Kashgar collection.

Visitors to the Library can continue their exploration of this ancient city on their mobile devices by accessing an interactive tour of the region, thanks to content created by Information Technology student Vinu Alwis. Access the interactive experience by scanning this code with the free Zappar app. Here you can access additional photos, insightful videos, and descriptions of Kashgar city and surrounding towns.

David Groenewegen, the Library’s Director, Research, said that the Library was delighted to have the opportunity to work with a student to help expand access to the amazing materials collected by this project. Innovative digital techniques and apps have the potential to help libraries and other cultural institutions grow awareness of their collections.

The exhibition will be on display at the Sir Louis Matheson Library, Clayton until December this year.

Get a taste of the exhibition with this video of project director Marika Vicziany and John Gollings recounting their experiences of Kashgar.


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4 July 2017

Welcome to all new students

Hello to those who are newly enrolled. We hope you are looking forward to your time at University, despite the cold weather we are experiencing at the moment.


If you're new to Monash, we've put together the Library orientation guide to give you the basics about using the Library.  You will also find Library activities in the Orientation planner.

But first, some interesting facts: did you know that research shows that students who use the Library achieve better results than those who don't? [1]

At Monash 79% of students who used the Library achieved at least a Distinction, based on students' best estimates of their academic results. In the user survey, “Library use” meant either coming in to the Library or accessing it online daily or 2-4 days a week. [2]


Study spaces and facilities

New students will find that they are using smart refurbished areas with facilities like bookable discussion rooms for group projects and study, in the Caulfield and Matheson libraries. 

At Caulfield some inconvenience may apply until the building project is finalised. At present you will enter the library from the arcade level 1 between Buildings A and B (opposite Monash Connect), but very soon the main entrance facing the Caulfield Green will be open.
    
Programs, resources and activities
As well as working with you in your courses and units, we provide a range of programs and drop-in sessions related to your assignments and other tasks. Drop-ins begin from Week 2.

We’ve developed a new Research and Learning Online site as your gateway to the Library’s online learning materials. Check it out to access online modules such as academic integrity, citing and referencing, and more.

Visit the Students’ page for a complete list of Library programs, resources and activities.

Don’t forget to check this blog for useful articles with tips and advice for your study. You can also find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.


1   Soria, K. M., Fransen, J., & Nackerud, S. (2013). Library use and undergraduate student outcomes: New evidence for students’ retention and academic success.  Portal : Libraries and the Academy, 13(2), 147-164.  

2  2015 Monash University Library User survey

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6 June 2017

500 additional seats opened at Caulfield Library

As exam study intensifies, nearly 500 additional seats have been made available at Caulfield Library. 



New areas on levels 3 and 4 at Caulfield Library have been completed and opened up to students, adding 500 seats to what was already available earlier in the semester.

Almost all of the planned total 1500 seats will be available for study and research by the middle of June.

By 16 June it is anticipated that new level 2 discussion rooms and the area where the research and learning point is will be available. This will provide approximately another 140 seats. By this time all areas in the library, including the informal study areas and teaching rooms at the north end, will be accessible via the one temporary entrance across from Monash Connect.

When the building works are completed, Caulfield Library will have doubled its pre-refurbishment seating capacity from 750 to 1500 seats, offering a range of spaces for quiet study, collaboration and interactive teaching.

For exam study, other locations at Caulfield campus are available and are listed below for your convenience. If you find that a room or area listed here is not accessible please find other alternatives.







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26 May 2017

Matheson Library turns a new page

The Sir Louis Matheson Library on Clayton campus has reopened from a stunning western entrance via the Forum. All study spaces are now available to students.


We celebrated the reopening of the Sir Louis Matheson Library on 23 May, completing its transformation into a modern, vibrant and stimulating learning and research environment.

President and Vice-Chancellor, Professor Margaret Gardner AO, said the refurbishment of the Matheson Library had reinvigorated the heart of the Clayton campus.

"So many of our alumni recall the Matheson Library as the site for where they spent their most formative and rewarding hours as students," Professor Gardner said.

"The Sir Louis Matheson Library is a cornerstone of the University and its transformation is of tremendous importance in our Clayton campus's academic, cultural and community life."

A key feature of the Clayton Campus Masterplan, the new-look library boasts a long list of benefits, including:
  • a welcoming and inspiring new entrance
  • improved navigation throughout the three buildings
  • four teaching spaces with a combined capacity for 200 students
  • a range of individual and collaborative study areas, with an overall 15% increase in seating to 1620 seats
  • technology-rich study areas, including 240 computers (67 are 27-inch iMacs and a range of laptops)
  • 20 bookable discussion rooms
  • Wi-Fi, powered workstations, and digital wayfinding pointing students to available study spaces.
University Librarian Cathrine Harboe-Ree said the completion of the refurbishment marks the culmination of a journey.

"We set out to create a welcoming, inspiring and enabling facility for first-class scholarship at Monash. We are already hearing that staff and students agree we have achieved that," Ms Harboe-Ree said.

The design of the Library spaces is enhanced by an eclectic array of artwork from the University's collection, exhibition and function capacity, a digital wall to showcase Monash research activity and an in-library café.

Attending the reopening was His Royal Highness Prince Sisowath Tesso of Cambodia, representing the King of Cambodia. The Matheson Library's Asian Collections have substantial holdings from former King Norodom Sihanouk's personal archive -- an invaluable research resource.

The new-look Matheson Library will welcome over 10,000 visitors a day, complementing daily online activity of over 80,000 accesses and downloads of Monash University Library's electronic resources.








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25 May 2017

Where to find a study space at Clayton

Our three libraries at Clayton campus together offer the largest number and range of study spaces and they're open longer during Swot Vac and exams. But there are many more alternative areas available on campus. Check the list below.



We anticipate an increased demand for quiet study spaces on campus during the Swot Vac and exam period.

Refurbishment of Sir Louis Matheson Library has finished and the library has been reopend. New areas are proving very  popular among students.

Our Law and Hargrave-Andrew libraries have more seating and are open from 10am to 5pm on weekends.

In addition, Hargrave-Andrew Library will be open until 2am Monday to Thursday beginning 29 May until 23 June.

There are many more alternative areas available on campus. Check the list below.


In addition the following informal study spaces (non-bookable) are available to all students:
  • There are the lecture theatres foyers that have been set up with chairs and tables for study
  • Faculty Student Common Rooms
Monash Student Association are offering free tea and coffee in the Airport Lounge.

Clayton campus study spaces may be viewed on the Clayton campus map.

You may also want to check out '200 more study seats now available at Caulfield Library'.

Additional study spaces are also available at our other campus libraries. These include:
Berwick Library (120 spaces)
Peninsula Library (250 spaces)
CL Butchers Pharmacy Library at Parkville (120 spaces)

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Some revelations for effectively studying for exams

Want to ensure your study is effective? Learning Skills Adviser Roland Clements has a few pointers.


The rule for studying for exams is to study for understanding ... not just to get good grades! Be kind to yourself. Tell yourself: “I can do this” and think about the following...

What subjects should I start with?

Start with the material you like. Before you delve into a subject, a quick read of the entire topic is a great idea. Go through the relevant texts and notes to refresh your memory. Once you understand the scope of your subject, you can focus on the details. So start with the material you like, and then move on to the more challenging parts that require extra work.

Group or individual study?


Why not both? Here are a few pointers:
  • Firstly, all the group members should study independently. Once you all grasp the fundamentals of your subject, you can revise as a group, so that everyone is on the same page.
  • It might help to take turns teaching others what you have learnt. Be prepared to ask questions and to challenge each other. Studying this way also prepares you for later life and teaches you the value of collaboration and the effectiveness of collective effort to achieve a target.
  • Even if you chose to study by yourself, take some time to teach others, this will help clarify and retain the subject matter you are studying.
  • Have fun and laugh, but make sure you all get back to the work at hand.

Should I study for long periods of time?

It’s a good idea to work for an hour at a time. If you start to feel tired before an hour, then you need to discipline yourself and gradually build it up to an hour. Here is a structure of a one hour model:
  • 5 minutes: Prepare (what will I study now? How will I study?)
  • 45 minutes: Study (revise, synthesise, practice)
  • 5 minutes: Review (what did I learn?)
  • 5 minutes: Refresh (stand, stretch)
Do something you really enjoy and then come back to work. You will find you can go on like this for quite a while.

Some handy tips:
  1. Find a spot that you find comfortable and start work - the library is a good choice, as there will be minimal distraction and you can make optimum use of your time.
  2. Keep all the stuff you need at hand: your notes, pens, textbooks and water.
  3. If you can, study with one or two other people in the same room to keep you on track.
  4. Skim over all the notes you have at least two or three times so you get an idea of what you are in for in the exam.
  5. Eat a light dinner and keep some snacks for those hunger pangs.
  6. Take a fifteen minute break every two hours or so to relax. Do something you like which you can do quickly – stretch or take a short walk.
  7. Two hours before the exam do a quick revision but don’t learn anything new, just a review of everything you managed to study once or twice.
  8. Keep all the materials you need for the exam the next day packed and ready – pens, calculator, pencils etc.
  9. Check out the Library’s tutorials on Studying for exams and Examination strategies.

After the exam

Enjoy and celebrate – you’ve earned this one!

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18 May 2017

Library educational resources on Indigenous cultures and histories


The Library's resources can assist student teachers and others to gain a better understanding of Indigenous culture, says librarian Zachary Kendal.


School visit to the Aboriginal tent embassy Canberra*.
Australia’s Indigenous history goes back tens of thousands of years. In our schools, how do we best engage with the current and historical richness of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and stories? Imagine you’re a school teacher, weaving Indigenous cultures and histories into your teaching—what resources could you draw on?

Fortunately for our teachers-in-training and educational researchers, Monash University Library's wide range of resources can be used to engage with our Indigenous cultures.

Consider these streaming video resources:
  • Informit EduTV: Indigenous Studies – This collection within EduTV contains a huge range of documentaries and TV series on Australian Indigenous studies, including the ABC Kids shorts Grandpa Honeyant Storytime, the ABC series Black Comedy, and the new NITV current affairs series The Point.
  • Kanopy: Indigenous Studies – This collection brings together videos about indigenous populations around the world. It’s also worth looking at Kanopy’s AIATSIS Ethnographic Collection, which focuses on Australian Indigenous cultures and histories.
  • Monash Country Lines Archive – A collaboration between Monash University researchers, animators, and postgraduate students, this project creates stunning 3D animations to assist in the sharing and preservation of Indigenous knowledge and stories. Take a look at this “Winjara Wiganhanyin (Why We All Die)” animation, which retells a Taungurung creation story.
If you’re wanting to do more in-depth research into Indigenous cultures and histories, you could explore some of the scholarly databases available through the Library, including
You can also take a look at our Indigenous Cultures and Histories Library Guide which includes links to these and other useful resources.



Monash University Library is developing services and programs that focus on improving access, participation, retention and success for students from low socio-economic status (SES) backgrounds. The social inclusion-related programs are being implemented across campuses. Contact Zachary Kendal or Roland Clements to find out more.


*Photo Craig Hodges 2010  CC BY 2.0

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15 May 2017

Presentation skills: You need them, and the Library can help!

Whether you're an international or domestic student, speaking in front of your class can be daunting! If you need a bit of help, the Library is here for you, says subject librarian Romany Manuell.



Presentation skills: useful for work and life


Some people just love performing in front of a group! For others, delivering an oral presentation can be anxiety-provoking. Firstly, it can help to remember why you're being asked to deliver an oral presentation. Your lecturers and tutors are not trying to make you feel stressed out. It's all about helping you prepare for life outside the university. You'll probably be asked to give presentations to colleagues and peers in the workforce (if you haven’t already done so!). Why not start developing your employability skills now?

Watch and learn (and read)


The Library has plenty of self-help resources to help you improve your public speaking skills. A big favourite is the Lynda.com video tutorial platform (search for “presentation skills”). Set a time limit for yourself when venturing onto Lynda, or you might find it becomes an easy way to procrastinate.

 If you have more time (and you’re absolutely sure you’re not procrastinating… be honest, now!) why not peruse the Library’s extensive collection of books on the topic. In Search, try “public speaking” or “presentation skills” as keywords.


Plan, prepare, practise and present


If you’re just beginning to research for your oral presentation, this downloadable guide developed by the Library will point you in the right direction. It’s all about The Four Ps! If you’ve already finished your plan, why not use the dot points on this previous library blog post as a checklist to make sure you’re ready to go.

If you are still feeling anxious, you’re not alone! Monash University’s mindfulness programs and resources can really help. Or, perhaps it’s your English that’s giving you nerves? Check out what English Connect has to offer. Finally, don’t forget that Learning Skills Advisers are available at the Library’s drop-in sessions, whether you want tips and tricks, or just a quick run-through of your presentation. Good luck!



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11 May 2017

Access to Caulfield Library during exam study time - Bring your Monash ID card


Special entry arrangements apply at Caulfield Library beginning 15 May until 16 June for exam study.

Make sure you bring your ID card for hassle-free access to Caulfield Library during the period leading up to and including the exams.

While new study areas have recently opened at Caulfield, thanks to the refurbishment (see picture at right), there are still limitations on seats available there for study.

Caulfield Library will be open to only Monash staff and students between 15 May and 16 June, to ensure they have the best access to available study space.The Library introduced this restriction a few years ago because of the pressure on spaces.

If you plan to use this library over this period you must carry your Monash ID card to minimise inconvenience and delays at the library entrance.

CAVAL and ULANZ registered borrowers will be able to retrieve and borrow specific items, but will not be able to study in the library during the restricted access period.

Alumni and external fee-paying Library members will continue to have access by presenting their Library card. Students from Sir John Monash Science School and Nossal High School can also get in if they have their school ID.

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24 April 2017

Getting group work done

Do you find group assignments difficult? It can be challenging to work with others, but that’s why these assignments exist - you’re being assessed on your teamwork skills, not just your content knowledge. Get the most out of your group with tips from librarian Clinton Bell.


Set team rules, goals and expectations before you start work

Before you actually start working on your assignment, it’s a good idea to set ground rules for the group. These include things like when and where you will meet, how you will communicate, and so on. Make sure everyone gets a say - it’s no good setting a meeting time if half your group can’t make it!

You should also talk about the task and make sure everyone is on the same page. Sometimes people interpret instructions differently, overlook an important detail, or have different expectations about how the assignment should be completed. Making sure everyone is clear about what needs to be done before you start helps you avoid a lot of problems later on.

Communicate with your team

It’s important for everyone in the group to communicate regularly. This helps make sure everyone is making progress on their tasks, and allows problems to be addressed before they cause trouble. It also allows the team to make suggestions and improve on each other’s work.

If you’re having trouble, you’re not sure what you should be doing, or you’re not certain if what you’ve done is okay, let your team know! It’s better to sort it out early than wait until just before the assignment is due. Conversely, if someone else is having difficulty, help them out.

It can also be a good idea to keep a copy of documents in a shared space, such as Google Drive. This is great for providing suggestions and feedback, and helps everyone keep an eye on how the assignment is progressing. It also means that if something happens to one of your group you still have access to the stuff they were working on.

Everyone is responsible for every part of the end product

A group assignment isn’t “several individual assignments, stapled together”. As a group, you need to make sure you produce a coherent product and that all parts of the assignment are of an acceptable standard. It’s fine to put people in charge of a specific task, but they shouldn’t be working in complete isolation.

Throughout the assignment, everyone should share what they’ve done and provide feedback on the others’ work. You should also allow time before you submit to do a final round of editing. Look for differences in formatting, quality, and what you’re actually saying, and make sure everything is consistent.

Be a team player


Treat your teammates with respect. When giving suggestions or feedback, be constructive - focus on how to improve things, instead of complaining or assigning blame. Listen to your team and be prepared to compromise sometimes.

If you really want to do well, help your teammates get along with each other. If someone is having trouble being heard, ask directly for their opinion. If there are heated discussions and things get personal, try to smooth things over and refocus everyone on the task. When someone makes a good contribution, or compromises so the project can move forward, let them know you appreciate it.

If something is seriously wrong

Finally, if there is a major problem with the group, discuss it with your lecturer or tutor before the assignment is due. Dealing with minor problems is part of the task, but if something is seriously wrong it’s okay to raise it with your lecturer.


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11 April 2017

200 more study seats now available at Caulfield Library


New study spaces have opened at Caulfield Library as the builders progress steadily towards finishing the refurbishment.



Good news! There are 200 additional seats available at Caulfield Library, increasing the total to just under 800 seats.

A new area has opened for student use on level 1, adjacent to the teaching rooms. The bright and modern area has been finished just in time for students to make best use of them.

Access to this area as well as the three teaching rooms is temporarily via the Ian Potter Sculpture Courtyard. These spaces are open 9am to 6pm Monday to Friday.

The three teaching rooms are also available to students outside of Library class times. There are 30 fixed laptops that students can use for their study activities.

When the building works are completed, the library will have doubled its pre-refurbishment seating capacity from 750 to 1500 seats, offering a range of spaces for quiet study, collaboration and interactive teaching.

As the demand for study spaces has increased as the exams get closer, other study locations at Caulfield campus are available and are listed below for your convenience.



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20 March 2017

Using academic resources - what and how

Most units you undertake at Monash will have a research component - usually in assessments, where you will be asked to support your work with academic resources. Knowing how and where to find such resources can be tricky, says Romney Adams, Subject librarian.


The good news is the Library has plenty of expertise in the area of academic resourcesand can work with you to build your research skills. Read on to discover tips that will make your journey into the world of academic research a little easier!

One thing that confuses a lot of students is understanding what an academic resource actually is. Most of us will have had no reason to look further than a textbook prior to studying at university - but you can’t just rely on your textbook for research! Articles in academic journals will often be the type of resource you’ll be looking for.

Some academic sources undergo a process known as peer review - you can find out more about the peer review process in this dino-tastic video, but essentially it means the article has been verified by independent experts in the field. Peer reviewed articles are sometimes known as ‘refereed’ articles.

Books can also be considered as academic sources. Most books you find in the Library will be considered ‘academic’ in the context of your discipline, but if you’re ever unsure, you can always ask a Librarian at the Research & Learning Point.

Okay, so you know what academic resources are...now you just need to find them! While the Library has far less physical items than it used to, we have an abundance of academic materials online - including journal articles and eBooks. We recommend using Search, the Library’s resource discovery tool, as a launching point for your research - this will give you a great overview of the literature that’s available, and you’ll be able to find plenty of materials to get you started. Once you’ve used Search, it’s best to then look at some subject-specific databases. These databases contain even more materials - many of which you won’t be able to find using Search! The Library has a Guide to databases that are particularly useful for your discipline. Of course, there’s nothing quite like getting hands-on and browsing the shelves - if you have the time - you never know what gem you may stumble across!

Getting used to searching for academic resources takes time, patience, and practice. If you feel frustrated, confused, or just want to make sure you’re on the right track, chat to a Librarian at your Library’s Research & Learning Point, or book into a workshop. Together, we’ll ensure you’re finding the right kind of sources for your assessments as quickly and easily as possible.


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13 March 2017

Stay ahead with Research and Learning Online

Want to get the best marks for your assignments? Worried you might not know how to write an academic essay or a lab report? Never fear! Check the tips in this article.



At Monash, you are independently managing your own learning. Arm yourself early on with the necessary skills to achieve your learning goals by using our online modules. Designed to help you keep on top of your studies, the modules have strategies, advice and examples of writing in subject areas.

Our learning skills advisers and librarians have been hard at work creating tutorials, guides and activities for the Research and Learning Online (RLO) website, providing you with the tools you need to stay ahead of the game.

These RLO e-learning materials cover effective study strategies including note taking in lectures, reading critically, and how best to tackle your labs to get the most out of them. There’s advice on brainstorming for assignments, thinking critically, communicating clearly and which citing and referencing method you’ll need. They also have heaps of tips on how to write academically, manage your time, and approach your exams with confidence.

See? We’ve got you covered.

Stuck on that BusEco essay? No worries! There’s a sample assignment for that for you to refer to, with lecturer’s comments and activities to enhance your understanding. There are guides for whichever field you’re in, with detailed instructions and advice.

For research and postgraduate students, there’s plenty of information about how to manage your research process, the trick to writing a great proposal, navigating copyright and demystifying the peer review process.

And the best part? It’s totally free, and accessible by you around the clock! Just visit monash.edu/rlo and find the help you need. Don’t forget that if you have any questions about your assignment or need some clarification, our learning skills advisers and librarians are available at our drop-in sessions.



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9 March 2017

Looking for advice on English grammar?

Are you looking for advice on English grammar for your assignments? Then come to a drop-in session with a Peer Support facilitator from English Connect!




The English Connect Peer Support drop-in sessions are now co-located alongside the Library’s Research and Learning point in the Matheson, Hargrave-Andrew, Caulfield and Peninsula libraries on an ongoing basis. This comes after a successful trial last semester.

Students have found the co-location to be means that you can drop in at the Research and Learning point for professional advice from Library staff on your research, citing and referencing and assignments, then visit the Peer Support table for all your grammar questions. Please note that neither the Library nor Peer Support offer proofreading services.


In the free 20 minute Peer Support session you can speak to a trained student-facilitator one-on-one. If you bring along one or two paragraphs of the assignment or essay you’re working on, you’ll be able to read through them together to get advice about your English grammar. You will also get tips and resources to help you in the future.


Drop-in sessions are available at the following times:
  • Matheson Library Monday to Friday: 11am to 3pm
  • Hargrave-Andrew Library (HAL) Monday and Wednesday: 11am to 3pm
  • Caulfield Library Monday to Thursday: 11am to 3pm
  • Peninsula Library Tuesday and Thursday: 1pm to 3pm

Visit the Peer Support website for more information.

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6 March 2017

New online lectures for 2017

Not only are lecture recordings easier to access now, the change to Learning Capture means you can do a lot more to participate in discussions, take notes, create your personal study guide and more. It's about your learning, not just the recording.


From 2017, online lectures are available to students through Moodle. Previously, online lectures were available through the Library website.

The new Learning Capture system is a more exciting system as it lets you view a class online while it is being conducted, and allows you to participate, take notes and bookmarks, and contact your lecturer.

By visiting the Learning Capture Getting started site you can find out how to:
  • Use the Dashboard
  • View classroom lectures and answer questions during class
  • Take notes on the material and bookmark locations to return to later
  • Participate in after-class discussions and Question and Answer forums
  • Review your class Study Guide, including your notes and bookmarks.
Lectures may be broadcast live, so that you can view the lecture from elsewhere and participate as if you were in the room. If it is a live broadcast, there will be a green icon.

Later, after a class is over, you can still participate in activities like Question and Answer forums and sharing materials with other students as well as downloading the lecture, notes, and other content, and maintaining your own personal study guide.

On the “all classes” list you will see earlier lectures and materials your instructor has posted for you to read for upcoming classes.

To download a lecture you have missed: 
  • go to your unit page in Moodle
  • click on “Learning Capture” 
  • select 'all classes' for your unit
  • click the class you wish to download
  • click on the video icon and selecting 'download original'. 
Please note, you will not be able to download a lecture if your lecturer has disabled downloads for your unit. If he or she has, the Learning Capture link will be “greyed out”. If this is the case, check with your lecturer whether online lectures will be available in the future.

Please check the Learning Capture help site if you have trouble downloading your lecture or using the features of the new system.



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Borrowing basics


Now that you’ve been to your first week of classes, you may be thinking about how to find a copy of your textbook for those pre-tutorial readings, or even for your first assignment. In this article, Clinton Bell takes you through the process of borrowing your first book from the library!



The refurbished libraries have new loans machines

How do I find the book I want?

Start by finding it in Library Search! You can get to it via the Library tile in your my.monash portal, or use the search box halfway down the library homepage. You can find most books just by typing in the title and the surname of one of the authors.

When you find a record for the book you want, there will be a “Get it” or “View it” tab underneath it. The “View it” tab will give you a link to an electronic copy of the book, if we have one. The “Get it” tab shows you how many physical copies we have, whether they’re available, and which library collection they’re in:



If the book you want is available at your campus, you can go and get it off the shelf. To find it you’ll need the call number, which is also shown on the “Get it” tab. A call number is a bit like the number in a street address - it tells you how far along the shelves your book will be.

If the book you want is only available at a different campus or all the copies are on loan, you can place a request, and we’ll send the next available copy to the library where you want to pick it up. Make sure you’re logged in (there’s a “Sign in” button in the top right), and then you should see a “Request” button near the top of the “Get it” tab.

If you’re having trouble finding what you want, just ask the Library staff!


Okay, I found it. Now how do I borrow it?

You can borrow books using the self-check systems around the library. You need to scan your ID card, then slide the book into the cradle until the barcode on the front (not the back!) is under the scanner. The machine will go “thunk!” and the book’s title will be highlighted in green on the screen when it’s ready - it does take a second or two, so don’t pull it away too fast!

There are some items which won’t work with the self-check, for example because they’re too big, a weird shape, or they don’t have a barcode on the front. If you have one of these items, or you’re just having trouble with the machine, you can also borrow at the information point.

One of the books I want has a coloured sticker on it.   What does that mean?

If we expect a book to be in high demand, we may place limits on how long some copies can be borrowed, so that more people have a chance to read it. The stickers pictured above mark books which have these restrictions.

If a sticker has a year on it, the restriction only applies for that year, so don’t worry about stickers from 2016 or earlier!

More questions?


If you have more questions about borrowing, you can view detailed information on our website, read the FAQs on ask.monash, or ask our friendly staff in person. Happy borrowing!










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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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