December 2023

In this issue

  • Coffee and Cake events
  • AI Study Skills Guide
  • Self-Service Laptop Loans - extended outside the library
  • Writing Development news
  • MASH update
  • Zines win Award!
  • Christmas Opening Times

Coffee and Cake!

As part of our Study Happy initiative, the Library is running some Coffee and Cake events in the University Library in December and January. These are to encourage students to take a study break at a busy time of year whilst enjoying a free hot drink and cake in a relaxed environment.

We are running two events per week on Tuesday and Fridays during the final two weeks of term in December and during the week commencing January 15th. The first event was held on 5th December and the sessions have been very well attended with lovely feedback from students.

The sessions in January will be on Tuesday 16th and Friday 19th January from 12-1pm in room UL110 in the University Library.

AI Study Skills Guide

As use of AI becomes commonplace for our students, it can be confusing as to what is acceptable in an academic context. Questions such as these are commonplace:

  • Can I use AI in my assignments?
  • When would using it be an academic offence?
  • If I am told by my tutor I can use it, how do I properly acknowledge it's use?
  • Do I have to put something in my reference list?

To help students navigate this tricky new world, Libraries and Learning Skills have produced this handy AI Study Skills Guide. It also directs students to other university resources and help on AI. Please share it with your students!

More Laptops for Loan!

The self service student Laptop Loans are now available in the Minerva 2nd floor Learning Lounge and David Chiddick ground floor Global Lounge. This is in addition to those already available in the University Library.

The 72 new laptops are high spec Windows 10 devices, with the university standard desktop installed. Students just need to log in using their student ID and password and the laptop will connect to the university Wi-Fi automatically. Any student with a valid UOL student ID card can borrow a laptop. Only one laptop can be borrowed at a time.

Laptops can be borrowed for up to 3 hours at a time. If a laptop is needed for longer, students can just return the laptop and borrow another. There is no restriction on how many times a student can borrow one.

This initiative is a collaboration between Libraries and Learning Skills, The International College and Student Services. The aim is to provide easy to access, reliable devices to aid with student learning and combat digital poverty.

For more details see:

Writing Development news

The Writing Development Team in the Library has recently expanded. As a result, we have increased the number of one-to-one appointments that each student can book with the team to 4 per term (a maximum of 12 per academic year). We offer on-campus and online appointments.

In addition to the generic workshops and webinars that we run, you can request lectures or seminars for specific module/cohort groups of students. The team can deliver sessions on various types of writing including essay writing, report writing, literature reviews and exam preparation.

If you would like to arrange a session for your students, either fill out the form on the Writing Development website or email the team at

Please see our website for more information:

MASH update

The Maths And Stats Help (MASH) centre has grown to a core team of three. In September, Andrei joined us, bringing a wealth of statistical expertise from his background in Psychology.

As part of our continuous efforts to enhance support, MASH workshops are back in the Library Events lineup, featuring a series focused on the use of SPSS for both descriptive and inferential statistics. Students and staff can book onto the workshops through the Library Website.

Appointments are currently available Monday to Friday and are offered both online and in person. Students can visit our MASH homepage for resources and to book an appointment. We also welcome academics to come along with their students if they would like to.

Zine Collection team win award!

Congratulations to the Zine Collection team, who won the Equality and Inclusivity Award at the University Merit Awards in November. The team were Oonagh Monaghan, Jemima Sims, Jocelyn Cook from Libraries and Learning Skills and Jantze Holmes - Arts Technician.

What is a zine?

The word 'zine' comes from the word 'fanzine'. They emerged originally from the 1930s as fans of science fiction produced these 'fanzines'. These non traditional publications are self-published (written/edited, illustrated, copied, assembled, and distributed); they are motivated by desire for communication or self-expression (not profit, fame, or a grade).

The Zine collection in the main university library is part of our work to diversify our collections and provide alternative points of view and expression and an insight into today's popular culture.

Come and browse the collection on the first floor of the library, and check out our handy Zines Guide.

Holiday opening times

Both the University Library and the Ross Library are currently open 24/7. This will continue until Monday 18th December when both libraries revert to midnight closing time until the 23rd December. There will then be reduced opening hours over the Christmas period.

University Library: Open 12pm–9pm on a self-service basis on 23rd, 27th, 28th, 29th, 30th December and 2nd and 3rd January. Closed on 24th, 25th, 31st December and 1st January.

Ross Library: Closed from 23rd December until 4th January.

From Thursday 4th January both Libraries will be open from 8:30am until midnight, reverting to 24/7 from 8th January.

The NCFM Library at Holbeach will be closed over the holiday period, and will re-open on Thursday 4th January 2024. Desk services will resume on Monday 8th January 2024.

Keep an eye on our opening times web page for up-to-date details.

From all the staff in Libraries and Learning Skills, we wish you a restful and enjoyable Christmas break

Contact: Liz Mallett, Assistant Director, Academic Engagement