Northampton Square Library, Level 6

Great news!

The silent study space on Level 6 of the Northampton Square Library has now reopened, providing nearly 200 silent study spaces.

Photo of desks on Level 6 of the Northampton Square Library.
Level 6 Silent Study Area

We had to close the floor for the autumn term to allow disruptive surveying work to take place:  this was in preparation for the proposed development of Level 7.

The additional silent study space in B411C (Level 4 of the University Building) remains open Mon-Fri 08:30-18:00.

 

Library systems downtime

We are upgrading our library systems overnight Monday 16th – Tuesday 17th December.  As a result you may experience intermittent periods of downtime during which you will be unable to:

  • login to online resources
  • see book availability through CityLibrary Search
  • request items, or
  • login to your CityLibrary Account to renew items.

Please plan ahead to conduct research and manage your account ahead of this time.

CityLibrary gains Customer Service Excellence Standard

City’s Library Services Team has been awarded the Customer Service Excellence (CSE) Standard.  The standard assesses a huge number of elements and criteria, including feedback from library users, to determine the highest quality service.

This is something we could not have achieved if it was not for the help of our wonderful customers, both students and staff, who assisted in talking with the CSE assessors and who help us run a successful service in different ways.

Social Media

Our assessors picked up on several factors relating to our relationship with our students. Our social media game was praised as being beyond the standard and, without your interaction with our tweets and posts on CityLibrary News, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, these efforts would be wasted – so thank you so much for interacting with us online as well as in person.

Continous Improvement

We were also commended on our commitment to continuous improvement where, really, it is you who drive this, you who make us a success. Without your engagement with our Feedback pop-ups, for example, we would not know how we do better – because it is what You Say that We Do. We are currently looking at the feedback we received last month but you can let us know at any time what we are doing well and what are not doing well at our Help Desks where you can talk to our staff or fill out a form.

So thank you for making us a Customer Service Excellence success!

The Story of City exhibition – ending soon

Thank you for helping us celebrate 125 years of City. As our anniversary year draws to a close we would like to remind you that Part 2 of the exhibition The Story of City: life, learning and legacy will run until the end of December, so please visit while you can. The exhibition is open to all and is located at the foot of the Great Staircase in the Pavilion, University Building.

The second part of the exhibition explores everyday life during the early years of the Institute. Find out more about the academic and social activities of the Institute. Learn about the origins of Student Union Mascot, King Carrot and travel back to the 1896 opening to the general public of Clerkenwell who enjoyed access to the swimming baths and entertainments in the Great Hall.

On display are items from the City Archive including student exercise books and early prospectus.  You can also see a reproduction of the time capsule which was buried under the Foundation Stone of the College Building in 1894. Visit the online exhibition where you can find out more and examine in detail digital replicas of a selection of documents, such as this 1923 laboratory workbook of Telegraphy student Philip de la Haye le Marquand.

We would love to hear your thoughts on the exhibition, please share your feedback or your memories of City in the comments below.

Extended loan periods

To help you prepare for your exams, Library Services is giving you extended loan periods over the Christmas and New Year break.

 

Seven day loans

If you borrow or renew a seven day loan on Friday 6th December you won’t have to bring it back until Friday the 3rd of January.

24 hour loans

Pop in on Friday 13th December or anytime up to closing time on Monday the 23rd of December, and you will be able to keep 24 hour loans until 10am on Friday 3rd January.

You can renew seven day loans and long loans online from your Library account.

If you would like to return books, and the library happens to be closed, you can put book returns into the library book return drop. They can be found in the following locations:

  • At Northampton Square, in the University Building Walkway at bottom of the stairs up to the library
  • At Cass just outside the Learning Resource Centre
  • In the College Building, just outside the cafe near the St John’s Street entrance 
  • At Gray’s Inn Place, just outside the entrance to the Library.

Don’t forget you can stay up to date with our opening times over the Christmas and New Year period on the Library Services website and see updates on the Library social media pages on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

24/7 opening at Northampton Square and Cass

The Northampton Square and Cass libraries will be open 24 hours a day, seven days a week during the January exam period, from Thursday 2nd January to Friday 17th January, 2020.

24/7
Northampton Square and Cass libraries will be open 24/7 during the January exam period.

Library staff will be available at Help Desks and roving around as usual, with a security team in place overnight.

Detailed opening hours can be found on the Library website.

We would like to thank everyone in advance for showing consideration to local residents when entering and exiting the buildings during 24/7 opening.

If you have any questions or comments about 24/7 opening, please contact our User Services Team.

Seasonal opening hours

The Northampton Square Library will be open from 10am to 6pm between Friday 27th and Tuesday 31st December, 2019. Security staff will be present, and yule be able to borrow items using the elf-service machines as usual.

If you are planning to visit the Library to study or revise over the festive holidays, then check out our opening hours and plan ahead.

Graphic of bells with #CityLibraryChristmas.

……….

All libraries will reopen on Thursday 2nd January, with Northampton Square and Cass libraries open 24/7 until the January exam period is wrapped-up.

……….

Please note: access for SCONUL users is permitted during Library-staffed hours but restricted during 24/7: see the Library website for more information.

Library Loves Feedback: 18th to 24th November 2019

Once again Library Staff will be popping-up across City to find out what you think about Library Services. We want to know what you love and why you love it: plus, your ideas for how we can improve things too.

Your feedback makes a difference: we use it to help plan and make changes for the benefit of everyone who uses the Library’s services, resources and spaces.

We’ll have our usual in-person pop-up stalls, plus our popular feedback walls so that you can post your comments anonymously, read other people’s thoughts and see responses from Library Staff. If you don’t make it in, you can submit your feedback online: https://city-uk.libwizard.com/f/feedback-2019.

Poster advertising Library Loves Feedback
Library Loves Feedback

As a massive “thank you” for giving us your feedback, we’ll have some fabulous freebies and prizes to giveaway too!

Here are details of our pop-up locations for this year:

Northampton Square:

Monday 18th Nov Myddleton Street Building Reception Area 12:15-12:45
Tuesday 19th Nov University Building Pavilion 13:15-13:45
Wednesday 20th Nov University Building Stalls – Level 1 Walkway 12:15-12:45
Thursday 21st Nov College Building Entrance Area 13:15-13:45
Friday 22nd Nov University Building Stalls – Level 1 Walkway 13:15-13:45

City Law School, Gray’s Inn Place:

Tuesday 19th Nov Common Room, Atkin Building, Gray’s Inn Place 11:45-12:15

Cass Business School, Bunhill Row:

Thursday 21st Nov Bunhill Row, 1st floor, outside Cass Learning Resource Centre 15:15-15:45

Finally, there are loads of other ways to contact us too throughout the year including via email, Online Chat, and Social Media: tell us what you think!

Hold that thought: Mind Mapping with MindGenius

Understanding, organising and retaining information can be challenging. While studying and working we often need to compose and organise our written work, understand complex topics and retain information. Mindmapping can be an excellent tool to help us meet these challenges.

Depending on the task at hand mindmapping can be useful for almost everyone, but can be particularly useful for Neurodiverse profiles such as Dyslexic learners.

Mindmapping is a way of graphically representing a topic, concept or problem, so we can visualise it, making it easier to understand. Mindmapping is a versatile technique which can have many applications. Here are some examples:

Brainstorming

Mindmapping is a great way to brainstorm. You can use it to better capture your thoughts or start exploring a topic. You may find that it can help to stimulate and generate more ideas.

Capturing all of your ideas can reduce the load on your working memory. Once you can see your ideas together on one page, you can then edit and arrange them into a more organised structure. This is also useful for group brainstorms, try it on our large screens in the group study rooms and technobooths.

Planning and organising

Bring order to chaos. Before you start a task it’s a good idea to plan how you are going to do it. Mindmapping can help you plan written work such as an essay. With most digital mindmaps, as you build your map you can add more substantial notes to ideas. This means that when you export your finished mindmap into a Word document you have a logical outline structure and some content to get started with.

You could even use a mindmap to plan your research or literature search in an academic database, plotting out which keywords, synonyms and antonyms you are going to use.

A mindmap breaking down a keyword search of " a comparison of the effectiveness of exercising versus a health diet in reducing obesity in children".
A mindmap to plan a database search [click to expand].

Revision

Make your revision notes into a map. When trying to recall information it’s easier to remember the spatial layout of a map rather than linear notes. Add additional memory hooks, such as colour and images, which can prompt you to recall the associated concepts.

Breaking down complex ideas

Some topics are complicated such as land law, who is related to who in Wuthering Heights, or potential Brexit  scenarios, requiring flow charts and maps to make visual sense. It’s difficult to keep all that information in your head or to understand the connections when going backwards and forwards though linear notes.

A mindmap of Wuthering Heights characters and their relationships.
The characters of Wuthering Heights [click to expand].

So, how can I start mindmapping?

To me, Mindmapping has no strict rules, but there are some basic guiding principles you may wish to follow to keep your map effective:

  • Put your topic or essay title in the centre this is useful for keeping you on track or remind you to answer the question in hand.
  • Use single keywords (or very short phrases) so you can see at a glance what the map means when you come back to it. Key words are easier to digest and remember if you are using the map for revision. Keywords are also useful because at the mapping stage our ideas may not be fully formed sentences, but we can still easily capture and build on them.

Using MindGenius software

MindGenius 2019 software is now available on any City student Windows pc.
Staff can download the software onto their City staff desktop computer via the Software Centre. MindGenius is excellent for project management and has some advanced features to facilitate this, such as the ability to create a Gantt chart from your map at the click of a button.

MindGenius Functionality

The software is simple to use with “type and return” functionality to build you map. You can also:

  • Add attachments to keep the documents you are reading for a project or essay organised by linking them to relevant branches within the map.
  • Add notes: Add more substantial notes to each branch. As mentioned, this feature is excellent when planning an essay.
  • Export to Word: You can export your finished mind map to Word to create draft written work. In Word you will have a linear structure to work with along with your added notes.
  • Export to PowerPoint: You can use the software to help plan and create presentations.
  • The mental connection tool allows you to link ideas on different areas of you map and describe the relationship between them.
  • Categories and Filter: You can use colours to code or categorise ideas across your map. If your map becomes quite large and complex you can filter by category to concentrate on particular themes.
  • Templates such as the SWOT and PEST analysis can help encourage exploration of a topic and apply critical thinking to it.
  • If you’re really not sure where to start there are guided brainstorm tools, such as ‘solution finder’ and ‘question sets’.

A real life example

I find mindmapping incredibly useful for organising complex, but otherwise unordered ideas. To write this article I planned it first in Mind Genius.

I started by brainstorming in an unstructured way, getting every one of my ideas down on the page (which is very cathartic!). This reduced the load on my working memory. I also used the Who? What? Where? When? Question set to stimulate more ideas and identify gaps in my thinking.

Once all my ideas were on the page I could move on to organising and structuring the information using the drag and drop functionality to group ideas which came under the same theme.

Then I could think more critically and reject any of the weaker or less relevant ideas. i.e. in this article I’m not going to talk about other mindmapping software so I have deleted those branches on review.

A mindmap bout mindmapping, many ideas have been added with no real structure.
Stage 1. An unordered mindmap. [Click to expand]

A mindmap about mindmapping with more structure
Stage 2. An ordered mindmap. [Click to expand]
""
Stage 3. Mindmap exported to Word as outline text. [Click to expand]

Need Help?

If you need help or have any questions about Mind Genius contact us. We’d like to hear what you think so please add your comments below or share with fellow students how mind mapping works for you.

Silent Study at Northampton Square

Returning students will notice that Level 6 is closed for refurbishment as part of our wider work to develop the library estate.

Levels 4 and 5 are still available for silent study.  In addition to the silent spaces inside the Library, we have transformed B411c into a silent study room.  You can access this new silent study space by taking the lift or stairs from the refectory end of the Level 1 walkway to the 4th floor and following signs to Silent Study.

B411c will be open Monday-Friday 08:30-18:00.