24/7 opening at The Sir Duncan Rice Library before and during Exams

In the lead up to the fast approaching exam period The Sir Duncan Rice Library will be extending its opening hours to 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. There are just a few days until this happens and we want to let you know just now so that you can properly plan your revision.

The Sir Duncan Rice Library will open at 11.00 on Sunday April 23, and stay open continuously until 22.00 on Friday May 19, 2017.

Over this period it is important that you are aware of the following:

  • Swipe access only after 22.00 – please ensure you have your ID card, as access will not be permitted without it.
  • The PCs require a nightly shutdown (lasting about ten minutes) and reboot for essential maintenance. This will happen at 04.00, and you will be given an option to delay this for 2 hours.
  • Essential cleaning of the building will be carried out overnight between 02.00 and 06.00, which may result in some disruption.
  • Look after yourselves and your belongings – take breaks, but do not leave your personal belongings unattended.
  • Take care if leaving the Library in the early hours – travel with friends if possible.

Please respect the building and your fellow library users:

  1. Hot and cold drinks in covered containers can be consumed in designated areas of the Library (everywhere except the silent study areas, study rooms, project rooms and areas with equipment).
  2. Cold food can be consumed in the same locations – but not if it is has a strong smell or is noisy! (remember – no hot food allowed).
  3. Tidy up after yourself – use the bins which are available on each of the floors.
  4. Keep talk to the group study areas to allow others to study.

Please report any problems to security staff on duty – in person (Information Centre,
Floor 1, TSDRL) or by phone (01224 273330).

Also check out the opening hours for our other two Library sites, as Taylor and Medical will NOT be open 24/7 during these dates.

If you have any feedback or suggestions, contact us at library@abdn.ac.uk.

Posted on behalf of Marion Blacklaw, Circulation Manager

Ebook Central has replaced ebrary

Today one of our largest e-book collections, ebrary, has been replaced by a new platform called Ebook Central. Ebook Central contains the same high-quality academic content that was available in ebrary, but you will notice some major changes to the search interface and the way in which search results are presented to you.

You can access Ebook Central here, and will need your University of Aberdeen username and password to access it. The contents of Ebook Central are also searchable from Primo, our library catalogue. We still recommend, though, that the best way to search Ebook Central is to link directly to it and carry out your searches there.

If you had previously been saving e-books to your bookshelf in ebrary you can transfer those books to the bookshelf in Ebook Central, but the transfer will not happen automatically. Further information on how to easily transfer your bookshelf is available in a separate blog post.

Library Guides on the new Ebook Central platform are available, and ProQuest also have their own online guide and some video tutorials.

ebrary relaunching as Ebook Central – remember to move your bookshelf

On Thursday March 9 one of our largest ebook platforms, ebrary, will be relaunched as Ebook Central. The content and features that you know from ebrary will be the same, but the search screens and the way search results are presented to you have been redesigned.


One issue we want to alert you to before the relaunch concerns the Bookshelf feature on ebrary. Ebook Central will have the same Bookshelf option but the contents of your own Bookshelf will not be automatically transferred from ebrary. However, it is very easy to do this, allowing you to keep any ebooks you have already saved, complete with any notes, highlights, and bookmarks you have used. Instructions for moving your Bookshelf from ebrary are outlined below.

  • The option for transferring your Bookshelf is displayed when you sign into your Ebook Central account with your University of Aberdeen username and password, and click the Bookshelf tab near the top of the screen.
  • Next select Move ebrary Bookshelf to begin the transfer.
  • If you currently have no books in your ebrary Bookshelf there is nothing you need to do.

Screenshot showing a button "Move ebrary bookshelf" to copy your bookshelf

  • If you click the X, the option to have your ebrary bookshelf copied over will not be displayed again.
  • If you accidentally click the X and still want your ebrary bookshelf copied over, you will need to contact ebooksupport@proquest.com.
  • After selecting Move ebrary Bookshelf you will then see the following screen. Click Get Started and follow any on-screen instructions.

User-added image

  • Once the transfer has been done successfully you will see the following message.

User-added image

You will not need to do this bookshelf transfer until Thursday March 9, but if you encounter any problems with the relocation of your bookshelf please contact ebooksupport@proquest.com.

Further details and guides on Ebook Central will be available once the new platform goes live.

PhD Information Skills Sessions open for booking

The Library is here to help all postgraduate researchers as they begin, or continue, their in-depth research with a series of Information Skills Workshops designed to their needs. With so much academic literature available through the University of Aberdeen, these workshops will give you the confidence and skills to locate and manage the materials you need.

These workshops will take place at the start of February 2017 and will help you understand the resources available to you as researchers here at the University of Aberdeen, and how to get the best out of them. Read on for further information on the workshops. To book workshops visit www.abdn.ac.uk/coursebooking and look for Library Information Skills classes.

There are three workshops on offer, each lasting two hours:

  • Literature searching – Part 1: Getting started
  • Literature searching – Part 2: Using databases
  • Literature searching – Part 3: Managing your references using RefWorks*

Across the three workshops we will look at:

  • Planning your search
  • Looking for books: using Primo and E-books
  • Databases of academic literature
  • Getting the best out of Google
  • Managing your references with RefWorks
  • Formatting Word documents with in-text citations and bibliographies

 *IMPORTANT NOTE: The workshop focusing on the management of references (Part 3) is not suitable for research postgraduates in the School of Law, as the software used does not support the OSCOLA referencing style required for legal theses.

To find out more, and to book onto the different workshops please visit www.abdn.ac.uk/coursebooking and look for Library Information Skills classes. We look forward to seeing you at the workshops.

RefWorks and ProQuest Databases – service interruptions this weekend

During this weekend ProQuest will be undertaking product maintenance to upgrade infrastructure, enhance security, and maintain reliability of their products. This vital work will mean that ProQuest databases and RefWorks will not be available for a limited time during the morning of Sunday January 29, if you are based in the UK.

United Kingdom (GMT): Sunday, 29 Jan., 3:00 a.m. until Sunday, 29 Jan., 12:00 p.m.

If you are based elsewhere in the world you can check here to see when the maintenance will occur in your region.

While the date and time were chosen to minimize impact ProQuest realize that some users may be affected, and apologise for the inconvenience.


Unattended belongings in Libraries before and during exams

With the next exam period approaching, all of our libraries are becoming busier as revision begins in earnest. To ensure that all of our students have fair access to a study space during this busy time we would like to bring to your attention the Library policy concerning unattended belongings.

The reason for the policy is to ensure that study spaces are not blocked by readers leaving their belongings unattended at a desk for an extended period of time, in effect reserving a desk. This inconveniences others, particularly at a time when demand for study space is high, and we kindly ask that you do not do this. If you see desks being reserved in this way please feel free to speak with library staff.

If you do leave belongings at a study space please note that items left unattended for more than 30 minutes may be removed for safe keeping by library staff, in accordance with Library Regulation 5.5. A notice will be left on the desk to indicate this has happened to your belongings.

In the Sir Duncan Rice Library, if this happens to your belongings before 5pm please refer to Library Floor staff to retrieve your belongings. For Floor 7 please go to the Floor 6 Office. After 5pm belongings can be collected from the Information Centre on Floor 1. At Taylor and Medical Libraries please speak with staff at the issue desks.

Notices will be displayed on desks to indicate this policy. We kindly ask all readers to please think of their fellow students and be considerate to the needs of others also revising hard for important exams. Good luck to everyone with their exams.

Exam Papers Database available to help with revision

books-927394_1280With just over one week until the start of the next exam period, for the majority of students, we would like to help you prepare for them by reminding you about the large online collection of past exam papers which the library manages.

There are well over 3000 past exam papers available in Word or PDF format in our searchable database, covering undergraduate and taught postgraduate courses from across the University’s three Colleges. You can either search for specific courses or browse your way towards those past papers you need. You will need to enter your University username and password to access the exam papers.

The exam papers are stored on DigiTool, the University’s digital asset management system, where in addition to exam papers you can also access many other resources, such as photographs from our George Washington Wilson Collection, or even digital versions of illuminated manuscripts.

There are two ways in which you can search these exam papers, either through DigiTool itself or via a search form on the Library website.

We do not have every past exam paper available there, so if you can’t find an exam paper for a particular course you will need to check with the School that delivers that course to see if they can provide you with copies of past exams.

There is a guide to accessing the exam papers available here and a further guide to DigiTool available here.

Also, don’t forget that library staff are here to help you locate any other resources you may need while preparing for your exams. If you have any questions please just ask a member of library staff.