Friday fun

Map of Europe showing the first (two) word(s) of each national anthem overlaid on each country - from RedditWhat happens when a faculty librarians fingers are left idle for a moment?  They find things like this gem on Reddit – a map of Europe showing the first word of each countries national anthem.  Take a peek! If neither the map nor the comments make you smile, you must have a heart of stone.

Posted in Thing of the Day

Join the public library for fun and savings!

Portsmouth Central LibraryMembership of Portsmouth City libraries (the local public library service) is free and you don’t even need to live in Portsmouth to use them.  The public library has branches across Portsmouth and Southsea, from North End to Central Southsea.

Their closest branch to the University Library is just a short walk away in Guildhall Square.  As you enter Guildhall Square with the Guildhall itself on your left and the civic offices to your right, look up the steps to your right and behind you and you will spot the central library and local history centre.  It’s not quite as well hidden as I make it sound, honest!

Public libraries give you access to much more fiction than we have for pleasure reading as well as local history collections and occasionally even useful textbooks, making them well worth joining.  You can join, borrow and return books at any public library branch, only please sort your University Library books from your public library books.

Surprising discounts available to anyone with a public library card

Joining the public library can save you money on more than just books.

Read more ›

Posted in Thing of the Day Tagged with:

Talking truth to power

Fake newsDisinformation is a well-worn path to power and those in power abuse it to maintain themselves amidst controversy.  Where then does the ordinary citizen and scholar turn to find the truth amidst a whirlwind of lies, often repeated innocently by bystanders who we implicitly trust?

While politics has long been rife with “spin” – slanted, often only partial, truths worded to give a particular impression – as well as outright deceit, even academic has seen its share of fraudulent publications, some of which have passed through peer review and been published in academic journals.  Even Gregor Mendel’s pioneering work on genetics has fallen under suspicion after it was realised that the likelihood of such perfect results being found in his huge dataset of pea plants was less than 5%.  It is possible that after seeing a clear trend emerging, he expanded his dataset with similar findings to make the evidence for the trend he was certain he had discovered more compelling. Read more ›

Posted in Services, Thing of the Day Tagged with: , ,

Storytelling for grown-ups (in an academic setting)

Open bookLast month, September 12th, saw an interesting one-day symposium taking place at CCI Eldon building titled ‘Storytelling in Learning Development’. It was organised by Learning Developers/ Academic Skills Tutors from two faculties as a regional symposium of their professional body ( and showcased speakers from a number of University of Portsmouth departments.

Read more ›

Posted in Uncategorised

Card Printing at the Library

Now the new academic year is underway, University card printing is moving from the Spinnaker Sports Centre to the Library.

Do you need a new or replacement University card? Come on down to the Library where staff can help you obtain a new one from Friday 11th October.

If you are replacing a lost card you can pay for a new one through the University’s Online Store: then show your receipt at the Library.

If you are a new arrival to the University you can either submit a photo or have one taken while you wait.

Just ask at the Library Reception and we can show you where to get your new card.

Posted in IT, Library Announcements, Library News, Services Tagged with: , , , , , ,

Taking up the Slack (Essentials of Operations Management, 2nd ed.)

Update – 14 October

Just when we thought everyone had access to this textbook, the supplier has messed up the login process.

It is best if you set up the VPN to work off-campus (outside of halls).  Wherever you are logging in from – even if you are on campus – if you see this screen when logging in that invites you to choose between Shibboleth, OpenAthens and Direct login options (shown here), you should follow the instructions below:

Login screen for Slack, showing Shibboleth, Open Athens and personal login options in a pop-up dialogue box.

  1. Click on Shibboleth login (this is another name for the institutional login authentication system).
  2. Choose the University of Portsmouth from the drop-down list.
  3. Login on the branded UoP login screen.

If you are not taken straight into the ebook but instead into the Dawsonera home screen, click on the link in the email you were sent if you are in the queue or click on the login link in the library catalogue record for this ebook (here is a direct link).

We are really sorry that this login process has suddenly been made so complicated.  We just hope it can be fixed.


(Original post follows)

We know you are all very busy because of all the enquiries we are receiving.  Keep them coming, that’s what we’re here for!  For Business and Economics students trying to access Slack’s “Essentials of operations management”, we just wanted to update you on what we have been doing to make it a little easier for you to get through this textbook.  Your lecturer has asked us to remind you that you must read the latest edition.

Bottom line, as your lecturer has already told you, if you can afford to buy a personal copy of this book, it would be a good idea to do so.  We simply cannot buy over 600 students their own copy of core textbooks like this one that are in continuous demand.  What we have done to help you get to a library copy each week, including buying:

10 more ebook copies

Ten more people can now read the ebook version at any one time.  If you log into the ebook but are told all the copies are in use, it is well worth asking to join the queue for a book.  You might be quoted a several thousand minute wait time but this estimate assumes everyone else will use the book for a full hour, and from observation, this estimate often exaggerates how long you will have to wait by as much as 5-10 times, so if you request access at 8.30 am with a 5500 minute wait time and join the queue, you might well get to read a copy at some point the same day .

22 more printed books

20 loanable copies have been bought to satisfy existing reservations.  We are ordering more copies because of the number of reservations on this book.  Remember to reserve any books that are all on loan if you want us to buy more copies!

We are also ordering a further two copies that will be made ‘library use only’ so they can only be read in the Library, ensuring they reach as many students as possible in the shortest time.   If you are desperate to find a copy, remember we are open 24/7, and that if you do not have time to read the book when you find a copy, you can make a copy of one chapter (or 10% of the book, whichever is more) to read at your leisure under our educational copyright licence.

We hope this helps!  Any questions or problems, please get in touch.

Posted in Services, Subjects: Business School Tagged with: , ,

Dive into Discovery

or Why not start with Google?

Google search on a tablet computerEverybody loves Google, with good reason.  Google is great for finding the answers to any specific question where the answer will be pretty much all in one place and you will recognise it when you see it.  The problem comes when you try to investigate a subject area that you are unfamiliar with and where there may not necessarily be any clear answers, if you are researching something new.

Read more ›

Posted in Services Tagged with: , ,

Work anywhere over the University computer network

You can use all the library’s premium subscription eresources from anywhere for free as if you were on campus.  In order to enjoy the full experience, including making group study room bookings and getting to use some otherwise ‘campus only’ resources, you need to set up your VPN (or Virtual Private Network).

Setting up the VPN involves downloading, installing and setting up a small piece of software called GlobalProtect and logging in once to the University computer network.  Thereafter, when the VPN is connected your home computer will function as part of the University computer network.

Instructions for setting up the VPN are available from MyPort for different operating systems.  If you have any setup or connection problems, please call the Information Services Service Desk on (023) 9284 7777.

Nurture your N-drive

It has long been said that “many copies keep stuff safe”, so you should save your work every day to several places, including your N-drive, to make sure nothing ever goes missing or becomes corrupted.  While you can save native Google files to your Google Drive, it is a very good idea to back anything else up to your personal storage space on the University computer network, your N-drive.  Once you have connected the VPN, connecting your N-drive is simple.

These guides on MyPort explain how to connect your N-drive for:

Posted in Services Tagged with: , ,

Feeling the cold?

Grab a blanket for warmth!

Some people feel the cold more than others, and so you can grab a blanket to use in the Library from baskets dotted around the Library.  What they lack in looks, they make up for in insulation.  Please return your blanket when you leave – we only have so many for everyone to share.

Home is where the heat is

If you like your study space to be particularly warm, the warmest areas of the Library are almost always

  • Area 1C – the old journals room on the first floor, found between the connecting walkway leading to the wooden staircase up from the Atrium on one side and the central concrete stairwell on the other; and
  • the open-access computing rooms, OA 1-6, accessed from the corridor on the ground floor just to the left of the Library Café.

On the other hand, if you like it cool, the ground floor is usually as cold as it tends to get.

If the directions above confused you, the linked floor plans might help, otherwise please ask at the Library Help Desk.  Most people get lost from time to time, at least during the first three or four years.

Posted in Services Tagged with: ,

Shopping for books? You need a basket

Basket used to carry booksBooks can be slippery and tricky to carry if you want to take out more than one or two books at a time.  Happily, the library offers baskets and even wheeled baskets (with extendable handles) for you to use.  They make library life much easier!

Find them near the Library Help Desk and (sometimes) oWheeled basket in usen the upper floors.

Posted in Services Tagged with: , ,