Wednesday, 3 December 2014

Pursuing a Career or work experience within the European Union Institutions - over 80 Aberystwyth University students participated

A post by Lillian Stevenson, Academic Services Manager and Law Librarian

EU Careers event

The Welsh Government’s EU Policy Office Team invited Marco Odello from the Centre for European and International Legal Studies (Department of Law & Criminology) and Lillian Stevenson, on behalf of Aberystwyth University’s European Documentation Centre to host an EU Careers event in the Thomas Parry Library on the 18th of November 2014.

Over eighty students from different departments across the university attended the event to find out more about the procedures for getting jobs and traineeships within EU Institutions, and to hear from people who are working or have worked for the EU.

Three speakers spoke about the recruitment cycle and their own personal experiences of applying to and working within EU Institutions. The speakers related that EU institutions are interested in students from all disciplines. The speakers were :

  • Victoria Joseph EU Careers Ambassador at Aberystwyth University 2014 to 2015
  • Charles Whitmore, European Personnel Selection Office (EPSO) Ambassador at Cardiff University 
  • Thomas Fillis, Regional Manager Europe, Asia and North America at Women in Parliaments Global Forum, Aberystwyth University alumnus 

 It was inspiring to hear from Thomas Fillis,  a former AU student about his work within the EU and exciting to see so many Aberystwyth students interested in future careers in the EU.  The event demystified the application processes and encouraged those present to consider applying for careers within the EU.

We hope this will be the first of many similar events which will highlight and help support AU students with an interest in pursuing a career opportunities in the EU. The appointment of an AU student ambassador highlights the importance which the Welsh Government’s EU Policy Team place on promoting the EU as a future career for Aberystwyth University students. The Library was pleased to be invited to collaborate in this initiative.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Time to add your reading lists to Aspire!

To arrange library stock purchases for Semester 2, please add your module reading lists to the new online service Aspire Reading Lists.

Aspire training for staff is taking place in all departments but if you've been unable to attend or just need a little help to get started, please contact Academic Services 01970621896

We're happy to visit you at your convenience or arrange to deliver additional training for groups.

Find self-paced training materials here (help sheets, videos, a presentation and FAQs).

Reading lists for Semester 2 must be added to Aspire by the end of term to ensure there is time to buy books and other learning materials.

For more about Aspire, visit the Reading Lists page and discover the advantages of Aspire for students and staff.

Friday, 7 November 2014

EU Careers event notification

Are you an undergraduate or postgraduate student interested in an exciting Career which will challenge you as well as enable you to grow and learn in a strongly multicultural environment? or even just first class work experience within the European Institutions.

If so then you may be just the person the institutions of the European Union are looking for! Contrary to popular belief, these Institutions don't hire only lawyers, linguists and economists! They are looking for students from across all disciplines. Not only that, they are currently suffering from a lack of appropriate candidates, so don't hesitate to come along to this event.

Even if you think you don't have the language skills, don't let that stop you! You may have exactly the profile they are looking for!

This event will be of interest to both students who are early on in their degree and may wish to start preparing early or students who are further on in their studies and may want to obtain concrete information on the pursuit of, as well as personal testimonies from people with experience with, European Careers.

Charles Whitmore, EPSO Ambassador to Cardiff University and
Ex student/s of Welsh Universities who have undertaken a traineeship at the Commission in DG REGIO.

Topic:  Pursuing a Career or work experience within the European Union Institutions

Date: Tuesday, 18th November
Time:  3:30pm to 5:30pm
Venue: Thomas Parry Library, Llanbadarn Centre

Any queries, please contact:
Dr Marco Odello:
Lillian Stevenson:
Charles Whitmore:

If you wish to attend, please register at:

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Access to Hart Collection (Law) & Human Rights Law Collection ebooks (Bloomsbury)

Aberystwyth University has access to Hart Collection and Human Rights Law Collection via Bloomsbury.  The Hart Collection includes nearly 100 titles from Hart’s front list, including International Law and Child Soldiers and The Law and Practice of Piracy at Sea.  The Human Rights Law Collection consists of 40 titles including Current Problems in the Protection of Human Rights and Freedom of Artistic Expression: Essays on Culture and Legal Censure.

You can access the platform directly at:

The trial will expire 30 November, 2014.

Monday, 20 October 2014

International Open Access Week, 20th – 26th October 2014

International Open Access Week, 20th – 26th October 2014, offers an opportunity for the academic and research community to learn more about the potential benefits of Open Access (OA) – free, online access to results of scholarly research, and the right to use and re-use those results.

OA has the power to transform the way research and scientific inquiry is conducted; with research
funders and Funding Councils alike, recently launching OA policies.

However, the implementation of OA is not without its issues. The AU OA working group, an Information  Services and Department of Research, Business and Innovation collaboration, invites AU academics and  researchers to a series of events scheduled across OA week.

These events include:

* Q & A session with HEFCE HE Policy Advisor Ben Johnson, and representatives from the
publishing community, PLOS, JISC Monographs, Biomed Central and Wiley - Arts Centre Cinema, morning of Friday 24 October, 9.30 a.m.

* PURE refresher training sessions, 12pm Wednesday 22nd and Thursday 23rd October, Hugh Owen
Training Room. Spaces bookable via CDSAP webpages.

* “Who owns what and what can they do with it? Copyright and your research publications
workshop” (Tuesday 21 October, 1-2 pm) with AU Data Protection and Copyright Manager, Dr Jonathan Davies.  Please send us  or bring along licences/copyright agreements which you have been asked to sign when publishing articles.  Send licences (or screenshots of licences) and any questions to

Steve Smith

Tuesday, 30 September 2014

ARMS: read-only from Monday 13th October 2014

The ARMS reading list service will now go read-only from Monday 13th October - a little earlier than previously advertised.
Reading lists for Semester Two and beyond can be added to Aspire Reading Lists.

If you need to keep making changes to a Semester One list, you can save the list content to a text file or Excel spreadsheet.

  • Text file: open your list in ARMS and on the left click Print List. In your browser, choose Save As or Save Page and choose the file type .txt
  • Excel spreadsheet: open your list in ARMS and copy the URL. In a new Excel spreadsheet, click Data then From Web and paste the URL into the Address field. Scroll down and click the yellow arrow next to each field you wish to retain, then click Import.

Training for academic and administrative staff will be available in Hugh Owen and Thomas Parry libraries soon, or by arrangement at a place and time convenient to you.
Please feel free to contact the subject librarians with any questions you have:

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

The Times Digital Archive. From the end of Solidarity to President Obama.

Quiz time. What have the following events all got in common: the end of Solidarity; the opening of the Channel Tunnel; the fall of the Berlin Wall; the creation of the Eurozone; the England football team being beaten (repeatedly!) on penalties; the release of the movie trilogy of The Lord of the Rings; and the election of America’s first black president? Any ideas? No? Well let me tell you. These life-changing events all took place in the twenty two years between 1986 and 2008.

This same period is now being covered by The Times Digital Archive. This fantastic resource originally offered two hundred years’ worth of digital versions of its newspapers dating from 1785 to 1985. That coverage has now been extended by a further twenty-two years to include the period to 2008.

Monday, 14 July 2014

Talis Aspire at Aberystwyth: delivering reading lists online to support learning and teaching

Other universities have been discovering the benefits of the Talis Aspire online reading list service
  • Staff at the University of Liverpool talk about their experiences of using Talis Aspire in this video
  • In this video students at Nottingham Trent University give their first impressions of Talis Aspire
More news on the implementation of Talis Aspire at Aberystwyth
  • Formal introduction will take place at the AU Teaching & Learning Conference September 16th-18th; why not come along to one of the conference workshops and give Talis Aspire try
  • Training for academic and administrative staff will be available in Hugh Owen and Thomas Parry libraries during October and November, or by arrangement at a place and time convenient to you
  • First reading lists to be entered in October/November for 2nd Semester modules 2014/2015 to allow time to purchase any items not in stock in the libraries or electronically
Any changes to procedures will be added to the existing Reading list web page. Please feel free to contact the subject librarians with any questions you have:

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Meet your Academic Services Librarian #12

I’m Simon French and I’m the Library Graduate Trainee for the 2014/2015 session. The photograph is of me on a literary pilgrimage to Shakespeare and Company in Paris. As you can see, even when I’m on holiday I don’t want to stray too far from the books!
Books have always played a major part in my life. One of my earliest memories as a child was joining my local library. The first time I went in, I couldn’t believe my luck. I could have any three books that I wanted. Free! This was too good an opportunity to miss. Obviously I was going to make it worth my while and so I picked the three largest books I could find.  After nearly forty years my memory of that day is a bit sketchy but I distinctly remember that one of the books was called something like ‘Warplanes of the Third Reich’. It was a huge book, bound in blue cloth filled with technical diagrams and details along with silhouettes of the planes in question. I could barely lift it and quite what use it would have been to a small boy in 1970s rural Herefordshire is anyone’s guess, but I didn’t care. It was the size of the thing that mattered.
Yet my working life did not begin in a very bookish fashion. I started out selling polythene bags for a living but the excitement of that soon waned. I stuck it out for five years and then I threw in the thrills of the bag factory to go and pursue my first love – books. I studied for my BA and MA in English Literature at the University of the West of England in Bristol. I then got a job researching and cataloguing manuscripts and rare books for an antiquarian bookseller. Some six years later I struck out on my own path and for ten more years I bought and sold books for a living.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Aberystwyth University LibTeachMeet

The Information Literacy site features a report on the stimulating LibTeachMeet event that took place at Aberystwyth University earlier this month. Ffion Bell, our graduate trainee, bid for the funding and organised the event during her placement in Academic Services. Find out more about what went on...

Friday, 6 June 2014

Coming soon! A new AU reading list service supported by Talis Aspire

Talis Aspire is a reading list system designed to create accurately referenced, deep-linked resource lists available in Blackboard modules and other online locations.
Please take a look at this short video.
Planning for implementation is underway but some key milestones are as follows:

  • Implementation: July
  • Configuration and testing: August/September
  • Training for academic and administrative staff: October
  • First reading lists to be entered in October/November for 2nd Semester modules 2014/2015 to allow time to purchase any items not in stock in the libraries or electronically
  • ARMS to remain available for editing until mid-November
  • Existing users of ARMS will be advised that it won’t be possible to export their lists into Aspire, however they will be prioritised for training and assistance with using Aspire
There will be regular announcements to track project progress, and changes to procedures will be added to the existing Reading list web page.We look forward to showing you the new system as soon as we can! Please feel free to contact the subject librarians with any questions you have:

Wednesday, 4 June 2014

Introducing JISC Historical Texts

The platform formerly known as JISC Historic Books has had a revamp. The BETA version of the new platform, JISC Historical Texts, is available now for you to explore: 

The current platform will be replaced on 23rd June 2014, so take care to update your links and bookmarks! 

JISC Historical Texts contains the same three collections as before, bringing together over 350,000 late-15th to 19th century texts: Early English Books Online (EEBO), Eighteenth Century Collections Online 
(ECCO), and 19th century books from the British Library collection.

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Undergraduates - More Books are available!

Are you an undergraduate? Are you thinking about your dissertation topic for next year, and planning the reading you need to do? Good news! With our More Books campaign we make it easy for you to get access to books.

If there is a book that will be useful to you, and we don't have copies in stock (always check Primo first) then we will order it for you. Just Sign In to Primo then click on the "Request new copies for purchase" link. Find out more here.

It can take from ten days to six weeks for the book to arrive, so do plan ahead.

Monday, 28 April 2014

Work experience in Hugh Owen Library

Laura Nichols, a 3rd year student at Aberystwyth University has just finished a short work experience placement with Information Services staff in Hugh Owen Library, via GO Wales.

This is what she had to say:

"My 3 days here have been really useful to me and have strengthened my understanding of what goes on behind the scenes in Information Services. My first day centred on Customer Services, I was introduced to ‘customer service mapping’ which emphasises the role of the customer in everyday processes. Working with the Lending Team was more hands-on, I was able to observe processes such as digitising, document supply and meeting with customers at the enquiry desk. My third day working with subject librarians was most interesting as I was able to see how the staff liaise with the different departments. The special collections were also interesting as I got to sit in on a meeting regarding a planned World War One display of Welsh students who went to war, which was particularly interesting to me as a History student.

After my time here I’ve found that each member of staff is responsible for multitude of different tasks so work never gets boring. The taster has really strengthened my understanding of Information Services and made me sure that I’d be interested in a career in librarianship or similar. It was great to experience things here and the staff were all very supportive and friendly".

Sarah Gwenlan, Laura Nichols and Joy Cadwallader in Hugh Owen Library, Penglais Campus

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

E-resource trial to 26th April 2014 - Irish Newspapers Archive

Access on or through the Electronic Resources Trials page.

“Irish Newspaper Archives is the largest Digital Archive of Irish Newspapers in the world, with over 40 titles from all over the country, providing access to millions of newspaper articles spanning over 300 years of Irish history.”

It consists of digitised Irish news publications from 1738 onwards. It currently includes: the Freeman's Journal, Irish Independent, Sunday Independent, Irish Farmers Journal and some other regional newspapers. Further digitisation of these titles and the addition of new titles is ongoing.
  • You can choose to explore by title, keyword, or time period.
  • Search text articles, pictures, or adverts. 
Here's an example of what can be discovered - a book review from the Irish Independent, Tuesday 9th May 1939.  The reviewer certainly doesn't seem to have been able to get their head around James Joyce...

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Two judges visit the Thomas Parry Library in one week

A post by Lillian Stevenson, Academic Services Manager and Law Librarian.

It was a real pleasure to welcome the Rt Hon The Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd,  The Lord Chief Justice of England and Wales and His Honour Judge D. Elgan Edwards DL, Recorder of Chester, to the Thomas Parry Library, the new home for the Department of Law and Criminology’s library. It was a unique opportunity to discuss the role of legal information and law librarians, within the legal profession and legal education in the United Kingdom and internationally. Students studying in the library also found themselves cross examined but they rose to the challenge!

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Literature Online is Changing

ProQuest Literature Online provides Aberystwyth University students and staff with access to a vast number of literary texts as well as collections of reference and critical materials. It is an essential resource for the study and teaching of English literature, poetry, and drama.

Things may look different the next time you access Literature Online - ProQuest has developed a brand new interface and the existing version will be taken offline in May 2014. Try the new LiteratureOnline now.

Here's a word from ProQuest:

The new Literature Online features all the existing content - the more than 350,000 works of poetry, prose and drama, the ever-growing full-text journal collection, the vast library of reference resources such as biographies, encyclopedias and companions, and the exclusive audio and video offerings - as well as the bespoke and specialist search features and functionalities. Now, however, that advanced functionality and in-demand content has been paired with a modern search interface which is more intuitive and straightforward to use and navigate. What's more, Literature Online is now fully mobile-compatible, meaning you can use it on tablets or smartphones, wherever and whenever you need it. 

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

A day in the life of a librarian #2

Anita Saycell, the Information Studies and Management and Business librarian.

8.45am: I arrive at work drenched from the journey in. A quick change and then at my desk catching up with emails. As any part-timer knows the emails don’t stop even though you are not in work! One of which includes a request for a 10 minute lecture drop in to chat about finding resources for an assignment. I find these are the best sessions as they are at the point of need and relevant.

Thursday, 6 February 2014

A day in the life of a librarian #1

Question: What do librarians do?
Clue: It doesn't usually involve stamping books.
To get the answer, read on in this new series of blog posts! We've already had a 'meet your librarian' series, and will continue to write those. This series is 'a day in the life of a librarian' and will give you an insight into what some of the librarians do on a typical day. We'll just pick a few events from each day.

I'll kick this series off: I'm Karl Drinkwater, the psychology librarian.

This is where I work (standing up).
I call it The Temple of Doom.

Friday, 31 January 2014

Is Open Access Harming Book Sales?

(Image: The Guardian)
A common concern over Open Access book publishing is that it harms book sales, with potential buyers simply opting to read the content online for free rather than actually purchasing a physical copy.

In answer to this concern, in October 2013, the OAPEN Foundation published a study on the effect of Open Access on the sale of academic monographs in the Netherlands. The project was supported by the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research and was undertaken in collaboration with nine academic publishers.

The OAPEN-NL report found no evidence that Open Access has an impact on monograph sales. Indeed, books with Open Access had similar sales to those without Open Access in the experiment's control group. There was, however, a clear effect on online accessibility. By making books available online, the study showed that average book discovery through Google Books increased by 142% and that full-text usage (in terms of Google Books page views) increased by 209%. On average, each e-book within the study attracted 144 sales as against 2800 downloads.

The report also makes several recommendations for different groups including authors, funders, publishers and libraries on how to improve Open Access for monographs.

The full OAPEN-NL report can be found online.

Neil Waghorn
Steve Smith

The Finch Report: A Year On

The Finch Report on increasing access to research publications was published in 2012 and included a list of recommendations and identified steps to achieve them. In October 2013 the Working Group published its findings on the state of progress.

The review stands by the recommendations made in the original Finch Report, that Gold Open Access, primarily funded by article processing or publishing charges (APCs), will be the eventual optimum form of Open Access, although they did 'not recommend a rapid transition'.

In light of the Finch Report, the RCUK announced new policies to which universities adhered. It was noted, however, that universities' actions seemed to only meet requirements rather than to go further. An example being that universities have apparently continued their investments into Green Open Access rather than the recommended Gold Open Access.

Thursday, 30 January 2014

Introducing the Researcher Identifier ORCID

ORCID (Open Researchers and Contributor ID) Inc., was created in 2010 with the aim to create permanent unique identification codes for researchers that could be used as an international, cross disciplinary, cross institution system to identify researchers and attribute their respective work.

This non-profit effort works through the insertion of an individual's ORCID identifier into the content metadata, allowing the permanent clear association with that individual. Registration for ORCID is free and by the end of the 2013, there were over 460,000 individuals with their own ORCID identifiers.

Users can attribute as much, or as little, personal or professional detail to their ORCID account, and can also tailor their privacy settings to control who has the ability to access said information.

Universities and institutions world-wide, from Boston to Hong Kong and Sweden, are beginning to integrate ORCID into their systems, and are especially useful in regions where there are high concentrations of similar surnames, such as in Wales.

To find out more information about ORCID, or to sign up for an individual identifier, visit the ORCID website.

An Introduction to Creative Commons Licences

Creative Commons Licenses offer a way for material to be copyrighted in a manner that is less restrictive than traditional 'All Rights Reserved' copywriting. These licenses 'provide a simple, standardized way to give the public permission to share and use your creative work — on conditions of your choice'.

Creative Commons Licences are in wide use around the world, arguably most well-known at photo sharing site Flickr and the online encyclopaedia, Wikipedia. There are also other companies and organisations that have opted to make some of their content less restricted than traditional copyrights, an example being GlaxoSmithKline, who surrendered all copyrights in its malarial data set, which includes more than 13,500 compounds known to be active against malaria.

The Creation Commons website describes the various types and combinations of licences below:


This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon your work, even commercially, as long as they credit you for the original creation. This is the most accommodating of licenses offered. Recommended for maximum dissemination and use of licensed materials.


This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms. This license is often compared to “copyleft” free and open source software licenses. All new works based on yours will carry the same license, so any derivatives will also allow commercial use. This is the license used by Wikipedia, and is recommended for materials that would benefit from incorporating content from Wikipedia and similarly licensed projects.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Horizon 2020 Open Access Guidelines Published

Guidelines on Open Access to Scientific Publications and Research Data in Horizon 2020
(Image: European Commission)
On 11th December 2013, the European Commission published their latest guidance document for Open Access to scientific publications and research data. These Guidelines are designed to 'provide context and explanation for the rules on open access applicable to beneficiaries in projects funded or co-funded under Horizon 2020.' Horizon 2020, the largest ever EU Research and Innovation programme with nearly €80 billion of funding available (2014 to 2020), is designed to open up access to published research.

According to the guide, 'information already paid for by the public purse should not be paid for again each time it is accessed or used, and that it should benefit European companies and citizens to the full. This means making publicly-funded scientific information available online, at no extra cost, to European researchers, innovative industries and citizens, while ensuring long-term preservation.'

While the document details and describes both Green and Gold versions of Open Access, it does not make a clear preference over which form of Open Access the data should take, only that it be open.

The guide sets out the political and legal basis for rules on Open Access in Horizon 2020, detailing various EU policies that correspond with Horizon 2020, including the Digital Agenda for Europe and the Innovation Union policy.

Hitting the Button for Open Access

Open Access Button
(Image: Open Access Button)
Coming across paywalls for content can curtail and frustrate research. To log this frustration and attempt to highlight the need for Open Access two medical students, David Carroll and Joseph McArthur, have created an Open Access button.

Once installed, this plugin allows users to simply click to record that they hit a paywall and could not access the desired material. Your approximate location is then logged on a map, helping build the global case for Open Access. Once you have filled in a brief description the plugin offers alternative routes to the desired material, including an automatic Google Scholar search and similar articles that are available through Open Access sources. In the future the developers plan to add the ability to directly email the author of the work for a copy.

The button had a formal beta launch in Berlin in November 2013 and at the time of writing had reported 4269 paywall hits.

You can find out more and download the button for your browser at the Open Access website, or follow them on Twitter.

Neil Waghorn
Steve Smith

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Improve your referencing for Law modules with OSCOLA

A post by Lillian Stevenson, Academic Services Manager and Law Librarian.

(Oxford University Standard for Citation Of Legal Authorities) 

•  4th ed 2012 -

•  Quick Reference Guide

•  Citing international law 2006

OSCOLA is the authoritative guide, with worked examples, to referencing legal materials. It covers books, journal articles, cases, statutes, treaties, online journals, government publications, websites & blogs……………………

For this and other law & criminology library help, contact Lillian Stevenson, Law Librarian I am often in the Thomas Parry Library so please ask for me there too.

Thursday, 9 January 2014

Meet your Academic Services Librarian #11

Ffion Bell
Library Graduate Trainee 2013/2014

I'm Ffion, and I'm the other 50% percent of the Library Graduate Trainees working in Information Services this year. Before the new year I worked with Lending (mainly trying to be helpful at the enquiry desks) as well as E-services & Communications. Now I've moved over to Academic Services (which explains this blog post) and Collections, Acquisitions & Resource Management.
On a boat-bus in Copenhagen
Originally from Pembrokeshire, I studied towards a BA in English and Archaeology at Queen's University Belfast - an excellent chance to read (getting distracted from my first library shelving job in the evenings) and spend summers digging holes in Irish turf bogs as well as places like Transylvania and Pompeii. For my 3rd year I studied abroad at Aarhus University in Denmark...I liked it so much I moved back over there shortly after graduation.

Friday, 3 January 2014

E-resource trial to 5th February 2014 - Chatham House Online Archive

A post by Lillian Stevenson, Academic Services Manager and Law Librarian.

Access via or via the Electronic Resources Trials page.

"Chatham House Online Archive contains the publications and archives of the Royal Institute of International Affairs (Chatham House), the world-leading independent international affairs policy institute founded in 1920 following the Paris Peace Conference. The Institute's analysis and research, as well as debates and speeches it has hosted, can be found in this online archive, subject-indexed and fully searchable".

  • Explore by subject including - Energy & Environment ; International Politics ; International law ; International Economics ; International Security, War & Conflict ; United Nations
  • Explore by Region
Aberystwyth University in the Chatham House Online Archive
Aberystwyth University features in 71 records, the earliest in The British Year Book of International Law 1922-23. In 1929 A Directory of Societies and Organizations in Great Britain Concerned with the Study of International Affairs summarises Aberystwyth’s Department of International Politics and its Library: