Monday, 28 September 2009

Moving around

We have been moving some of our books and journals around in order to try to ease some of the overcrowding of shelves in certain areas.
  • All journals are on level 4 (the top floor) apart from those beginning with "A", or B-Bioc.
  • All Bliss items (alphabetical shelfmarks) are now all on Level 3, these remain on Level 3.
  • Dewey items (numerical shelfmarks) 941-999 are now on Level 3.
  • Some work is continuing to spread the items out on Level 2 so that the overflow trolleys can be emptied onto the shelves. As usual if you can't find something please ask a member of library staff for help.

Friday, 18 September 2009

Changes for the new year

The new academic year is almost upon us so it seems a good moment to welcome back returning students and to mention a few changes. As usual you should check the library website for all the details. In order to smooth over the start of term we have extended the expiry date for returning students to 31st October. As soon as you complete enrolment this will adjust to the end of September 2010.

  • The library entrance has changed a bit following the development of the new My Birkbeck Helpdesk. Even more important to note is that the exit has moved, so to avoid getting trapped in here remember that the exit is now adjacent to the entrance!
  • We have extended our opening hours at the weekends so we will be open 10:00-23:45 (self-service after 18:00) on Saturdays and Sundays. Full details at:
  • Term-time hours commence on Monday 21st September.
  • Fines on One Week Loan items will increase to 50 pence per day from the 28th September. We are also introducing a £5 administration charge for non-returned items when we have to start ordering replacement copies. You can easily avoid these charges by keeping your library account up to date and renewing on-line or by phone as soon as we send you a reminder. Email reminders are sent out before your books are due back.
  • We now use the contact email address on your student record to send library notices to you, please make sure it is up to date and is enabled to receive messages from us.
  • We are updating the library PCs and installing Office 2007.
  • And finally - please have a go at using our new catalogue interface which is being tested and let us know what you think.
Good luck with your studies.

Thursday, 17 September 2009

Welcome to Birkbeck

The Library will be participating in the College orientation event for new students which is taking place over the next two evenings (Thursday 17th & Friday 18th) and on Saturday. You can find more information here:

We will be open for students to come in and have a look around and there will be some guided tours.

You might also be interested in some of the induction sessions that we have arranged for the first few weeks of term. Full details are available here: or look for the posters in the library.

If you use Twitter please feel free to follow us - and you can also find us on Facebook and of course here.

Good luck with your studies.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Birkbeck Open Evening 3rd September

The Library will have a stall at the Birkbeck Open Evening today so if you want to find out what we have to offer please come and find us. If the wireless network is working we may be able to demonstrate some of the on-line services we have for students.

More information about this event and future Open Evenings can be found here.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Library Catalogue - new way of searching

We are pleased to announce that we have a new front-end to the library catalogue which is now available for library users to try out. This is called AquaBrowser and is in use in a growing number of libraries around the world. It is independent from the library management system but makes use of the catalogue data, and indeed links to the existing system to obtain up to date information about item availability.

You can find this at:

There is still some work to do as we make improvements and make sure that everything is working, but we would be very interested to hear what our users think of it. You will find that by default there is only one place to put your search (like Google) and that once some results have been returned there are ways of refining the results by date, format, language etc. You will also see that there is a graphical aid to searching with a spider's web of related terms. There is the option of an advanced (or Classic) search feature as well.

The catalogue also has a much improved accessible, text-only version, which you can use on mobile devices.

Please give it a go and let us know what you think. We will be using feedback for readers to help with an FAQ page about the new service.