It is that time of the year when students have their noses in books, eyes are red and bleary from studying and stress levels are peaking. To help relieve a bit of the stress of exams, the McMaster library is hosting a few events for the students
De-Stress Zones (Lyons New Media Centre and Innis Library)
The Lyons New Media Centre and Innis Library have set up de-stress zones. Students are welcome to drop in to relax and unwind. Play some board games, cards (video games in Lyons), do some puzzles, find Waldo, pick up a magazine to read, etc. Innis will also be showing movies (on silent mode with captions). Students can also drop by and help themselves to the free snacks that have been set out (while supplies last)
SPCA Animal Visits
The SPCA will be in the Connections Centre of Mills Library with their dogs and other animals on December 12th and 17th from 1-2 pm. Drop by and pick up a pet to hold and relieve your stress. It is a known fact that petting and playing with animals helps in reducing anxiety and stress.
Stressed about exams? SHEC’s got your back! We’ve teamed up with various campus and Hamilton organizations to put together events to help you deal with the craziness of the exams. Remember that stress can cause a productivity decline, but taking a break can actually improve your efficiency.
On December 5, 12 and 17, SHEC is working with the Hamilton Burlington SPCA to bring animals in to Mills Library (L113)! We’ll be there from 12 – 1 PM on Dec. 5 and 12, and 1-2 PM on Dec. 17 with some adorable dogs who can’t wait to help ease your stress. You don't even have to leave the library to reduce your stress levels.
Other events include a board games night, free coffee socials hosted by the Chaplaincy Centre, crafting workshop by Threadwork, bi-weekly runs by Mac Running Club and exam yoga and meditation in DBAC! Check out msumcmaster.ca/shec or facebook.com/StudentHealthEducationCentre for a full event listing.
The Reference Collection has moved from the 2nd floor of Mills to the 3rd floor, along the North wall of the library.
All materials on the 3rd floor are non-circulating, including Periodicals, Microfilm and now the Reference Collection.
Please ask the staff at the Service Desk on the main floor of Mills if you require assistance with any of these collections.
This year you will once again have lots of options when it comes to late night studying during exams.
Thode Library will be open 24/7 from December 5th to December 19th. The Reactor Café will be open December 6th-15th from 10am to 10pm, December 16th-19th from 10am to 8pm. Don't forget there is an ATM to Thode so you will have easy access to cash for use at the café and the vending machines.
The lower level of Thode is the Quietest Study Area in the building, with the 2nd floor designated as Quiet but more difficult to enforce due to noise floating upwards from the 1st floor.
Mills Library moves to extended hours this week – the main library will be open 8am to 10:45pm, 7 days per week.
The Mills Learning Commons (2nd floor) is open 24/7 until December 19th.
The entire 6th floor of Mills is designated as a Silent Study Areaand we will do our best to patrol this area. Feel free to send an email to email@example.com if students in the area are not respecting the Silent Study guidelines (no talking, no socializing, no cell phones, no music). A large area on the 4th floor is designated as a Quiet Study Area. During exams, all seating areas on the upper floors (3rd – 5th) are considered Quiet Study Areas and will be signed as such.
Innis will also move to extended hours this week – Monday to Friday 8:30am to 10:45pm / Saturday 10:30am to 5:45 pm / Sunday 1pm to 7:45pm.
You will find more information on the various study spaces available in our libraries here.
All libraries have bookable Group Study Rooms. Please remember that these are to be used by groups of 2 or more, and cannot be booked for more than 2 consecutive hours by one group. The library reserves the right to remove bookings which do not follow these guidelines.
Food and beverage vending machines in all libraries will be stocked daily during exams.
Good luck on your exams!
We've heard your comments and suggestions about wifi speed and connectivity in Thode, as has UTS. Working together, we have recently changed out 16 access points with newer generation hardware that supports more simultaneous connections and better manages bandwidth. UTS also implemented a number of management changes on the access points, all geared toward breaking up bandwidth bottlenecks and improving the experience.
These changes will mean significant improvements in Thode, but we can't guarantee that everything will be rosy. Given the population density of Thode at peak times and the extreme demand placed on the wireless network by hundreds of devices, there may still be times when bandwidth gets tight. UTS is investigating other options for adding more access points, but this work depends on budget and competing priorities, as many areas around campus are calling for better connectivity.
By Tyler Welch
Since the inception of e-books and other online resources McMaster’s library has been working to keep up.
One of the most practical modernization techniques, said University Librarian Vivian Lewis, is simply adding more electrical outlets.
“Outlets are huge for us. It is one of our main demands in study spaces. It is very different from when I started here 20 years ago,” she said. “We have to come up with all kinds of ways to get power to different study areas. We run power strips across tables…more and more this is what students are looking for.”
With the Library—Mills, Thode and Innis (The Health Science Library is run separately)—as the largest Wi-Fi center on campus, spaces within the actual buildings are forced to adapt to demand. That means, in some cases, allocating square footage once given to book stacks to study space instead.
In recent years, Mills has transformed much of the sixth floor into quiet study space and added the Lyons New Media Centre, allowing student to use resources like video editing software and green screen. Thode has also added more open study spaces.
The most significant player in the modernization of academic libraries is the move from print to electronic resources.
“The journals that we get have gone almost completely electronic because that is where the users are…where they can get the article they want at 2 o’clock in the morning, even if they’re on the other side of the country,” said Wade Wycoff, Associate University Librarian, Collections.
In 2001, the Library had around 11,000 journal subscriptions that were available to students and faculty only print. Because of the move to electronic publication, e-journals can be purchased in bundles and are more affordable than a decade ago. McMaster students can now access 80,000 different journal titles.
“It levels the playing field in a lot of ways. Now suddenly we’re getting subscriptions of volumes and journals available to our users, that rival U of T and Western,” said Wycoff.
The rise in overall journals does come at a cost, especially for researchers who seek a true print copy.
Wycoff said, “We still have about 2,000 print subscriptions, and those are mostly smaller publishers who just haven’t moved on to electronic versions of their journal yet.”
The same transformation is happening with books. In 2001, the Library purchased more than 40,000 books in print. In 2012, only 6,610 print books were purchased, in addition to 22,000 e-book titles. The combined total of 28,810 still falls more than 10,000 titles short 2001’s book purchases.
Wycoff says that this reflects a focus on serials that many libraries are making.
“More academic libraries are spending more on their journal collection. We have had to shift some resources around,” he said. “We are also seeing things, like in the sciences, how they are using those electronic resources, they are using journals more. So their usage pattern is changing, so the money changes to support what they actually want.”
Wycoff believes that the trend will continue.
“Ten years from now, we’ll still have a physical collection, but its footprint will be much smaller,” he said. “The longer-term trend in academic libraries is toward a collection that is almost fully electronic. In the near term, we expect that the Library’s collection will continue to be a blend of print and electronic materials.”
University Librarian Vivian Lewis sees a general move to a more service-based library on the horizon.
“It is also changing how we’re providing services in general. It’s not really just the collections—the libraries are places for service and so it is changing the way that we answer questions,” she said. “If students aren’t physically coming to the library to use the library, we need to support them where they are.”
She continued, “We have to be all about serving students now, even if they aren’t in the physical library.”
“Sometimes we hear someone say ‘I never use the library.’ Reality is that they are using the library all the time, even when they are just accessing Google Scholar,” she said. “Our students and faculty researchers use the library constantly, probably way more than they did a decade ago, when they physically had to put their hat and coat on and walk over.”
Photo credit: Yoseif / Photo Editor
Publication agreements often require authors to give up all or many of their intellectual property rights as a condition of publication. This limits your ability as an author to legally distribute or reuse your work. However, understanding copyright and what options are available can help you negotiate with publishers to retain as many of your rights as possible.
Join Sarah O’Byrne, Copyright Officer, and Anne Pottier, Associate University Librarian, as we discuss issues like:
- What should I be looking for in a publisher’s contract?
- How do I make sure I don’t sign away my rights?
- What Open Access options are available to me?
- How does Creative Commons licensing fit in?
- What is custom publishing?
- What role can McMaster’s Institutional Repository play?
Date & Time: Wednesday December 4th: 3pm to 4:30pm
Location: The Great Hall, University Club
Wine and cheese reception to follow.
RSVP to Anne Pottier at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 905-525-9140, ext. 22410 by Friday November 29th at 3pm
McMaster's Libraries are once again pleased to host this year's Annual Toy and Food Drive, in support of the Hamilton chapter of the Salvation Army's Christmas Bureau. The Bureau collects and distributes new toys, gift cards, non-perishable food items as well as toys and food for family pets, all going directly to their clients who are in need of assistance in our community. This year's Drive runs from November 21 to December 16.
The Drive dates back to 1975 in Mills Library; the purpose being to assist community residents in need, in partnership with the local branch of the Salvation Army. Each year, the Drive commemorates the contributions of one of the founding members, former library employee Frances McCrone. She ran the Drive for many years, and was instrumental in expanding it to locations beyond the libraries, and in fact was awarded a President's Choice award for all her work on the Drive, in 1999. She worked with the current Toy Drive committee to include the very popular additions of non-perishable food items, and toys for family pets, as well as increasing the age for children up to 16. There are many now-grown children in the community who have Frances to thank for making their Christmas season much brighter over the years.
The number of needy families that are assisted by the Salvation Army here in Hamilton continue to increase each year. All donated items go directly to the Hamilton branch of the Salvation Army, and then on to the families in need here in our community. Every single donation made is very helpful, and is much appreciated by the families that really need the assistance.
This year's Drive runs from November 21 to December 16. The collection bins can be found at the following locations:
- all campus libraries (Mills, Innis, Thode & Health Sciences)
- the Downtown Centre
- the MSU (McMaster Students Union) office in the Student Centre
- the lobby of the Ron Joyce Centre (Burlington)
- gift card donations may be left at the Service Desks at any of the above locations
For further information, please contact Sylvia Dion at 905-525-9140 ext 22077, Eden McLean at 905-525-9140 ext 27099, or send an e-mail to email@example.com
Photo by Matt Terry Map Specialist Gord Beck with a Second World War map of Hanover. A new Library website makes it easier to find and use maps of Europe and Africa produced by the British War Office's Geographical Section and the US Army Map Service.
By Wade Hemsworth
A McMaster collection of 2,650 maps from the Second World War, once confined to paper, are now available to the world online.
McMaster’s library has launched a site that makes it easy to find and use maps of Europe and Africa produced by the British War Office’s Geographical Section and the US Army Map Service.
In some cases, the maps were adapted from maps captured, borrowed or otherwise obtained from their countries of origin.
All have been scanned at high resolution and are rich in details that are already proving to be valuable to scholars and amateur historians alike. The site includes links to documents that provide valuable context.
Map Specialist Gord Beck has supervised the building of the site, made possible by a large-format scanner that can accommodate entire map sheets at a single pass.
Alumni of McMaster’s School of Geography and Earth Sciences contributed to the purchase of the scanner.
The maps were scanned over a period of months by students working in the library. With a resolution of 600 dpi, the maps are print-quality and lend themselves readily to magnification.
The maps are significant because they show geographic features and human settlements that have since changed or even been lost since the Second World War.
Among the early users of the site, Beck explains, have been people searching their ancestral homes, including villages that were destroyed by conflict, or which have since been absorbed into larger communities.
The maps have already drawn calls from Canada, the US and Europe.
“We’re starting to become the place to go for research on those topics,” Beck says. “This stuff sort of snowballs.”
Beck explains that while the maps in question may not be rare, the ease of access and searchable format of the site makes them easy to find and use.
Some other institutions have either discarded their historical maps or stored them in places that are difficult to access, he said. Now it is easy for anyone with an Internet connection to find and use them.
The digital format also makes it far easier for researchers to compare the maps to others from different places or from different points in history.
Beck says the maps are so detailed that they could be used to construct three-dimensional models of landscapes that no longer exist. -
Dr. Stefan Reif, Emeritus Professor of Medieval Hebrew Studies and Fellow of St. John’s College in the University of Cambridge will deliver the 2nd Meyer-Schreiber Lecture on Monday, November 11 at 7:30 PM in CIBC Hall (MUSC, 3rd floor). The lecture is free and open to the public.
As a renowned expert in the history of medieval Hebrew literature, Professor Reif will examine some rare and remarkable old prayer texts and reveal how they shed light on relations between the Jews and other religions many centuries ago. He will then reflect on how relevant such data is for current inter-faith dialogue.
The Meyer-Schreiber lecture series, funded through a generous gift from the Herb & CeCe Schreiber Foundation, focuses on modern Jewish Studies, especially relations between Judaism, Christianity and Islam, and commemorates the friendship between the late Ben Meyer, a professor from the Department of Religious Studies, and philanthropist and businessman Herb Schreiber.
The next lecture will be held on March 4, 2014, and will feature Dr. Mark R. Cohen, Khedouri A. Zilkha Professor of Jewish Civilization in the Near East and Professor of Near Eastern Studies at Princeton University.
For more information, please contact Anne Plessl (firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 905.525.9140 ext. 24865)