Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Thinking about libraries for National Libraries Day...

Saturday 4th February is National Libraries Day! It's an opportunity to celebrate libraries and their staff across the UK (see the official website at http://nationallibrariesday.org.uk/)

As part of this we are asking you to think about libraries, and suggest 1 thing that could potentially improve your SMU Library for you. This is open to all SMU staff and students, and we are doing it the old-fashioned way with suggestions boxes at each of our three libraries. So if you have something you would like to suggest, do call in and fill out a slip, we'll be considering all feedback. Also, if you would like to tell us 1 thing you really value about your library that would be useful too!

Finally, please note that the suggestions boxes will be available from today until Wednesday 8th February.

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Calling everyone with an interest in market research and company information!

SMU Library has arranged a free, online trial of the Key Note database until 7th March 2012.

Key Note is a leading provider of market intelligence in the UK. Offering a combination of market research and company information on one easy-to-use platform, it is possible to perform a dual search for company information and market research in one simple step.

Market research: analyse every major market sector, including brand strategy, buying behaviour, competitor analysis, market forecasts, SWOT/PEST analysis, etc. All reports are available alphabetically if you click in to the first pod on the main page of the site.

Company information: access to up to 5 years of company financial information for more than 7 million UK companies, including a ‘People Search’ for directors. The key ratios offered are profitability, efficiency, liquidity, gearing and employee performance, as well as company overviews, detailed accounts and performance analysis.

To access Key Note, go to the business subject pages on the library website. Click on the Databases tab in the top left corner of the screen and then find Key Note in the alphabetical listing.

We currently subscribe to Datamonitor360 for marketing and company information – does Key Note provide a better alternative for your needs? Have a look and let us know what you think!

Thursday, 26 January 2012

All that jazz... Jazz Heritage Wales, that is!

As you might know, SMU is lucky enough to play host to the charity, archive and performance group Jazz Heritage Wales, which is based at our Townhill Campus in the library. Jazz Heritage Wales was founded in 1986 by pianist and historian Jen Wilson, who is has become a familiar face around Townhill Library since the operation moved here in 2009. The group’s distinguished patrons are legendary jazz singer Dame Cleo Laine and Paula Gardiner, who is head of Jazz Studies at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama.

Jazz Heritage Wales is dedicated to four areas of activity: performance, archive, research and education. The Women in Jazz Allstars swing band is linked to the group and regularly performs at events in Swansea and further afield. The charity’s latest project is ‘Remembering the Tower Ballroom, Townhill’, a community project funded by the Arts Council of Wales. Jen is working closely with the Phoenix Centre in Townhill, which now stands on the site of the ballroom, to gather stories, memories and photographs from local people who went dancing at the Tower. An open day, featuring a performance by the Women in Jazz Allstars, will be held on Friday 10th February. You can find out more from the SMU website.

Jazz Heritage Wales also runs swing band workshops for women every Sunday 2-pm in the Gower Room, Townhill Campus. If you play an instrument and have a basic knowledge of reading music, they’d love to see you there! The fee is £3 for students and £5 for everyone else.

You can find out more about Jazz Heritage Wales and keep up to date with their latest events on their Facebook page and website.

Photo: Rob Stradling

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

All in a good cause!

Did you know that your university libraries have been busy raising money for good causes? Here's what we've been involved in...

For the past couple of years SMU library staff have been supporting a christmas appeal in aid of Maggie's Cancer Caring Centres. The 'Maggie's Merry Messages' appeal encourages people to put their christmas greetings to one another on a big communal poster, instead of sending cards, and to donate the money they would have spent to the charity. Our library staff have so far raised a total of £230 for the local Maggie's centre at Singleton Hospital, which has helped towards the recent completion of their much needed brand new building!

Students at the Owen Library in Mount Pleasant have also been doing their bit by generously putting their loose change in our collection box for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. A total of £65 has so far been collected for this fabulous charity which grants wishes to children with life threatening ilnesses. Your small change makes a big difference to their lives, thank you!

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Re-naming ceremony for Library

Some of you may recall a blog post from last September, in which we mentioned that the Library at Dynevor was to be re-named 'The Griffith Library at Dynevor' in memory of Art & Design lecturer, Sue Griffith. We are pleased to announce that the official re-naming ceremony is now going to take place on Wednesday 8th February at 5pm, at the Griffith Library, Dynevor Campus.

Following this, refreshments will be available and there will also be the opportunity to view an exhibition of work by female staff and students from the Faculty of Art & Design, in the main foyer next to the Library.

We hope this all would be a fitting tribute to Sue, and look forward to seeing as many people as possible here that evening.

Monday, 16 January 2012

Lost property

I'm sure we've all been lost in a good book (if not, why not ask your friendly librarian for some reading recommendations?), but sometimes students lose more than themselves in the library. We often find coats, lecture notes, books and even spectacles that have been left behind by busy students. Our most common item of lost property by far, though, is the memory stick, of which we have dozens! So if you've mislaid anything lately, why not check at your SMU Library to see if we've found it. You never know, you might be lucky!

Friday, 13 January 2012

Why Use Your Library?

Last term, library staff from the Dynevor campus were approached to take part in a promotional video, aiming to make students more aware of and encourage greater use of the resources and services available from Welsh university libraries.

You can now see the finished product on the Welsh Libraries You Tube Channel - just click on the blog post title for the link (which is also the title of the film) 'Why Use Your Library?'

So take a look - you will see the Griffith Library at Dynevor featured and may also recognise a couple of faces! The film is being used throughout Wales, so is quite a coup for SMU!

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Change to 'Art Full Text' database

If you use our 'Art Full Text' database, you will now see a change to how it looks! The resource has been taken over by EBSCO Publishing, and is now running from their platform.

On a practical note, SMU staff and students can still access the database both on and off-campus via the 'Art Full Text' link on the library webpages. Plus you still have access to the same breadth of Art & Design e-journals as before.

However, if you do need help navigating your way around the new screens, please don't hesitate to contact myself or one of the other SMU Librarians for assistance!

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Roald Dahl honoured by Royal Mail

Does anyone out there still write letters? I hope so! If you do, you'll now be able to show your appreciation for Roald Dahl on the envelopes thanks to a series of stamps issued by the Royal Mail. The stamps feature Quentin Blake's illustrations from some of Dahl's best-loved books, including the BFG, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year.

Dahl's books have delighted children (and adults) for years and continue to entice children into a world of books and stories today. His classics are available in the Teaching Practice section of Townhill Library, so please feel free to come in for a browse and pick up an old favourite. We also have some of his more grown up stories, such as Tales of the Unexpected, available on the ground floor. They are characterized by the same subversive humour and outlook as his books for children and are definitely worth a read! If you'd like to find out more about his fascinating life, we've got some biographies you might be interested in, or hear it straight from the horse's mouth with his autobiographies Boy and Going Solo.

Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Greats of Great Britain

Happy New Year everyone! 2012 seems like a good year to be British, what with the Olympic Games coming to London and the Queen celebrating her Diamond Jubilee this summer. The Great Exhibition is getting into the patriotic spirit by launching a search for the 'Greats of Great Britain 2012' to identify the best in British society and culture. Go to their website to sign up to nominate a 'Great' or vote for an existing nominee. Categories include people, fictional characters, places, food and drink, so whether you think William Shakespeare is the epitome of British achievement, or a cup of tea is, well, more your cup of tea, then you're sure to find something you can get behind. It's worth a look just to see the variety of things out there that might represent "Britishness"!