Hillcroft LRC

Posts Tagged ‘students

Cite Them RightWe were recently asked to provide referencing revision sessions across all our longer courses as tutors felt it would be a timely reminder half way through the year.

Despite knowing about online referencing generators, Learning Resources have been reluctant to teach to any particular one as none seemed to match what we taught and we felt it would only confuse students. However, our research continued and we are now promoting RefMe. This is freely available on the desktop and as a mobile app. We particularly like this generator because when students select the Harvard style, it relates specifically to Cite them right 9th edition by Pears and Shields and published by Palgrave. This is the style we teach across the college. Data can be generated digitally (through a dropdown selection) or manually and students can generate multiple bibliographies, all saved on the cloud.

Our level 2 sessions were evaluated using electronic post-it notes provided by Linoit. Here is a selection of student comments (thank you for being guinea pigs) which were all very positive:

  • This is really cool. I won’t lose track of my references
  • RefMe makes life easy
  • It is a time saver. It will make my references very clear to read. It shows I am not plagiarising
  • It will help me to be organised
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The Periodic table is the way chemical elements are organised and it is controlled by the InternationPeriodic table imageal Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry whose work it is to standardise naming in this area of chemistry. Earlier this month, the Guardian reported the discovery of four new elements from scientists in Russia, U.S. and Japan in ‘Periodic table’s seventh row finally filled as four new elements are added‘. These are the first new elements since 2011. They belong in the seventh row of the table (super-heavy radioactive elements) and are the elements 113; 115; 117 and 118. They currently have temporary names which will be confirmed shortly.

Scientists are entitled to take five years with their demanding discoveries but let’s hope it doesn’t take book/ebook publishers as long to update this information which is essential for all science students!

Gold Mine by Kuznetsov is licensed under CC by 2.0

Gold Mine by Kuznetsov is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

First of all, what do we mean by information overload? It is that feeling of falling down a dark hole when there is too much information to carry out a task. So even simple tasks can be made difficult when we are faced with too many options and no specific direction.

For example, you may need to find out about main theorists for a subject for your UCAS application. As Confucius is credited with saying ‘You can not open a book without learning something.’ There are entire libraries online and offline devoted to human knowledge. Where do you start?

If you have access to lots of information this gives you the chance to be selective and find a direction. The trouble is how can you be selective without being biased or limited? How can you read it all? We all need help with overcoming our biases, speed reading and managing time. The key is not learning willy-nilly (although this can be great too sometimes!) but to focus on what you need to learn for the task at hand. Finding the most appropriate, relevant nuggets of information is the ultimate challenge of academic study (and who knows, probably in life too!).

There is no one way to cope with information overload. We would like to hear about your advice to other students on that awful feeling of being overwhelmed with too many sources, too many theories, too many words. What do you do? What if you are dyslexic? What if you are starved for time?

If you post a tip to us by email, on Twitter or in the LRC and you may receive a World Science Day calendar thanks to UNESCO.

Pocket study guidesNext week our Access to Higher Education Humanities and Social Science and Access to Health and Human Sciences and Preaccess students finish their courses. Our Access to Higher Education students will be waiting to start university in the autumn term. If you are like them then Palgrave Study Skills website is useful in reducing those pre-university jitters before you begin a new course of study.

The Palgrave Student Life area gives you advice on everything you need to know about study at university before it starts! Your First Weeks at University gives you a thorough grounding of what to expect when you begin student life – everything from halls of residence, to freshers’ week and socialising. Getting in the Study Mindset advises you on how to get yourself in the zone for studying. The Look After Your Wellbeing page gives you hints on eating, sleeping, dealing with stress and getting exercise. Its Common Challenges and Getting Help helps you overcome homesickness and nerves and boost your confidence.

Their Essential Study Skills page gives you advice on drawing up a learning strategy, organising your time, reading and getting the most out of independent study whether you are going on to study at university or going to study at local college.

If you’ve got some money in your pocket then you would do well to equip yourself with the Study Skills Handbook by Stella Cottrell which has more advice again. Why not invest £8.99 in the Palgrave Student Planner 2015-16 to get yourself ready for your studendom?

CLA Copyright and the Creative Industries bookWhile our Learning Resources Centre (LRC) Manager was following the exhibition track at the Academic and Research Libraries’ Group (ARLG) annual conference at the University of Sussex she picked up this handy guide explaining how copyright works for those working and creating material in the creative industries:

Copyright and the creative industries: a short introduction to copyright and reference guide to related organisations

It lists the contact details of key agencies protecting the rights of the creators.

The Copyright Licensing Agency have an excellent website area CLA Further Education dedicated to how copyright works for those working  in Further Education colleges. Plus they’ve done a guide for students.

There’s also a handy website called Copyright User which explains how copyright protects those who create images, music, film and other works. It’s useful for anyone wanting to copyright the material they have created or use copyrighted material and avoid breaking the law.

The LRC team teaches students on the Access to Higher Education Business, Health and Human Sciences Humanities and Social Sciences and Preaccess about copyright as part of their induction.

 

Reflective Dialogues exhibition at Morley CollegeLast week our Learning Resources Centre Manager got an invitation for the launch of the Reflective Dialogues exhibition at Morley College.

Reflective Dialogues is the results of a Learning Skills Improvement Service (LSIS) project which had 10 practitioners from 10 Art and Design courses in the London area trying out online technologies. The subject areas included everything from dress making to stained glass. The exhibition itself focuses on the  relationship between teacher and learner through the use of  Electronic Individual Learning Plans (eILPs).  The five colleges who took part were EC Bexley, Croydon Adult Learning and Training (CALAT), Morley College, NALS Newham, and Working Men’s College.

The exhibition is set to move to each college. And it’s free.

Find out more about the LSIS Leadership with Technology: Regional Collaboration Fund (RCF) Final Report 2013


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