Author Archives: katieguest

News and holiday announcements

As we begin to say goodbye to everyone at the end of Term, we have a few bits and pieces of news.

Firstly, a reminder that we close for Christmas on the 20th December, re-opening on 2nd January. We will be open tomorrow, Saturday 7th December, from 11-5pm and will open until 7pm next week (9th-13th December), but go back to our vacation opening hours of 9am-5pm, Monday-Friday from Monday 16th December until the start of next Term.

Secondly, vacation loans are now in effect, with books due back on the 21st January (Tuesday of 1st week). We are aware that some readers’ cards expire at the end of the year; if you are a card holder whose card expires during the Christmas closure, please let us know and we will extend your loan and waive any fines incurred once you have renewed your card.

Thirdly, a bit of good news: the Humanities Research Fair, which was cancelled due to strike action in November, is now rescheduled for 27th January. Details can be found here and the booking link is here.

We trust that everyone has had a productive term! There have certainly been some changes here. Three weeks ago we welcomed a new member of staff, Ruchi Srivastava, who is with us in the afternoons and at the Sackler in the mornings. The extra pair of hands has provided a much needed boost to our ability to shelve books promptly and avoid the shelving trolleys getting out of hand.

Readers may have noticed piles of blue crates in amongst the empty shelves round by the staff office – this is part of an ongoing project to move some of our older and more vulnerable collections to the Book Storage Facility, where they will be kept in cooler and more book-friendly conditions. Some of these materials have also been boxed in specially made acid-free boxes to ensure that they stay in the best condition possible. Books which have been moved to the BSF will still be orderable back to OIL, but if they date from before 1920 they will not be borrowable. All items in the collection which are more than 100 years old are confined to the library.

The reclassification has continued during the term, and will be accelerated by more staff-time after Christmas (more news on that in our next post). There may be a minor book-move after the holidays to accommodate the PJ-section, which is becoming slightly clogged again, but Kate says she will decide on that nearer the time.

Finally, we’d like to wish all our readers a Merry Christmas (for those that do) and a Happy New Year (for everyone), and we will see you in 2020!

 

 

 

 

Welcome to OIL!

Hello, and welcome to the first OIL blog post of the 19/20 academic year!

We are excited to meet all our new readers, and pleased to see people from previous years returning to us. Here are a few bits of news and a few reminders (we’ll try to keep it short; information overload is probably setting in already…)

Summer update

Returning readers will have noticed that the refurbishment which was supposed to happen this summer did not. We will instead be closed for a substantial part of next summer (2020) for the building works. More on that as and when we get information. We will be sure to put notices up around the library and add something on the Facebook page and in this blog if we get any firm dates or details.

Kate has rearranged the PJ section again, as part of the ongoing reclassification work. The shelves are all labelled, and it is only the area around the computers and in the middle of the library which has changed; the rest of the LC section is still largely in the same place it was last year.

The biggest change over the summer has been the moving of the periodicals – formerly on the shelves by the photocopiers – down to the basement, from where they will be eventually transferred to the BSF. Do ask staff if you can’t find something which was previously kept with this collection.

Housekeeping: a few reminders

Food and drink (except for water in bottles with a lid) are not allowed in the library. This is to prevent pests which might damage the books from being enticed in by crumbs. If you have a medical need to keep food with you, please speak to library staff. We are not trying to cause harm to anyone, but to prevent harm to the collections, which are, after all, why everyone is here.

All the shelves are labelled with the range of shelfmarks which they house, but if you cannot find something do feel free to ask the library staff. Most of the collection on the ground floor is classified under the Library of Congress Classification (LC), and is gradually being reclassified by Kate, who is in the library on Tuesday and Friday afternoons. The central section holds the remainder of the “old” classification with black labels, which duplicate to a certain extent the PJ and PK sections. If a shelfmark which you cannot find has a date at the end, it will be in the LC (white labelled) section. If it is short and does not have a date (i.e. PJ7700 Jam*) it will be in the “old” section.

*not a real shelfmark.

Korean books and books on Eastern Christianity are housed in the lower ground floor, down the stairs by the Library offices. These have a prefix on the record (KSL and ECL respectively) which identifies them as being part of these collections and not the general LC sequence.

The lower ground floor is also home to our South Asian and Hebrew collections, both of which use in-house classifications rather than LC. There is a plan of the library and the various locations of the different shelving schemes at the front desk, should anyone need one.

We have a Suggestions book by the front desk which readers can use if they think of a book or resource which we do not have but which they think we ought to have for the library. Our subject specialists look into all suggestions and reply to the original enquiry.

PCAS (Print, Copy & Scan) has changed its payment structure over the summer, so payments are now taken on a different platform – the new URL is on the website and on flyers which you can obtain from the library staff, so if you have bookmarked the old link you will need to change it for the new one.

Photocopiers are to be found by the Library Desk. Please do not remove paper from the photocopiers, and please let staff know if you notice that the paper has run out – we have a supply in the back office. Scrap paper is available in the box on the table next to the photocopiers; you are free to add to this if you have unwanted single-sided copies.

BSF (Book Storage Facility) books are delivered twice a day, Monday to Friday. If you order a book by 10.30 am it should arrive in the afternoon delivery.

OIL is on Facebook and Twitter, which is where we post urgent announcements such as problems with SOLO, or the van deliveries, or (rarely) closing the library early due to emergencies. You can find us at https://www.facebook.com/oiloxford/ and www.twitter.com/oiloxford.

Finally… ask us! There will always be a member of library staff at the desk during opening hours (if they are not at the desk they will be shelving in the library and should have left a note saying where they are) and we are here to help.

Have a wonderful Michaelmas Term!

 

August and September Library Hours

 

August Bank Holiday Closure

Hello! We hope everyone is enjoying the relaxed atmosphere in the library over the summer.

Just a reminder that, as usual, we will be closed on the August Bank Holiday Monday — 26th August.

 

St Giles’ Fair

We will also be closed for the two days of St Giles’ Fair – the 9th and 10th of September.

For those readers who wonder why we do this, it is partly because of security concerns due to the large numbers of people who converge on this end of the city during the fair, and also because the noise from the rides is quite loud and intrusive. Your humble blogger was in the library while it was closed one afternoon a few years ago and the screams from one of the closer rides were quite alarming!

Otherwise, we will remain open 9am-5pm on Monday-Friday until the start of Michaelmas Term, when our usual term-time opening hours will be 9am-7pm on weekdays and 11am-5pm on Saturdays.

 

Book moves

As some of you will have noticed, there has been a bit of moving going on in the far end of the LC sequence; Kate is currently wading through the PL section.

Our most asked-for resource in that area, the New Catalogus Catalogorum (Z6605.S3 U54 NEW 1949 Ref.) has now moved to the opposite side of the aisle. We hope to get the rest of the move done before the start of Term, and apologise for the occasional loud noises caused by books falling over and shelves being moved around.

Summer Building Works Postponement

Following the postponement of building works until next summer (2020), the Oriental Institute will now be open during the summer vacation. Our Opening hours during July will be Monday-Friday 9.00-17.00.

Our opening hours during Aug and Sept will be confirmed in due course.

The vacation loan limit, which has been raised to 20 books, will remain in place, and further information that affects library users will be shared when it becomes available.

Summer Closure: July 8th – September 30th 2019

We have now had confirmation of the summer closure for the refurbishment of the library following the endowment given by the British Foundation for the Study of Azerbaijan and the Caucasus.

The Library will be closed from the 8th July 2019 until the 30th September 2019 to enable substantial remodelling and building works to take place.

The vacation loan limit has been raised to 20 books per reader. We strongly advise people to borrow their books at the beginning of the vacation. Vacation loans will begin in 8th week to allow people who are leaving Oxford at the end of Term to borrow their books for the summer.

A daily fetching service of material from the Oriental Institute Library to the Sackler Library will be in operation during the closed period. If at any point it becomes impractical or unsafe to access parts of the collections we will keep everyone updated as to availability.

We would ask those who are planning to use Oriental Institute Library books over the summer vacation to get in touch with library staff to let us know as soon as possible what open shelf books you are intending to use.

If you know of any colleagues from outside of Oxford who are planning to use the Oriental Institute Library over the summer, we would be grateful if you could share this advance warning with them. Any further information that affects library users will be shared as it becomes available.

We will keep the Facebook page updated with any changes to the above as and when we know about them, and update the blog if there is detailed news.

Before the closure, OIL will continue to be open until 7pm on weekdays.

 

May news and reminders

Welcome back to everyone who was away for most of April! We trust that everyone had a relaxing and productive Easter Holiday (as much as the two are not mutually exclusive).

First up from us this month is a new trial for an e-resource which may prove useful to our students, Quran Gateway:

You can find it on the A-Z databases list under “Q” and it will be available for a month, until 31st May.

Building works

Following on from our previous post, we currently do not have any further information about the building works scheduled for the summer. As soon as we know more about the timeframe/scope/disruption or anything else, we will make sure that we post on this blog and also put signs up around the library.

 

Book moves

Kate has been rearranging the PJ area of the Library of Congress section, but only by a few shelves, so everything should be more or less where it was last term. As ever, this is a long-term process, and things will move around as more books are removed from the old sequence and added to the new one.

At present there are no plans for a large-scale move over the summer vacation as the timeline for the building works has yet to be finalised, but there may be a small rearrangement to move things up into the space vacated by the old PJ books which are currently being reclassified. We will inform readers if there is likely to be any disruption, but since Kate is the person who usually does the moves and she is only here on Tuesday and Friday afternoons there will be very little going on for most of the week!

 

Reminders

We are now back on to Term time opening until the end of June, 9am-7pm on weekdays and 11am-5pm on Saturdays.

Readers are requested not to bring coffee – in keep-cups or otherwise – into the library, but just to drink water (in a sealed bottle, not one of the cups from the water cooler downstairs), please. Coffee and foodstuffs attract pests which may damage the books. We realise that people are revising for exams and feel the need to caffeinate themselves in order to concentrate, but that is easily managed in the common room downstairs (and stretching your legs every so often and getting away from your screens is never a bad thing).

As ever, please keep an eye on our Facebook and Twitter feeds for up-to-the-minute (or as soon as we find out about it) news!

Advance notice of temporary summer closure

At some point during the summer vacation, the Oriental Institute Library will need to close temporarily. This is to allow for refurbishment work funded by the recent gift to the University, given in honour of the British Foundation for the Study of Azerbaijan and the Caucasus, which was announced in the University Gazette of 25th Oct 2018. Refurbishment will include creation of a room within the library to provide office accommodation for Nizami Ganjavi scholars. This will involve some substantial building work that will include creation of a new door from the scholars’ room into the main Oriental Institute lobby area. The current library reader service point will be moved to a new location in the library; the acoustic barriers  surrounding the service desk will be removed and new acoustic barriers will be installed around the relocated service point.

The closure dates and advance notice of periods of noise and disruption to users will be communicated as soon as the library receives a detailed schedule of work. We would ask those who are planning to work in the library over the summer vacation to get in touch with library staff to let us know as soon as possible when you are planning to work in the library and what open shelf books you are intending to use. The graduate student vacation loan limit will be raised to 20 books and we strongly advise people to borrow their books at the beginning of the vacation. A fetching service to the Sackler Library will also be put in place. If you know of any colleagues from outside of Oxford who are planning to use the Oriental Institute Library over the summer, we would be grateful if you could share this advance warning with them.

Vacation Opening for Easter 2019

Just a short post this month, as we covered all the news last month…

We are now issuing books on Vacation Loans, so they will be due back on Tuesday April 30th.

We will remain on our term-time opening hours of 9am-7pm next week (March 11th-16th) and thereafter will be open from 9am-5pm during the week and closed on Saturdays.

We will be closed for Easter for the usual five days: Thursday 18th – Monday 22nd April inclusive. We have yet to finalise the opening hours for the week beginning 22nd April, but will post an update on the Facebook page when we know. This is to a certain extent dependent on staff leave and the availability of cover.

As ever, please keep an eye on the Facebook page for any updates or last-minute changes to our opening hours, and have a great Easter Vacation!

January News and reminders

Happy New Year!

We daresay that all our readers had a pleasant holiday and have now got back into the swing of Term. As we write this on a very snowy Friday afternoon it is pleasing to see that many of our regulars have not been put off by the weather! On a more serious note, however, we ask that readers, if they do come in covered in snow, brush themselves off properly (preferably not in the foyer or the library) before handling the books. Last week we had a few which got covered in droplets of water from readers’ coats and gloves, and we’d rather the books stay as dry as possible, for obvious reasons!

We will, of course endeavour to stay open during any further periods of winter weather, but please watch the Facebook page and other outlets for any updates.

Reader Survey

As you’ll have seen on the Facebook page, the Bodleian Libraries’ reader survey is being run again this year: www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/reader-survey. We urge everyone who uses the library to please respond; it is a valuable tool for us in gauging reader satisfaction and identifying areas which we need to work on or to improve. The survey runs until 17th February, so you still have a couple of weeks to fill it in!

 

Open Access Oxford Week

The next event in the Bodleian’s Open Access week preparations will be a talk on “Open Access and Plan S” by David Sweeney on 11th February: http://openaccess.ox.ac.uk/2019/01/23/open-access-and-plan-s-david-sweeney-talk-11-feb-2019/

 

The Week itself is from 4th-8th March: http://openaccess.ox.ac.uk/home-2/open-access-oxford-week-march-2019/ please see the website for details of related events throughout the week.

 

That’s all for this month! As ever, please see the Facebook page for updates on more immediate matters such as SOLO, deliveries etc.

 

 

November news and Vacation reminders

 

November news

We’re sorry that this blog post has been somewhat delayed this month; this was mostly due to there not really being a great deal of news, but illness was also a factor as there has been a nasty cold going round. We hope not too many of our readers have been affected!

One thing we had been meaning to mention, out of general interest to our readership, was the exhibition about T.E. Lawrence which has been on since October; please see the website for more information: http://www.magd.ox.ac.uk/libraries-and-archives/news/new-exhibition-lawrence-of-oxford/.

We are very pleased to report that, thanks to the sterling efforts of our extra members of staff this term, we have managed to clear the shelving backlog in the Korean Studies Library section in the basement. Thanks in particular to Ben, who has done a great job of sorting this out. Hopefully, now that the shelves are better arranged, we will not find ourselves with the same space problems in the future!

 

Vacation reminders

The Oriental Institute Library will be open until 7pm next week (3rd-7th December) and 11-5pm on Saturday 8th; after which we will revert to our vacation hours of 9-5pm (closed Saturdays) until the 6th of January.

Vacation Loans are now in effect; all books checked out or renewed will be due back on the 15th January (Tuesday of 1st week).

The Oriental Institute building closes for Christmas at 5pm on Thursday 20th December, so we will be closed on the Friday 21st, unlike most of the other Bodleian Libraries. We will re-open on Thursday 3rd January at 9am.

We are aware that some readers have cards which expire on the 31st December and who will therefore not be able to borrow or renew their books beyond that date. We are happy to waive fines for readers in this position once they have renewed their cards as it is not their fault that their card expires during the closed period. Do let us know if you need any help with this.

Finally, we would like to wish our readers a good holiday, and a happy Christmas to those who celebrate it!