Author Archives: katieguest

Reminders for the Summer Vacation

 

Summer Closure

Readers will now be aware our four week closure for the planned heating works begins THIS FRIDAY, 13th July, after which we will not re-open until August 12th. We have made arrangements with our colleagues from the Sackler Library, who will be able to fetch books from OIL for readers to consult at the Sackler Library during the closure. Please email them on sac-loans@bodleian.ox.ac.uk  if there is anything you wish to see during the closed period. Note, please that the books will be made available in the Sackler Library for consultation only; they will not be borrowable.

If anyone is aware of potential visitors to the OIL during the period 16th July – 12th August please do make sure you let them know about the limited availability of the books and pass on the other contact information.

Most of the OIL staff will be on leave for much of the time during the closed period so the oilcirc@bodleian.ox.ac.uk address will not be closely monitored.

Unfortunately, due to a supply problem, the contractors have very recently informed us that they may not be able to finish all the work before we re-open. They have agreed to try to do the most disruptive work out of opening hours after the 12th August so that there is as little disruption as possible to readers, but there may necessarily need to be some areas which are screened-off for drilling or other disruptions. At present we do not know any details; we will keep readers informed after we re-open as soon as we have more information and will give as much notice as possible if there are likely to be inaccessible areas of the collection or other problems.

 

Vacation Loans and opening hours

Vacation Loans are now in effect until 16th October 2018; readers are permitted to borrow up to 15 books – an increase from the usual 8 – during the summer.

During the weeks on either side of the closed period the library has reverted to vacation opening hours, 0900-1700 on Monday-Friday and closed on Saturdays.

We will also be closed as usual over the August Bank Holiday (25th to 27th August inclusive) and for the two days of St Giles Fair, which falls on 3rd-4th September this year.

 

Have an excellent summer!

This will be our last post until the end of the summer (since there’s not really going to be any news). We wish all our readers an excellent summer and hope your studies aren’t too badly disrupted by our absence.

We look forward (even in this scorching weather) to a winter where we will finally be able to control the heating!

 

News and Summer Announcements

Summer Closure

We would like to give readers advance warning that the Library will be closing during the Long Vacation, due to the ongoing heating works which have been carried out around the building. The work will significantly affect the library spaces, and it will not be safe for readers or staff to access the library during the day. The current dates for the closure are 14th July to 12 August. Please look out for notices in case this changes – we will do our best to keep information up to date.

The protocol agreed with the contractors should allow staff to access the library for an hour at the end of each day to fetch books requested by readers, which will then be made available at the Sackler Library.

We will make sure that everyone is kept informed and will be posting updates here on the blog, on Facebook and Twitter and on signs around the library, so do please keep an eye out for those. If you know anyone from outside Oxford who might be planning a visit to use the library over the summer please share this information with them – we do not want to disappoint anyone unnecessarily!

We appreciate that this is inconvenient for everyone involved, but are optimistic that the improvements to the heating system will mean that everyone in the building can be more comfortable in the long term.

Open Access Week

The University is holding its own Open Access Week in 8th Week, with a series of events of interest to researchers about issues and developments in open access publishing and research dissemination. The full programme and details for booking can be found here: http://openaccess.ox.ac.uk.

Doors

The ongoing issue with SALTO (the door-entry system) appears to be slowly resolving itself. The problem has involved the doors at OIL not connecting to the server and updating the cards which are used here; readers who are also using other libraries where their cards are updated – including the Sackler and the central Bodleian/Weston Library – are not experiencing the same problems. A new Web client for Salto is being installed at the end of June, which should solve any of the remaining problems.

Opening hours over the Summer

Summer Vacation opening hours for the library have been confirmed; we will remain open on Saturdays and until 7pm until Friday 29th June. Thereafter we will be open 9am to 5pm on Monday-Friday from July 2nd until Friday 28th September, apart from the aforementioned 4-week closure.

We will be closed on the August Bank Holiday Monday (27th August) and on 3rd and 4th September for St Giles Fair.

We will start the longer loan period for Vacation Loans in 9th week. We are considering whether to increase the number of books readers are permitted to borrow over the vacation in order to ease the problems which may be caused by the closure, and will let everyone know when a decision is made.

 

April News

Welcome back!

We decided to delay the blog post for a couple of weeks after the start of April as we figured that it was better to wait until a time when most people are actually back in Oxford, rather than right at the start of the month when we were all sluggish from too many Easter eggs.

Ahem. We trust you all had a restful break?

New height-adjustable table/chair

We took delivery over the vacation of these new pieces of equipment, a height-adjustable table and a chair which can be configured for various positions for use with the table or elsewhere.

Anyone is welcome to make use of them, but please note that readers with a specific need – such as the need to work at a high desk due to a back problem, for example – will take priority.

 

Two lectures about Persian books

https://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/whatson/whats-on/upcoming-events/2018/may/persian-arts-of-the-book

Readers of Persian may be interested in the above event on May 16th. Bookings may be made through the website. We will mention this again on Facebook nearer the time to remind everyone.

 

Mundane library matters

Last week we said goodbye to Natalija, who has left OIL to work as a cataloguer for the Bodleian, based at the Osney offices. We would like to wish her the best of luck in her new job – she will be missed by the rest of the team.

The PJ section has been rearranged again over the vacation to make room for the end of the 6000s, which were rather too crowded. We hope this will facilitate the reclassification for some time, although these things are notoriously hard to predict.

Finally, a reminder that we are now back to our Term time opening hours, so will be open from 9 am to 7 pm on weekdays and 11 am to 5 pm on Saturdays.

February News and Reminders for March

 

Winter returns…

This post is a little late, owing to the slightly chaotic scenes last week when we were a bit short staffed due to the extreme weather conditions. We would like to thank everyone for your patience with the delays to the deliveries which resulted from the snow, and also apologise for the tropical conditions in the library. The old heating system got rather enthusiastic when the temperatures outside dropped, and we know that some people found the resulting heat a little too much, particularly as everyone was dressed for the Siberian conditions outside. Fortunately, the observant will have noticed the additions around the building of new radiators which will be plumbed in during the Summer vacation and will enable us to control the temperatures around the library and hopefully keep readers (and books) in slightly more favourable conditions.

Vacation notes

With this being the final week of Term, please note that we will revert to vacation opening hours from 19th March until 14th April: we will be CLOSED on Saturdays and will be open 9am – 5pm Monday-Friday.

We will also be closed for Easter from Thursday 29th March until Monday 2nd April inclusive, reopening at 9am on Tuesday 3rd.

Vacation Loans are now in effect; any books checked out or renewed will be due back on April 24th.

 

Book Moves and shelving

As we mentioned in February’s post, we are currently at something of an impasse in the basement with regard to new Korean Studies Library books, for which we need to rearrange the shelves. We have not managed to organise this due to staffing pressures, but hope to reach a solution soon. In the meantime readers are welcome to browse the reshelving trolleys on the ground floor if there are any basement books which they cannot find on the shelves downstairs.

Kate has also reached a point with the PJ reclassification where she is unable to fit anything else on the shelves and has been stashing unreclassifiable books on shelves near the older PJ sequence with a view to doing a book move after the end of Term. She will be adjusting the amount of growth space in the G-P sections in the hope of making up a bit of room to space out the PJ section where it is particularly full and also to fit in the books which have not been reclassified. She tells us that the problem lay in the large number of dictionaries, which took up a lot of shelf space and left her without much flexibility for additional books in the same area. She will begin moving things next week, and apologises in advance for any falling book noises or bad language.

Incidentally, all the Hans Wehr Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic editions are now on the shelf by the front office as far as we know, but if anyone sees any with the old label please feel free to pass them on to Kate to be reclassified!

January News and General Catch-Up

Happy New Year!

Yes, yes, we know it’s a bit late… but we had so little to report straight after Christmas that it seemed better to wait a bit.

2017 recap

Last year saw some interesting changes in the organisation of the library, with our Technical Services moving out of the library and down to the offices at Osney Mead, along with similar moves for the staff at the Sackler and the Taylorian. This is part of a wider initiative to consolidate the Humanities libraries’ workflows.

The main difference for us has been that Natalija and Kenan now work some of their time down at Osney as well as being at the library, which effectively means that we sometimes have fewer staff than we would have previously had on some days. We are working more closely with the Sackler Library to fill in any staffing gaps which we might have as a result of these changes.

The long-term effect of this change is yet to be ascertained, but we welcome any feedback from readers. We hope that the workflows now being implemented at Osney will speed up the processing and enable us to get new books, especially those requested by readers, to the library faster.

The work to improve the heating system has been ongoing throughout the year, with lots of shiny new copper pipes being installed around the Library. We await confirmation of when this will be finished, but are assuming it will be mostly done during the summer months when the library is quietest.

The biggest change seen by everyone has been our reverting to term-time and vacation opening hours. We now open until 7pm during Term only and until 5pm during vacations. We hope that this change has not been detrimental to too many readers, but it was brought in as a necessity due to a lack of staff to cover during the summer last year.

The reclassification has continued, although at a slower pace since Kate’s hours at OIL reduced to two afternoons a week. She is currently in the midst of the PJ sequence, somewhere beyond the dictionaries, and heading towards linguistics. There is currently an impasse in the dictionary section under the windows, so she is avoiding adding to that section for now. A small move to make up space will take place during the Easter vacation, and anything which has not been reclassified will be kept in its former place until this has been done.

 

News

Due to the aforementioned staffing changes, we have had some problems finding the time to get all the shelving done in the library, particularly since Term started. This is partly due to the fact that we do not have enough space downstairs and need to do some rearranging, but with all our staff busy with their day-to-day duties when they are here in the library there has been no extra time to do the necessary move, particularly in the Korean Studies Library.

We are working on a solution to this and ask that readers are patient; this mostly affects the shelving for the Lower Ground Floor and anything which should be down there will be on the trolleys by the photocopiers if it is not on the shelves. Readers are welcome to borrow items which are on the reshelving trolleys.

We are still finding that some readers are surprised that they cannot borrow BSF books; possibly this is due to a misunderstanding during their original library inductions. To reiterate once again, if a book which has been ordered from the BSF is *not* part of the OIL Arabic Literature collection or the Aris Collection of Tibetan Studies, then the chances are it cannot be loaned. This includes the vast majority of the Indian Institute collection not concerned with Tibetan, as well as the Bodleian’s collections, which have historically never been loaned.

That’s all for now! Keep an eye on the Facebook Page, as ever, for urgent updates.

 

 

 

 

 

 

November News and Holiday Reminders

Holiday Opening Times and Deliveries

Over the Christmas Vacation, we will be opening from 9-7 until the week beginning 11th December, when we will start to close at 5pm.

We will be closed for Christmas from 5pm on Thursday 21st December until 1st January inclusive.

After Xmas we will be opening until 5pm for the first week back, from Tuesday 2nd January and then reverting to our Term time opening of 9am to 7pm from Monday 8th January.

The last book delivery from the Book Storage Facility before Christmas will be on the morning of Thursday 21st December; any books ordered after 7pm on Wednesday 20th will be fetched on Tuesday 2nd January, either in the morning or afternoon runs, depending on the backlog of orders which has built up over the vacation.

 

Care of Library Materials

Readers are politely requested to please take the best care possible of books borrowed from the Oriental Institute, as any damage caused may result in the removal of the book from circulation, and therefore its loss to everyone who might have wished to use it.

Some of our materials are quite old and quite fragile, or have been misused in the past and suffered damage, and we rely on our readers to make sure they do not become any more damaged than they already are.

A short while ago a book was returned to us which was soaked with coffee – fortunately only on the covers and the edges of a few pages – which, had it been worse, might have been removed from circulation altogether. We were able to rescue it, but we would really rather not have to deal with situations like that in the first place.

No action was taken against that particular reader, but we do reserve the right to charge for the replacement of damaged library items if they cannot be salvaged.

 

Food and Drink in the Library

With this in mind may we also remind everyone that *only* water is allowed in the library. A bottle of Oasis juice was found by the Photocopiers earlier this week and several staff have observed coffee cups in the wastepaper baskets. Sugary drinks may attract pests, which might then damage the books, and may also cause mould outbreaks which can be a health hazard.

There is a common room downstairs, and most library materials – apart from the BSF books which cannot leave the library – can be borrowed, so we would much prefer people take their refreshments outside the library. A break from your desk is supposed to be beneficial, after all!

 

Shiny new pipes!

Observant* readers may have noticed a new set of shiny copper pipes, which have appeared on the wall around the Photocopiers and along the edge of the Periodicals section, as well as in the Back Office.

These have been installed in advance of the new heating system which is due to be fitted next summer. Fortunately all the work took place outside normal opening hours so we have not been disrupted by noise.

*They had been there for several days before your humble blogger noticed them, but I do tend not so spend too long looking at the ceiling…

Finally…

We would like to wish all our readers a good break, a Merry Christmas to those of you who celebrate it and a Happy New Year to all. We will be back in January with our usual review of 2017 and (hopefully) fewer complaints about food in the library!

 

October News

Building Works in the basement

As mentioned in the previous post, there will be some work taking place in the basement of the Oriental Institute for the first few weeks of November. We hope that this will not disturb readers, as the contractor intends to do most of the noisy work outside office hours, but wanted to remind people that there might be some disruption in the far end of the basement for a period of time.

 

Staff News

Following a reorganisation of several Humanities libraries including the Taylorian and Sackler as well as OIL, Kenan and Natalija will be spending some of their time at the offices at Osney. This is part of a drive to consolidate as much as possible all technical services (cataloguing and classification) work in one place. This week (30th October – 3rd November) marks the first week when both Ken and Natalija will be at Osney for part of their time; we hope they find the change of scene enjoyable and productive!

 

Chicago Manual of Style Trial

This Blog post http://blogs.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/history/2017/11/01/trial-chicago-manual-of-style/ from our colleagues at the History Faculty Library details the new trial of the 17th edition of the Chicago Manual of Style, which will be available via SOLO and OxLip+ until the end of January. (Meanwhile, the Library has the 16th edition on our open shelves at Z253 CHI 2010 Ref.)

 

Quick reminders

We have had several questions from new readers over the last few weeks about borrowing books from the BSF. Most of the BSF books cannot be borrowed and must be read in the library. The majority of books kept at the BSF belong to the Bodleian, and are therefore subject to the no-lending policy which is common to all Bodleian materials. A few of our own books which are stored at the BSF can be borrowed; these will either be part of the Arabic Literature collection or the Aris Collection of Tibetan books. Do ask if you are not sure, but it is probably best to assume that most of the stack books cannot be borrowed.

On the subject of the BSF books, please remember to bring those books back to the desk at the end of the day. We would prefer that these materials, which are not our property, be kept in the office when not in use to ensure that they are not accidentally removed from the building. We will only send books back when they have reached the end of their consultation period, so please keep an eye on your patron record and renew any BSF books before they are due to be returned. As long as nobody else has put a hold on them, you should be able to continue to renew BSF books for as long as you need them as there is no upper limit on renewals.

Finally, please remember that food and drink are not permitted in the library, including Keep-Cups, which are permitted in some of the other Bodleian Libraries. Only sealed water bottles are allowed. We have found some food wrappers in waste bins in the library and would request that readers who are desperate for a snack please take them down to the common room.

 

 

Autumn News

Hello, and welcome to the usual monthly blog post from the Oriental Institute Library! We’ve delayed by a few days to ensure that those of you who have recently liked our Facebook page will see the link – hopefully we’ve got some new readers as well as the regulars!

Summer reshuffles

Those of you who have been away over the summer may have noticed that the Library of Congress collection has been substantially rearranged since the end of last Term. The end of the sequence – from PK to Z has now moved into the middle of the library on the shelves where the rest of the old PJ and PK books are, and will continue to move down into that part of the library as the old sequence gradually diminishes. We have updated our plan of the library to show the changes and all the shelves are labelled clearly with the shelfmark ranges. If you have problems, do come to the desk and someone will be able to give you directions.

As well as the Library of Congress material, the few Z.Per. periodicals have now moved to the shelves where the rest of the periodicals are kept (round the corner past the photocopiers). Again, feel free to ask if you can’t find anything.

The past academic year has seen 1049 shelfmarks – equating to 1419 individual books – reclassified. This is a little down on previous years, which reflects that Kate, who has done most of the reclassification, is now only with us two afternoons a week instead of three.

Building Works

In preparation for a refit of the heating system in the entire building which is currently scheduled for next summer vacation, engineers will be replacing pipes and duct-work at various locations throughout the faculty. The Library is expecting this to happen during November – we are on the plan as having work carried out in our basement area from October 30th to November 16th. The noisy work should be taking place during closed hours, but if there is likely to be disruption we will inform readers as soon as we know. We will also keep readers informed if there is any change to the schedule, or if any areas of the basement are going to be off-limits. The ground floor of the library should not be affected, except by possible noise coming from other areas, but again, we will keep everyone informed as much as we can.

Arabic Reading Group

Alasdair Watson, the subject specialist for Islamic manuscripts, is seeking participants for an Arabic Reading Group :

Please contact him directly to express and interest.

Rules of the Library: a gentle reminder

In line with other Bodleian Libraries we would request that readers remember that food and drink are not allowed in the library. Bottles of water are permitted, as long as they have a lid and are kept sealed when not in use. Other drinks, including coffee, must not be brought into the library. This is to prevent damage to books and equipment and also to discourage pests – insects or other vermin which are attracted by your crumbs may stay and munch on the books afterwards!

We have now switched to our term-time opening hours of 0900-1900 on Monday – Friday and 1100-1700 on Saturdays. Readers are requested to pack up and leave promptly when the bell is rung at 1850 – you do risk being plunged into darkness if the staff do not realise you are here!

And finally…

Do keep an eye on the Sale Trolley for duplicate books which is located just inside the Front Office; we will be adding new books when time permits during the term.

Summer catch-up and reminders

Firstly…

We hope everyone has had a lovely summer!

Oxford’s official Autumn begins with St Giles’ Fair next week, so don’t forget that OIL will be closed on Monday and Tuesday as usual. We re-open on Wednesday, and will continue our shortened opening hours until the first week of October.

 

Summer shifting

Readers familiar with the layout of the library will no doubt be delighted to discover that Kate has now rearranged it…  Much of the collection has moved – but only from the middle of DS onwards, so those of you who use BP and similar will still find everything in the same place!

For the first time, the LC sequence has encroached on the old classification stronghold that was “the bit in the middle”. The end of PK, the whole of PL and everything up to and including Z are now at the Sackler end of that section, with the rest of old PJ and PK and others still to do. PK starts under the windows near the reader computers and PJ takes up much of the bay in the middle near the windows, with G and H having moved further from under the windows on the Sackler side. Lidio has helpfully re-jigged the floor plan of the ground floor to take into account all the changes. New shelf-labels have been applied to the entire ground floor.

Another change is that the Z.Per section is now with the other Periodicals at the far end of the library round towards the stairs. All the periodicals are now in once place, which we hope will avoid confusion.

We have also created a pair of “Outsized Folio” shelves on the Folio section near the windows; please be careful with these books as some of them are very heavy (especially the big green ones).

 

Building matters

Unlike last summer, when we had the delight of the replacement of the skylights, this year has been relatively quiet, with only the minor works in the basement taking place. We thank our readers who were frustrated by lack of access to the library’s basement for their forbearance! Next summer will see the replacement of the heating system, but we can worry about that nearer the time.

As ever, do keep an eye on the Facebook page for updates about everyday things which are going on; we promise the blog will get more lively once the rest of the University does…

 

 

Summer reminders

Vacation Opening Hours

Now that Term is over and the last of the exams are done, we would like to remind readers that this year we will be reducing our opening hours over the summer.

This Saturday, July 1st, will be our last Saturday until October 7th, and during the week we will be open from 0900 until 1700, Monday to Friday.

Readers who wish to consult books on a Saturday may discuss this with library staff, who may be able to move some material to the Sackler. This will be limited to confined books – readers will be expected to borrow books which can be borrowed, as long as they have the correct borrowing rights – and we reserve the right to refuse if the numbers of books being moved become unmanageable. Please give adequate notice that you wish to transfer books for use on Saturday (i.e. please don’t come to the desk at 4.55pm on a Friday with a massive mountain of books – this will not be appreciated!).

 

Basement Closure

Following all sorts of rumours about the imminent building work, the final version for 2017 appears to just be for some preparatory work to take place in the Oriental Institute basement. This will be taking place between the 21st and 28th July inclusive.

Due to the nature of the works, the Library Basement will be inaccessible to everyone, even library staff. This is because the fire exits are to be sealed – the work will not be in the library itself – which means we cannot risk going down there for Health and Safety reasons.

Readers who wish to consult books from the KSL, Hebrew & Jewish Studies, South Asian, and Eastern Christianity sections are strongly advised to either move them up to a desk in the ground floor space or to contact staff in advance if they are coming that week so that we can move them for you. If anyone is aware of a potential visitor who might need these books during the closure period, do please let them know about this; we have informed our colleagues in Special Collections at the Weston Library in case they are expecting academic visitors who might need access to our collections.

During this time, the Common Room and the toilets will also be out of action.

 

Book Moves – a long process

Kate, who has now reduced her hours to two afternoons a week (Tuesdays and Fridays), has begun moving the LC books into space vacated by the reclassified PJ section, and also the Z.Per. periodicals which have now been moved round to the same area as the rest of the journals. This will necessarily take some time, but she intends to keep the shelves updated with handwritten notes until the move is finished.

We apologise in advance for any confusion this may cause!