Category Archives: Re-organising the Library

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!

Summer Announcements

We apologise for the late blog post; this has been largely due to waiting on confirmation about several matters which will affect the Library over the Long Vacation. Having finally had some information, please note the following:

Opening Hours

There will be changes to the Library’s opening hours in the vacation:

From Monday 3rd July to Saturday 30th September, the new hours will be Monday to Friday: 09:00-17:00 and closed on Saturdays.

A system of transfer of material from OIL to the Sackler Library from 16:00 on Fridays from 7 July will be trialled (and adjusted if the quantity proves to be unmanageable).  This will cater for non-lending material and for readers without borrowing privileges.  It is expected that material transferred in this way will be returned to OIL by 10:00 on the following Monday but staff may consider requests from readers to keep the material on reserve in Sackler for their convenience.

The library will be closed as usual on August Bank Holiday Monday (28th August) and the two days of St. Giles’ Fair (4th-5th September).

 

Building Works and Library Closure

During the summer vacation, the Oriental Institute Library will need to close temporarily to allow for work to install a new central heating system in the Oriental Institute building. The closure dates will be communicated as soon as the library receives a detailed schedule of work from the Faculty. Should the closure be prolonged, we will make arrangements for books to be fetched from the Oriental Institute for use in the Sackler, subject to it being safe for staff to enter the building.

The graduate student vacation loan limit has been raised to 20 books and we strongly advise people to borrow their books at the beginning of the vacation.

We would ask readers who are planning to work in the library over the summer vacation to watch for further communications and/or 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 which 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.

We will post further updates to this as and when we get them, both on the website and on the Social Media platforms.

Book Moves

When other factors allow, Kate will be undertaking another move of books around the LC section over the summer. Having cut down her hours to two afternoons a week for unrelated operational reasons, she reckons that this will take slightly longer than previous moves, but will endeavour to get it done with the minimum of noise and disruption. As part of this, the last of the periodicals currently not shelved over by the photocopiers (the Z. Per. Section) will be moved across the library and the LC sequence will continue from under the windows by the reader computers to the central section from where Kate has been moving the PJs. We will ensure that the shelf labels are kept up to date so that readers can find everything.

 

 

April News

Reclassification

Those of you who use the Arabic folio section – Fol. PJ – may have noticed the old sequence diminishing over the vacation as Kate has been reclassifying them, and should finish this week. The Folio shelves have been extended to the other side of the bay from where they used to finish (in the furthest corner, by the windows) to allow more space for the PJs. This area is still a work in progress, with a long-term likelihood that we will reorganise the larger books again, but for now they should remain in that place for a while at least. If you cannot find anything, do ask a member of staff.

 

Revision reminders

Readers are gently requested that, despite the stress of exams and other deadlines, they still adhere to the rules of the library regarding food and drink. *Only* water in bottles with a lid is allowed in the library; we have seen an increase in cups from the water cooler being brought in, which are a potential spill-hazard and could also affect electrical outlets. Food is, as ever, not allowed, but readers are welcome to use the Common Room downstairs. This rule is to prevent pests in the library, such as rats or mice, which might eat the collections when they run out of crumbs.

We know that OIL is favoured by people wishing to revise as it is a quieter environment than the busier Sackler Library (for example) and we welcome this and ask our regulars to do their best to maintain our good reputation!

 

Old £5 notes

Finally, the old (paper) £5 note goes out of circulation on 5th May (Friday). The Library will no longer accept these notes as payment for fines, locker deposits or book sales. If you have any old £5 notes in your possession you are advised to take them to a bank to be swapped with a new one.

 

 

March Headlines, Easter Reminders

E-Resources

We hope that some of our readers were able to take advantage of the e-resources trials publicised here which were available throughout March; do let Lydia know if you have any comments, and remember that e-marifah.net trial from the Middle East centre, which we mentioned on Facebook on the 14th March, is still available until April 27th.

We will keep you posted with any other trials which we decide to run in the future!

Book Moves

A small-ish move has taken place during the last couple of weeks; the “Z” books – Z.Arm, Z.G, Z.T, Z.Sov, and Z.C, which used to reside on the tiers opposite the Library of Congress Folios at the Sacker end of the library have been moved down three rows to the space vacated by the Japanese books last year in order to expand the shelves of folios. This is because Kate is currently working on the PJ folios – a quite extensive section – and was concerned about running out of space. We will be re-thinking this area of the library and there will be further moves of the Z.Per journals (which will go with the rest of the journals over by the photocopiers) over the Long Vacation. In the meantime, if anything you need has vanished without trace do come and ask at the desk! The shelves are labelled, and nothing has gone very far at this point.

Wifi

We are pleased to report that the router, which had been faulty for some time, has now been replaced and that the Bodleian Libraries Wifi is now available again. EduRoam and OWL are also available for those who prefer to use them, and the signal should be better now that we have a router in the library again. Thanks to all of you for your patience!

Easter Closing

As usual, the whole Oriental Institute building will be closed from Thursday 13th April to Monday 17th April inclusive. The Library will be open until 7pm on the Wednesday 12th, but the rest of the building will close at 5. Other Bodleian Libraries are open on Thursday 13th.

Additionally, the Library will close at 5pm on Tuesday 18th April, before normal opening until 7pm resumes from the 19th. We will post reminders on the Facebook page nearer to the time.

February News and March Reminders

 

Another quiet but busy month in the Oriental Institute Library; we have been pleased to see how popular our Facebook link to the new blog post about the Digby collection has been – for those who missed it you can find it here: http://wp.me/p5Eblf-ZQ.

E-Resources Trial

Of interest this month has been the exciting trial of new e-resources, mentioned in our previous post and now with its own display just inside the Library door.

We hope our readers are taking advantage of these resources which are all available via OxLip+ until the end of March EXCEPT for the Early Arabic Printed Books resource, which is available until the 10th. Don’t miss the chance to try them out!

 

Wifi

While the Bodleian Libraries wifi issues appear to have been resolved for now, we have been asked to inform readers that the infrastructure is being migrated to a new platform on the 7th March (Tuesday of 8th Week) and that the service will be unavailable for a short time while the migration takes place. Eduroam and OWL will still be available to readers during the outage.

 

Vacation Loans

Long loans for the Easter vacation will commence on Tuesday 7th March and from then on all books checked out or renewed will be out until April 25th (Tuesday of 1st Week). If you have books which you want to keep for the vacation do remember to check that you can renew them – remember only three renewals are permitted before the books must be returned to the Library, so don’t get caught out! If in doubt, a member of staff can help.

The Library will be closed over the Easter long weekend from Thursday 13th to Monday 17th April inclusive, but we will otherwise be operating our usual hours over the Vacation. A reminder of this closure will be posted nearer the time.

 

Moving books

Once we are out of Term we are planning another of our small book-moves, this time in the Reference Section at the far end of the ground floor. This will involve moving the “Z.” shelfmarked books which came here from the New Bodleian into the space vacated by the Japanese Reference books, and is necessary in order to increase the space for the Folios which are currently just on the last two bays along the back wall. Kate is imminently going to be reclassifying the PJ Folios and is concerned that there is not enough room in the current Folio section to accommodate them and the PK Folios (which she will reach within the next few months if she carries on at her current speed).

November News, December Reminders

Goodbye to Jonathan!

Today we said goodbye to Jonathan Acton, who has worked at the Oriental Institute Library since 2010, when he moved here after the closure of the New Bodleian.

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Jonathan first started working in the Bodleian Libraries in 2007, in the old Oriental Reading Room, and has spent the past nine years assisting readers of modern Oriental materials. When the reading rooms were re-organised in 2008 he worked in the New Bodleian Reading Room, as well as carrying out book-processing duties behind the scenes, and then moved to OIL along with Kate when the refurbishment started.

We wish him the best of luck in his future endeavours, and lots of fun playing with his grandson! We are sorry to see him go; his dedication to helping the readers has made him a valuable asset to the library, which will be a quieter (and probably less tidy) place without him!

November News

Drinks in the Library (again)

Despite repeated reminders, we are still finding evidence that readers are ignoring the rule that only water in sealed containers such as bottles may be brought into the library. We have found a number of cups containing coffee dregs over the past few weeks but have unfortunately yet to identify the culprit or culprits. Several readers with cups of water have also been spoken to.

We are not doing this to be awkward: the reason we don’t want coffee or other drinks in the library is purely for the protection of the books and equipment. We would politely request that readers respect this rule. We would rather not return to the days when readers were not permitted to take their bags into the library!

Reclassification

In happier news, November saw a milestone in the reclassification project: the end of the “D” section! D (History) has taken Kate since February 2014 to reclassify, with much of the collection moving into comparable sections in the Library of Congress sequence, although there were quite a few geography books which ended up in G!

The vast majority of former “D” shelfmarks – numbering almost 6000 books – are now in the LC sequence, which moves us a step closer to simplifying our shelving scheme and making it easier to find the books.

Since finishing “D”, Kate has also polished of “J” (Political Science) and “M” (Music) and is currently working on the end of “N” (Fine Art), before once again moving the books into the space created over the past few months.

This move is likely to start in the next week and will be finished before the start of Term in January.

Next on the reclassification project: “P”, but Kate says she’s not going to think about those just yet!

Periodicals

A number of periodicals which are currently shelved within the LC sequence are going to be moved into a space near the other periodicals (round the corner past the photocopiers) within the next few weeks. This is partly to free up space and also to rationalise the collection with a view eventually to having all periodicals on the ground floor in the same area. A prefix “Per.” will be added to these items to distinguish them from other materials with similar shelfmarks.

Vacation Loans

Vacation Loans are now in effect! Books borrowed from now on will be due back on January 17th (Tuesday of 1st week). Readers are requested to remember to renew books which were borrowed before this week to avoid a nasty new-year library fine surprise.

December Reminders

The library will be closed from 22nd December to January 3rd inclusive. This is a day earlier than the other Bodleian Libraries, which are open on the 22nd but closed on the 23rd onwards.

We have already noticed the dwindling numbers as many of our readers are leaving for the holidays and would like to wish everyone the best of the season!

Summer News, Autumn Announcements

Welcome!

The start of a new Term always seems to creep up on those of us who are here in the Library all year round; the sleepy quiet of the summer months being swept away by the influx of readers. September ends with a whimper and suddenly we are busy again!

This week marks Induction Week at the Oriental Institute Library; with graduate inductions having already mostly taken place and the Undergraduate Induction and Library tour taking place late Friday morning. We urge new users (and readers of this blog) to take advantage of these opportunities to meet the staff and to be shown round the library; we know you will have questions later, but for now it is just good to know we’ve told you roughly where the books you need are and how to access them!

 

Summer News

So… what’s new? Lots of things, actually!

The skylights in the library and the office were replaced over the summer, necessitating some disruption, mainly to the staff office, which had to be emptied for a number of weeks. The towers under the skylights in the library came into their own when one of the builders fell through the hole (amid much swearing) having tripped on the roof, so it was worth having them there, and the work itself was carried out from above, which lessened the dust and general unpleasantness for those of us beneath.

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At the end of the summer term we rearranged the periodicals into a slightly tighter arrangement in order to make some space for other materials on the ground floor, while at the same time moving the KSL (Korean Studies Library) books into the space vacated by the Japanese books which moved out earlier in the year. The area where the KSL books were is now a temporary home to a number of Taylorian periodicals which have been moved here to make space for the Slavonic and Modern Greek material which moved into the Taylorian; the Indian Institute Government Publications still occupy most of the rolling shelves downstairs, while the other Indian Institute material is now up on the ground floor just opposite the photocopiers. (Phew!) Everything is labelled; if you can’t find anything please ask a member of staff – we have updated our map of the collections accordingly.

The Library of Congress material has been moved round again by Kate into the space she made since her last move, so books may be in a slightly different area than they were; the shelf labels are up to date and Kate is currently working her way through the DT section in the corner near the reader computers.

In the last year, a total of 2388 items, representing 1993 shelfmarks, were reclassified and reshelved into the proper sequence. Kate is hoping to get past 2000 shelfmarks in the next year, but isn’t promising anything!

We now have a sale trolley, to be found just inside the door in the Front Office, which contains duplicates of books the library already holds and other items. Unsold books will be sent to Betterworld Books for resale, but we thought we would give readers the opportunity first. Hardbacks cost £3, paperbacks £1.50 and multiparts are 50p each. Lydia is adding new things regularly, so do feel free to browse.

Finally, PCAS has now changed to a new system which automatically links to a user’s reader card. Readers with existing PCAS accounts will need to transfer the funds from that account to their new one using the portal created for the purpose. Please see the PCAS pages on the Bodleian’s website for details: http://www.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/using/copy/pcas

Autumn matters

As mentioned before, undergraduate inductions take place on Friday 7th October, so there may be more noise in the library during that period.

We would like to remind readers that food and drink (with the exception of water in bottles) are not permitted in the library – there is a common room downstairs for that purpose.

Finally, there may be a few more readers than usual for a while this Term as the Muller Library, which suffered a small fire on the upper floors of its host building on Walton Street in August, is still to re-open. Please check their webpages (http://www.ochjs.ac.uk/mullerlibrary/) for more information, in the mean time staff are able to bring books round to the Oriental Institute for readers to use and Muller materials held at the BSF may be ordered here.

Disruption in the Library in the next couple of weeks

During the Long Vacation – and starting next week – there is going to be some disruption in the Oriental Institute Library to accommodate collections which are going to be stored here as an interim measure. The following is a statement from James Legg, Head of the Humanities Section, and Gillian Evison, Head of the Oriental Section of the Bodleian Libraries [with minor amendments in square brackets].

With apologies for the short notice, this is to alert our readers that there will be some rearrangement of material in the Oriental Institute Library over the Long Vacation with some preliminary moves in the next few days:
– former Indian Institute books and the former Bodleian periodicals will move to the main periodicals section [on the ground floor, which will necessitate some moving of the OIL periodicals to accommodate them];
– the South Asia section in the basement will move to the shelving nearest the staircase [previously occupied by the Japanese books which moved over Easter];
– the Korea [KSL] section will move out of [the section round the corner] into the area currently occupied by South Asia (reference section and lending books) and the Hebrew and Jewish Studies folios (periodicals) [the area immediately before the lift and computer downstairs, on either side of the aisle];
– the Hebrew and Jewish Studies folios will move to the other end of the HJS section.
These moves will consolidate the periodicals sections, give more space to rearrange material as the reclassification project proceeds, and create a separate space for the collections being processed in the basement.
If you have any questions or concerns about these moves, please contact Library staff, who will direct your question to the most appropriate person.

We advise keeping an eye on the Facebook Page/Twitter feed for short-term notices about the moves, and will produce a floor-plan of the new locations in the basement when the moves are complete.

 

March News and April Announcements

Move of the Japanese Collections

During March, the Japanese Collections at the Oriental Institute Library have been moved to the Bodleian Japanese Library. This includes the Short Loan books, the books under the Library of Congress classification, and the majority of the collection, which was housed downstairs.

The decision was taken by the Committee for Library Provision in Oriental Studies – subcommittee on Japanese Studies to move the books from OIL so that all the Japanese material would be accessible in one place.

Meanwhile, readers who have borrowed Japanese books may return them to OIL and we can transfer them to the BJL, or may just take them straight to the BJL.

Reclassification and reorganising

Kate is currently undertaking one of her epic bookmoves, moving the books in the Library of Congress section into the space most recently vacated by those books reclassified since the last move in September of 2015. She is currently in the DS section on the back wall of the Library and hopes to take no more than another week (bearing in mind she works 3 afternoons with us and is elsewhere in the Bodleian the rest of the time) to finish up to the As.

Please bear with us while this work is taking place. Care is taken to make sure that not too much noise is generated by the occasional toppling book, but some disruption is inevitable so we try to use the vacations when there are fewer readers around to do this kind of moving.

SOLO downtime

A note from the Bodleian Libraries:

SOLO will have limited availability from 5pm on Friday 8th April until 9am on Monday 11 April.

This is due to essential maintenance on associated background systems. Users will still be able to search the catalogue but:

You will not be able to request items
The Find & Request tab will not be visible, so there will be no live item or availability information
It will not be possible for users to view or renew their loans
It will not be possible to place requests

The silver lining is that online access to electronic resources will be unaffected.

Just a short one…

A short post this month, but with fewer readers due to the vacation it has been rather quiet. We hope to update everyone on the skylight news next month!