Finding stuff – scholarly literature for your research

Are you confident that you are finding the best articles, conference papers, books and theses to support your research?

We still have spaces on this very popular workshop in which we explore a wide range of scholarly databases to help you to discover the best research materials. We will cover Proquest, eTHos, OCLC, EBSCO, Scopus, Web of Science and more, in addition to the Bodliean Library’s own SOLO database, and look at the most effective ways of searching for relevant journal articles, books, conference papers, theses and dissertations.  The workshop includes plenty of opportunities for hands on practice during which time you will be able to collect papers for your own research.

This workshop is FREE. Please be sure to book your place online:
Bodleian iSkills: Finding stuff – scholarly literature for your research (Thursday 4th May 14.00-17.00)

Tools and tips for your research in Film Studies

The Bodleian Libraries’ Film Specialist will be running an iSkills workshop in Week 2 of Trinity Term to help anyone doing research in Film Studies.  We will be talking about the Film Studies collections in Oxford (covering not only the films themselves but also books and articles on film)  and the best databases for conducting your research and literature review.  In addition we’ll also look at how to cite films.

This Bodleian iSkills workshop will be running on Wednesday 3rd May, 10.00-11.00.  The session is free, but please book your place online.

Get help with your referencing with RefWorks

Why waste time struggling with footnotes and bibliographies when you have Reference Management tools to do the job for you?  Bodleian Libraries run a number of workshops to help you try out different Reference Management tools, and in Week 2 we will be looking at RefWorks.

RefWorks can help firstly by keeping all your references in one place so that you have everything you need when you come to cite a source or create a bibliography; and secondly by formatting your in-text citations, footnotes and bibliographies for you.  Yes, it actually does your citations and bibliographies for you!  No need for you to remember which bits of the citation go in italics, where you need a full stop, or when to use parentheses…

Bodleian Libraries have a subscription to RefWorks which makes it free not only for current Oxford staff and students but also for Oxford alumni.  Find out more by booking a place on one of this term’s RefWorks workshops:

 Referencing: RefWorks for Humanities (Tuesday 2 May 9.15-12.15)

Referencing: RefWorks for Sciences and Social Sciences (Friday 19 May 09.15-12.15)

Needles in Haystacks – finding high quality academic materials on the web

Picture of a needle in a haystackGoogle can return high quality academic papers and also primary materials such as data and statistics; reports and policy documents; images, broadcasts and audio-visual content; historical and legal materials and much more.    However, too often the best results are lost among many thousands of spurious, inaccurate and downright crazy results.    Finding the academic needle in the haystack is time consuming and most people give up after scanning the first page or two of results, but of course there could be an outstanding piece of research on page 3, 10 or even 100 of your results list.

The good news is that by learning a few basic techniques you can hone in on the best academic content.       Come along to our iSkills workshop, Google for academic research on Thursday 27 April 14.00-16.00 at the Social Science Library to find out more and to practice your skills with Google and also with alternative search engines such as DuckDuckGo.

This workshop will be aimed at DPhils and researchers in Social Sciences subjects.   Please book your place at
Bodleian iSkills: Using Google for academic research (Wed 22 Feb 14.00-16.00)

Confident about your literature review?

tag cloud covering topics covered in this workshop

Doing a literature review is no easy task. In our Bodleian iSkills workshop, Moving from a research question to a literature review in the Social Sciences, you will learn how to build a search strategy and use it in a number of key tools.      The workshop is specifically designed for Social Sciences DPhil students and will cover:

  • building a successful search strategy
  • using a range of bibliographic databases and search tools in the Social Sciences
  • working effectively with large result sets
  • sourcing highly cited papers relevant to your research

Please bring along your own research questions so that you can start searching for materials relevant to your DPhil.

Bodleian iSkills: Moving from a research question to a literature review in the Social Sciences will take place Thursday 27 April 10.00-12.00 at the Social Science Library. Although the workshop is free, booking is essential.

Nearly finished that DPhil? Make sure it’s ORA ready.

Screen shot of ORA home pageIf you are an Oxford DPhil, you are probably aware that you are required to deposit a digital copy of your thesis in the Oxford Research Archive (ORA).    Once deposited, your thesis will be embargoed for a short period, but after that it will be become publicly available as an open access thesis.

Making your thesis open access brings lots of benefits not only to other researchers and the public who can benefit from your research but also to you in terms of raising your visibility and impact.  However, it also carried responsibilities. In particular, if you have included materials such as pictures for which you are not the copyright holder, you will need to get permission to reproduce them.    You may be surprised to learn that this not only applies to the more obvious items like pictures, but also to materials that you have authored yourself (e.g. journal articles) if the copyright belongs to a third party such as a publisher.  Our top tip is to be aware of copyright issues as early as possible in your research, as getting permissions as you go along is usually much easier than leaving it until you have finished your thesis.

In addition, if your thesis includes sensitive or confidential material, you may need to apply for a dispensation from consultation for the whole or part of your thesis so that it does not become public.

To find out more about how to handle copyright and sensitive data in your digital thesis, and how to prepare it for depositing in ORA, come along to Bodleian iSkills: Your thesis, copyright and ORA on Wednesday 26 April 14.00-15.00 at the Social Science Library.     Please note that although the session is free, booking is essential.

Managing Social Science research data

Good research data management is a vital component of academic practice. Part of this is the principle that the data used to develop the arguments and outcomes of your research should, where possible, be effectively stored, preserved and usable. Bodleian Libraries are running a workshop that introduces the University’s research data policy, outlines the practical impact this will have on the work of researchers, and looks at some of the tools in preparation to meet the requirements as well as services that are already available. This workshop is not only essential during your DPhil but will be invaluable if you plan to continue in research as a career.

Key topics to be covered:

  • Common dangers and pitfalls of digital data
  • Effective organisation of your data
  • Getting the most from your data and producing a data management plan
  • Data creation and funder requirements
  • Preserving data; embargoes and access restrictions
  • Oxford based tools for research data management (RDM)

Book online for this free workshop:

Bodleian iSkills: Managing Social Science research data (Tuesday 25 April 10.00-12.00)

Open Access Oxford – What’s happening? – March briefing

Picture of an open lockIn order to be eligible for the next REF, the final peer-reviewed version of journal articles and conference papers (with an ISSN) must be deposited in an open access repository within three months of acceptance for publication. HEFCE’s requirements are designed to ‘increase substantially the amount of scholarly material that is made available in an open-access form’.

Bodleian Libraries run monthly briefings on open access publishing and Oxford’s position. These briefings are aimed at researchers and academics, research support staff, administrators and librarians. Key topics include:

• Introduction – What is open access?
• Key terms – Gold, Green, APCs
• How to find out about research council or funder requirements
• How to find out what your publisher will allow
• Green route – how to deposit in ORA
• Gold route and how to claim for APCs
• HEFCE policy for next REF
• New developments, including ORCID researcher IDs
• Where to get more help

Our next session is on Wednesday 15th March

The session is free, but online booking is required.
Book a place on  iSkills: Open Access Oxford – what’s happening?

Find high impact journals and demonstrate your own research impact in the Medical Sciences

Are you a research postgraduate in the Medical Sciences? Looking for high impact journals and conferences? Need to demonstrate research impact? Wondering about your h-index?

Being able to identify high impact journals and to measure and demonstrate your own research impact and h-index are key skills which are increasingly important when applying for funding and in some case research positions.   One way of measuring impact is to count, track and anaylse citations to published works.   A number of tools exist to facilitate this but can be tricky to use.

Bodleian Libraries will be running our workshop ‘iSkills for the Medical Sciences Division: Research Impact – citation analysis tools’  on Thursday 16th March, 10.00-11.30, to help you to use citation data to measure and demonstrate impact. We will be covering  Journal Citation Reports, CiteScore Journal Metrics, Web of Science, Scopus, Google Scholar, Essential Science Indicators, Altmetrics and ORCID and will look at how to find highly cited journals and conferences as well as how to measure the impact of individual researchers including calculating the h-index.

This session is for researchers, research support staff and research postgraduates in the Medical Sciences.

This workshop is free. Please book online:
iSkills for the Medical Sciences Division: Research Impact – citation analysis tools (Thursday 16th March, 10.00-11.30)


Choosing and Using Reference Management Software

Struggling with your in-text citations/footnotes or bibliography? Keep on top of it all with reference management software. Not sure which package to use? Come one of our introductory sessions. We will give an overview of how reference management works, explore the pros and cons of a wide range of reference management packages and give you the opportunity to try out five different packages so that you can work out which one is best for you. The packages included are RefWorks, EndNote, Zotero, Mendeley, and ColWiz.

Book online for:
Referencing: Choosing and using software
(Friday 3rd March 9.15-12.15)