Published: 01 April 2019

Spotlight on support at the Library

With the Doctoral College based among its walls, the University Library is central to Surreys postgraduate community. From skills workshops, to individual advisory sessions, the Library is home to a wealth of tools to boost academic and personal development.

Image of the library and learning centre

Postgraduate students at the University of Surrey can find more than just journals, books and online resources at the on-campus Library. As a key part of membership, the Library also offers services to support the specific needs of the postgraduate community. These include bespoke workshops, as well as additional support for those students with disabilities and specific learning difficulties.

Aiding academic skills and development

Surrey recognises that postgraduate students may require tailored support to help develop their personal, academic and professional potential. A specific researcher development team is based at the Doctoral College in the Library to offer bespoke support and training for postgraduate research students.

For taught postgraduate students, the Masters Interactive Service gives access to a tailored range of online materials, plus information about workshops. These free workshops run throughout the year, and may include:

  • How to make effective notes
  • Refresh your writing skills
  • Writing your literature review
  • Public speaking and presentations
  • Dissertation: Structure and writing.

Of course, the chance to talk to an expert is invaluable, so for postgraduate researchers, library staff can offer advice on researching techniques, literature and systematic reviews, sourcing, and selecting and evaluating information. And to make sure that research is accessible to a wider audience, there is an Open Research team to support students with managing their data and making their research available to the world.

Space to study

A comfortable place to work is essential for all students who require space for concentrated work. Whether a quiet area is needed, or a place for collaborative and group study, the library has 1,700 study spaces available. Research students can also benefit from the Researcher Networking Room, a space specifically for you.

Collections for research

The Library’s wealth of books, journals and online resources are discoverable from a distance, thanks to an online platform (particularly useful for research students who may be off-campus). Being part of a wider network of research libraries means that material can be tracked down if it is not immediately in stock.

Nestled away on the ground floor of the Library are the archives and special collections. This important resource plays a vital role in many researchers’ studies. There are over 60 collections housed here, available for research, study and general interest.

As well as a range of subject-specific collections, the archives include:

  • The collections of the National Resource Centre for Dance, including the personal archives of prominent movement theorist, Rudolf Laban
  • Several collections related to  E. H. Shepard, illustrator of Winnie the Pooh and Wind in the Willows
  • British Guild of Travel Writers archive - a fascinating collection with research potential for those studying travel and tourism, literature and language, photography and much more.

Supporting students with additional needs

With a firm belief that no student should be at a disadvantage because of a disability or learning difficulty, the University offers students access to confidential advice at the Disability and Neurodiversity Service. Sitting within the Library, this service includes practical support on applying for the Disabled Students’ Allowance, and implementing exam arrangements, as well as specialised one-to-one academic and development support and mentoring. Students can also get help to access dyslexia and dyspraxia screenings.

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