Friday, 18 December 2015

Christmas Vacation 2015

If you’re away from Sheffield for the Christmas Vacation remember that the Library can offer support to students in various ways:

  • If you have a question about the Library, take a look at Library Connect, a database of frequently asked questions

  • For further help you can contact the Library HelpDesk in the following ways:
        Phone: 0114 222 7200 
(Please note that the HelpDesk will not be staffed during Christmas closure days: Friday 25 December to Sunday 3 January inclusive)

Merry Christmas! 

Thursday, 17 December 2015

Penn Corpora of Historical English

Of interest to students studying the history of English, (especially the historical syntax of the language), the Penn Corpora of Historical English are running texts and text samples of British English prose across its history - from the earliest Middle English documents up to the First World War.  This online version includes:

  • The Penn-Helsinki Parsed Corpus of Middle English, Second Edition (PPCME2)
  • The Penn-Helsinki Parsed Corpus of Early Modern English (PPCEME)
  • The Penn Parsed Corpus of Modern British English (PPCMBE)

Click under 'Quick Links' to visit the resource. Remember to make sure you're logged into Muse

Thursday, 10 December 2015

Christmas Vacation Loans

As you know, we usually renew your books for you automatically. But over the Christmas holidays things are a bit different.


  • We will try to automatically renew your loans on 12 December, but just in case there's any problems, such as another student requesting your book, please remember to check your library account through StarPlus, and renew any items due for return before going home for the holiday period.
  • Once the book has been renewed, you’ll be able to keep it over the vacation period, and as long as no-one else requests it, we will continue to renew it for you once term starts.
  • However, if someone does make a request for a book that you have on loan, we won’t be able to renew it after the vacation and you will need to bring it back to us by 18 January.


  • If we don’t have a physical copy of the book you need, remember to check StarPlus to see if we have it as an e-book.
  • If you have made any requests for books that you no longer need over Christmas, please remember to cancel them online.
  • If you need any more information about borrowing items from the University library, please contact

Trial electronic resources

The Library has arranged trial access to the following online resources. These services can be accessed by University of Sheffield staff and students for a limited time only:

The Economist Historical Archive, 1843-2011
The Economist was established in 1843 to campaign for free trade and freedom of the individual. The complete archive (1843-2011) is available, with editorial, advertising and tabular matter all fully searchable.

Trial access is available from this web page (see Quick links on the right hand side of the page). The trial ends on 31 December 2015.

The Financial Times Historical Archive, 1888-2010
The complete searchable facsimile run of the daily business newspaper, from 1888 to 2010.
Trial access is available from this web page (see Quick links on the right hand side of the page). The trial ends on 31 December 2015.

The Japan Times Digital Archive, 1897-2014
Japan Times Digital Archive includes digital and searchable scans of all pages published in The Japan Times between 1897 and 2014. The Japan Times is the English language daily newspaper published in Japan.
Trial access is available from this web page (see Quick links on the right hand side of the page). The trial ends on 22 December 2015.
We welcome your comments on these trial resources: online feedback form
You can also request a trial by using this online request form

For a full list of trial electronic resources, please see this web page

Wednesday, 9 December 2015

The Map Collection

Western Bank Library houses the library's map collection. The whole country is covered at a scale of 1:25,000 and 1:50,000. Larger scale maps are available for local areas (North Derbyshire, South Yorkshire) at a scale of 1:2,500 and 1:10,000. Sheffield is covered in greater detail; 1:500 and 1:1,250.  There is a wide range of historical maps (mainly 1850´s onward) as well as geology maps for England, Scotland and Wales at a scale 1:50,000. The collection also includes

  • Aerial photos covering Sheffield and Rotherham for 1992
  • A good range of atlases and gazetteers
  • A small collection of foreign maps used for teaching and research.
Alongside the physical map collection the library also has a subscription to Digimap

For information on how to consult maps in Western Bank Library see our Map Collection Subject Guide

Friday, 4 December 2015

Extra Help Week, 7 - 13 December

Extra Help Week (7-13 December) is the perfect opportunity to catch up on tips and info you may have missed at the start of semester. In our library sites;
  • Even more staff than usual will be available to answer your questions
  • There will be a pop-up advice service in the Diamond on Level 1
And if you're not in the library ask us on-line
  • We’ve launched a new on-line help system called Library Connect
  • We're on twitter; @UniSheffieldLib Use the hashtag #libraryhelpwk
  • Call: 0114 222 7200
  • SMS: +44 (0)1952 783022
  • Email:

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Doctoral Open Days at the British Library

The British Library is hosting a series of open days that are aimed at first year PhD students. Each one will introduce you to the library and its services by focusing on one aspect of the collections.Courses available are

Asian & African Collections – 18 January 2016 
News & Media – 25 January 2016 
Pre 1600 Collections – 01 February 2016 
Music – 05 February 2016 
Social Sciences – 12 February 2016 
17th & 18th Century Collections – 19 February 2016 
19th Century Collections – 22 February 2016 
20th & 21st Century Collections – 26 February 2016 - 

Further information
  • For the full list of open days and to book your place on one, please see this web page 
  • Booking is essential
  • Each open day costs £5.00
  • Lunch and refreshments are provided
  • To make the most of your day, you may wish to register for a free Reader Pass before the event

Monday, 23 November 2015

Critical thinking video and tutorial

Thinking critically about your sources - analysing, evaluating and synthesising information - is an essential part of your studies at University-level. Your work will benefit from using the best evidence and information available, and showing you have researched your question and have reliable evidence to back your arguments.

Thursday, 19 November 2015

Millions more items now available at Boston Spa

Further to our Boston Spa minibus post from last week, the British Library has recently announced a huge increase in the number of items available for visitors to Boston Spa. In fact 85% of the collection items requested in the London Reading Rooms are now also available to Readers in Yorkshire.

More details can be found in this blog post 

Friday, 13 November 2015

Join Up Your Skills

A new venture run jointly by 301 Student Skills & Development Centre, the Careers Service, University of Sheffield Enterprise and the University Library launched this month. We can work with you to strengthen a variety of vital skills which boost your academic credentials and enhance your personal and professional development. Discover how to get more from your time at University: Join Up Your Skills

Reading lists

The Library provides an online reading list service, myResource Lists, with links to electronic resources such as journal articles, ebooks and websites in addition to items physically held in the library. You can search for your reading lists by module code, lecturer or department. For more information, please see our short introductory video on the myResource Lists homepage.

You can access myResource Lists (on and off campus) in the following ways:

  • via the link in your MOLE course menu
  • via the My services menu in MUSE
  • From the Library web pages, under the A to Z link
  • From the StarPlus homepage

    What if I have any problems, or can’t find a myResource list for my course?Email:

    Help for Academic Staff

    Thursday, 12 November 2015

    British Library Boston Spa Minibus

    The Library runs a regular free minibus service to the British Library Document Supply Centre at Boston Spa to give staff and students of the University the opportunity to use the extensive collections housed there. Visits are scheduled for the first Tuesday of every month and the next trip is on the 6th of December.

    The British Library requires pre-registration to use their libraries and material must be ordered in advance. More details can be found on the library’s web page

    Friday, 16 October 2015

    Trial access to Christian-Muslim Relations Online II, 1500-1900

    The Library currently has a trial for Christian-Muslim Relations Online II, 1500-1900. This database comprises thousands of comprehensive entries on individual works and their authors, together with introductory essays to the periods and areas covered, making it the fullest available source in this field.

    Trial access is available directly from our Christian-Muslim Relations Online II, 1500-1900 page. Access is available to University of Sheffield staff and students on campus only and the trial ends on 10 November 2015.

    We would be very glad of any feedback you may have on the resource. Please let us know via this form.

    Friday, 9 October 2015

    Should we trust Wikipedia?

    As part of Academic Book Week, The Diamond will host a panel debate on Wikipedia. 
    As ubiquitous as Google, Wikipedia can be the first port of call for research outside academia as well as for undergraduates studying at University. This debate brings together librarians and scholars from a range of backgrounds to discuss the validity of this vast, easy to access swathe of information, and to address questions of academic authority and integrity in a world of digital self-publishing.
    Chaired by Professor Nicola Dibben (Music), the panel includes former British Library Wikimedian-in-Residence Andrew Gray, University Librarian Anne Horn, Digital Humanities experts Bob Shoemaker (History) and Michael Pidd (HRI Digital) and PhD student Hannah Robbins (Music).
    Date: Wednesday 11th November 2015
    Time and location: 5-7pm. The Diamond, University of Sheffield
    Booking: Please reserve your place

    Information Skills Workshops in the Diamond

    The Library is offering several exciting Information Skills Workshops in our new learning environment, The Diamond. Available for October and November are;

    • Getting started with finding information
    • Finding information for your assignment
    • Searching for Researching
    • Evaluating information
    • Plagiarism & Referencing

    More details and a bookable calender is available on our website here

    Welcome to the Diamond

    Our new 24-hour learning space is now open and offers 1000 additional study spaces to all students in all departments.
    Innovative study spaces are distributed throughout the building, including distraction-free spaces, group study spaces and social study spaces. Power sockets and USB charging points are available in all study spaces and laptops are available to loan from the level 4 information desk.
    The higher up the building you travel, the more study spaces you will find. This culminates in our exciting new service area on level 4 featuring a core print reference collection, extensive creative media facilities, information skills workshop and our most diverse range of study spaces yet, all with spectacular city views.
    Take some time to visit Library Connect on the ground floor, situated next to The Diamond Kitchen. This space allows you to quickly organise yourselves, including quick look up of resources, printing, pick of loans requested from any library, as well as convenience of returns.
    Call in to see us and find out more about information, space, skills development and answers to any of your questions. If you need any help or have questions, our Library and CiCS staff are available and ready to help you experience all that the Diamond has to offer. Simply ask any member of staff wearing a yellow lanyard... Say Hello to Yellow!

    Thursday, 24 September 2015

    Welcome to all new and returning students!

    Welcome to the University of Sheffield!  We hope you will enjoy your time here and hope to meet some of you at induction sessions arranged by your department. 

    To get you started on finding resources for your studies, check out our Introduction to library and computing services web pages. Our web pages also contain links to our subject guides and a suite of information skills tutorials, together with one-minute videos on a range of topics. Check out our one-minute video on how to borrow a book.

    You’ll need your UCard and PIN to borrow books using our self-service machines. If you forget your PIN or want to change it go to sign in, and choose one of the top 2 options.

    When you borrow a book we’ll renew it for you automatically unless someone else wants it. We’ll send you a weekly borrowing statement by email, so check this carefully to make sure your books aren’t wanted back. Please think of others and return books if they're requested by someone else. You will find yourself blocked from further borrowing if you keep books needed by others.

    If the book you want is out on loan, you need to request it online through theStarPlus Library catalogue and we’ll email you when it’s ready to collect. Select the Information Commons as your collection site for 24/7 self-service collection. Remember to sign in to StarPlus by clicking the University members link at the top right of the page (if accessing StarPlus via MUSE you will be signed in automatically)

    Remember we’re here to help you, so come and speak to us. Our Library HelpDesk can answer your email or telephone enquiries. Just email or telephone 0114 222 7200. You can also get specific subject help from your subject librarian.

    Follow this blog to keep up to date with Library news and updates for the Social Sciences. We also have a Twitter account: @LibrarianArts

    Friday, 4 September 2015

    Drama Online

    Drama Online is an invaluable source of full text plays from new and established writers. Users have access to scholarly notes, annotated texts, critical analysis and contextual information with new plays and collections being added all the time. Registering for a personal account gives you the option to save searches, view your search history, bookmark content and make notes against the text. The site also features video guides to get you started.  To access Drama Online click here making sure you are logged into Muse

    Thursday, 20 August 2015


    Correct referencing is not only an essential component of academic writing, but will also help you to avoid plagiarism. Learn how to reference correctly in the style used by your department. Use our referencing tutorials available from the Information Skills Resource.

    Friday, 19 June 2015

    Literature Review Help

    Creating your first literature review can be a complex process requiring a number of skills. It involves identifying, evaluating and synthesising previous research in your field of study. Structured around research ideas, its purpose is to set the research scene by highlighting the main arguments and identifying gaps or shortcomings which need to be addressed with further research.

    For help with writing your literature review take a look at the Library’s online tutorial: Producing a literature review. This tutorial will guide you through the process of writing a literature review in 7 steps. It also suggests sources of further advice and provides recommended reading.

    Working on your dissertation over the summer?

    The Library can help!

    Friday, 5 June 2015

    The Economist

    The Library now provides online access to The Economist - a source of information on international news, politics, business, and economics. 

    Explore the website by clicking on the tabs/drop-down menus located at the top of the screen. From here you can also view the print editions of The Economist from 1997 up to the current edition.

    The website provides access to a number of blogs on different subjects including: financial markets, American politics, economics, and business travel. There is also a multimedia library with video and audio clips.

    Useful tip: creating a free account will enable you to save articles to aTimekeeper reading list so that you can go back to them later. 

    Please note: University members get full access to The Economist (excludingThe Economist apps and The Economist in audio), so there is no need to subscribe. All links to subscription information are intended for individuals and can be ignored.


    Access is available via the StarPlus Library catalogue (make sure that you have signed in by clicking University members at the top of the screen). Find it by typing "The Economist” into the University Collections search box and clickSearch. Please note: the Library also has the print edition of The Economist. For the online resource click View It on the record marked as electronic resource and then click on the link.

    Spare Rib Magazine

    Spare Rib was a landmark national feminist magazine. It was first published in July 1972 and continued until January 1993. All 239 editions of the magazine are now available online for the first time, providing a valuable insight into women’s lives and this period of feminist activity. 

    Access is available from this webpage. Alternatively, search for “Spare Rib” using the University Collections search box on the StarPlus Library catalogue. 

    Additionally, the British Library’s Spare Rib website features selected pages from the magazine, alongside articles written by academics, activists and former contributors.

    Thursday, 4 June 2015

    Special Collections Refurbishment

    PLEASE NOTE. The library Special Collections Department in Western Bank Library will be closed for refurbishment for 3 weeks from Monday 15th June. It will re-open on Monday 6th July. During this closure period members of the University can request Rare Books and Special Collections material (not Archives) via the Western Bank Library Level 5 desk. Items will be collected at 10.30am and 2.30pm and are for reference use only. We are sorry for any inconvenience caused.

    Thursday, 28 May 2015

    New! Artemis Primary Sources

    Artemis logo

    Artemis Primary Sources can be used to cross-search, analyse and visualise search results of the University of Sheffield’s subscriptions to Gale historical collections and newspapers.
    From both the basic and advanced search screens you can choose to search across all available databases or select only those that are relevant to your research. These databases include:
    ·         17th and 18th Century Burney Collection
    ·         19th Century British Newspapers
    ·         19th Century UK Periodicals
    ·         Daily Mail Historical Archive, 1896-2004
    ·         Eighteenth Century Collections Online
    ·         The Times Digital Archive, 1785-2008
    On the left side of the search results screen there are options to narrow your results. From here you can also access visual representations of your search results by clicking on the options available under Analyze Results. For example, you can view your search results as Term Clusters, which are visual representations of the words and subjects that have been found most often in the text of your search results. Clicking on a Term Cluster will narrow your original search results to the documents also containing that subject or term.
    There is also a tool that allows you to see a visual representation of Term Frequency in the form of a graph. This can be used to determine how often and in what years a particular word or phrase occurs in your search results. Clicking on a point on the graph will narrow your search results to that particular year and search term. It is also possible to compare different search terms on one graph as well as visualise search results according to popularity.
    Useful tip: There is also a link to the Term Frequency tool on the initial search page. This can be used to visualise the frequency or popularity of search terms across all or some of the databases prior to conducting a search.
    Useful tip: Create an account to save documents of interest to a personal folder. From here you can email, print or export documents into reference management software, such as EndNote. Having an account will also enable you to create tags and annotate documents.


    Access is available directly from here by connecting to the Artemis Primary Sources website (see Quick links on the right). You’ll be prompted to log in to MUSE as necessary. Artemis Primary Sources can also be accessed fromStarPlus by searching under University Collections

    Friday, 22 May 2015

    Information literacy - employability

    Being information literate will help you in the workplace and when applying for jobs. Find out more about the importance of information literacy in the workplace by looking at this webpage. It explains what information literacy means and provides useful links to online tutorials and further information. There is also a link to case studies of University of Sheffield graduates, who have reflected on their experiences at work.

    Thursday, 14 May 2015

    Business Source Premier

    Business Source Premier is a resource for global business literature and data, such as country and industry reports. It also provides company profiles for the world’s 10,000 largest companies (see top left of screen), which will be useful for any student preparing for job applications or interviews.

    The database has Text-To-Speech functionality (in English) for articles in HTML format. The search interface can be translated into a number of different languages, and articles in HTML format can also be translated.

    If you create a personalised account within the database, you can organise your search results in folders and add notes to documents that you save. You can also save searches, create alerts and RSS feeds. Apps for iPhone and Android devices are available.

    This database will be of interest to students and researchers in a range of disciplines across the University.

    Open StarPlus from the My services menu in MUSE. Type “Business Source Premier” into the University Collections search box and follow the link to the database. Alternatively, it can be accessed from here by connecting to the Business Source Premier website (See Quick links on the right) - you'll be prompted to log in to MUSE as necessary.