Did you know that Sunday 16th July is Disability Awareness Day? The world’s largest voluntary-led disability exhibition is held in the grounds of Walton Hall Gardens, Warrington. For more details please see http://www.disabilityawarenessday.org.uk
The University of Salford, and The Library in particular, have many features in place to ensure their services are as accessible as possible. These include mind-mapping software (Inspiration), screen reading (Jaws), and the numerous applications available on My Study Bar – the latter should be available on all networked student pcs. To find out more, including accessible access to the different Library sites, go to http://www.salford.ac.uk/library/help/accessibility
Andy tells you about the new location for audio-visual resources in the Library.
Our CDs and DVDs are now in a much better and more obvious location – on Level 2 of Clifford Whitworth Library, just in front of the link bridge to the Level 2 Extension. This means that they are now very close to the Arts and Media bookstock in the Extension. Please remember though that they are not just for Arts & Media use – there are non-fiction DVDs relevant to many subject areas in the collection. Also you may wish to borrow feature films or music CDs for your own entertainment – most items here are available to borrow.
Amy points out handy resources to help you with e-Submission
Turnitin is used for the e-submission of your assignments. It is an online tool that you use to upload your work so that it can be marked by your tutor. You access Turnitin from Blackboard.
Important things you need to know about submitting your work for marking
Use the correct naming convention for your files – your school may specify a particular format.
Submit your completed assignment to the correct, FINAL submissions folder when it is ready for marking. Work submitted mistakenly to the DRAFT folder at this stage will not be marked.
When you submit work for marking, you are accepting the submission declaration.
Keep copies of email receipts from Turnitin as proof of submission.
Check the file size. Files must be less than 40Mb. Contact your lecturer if your file is greater than 40Mb.
Use an accepted file type. File types accepted are: MS Word, WordPerfect, PostScript, PDF, HTML, RTF or plain text. You can ask at The Library for help if you are not sure about a file type. For non text-based assessments (e.g. audio/video, etc.) your tutor may use the Blackboard Assignment Tool.
This time of year is all about assignments. Amy has shared the Skills for Learning 5 steps to essay success!
It’s that time of year again when deadlines are looming so we thought we’d share with you our 5 steps to essay success.
Step 1: Analyse and Plan
Step 2: Search and Evaluate
Step 3: Read and Make Notes
Step 4: Write your Essay
Step 5: Review and Submit
Read on to learn more about each step!
Step 1: Analyse and Plan
When you are given a question or task to complete you need to make sure that you understand what you are being asked to do and then plan how you will approach it. If you don’t answer the question being set you are more likely to get a low mark. With this in mind, the first step to essay success is to ANALYSE and PLAN. This involves analysing your task, making a plan and identifying useful words that describe your topic. You need to make sure that you pay attention to the instructions you have been given, be clear about the topic you have been asked to explore and any restrictions to the scope of your answer.
Step 2: Search and Evaluate
Next you need to search for information and evaluate the usefulness of what you find. You need to think about what you already know and where you could search for information. A useful way of evaluating sources is to ask yourself these questions: 1. How up-to-date is the information? Is it still CURRENT? 2. Is this information source going to help me write my essay? Is it RELEVANTto my topic? 3. Is this “the right sort” of information – is it suitable for academic purposes? Is the author an expert in this subject area? Is the information reliable and ACCURATE? 4. Why has this information been written? What is its PURPOSE? Is there any bias I need to take account of?
Step 3: Read and Make Notes
Now you have your materials together, it’s time to start getting the information that you need from them. There are different ways to approach this task depending on what you are reading. If it is books then you might want to start by looking at the chapter headings to decide which will be most useful. If it is a journal article then it is a good idea to read the abstract first as this help you decide whether it is worth reading in detail. Next you need to read the introduction as this will tell you about the main argument of the article. Read the conclusion next for a summary of the main ideas and finally if you still think it is relevant you may want to read the rest in detail. Make sure you annotate and summarise as you read.
Step 4: Write your Essay
By now you should have a good idea about how you are going to answer the question. It is a good idea to re-visit your plan as it may have changed as a result of all the research and reading you have done! Give some thought to how you will structure your essay – it will need an introduction, a main body and a conclusion. The introduction tells the reader how you will answer the question. The main body is the ideas and analysis to support your argument, it is your opportunity to critically analyse the topic. Finally, the conclusion tells the reader how you have answered the question. Don’t forget to paraphrase, summarise and reference correctly as you write.
Step 5: Review and submit
Leave plenty of time to proofread your work paying particular attention to spelling, grammar, the question, word count and references and citations. When you are happy with your essay and confident that you have done your best to answer the question you can submit it.
If you are new to studying law at Salford then you may have a few questions about how to go about finding legal information resources for your studies and assignments. We look at answering some of them in this blog post, if your query isn’t covered here please get in touch with me at email@example.com.
There are four main types of information resources that you will need to consult during your programme. These are:
Books or eBooks
Legal case materials
Legislation (such as Acts of Parliament)
Legal Journal articles
See the boxes below for discovering how you would find these four main types of legal information resources.
You may also want to find out other information about:
Find the books and eBooks you need using Salford Library Search
Clifford Whitworth Library, based on the Clifford Whitworth Library is open 24/7 all year. You can borrow up to 25 books if you are an undergraduate student or up to 35 if you are in your final year of your undergraduate degree or studying for a postgraduate qualification. If you are study or live away from campus however we have thousands of eBooks that you can access directly from your computer or mobile device.
You can discover what we have in stock by searching the Library Search system. This one minute guide will quickly show you how to get started searching for the books and eBooks you need.
A database is just like an electronic filing cabinet
You will also need to find information about legal cases. To find the highest quality academic legal information it is best to use a database. Westlaw is a great database to use if you are new to studying law. It is easy and quick to search and unlike content you may find through using Google you can guarantee that it is the latest legal information available.
Westlaw is a database…
…it is like electronic filing cabinet and holds lots of information on a subject area in one place.
…it holds a range of information, e.g. all UK and EU cases, international materials, legislation and journal articles, and more
…it allows you to search many resources all at once!
Westlaw can be accessed from off-campus using your network username and password.
If you are new to searching for cases on Westlaw UK, take this 5 minute tutorial by clicking on the image below to discover all you need to know to get hold of the legal case material you need:
Click image to access training lesson
Front page example of an Act of Parliament
You will also need to find Legislation. These could be Acts of Parliament, also known as Statutes, or Statutory Instruments such as regulations or orders. Just like with cases the best place to find the most recent version of a statutes is using a database like Westlaw UK. Westlaw is updated a few times a day so unlike the legislation you may find via Google, you can guarantee that the version of a statute you are reading on screen is current.
If you are new to searching for legislation using Westlaw UK, take this 5 minute tutorial by clicking on the image below to discover all you need to know to access the legislation materials you need:
Click on the image to access the Westlaw Legislation eLearning tutorial
Legal Journal Articles
What are journal articles?
An example of a Legal Journal Title. A weekly magazine covering reports on the legal profession
Journal articles are really useful when you are studying as they are short pieces of text covering very focused topics.
They are the same as magazines that you may read in your leisure time however they contain academic articles about topics in your subject area rather then fashion pieces, television reviews or recipes.
The benefits of using journal articles that you find via the Library Search system is that you can guarantee that they are written by experts.
In law this may be legal academics, judges, solicitors, barristers and leading legal commentators.
Many journals have to go through a process called ‘peer review’. this means that before a legal journal article is published its contents is checked and verified for accuracy by other leading experts in the field.
As journals are published weekly, monthly or quarterly the articles within the journals cover more up-to-date and current topics than the information you may find in textbooks. This is because textbooks can take over a year to be published where as journal articles are published much sooner.
This one minute video illustrates what journal articles are:
The Library has access to thousands of journal articles for you to search online to find evidence to support your arguments. To search for journal articles, access Westlaw UK.
Westlaw UK contains the Legal Journals Index, this is a catalogue of all the journal articles published in the UK in law related journal titles. Westlaw has access to many of these articles in full text for you to read on screen.
Find Law Journal Articles
What if the journal article I need isn’t on Westlaw UK in full text?
Although Westlaw UK has hundreds of journal article in full text, there may be times where only a summary of the article you want is provided. Westlaw UK is one of many online legal information products that we subscribe to at the Library. It is likely that we have access to the journal article you need via another source. Always check Library Search for the title of the journal you need and follow the links from here to access the full text of the individual article.
Check on Westlaw for the title of the journal that your article is published in
Go to Library Search and search for the title of the journal (not the article)
If we subscribe to the journal article electronically the journal title will be listed in the list of your Library Search results.
If we subscribe to the journal you need in print, details of where this is located in the Library will be listed. If you are registered on a distance learning course the library can scan a journal article to you via email. Please contact me using the email above if you need this service.
What if the journal article I need isn’t on Westlaw UK or available via Library Search?
Request a article we don’t have using the ‘Need Something…?’ service
Occasionally the journal article you need may not be available via Westlaw UK or any of the other legal information sources we have available via Library Search.
Students/ researchers/ teaching staff, if you’re looking for audio-visual resources for your research, need something visual to illustrate a presentation, or want to make clip of a television programme to include in a lecture, look no further than Box of Broadcasts (or BoB for short). BoB is an electronic resource for playing back and recording tv and radio programmes for educational purposes. You can access it from the Databases link on SOLAR, then choose Box of Broadcasts from the A-Z list; or from http://www.learningonscreen.ac.uk/ondemand. You’ll need your Network username and password to access it. You can link to it from PowerPoint, Word or BlackBoard, and you can now label your own clips. It is useful across all subject areas, and is a great resource for watching feature films if we don’t have a particular film in the Library’s DVD collection.
The Library has the database for you. LexisLibrary provides access to UK case law, legislation and journal articles but it also has a large international law section where you can search for legal information by country. There is a large US collection as well as information from other jurisdictions.
And of course your Academic Support Librarians can help you with finding suitable books, journal articles and electronic resources to help with your assignments, as well as help with Referencing; to find the Librarian for your subject area go to http://www.salford.ac.uk/library/help/academic-support .