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HEA Fellowship award – congratulations

By Angela Young, on 11 June 2021

Many congratulations to Heather Chesters (Deputy Librarian at the UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health) who has received the award of Fellowship of the Higher Education Academy via the UCL Arena Open programme. Heather already had the Associate Fellowship award, and the Fellow status is well-deserved recognition of her experience, dedication and commitment to delivering excellence in teaching our students.

What is HEA Fellowship?

HEA fellowship is a nationally recognised award which gives you formal recognition for your commitment to professionalism in supporting learning and teaching in higher education? The UCL Arena Open programme, which is free to UCL staff, provides a route to Higher Education Academy (HEA) / AdvanceHE fellowship and is open to all staff at UCL who teach or support students’ learning, regardless of role or job title, so it’s relevant to all sorts of roles within Library Services. There is tailored support and guidance available for Professional Services staff, particularly for staff with a role that does not include teaching.

HEA Fellowship – what’s in it for me?

The awards demonstrate your dedication and commitment to your continuing professional development in relation to teaching or supporting student learning, and can be great evidence for your CV or when applying for jobs. In addition to gaining you post-nominals, the process of applying for fellowship means you reflect on your teaching and learning support work and develop your skills, identify areas for your future development and enhance your support of students so contributing to the user experience. There are various categories of fellowship depending on your role and experience, including Associate Fellow, Fellow and Senior Fellow.

Our experiences over the past year in particular have meant we have all developed new skills and contributed to new ways of providing teaching and support for learning to our students, and have provided opportunity for reflection with lots of examples for you to draw on as evidence to support a fellowship application.

Find out more on the UCL Arena Open website, or contact Angela Young, who arranges support events and individual support for colleagues within Library Services.

SCONUL 20/21

By Sandra I Enwesi, on 7 June 2021

The SCONUL (The Society of College, National and University Libraries) return is an annual insight which provides a detailed picture of the workings of UCL Library Services , allowing us to take stock, plan and benchmark our performance against our peers. In total there are 34 sets of measurements which are reflective of the different areas of the library.

I have collected the stats for the past 9 years and we ( UCL Library Services) have never missed the submission deadline and the timely submission as well as the success of the annual return has been possible because of the collaborative spirit of UCL Library Services staff ,even in the thick of the lockdown last year with many many staff working from home , basking in the joys of home schooling (phew!) , literally taking the phrase “hanging in there” to a whole new level , we still delivered the annual return on time with Zero queries and for this I am very grateful and proud.

This year’s return 20/21 will soon be open and as always I will be collecting promptly, if you provided any stats in the last return but will not be doing so this year please let me know in an email  s.enwesi@ucl.ac.uk and advise who has taken over.

Aggregate figures for the academic year (1 August to 31 July) are generally required. Thank you 

Library Committee, June 2021

By Paul Ayris, on 6 June 2021

Report to Library Committee, June 2021

2 June saw the final meeting of Library Committee for 2020/21. I was asked to chair the meeting, in the absence of Professor David Price. The Committee was very supportive indeed of the work of Library colleagues during the dreadful challenges caused by the pandemic. I promised that I would pass on these congratulations and good wishes to colleagues, which I am happy to do here.

Going forward, Library Committee will have a new reporting line following re-organisation of the remits of all the Vice-Provosts. Details remain to be confirmed, but it is likely that Library Committee will henceforth report to RIGE, a committee to be chaired by Professor David Price which oversees all RIGE (Research, Innovation & Global Engagement) activities. The RIGE committee will itself report to the new University Management Committee, which will replace UCL SMT from 1 August.

At the meeting of Library Committee on 2 June, I presented my termly PVP Report. This is available at the link shared here. The Report attempts to present a high-level view of the role of the Library for the last three months.

Stay well and optimistic, as society works to emerge from the restrictions of the pandemic.

Paul Ayris


UCL Library Services Staff Summer School – initial programme and some bookings now open

By Angela Young, on 26 May 2021

The UCL Library Services Staff Summer School is a series of training and development sessions, events and online activities aimed at library staff from across UCL Library Services, to support them in answering enquiries and in providing support, training and advocacy to library users and stakeholders.

This year the entire programme will be delivered online throughout June and July, with a mixture of self-directed online learning and live sessions. Here is a taster of what’s on offer, with more sessions to be announced soon:

  • Introduction to digital accessibility (Wednesday 9 June – Wednesday 21 July, self-directed online learning).
  • Creating videos: an introduction (Thursday 10th June, 10.00-12.00)
  • Blended learning by design (Monday 28th June, 10:00-11:00)
  • LibAnswers and LibChat: Developing our online enquiry service (Tuesday 13 July, 11:00-12:00)
  • eXperience eXchange and Feeback from FestivIL (Tuesday 20th July, 10:00-12:00)

Full details are available:

Sessions are open to all UCL Library Services staff, with the permission of your line manager.

Angela Young, Head of Library Skills

Facilities & Project Update

By Collette E M Lawrence, on 14 May 2021

Facilities & Projects Team Blog – Our team information can be found at the following link Facilities & Project Team

Project update for the Fire Alarm upgrade installations throughout DMS Watson, Petrie Museum and Energy Centre.

Monday 17th May 2021 work on the 2nd floor will commence. This area will be closed off and there will be some noise disruption permeating through the building. Users of these spaces will need to be remined of additional bookable study spaces in other locations during this time.

The 3rd Floor will be reopen for staff and students on Monday 17th May 2021.

We will continue to provide further updates as the project progresses. Please speak to your building manager if you have any concerns or queries and they can feed back to the team.


Green Impact 2021 and updated Library Sustainability Guide

By Benjamin Meunier, on 14 May 2021

Green Impact is a UCL-wide environmental competition and accreditation scheme that allows departments and divisions across the university to improve their environmental impact support UCL’s Sustainability Strategy and engage peers and colleagues with these essential issues.

The scheme gives students and staff the structure to make positive changes to their department or office. There are a range of sustainability actions which directly contribute to UCL’s aim to lead by example when it comes to operating in a sustainable and socially responsible way, as set out in our Sustainability Strategy.

Library Services has performed incredibly well in the Green Impact scheme every year since the awards were created. You can see our 2020 results in my update as Chair of the Library Sustainability Committee last year:


“there is no stopping our Library Green Champions. […] Rather than 2020 being a fallow year, we have achieved the best results ever for Library Services. As detailed below, we have returned submissions and improved in most areas, with 1 Bronze, 6 Silver and a staggering 11 Gold Awards for 2020.”

The Library Sustainability Reference Guide has been updated. We are asking everyone in Library Services to take the time to read this important information. Please contact Departmental Environment Officer Collette Lawrence (c.lawrence@ucl.ac.uk) with any queries, ideas or if you want to become a Green Champion!

New UCL Press book hits national (and international) headlines

By Alison Fox, on 11 May 2021

We are delighted that The Global Smartphone: Beyond a youth technology (published on May 6th 2021) has hit the headlines across the world, with coverage in newspapers including The Sunday Times, The Guardian and Daily Mail.

Coverage in the UK and Ireland has included stories by The Scottish Herald, Reuters, The Irish Times, RTE, Newstalk, and an interview with lead author Prof Daniel Miller (UCL Anthropology) on Sky News this morning. Publications in Portugal (here, here, here and here), Germany, Brazil. Greece  (and here), Slovakia, Romania, Russia, Malaysia, Australia, Albania, EgyptRussia, Italy, Israel, Czechia and France have also reported on the book’s findings.

The book documents the work of a team of 11 anthropologists who spent 16 months documenting smartphone use in nine countries across Africa, Asia, Europe and South America, with a particular focus on older adults. The team was led by Professor Daniel Miller, whose previous UCL Press series on global social media usage, Why We Post, saw more than a million downloads of the open access books that detailed the findings.

The Global Smartphone: Beyond a youth technology is written by Professor Daniel Miller (UCL Anthropology), Laila Abed Rabho, Patrick Awondo, Maya de Vries, Marília Duque, Pauline Garvey, Laura Haapio-Kirk, Charlotte Hawkins, Alfonso Otaegui, Shireen Walton, and Xinyuan Wang. It is part of the Ageing with Smartphones series, which also includes Ageing with Smartphones in Ireland and Ageing with Smartphones in Urban Italy.

Service Catalogue for Library Services

By Bethan Smith, on 11 May 2021

The service catalogue has now been made live on LibNet.

This is an important tool, developed with various service owners and managers, which will enhance our understanding of how we work within Library Services. The catalogue will provide a point of truth regarding our services, capturing the range of services we provide, who provides them, and how they are provided.

Each service the library provides is listed in its own separate entry within the catalogue, with key information listed, including the description, components, owners and managers, users, stakeholders, benefits, costs and how users request the service.  Related services are also indicated, to collect a picture of the interconnectivity of services. Important information regarding each service will be updated continually, and enhanced as the catalogue is used in practice.

In addition, a contact table has been extracted to display all relevant email addresses at a glance – much like the current staff directory but based on services rather than individuals. Together, the contact table and catalogue will be an invaluable resource for new starters, and those who want to know more about areas of Library Services outside of their immediate department.

Taking the catalogue as a baseline, we are now working on developing complementary tools and frameworks, such as service standards and service dashboards. The service catalogue will also be used to shape the service information we provide to users, providing a useful frame of reference for website developments and customer service initiatives.

Please do make use of the catalogue to inform your interactions with services across the library, in both day-to-day and project work.  The catalogue and its associated deliverables will be updated as and when our workflows and service provisions change.

Comments are encouraged – please email bethan.smith@ucl.ac.uk with any suggestions, queries or comments you may have about the catalogue.

Library Services Staff Conference 2021 – Seeking Lightning Talks Presenters, Video or Digital Poster Contributions

By aanchal.bhatt, on 5 May 2021

A central part of the Library Services Staff Conference is the chance to hear from a wide range of our talented colleagues and share our experiencesDuring what has been a difficult year, one of the things that has become clear (as if we didn’t already know this) is what a creative and talented staff we have in UCL Library ServicesPhotographers, writers, dancers, wildlife experts, gardeners, film and TV enthusiasts… the list goes on. 

So we would like to hear from you, in whatever form you choose, about what has kept you happy or well in lockdown? Have you been able to learn a new skill or improve an existing oneWhat challenges have you overcome, or tasks have you accomplished? Would you like to share your progress or achievements for a particular project? Do you have photos, or stories or poems to shareOr has it been a chance to reflect on your life planHave you decided that when normality resumes, you’re going to start a new interest group to keep connected to colleagues with similar interests? Or would you like to just talk about how you’ve been?  

Well, here is your opportunity. In keeping with the theme of this conference and particularly on reflections and learning outcomes of the past year, we are seeking contributors for the following:  


Lightning Talks

We are looking for 10 colleagues, or small groups working together, to volunteer to present a 5 minute live slot at the conference (14/05/21)In terms of presentation, really anything goes! You can talk, or present slides or sing or whatever you likeWhy not use your talent or skill to help explain your storyPair up, work in a group, go solo, it’s up to you. Please don’t let a lack of technical skills put you offWe have experts on the conferences committee who will help you with all of that. 


Videos or Digital Posters

If you would rather not present live, or might not be available on the day, then we also invite contributions as recorded videos or digital poster presentations. These will be displayed on our dedicated conference site and once again can be as creative as you like! See below for more information on how to format and submit your contribution 


How to submit a video or digital poster

Your video or digital poster will be made available on the Library Staff Conference dedicated web page. Please follow these guidelines: 


  • Videos should be a maximum of 5 minutes and recorded in landscape orientation. 
  • Please submit as a .mp4 or .mov file. 
  • Guidance on creating videos is available at Best practice guidance: library skills videos (Please note, although this guidance is designed for library staff putting together library skills videos, it is applicable to video making in general). 
  • You may like to attend the Library Services Staff Summer School session on ‘Creating videos,’ Thursday 10th June 10.00-12.00. (Details to be announced)

Digital posters 

  • Digital posters should be a single page and may be in landscape or portrait orientation. 
  • Please submit as a PowerPoint file (.ppt or .pptx). 
  • Please do not included embedded multimedia, audio or animations in your PowerPoint slide (if you want to do these, submit as a video instead). 
  • Include your name / team name as author on the poster. 

To make your poster effective:

  • keep text concise and use bullets
  • include images
  • make sure you have a title 
  • make your key message clear


If you would like to volunteer, or have a chat about your ideas and the resources available, please contact Aanchal Bhatt aanchal.bhatt@ucl.ac.uk or Rozz Evans rosalind.evans@ucl.ac.uk by Friday 14th May 2021.


Videos and digital posters are to be submitted to Aanchal Bhatt aanchal.bhatt@ucl.ac.uk and Rozz Evans rosalind.evans@ucl.ac.uk by Friday 2nd July 2021.  


The Library Services Staff Conference will be held on Wednesday 14th July 2021, 1-5pm.

Facilities & Project Update

By Collette E M Lawrence, on 5 May 2021

Facilities & Projects Team Blog – Our team information can be found at the following link Facilities & Projects Team

Project update for the Fire Alarm upgrade installations throughout DMS Watson, Petrie Museum and Energy Centre.

The 3rd Floor and 4th Floor will be closed on Thursday 6th May and Friday 7th May 2021.

Monday 10th May 2021 the 4th Floor will reopen, while work on the 3rd floor will continue. This area will be closed off and there will be some noise disruption permeating through the building. Users of these spaces will need to be remined of additional bookable study spaces in other locations during this time.

We will continue to provide further updates as the project progresses. Please speak to your building manager if you have any concerns or queries and they can feed back to the team.