Information Skills Training: April to June

In the upcoming months we will again be offering a variety of library skills training sessions. There are different sessions suitable for your level of expertise or year of study, for students, academics and NHS staff.

Below you can find out more about the different training sessions we offer and the dates for these sessions. To book, please visit LibCal and register for the session you would like to attend. These sessions are all held online, via Microsoft Teams.

Don’t forget, we also continue to run our Library Research online drop-ins, Monday to Friday 12-1pm. At our drop-ins we can help you with getting started with finding information for your assignment, doing in-depth literature searching projects and referencing enquiries.

Visit our website to find out more or email liaison@sgul.ac.uk.

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Training sessions on offer

My Learning Essentials: Hunter & Harvard

Wednesday 26th May, 1-2pm
Tuesday 22nd June, 1-2pm

This session is suitable for SGUL or FHSCE undergraduate or postgraduate students who have specific referencing or literature searching enquiries relating to their assignments.  You will be able to discuss your query with the librarian, and receive guidance on how to effectively use Hunter to find academic books and articles and how to use CiteThemRight to ensure your referencing complies with SGUL’s specific Harvard Referencing Style.

Book here.

Literature searching for your dissertation

Tuesday 18th May, 11.00-12.30pm
Tuesday 15th June, 11-12.30pm

We know databases, like Medline (aka PubMed) and CINAHL, can be daunting, but with a little help and guidance, we are short you will get to grips with them in no time. If you have a longer research project, like a dissertation, or you just want to impress in your assignments, this session is for you. You will learn how to effectively run a literature search in a database relevant to your subject. The sessions are suitable for St George’s and FHSCE staff and students.

Sign up here.

RefWorks

Thursday 13 May 1-2pm
Wednesday 16 June 12-1pm

In this session, we will introduce you to the reference management software RefWorks. We will show you up to set up an account, add references, manage them and how to use RefWorks Citation Manager (RCM), a Microsoft Word Add-in.

Book here.

Training sessions for NHS staff

NHS Library induction

Thursday 20th May, 12.30-1pm
Tuesday 15th June, 11-11.30am

Library induction for NHS staff, introducing you to the range of services and resources on offer to those working for St George’s Hospital, Queen Mary’s Hospital and other community-based sites.

Sign up here.

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Finding the Evidence

Thursday 29th April, 1-2.30pm


Monday 10th May, 12-1.30pm
Wednesday 26th May, 12.30-2pm


Friday 11th June, 11-12.30
Monday 21st June, 1-2.30pm

Finding top-quality evidence is a priority for health care practitioners. This session will introduce the high-quality resources available to you, as well as provide training in how to use them effectively to support evidence-based clinical practice or decision-making.

The session will cover: The range of evidence-based healthcare resources available, including: NICE Evidence, the Cochrane Library and BMJ Best Practice.

How to use the NHS databases effectively and identify the most appropriate database for your need. This includes how to create and plan a search strategy using subject headings and keywords and how to combine searches and apply limits to focus your results; how to access full-text articles where available or locate articles through St George’s journals page; and how to save your searches and set up alerts.

You can book your slot here.

Systematic Reviews: finding and managing the evidence

Wednesday 28th April, 1-3pm

Tuesday 25th May, 11am-1pm

Thursday 24th June, 11am-1pm

This course will focus on in-depth literature searching for systematic reviewers and how to manage your results. It will provide you with an overview of the systematic review process, the know-how of creating effective search strategies, systematic searching of the literature, managing your results and documenting the search process.

You can book this session here.

At the end of this session you will be able to:

  • plan robust search strategies for literature searches in support of systematic reviews
  • carry out systematic, advanced searches on the Ovid platform
  • save searches strategies and create alerts
  • plan how you will manage your search results and report on your search methodology.

If you have any questions about these training sessions, don’t hesitate to get in touch by emailing liaison@sgul.ac.uk.

Tips and tricks for longer research projects

The focus of this blogpost is literature searching, specifically for longer research projects such as dissertations, and it is aimed at St George’s students.

Your expert Liaison Librarians are able to support you with every step of the way so don’t hesitate to get in touch by emailing liaison@sgul.ac.uk. We are able to advise on how to plan and carry out a complex literature search in a variety of databases. We can also recommend which databases are most suitable for your topic.

You can email us for an individual appointment or come to one of our online drop-ins. Monday to Friday between 12-1pm you can chat to a Liaison Librarian directly. Click on the relevant link on the day you want to drop by.

Here we provide tips and tricks, no matter which stage of the process you are currently at.

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If you are…

…just getting started

Do a scoping search in Hunter. Even if you already use Hunter to locate books and journal articles in our collection, our Hunter video might teach you another thing or two about how to really make the most of its search functions.

If you aren’t familiar with the planning stage of literature searching or you usually skip this bit to get stuck in straight away, now is a good time to change that. When it comes to dissertations and research projects, you need to be much more systematic in your work, including when you formulate your research question. Have a look at our Canvas unit on this topic. It gives you more information and by the end, you will have a research question ready to start searching with.

If you are worried about how to structure your dissertation or academic writing, you can make an appointment with the Academic Success Centre team. Their details are found on the Study+ section in Canvas. We also have a number of books in our collection which can help with academic writing, including how to approach a literature review, dissertation or research paper. They are listed on our Writing for Assessment Wakelet.

If you need specific software to do your research, such as SPSS, have a look at what is available to you through St George’s University and request it here.

And finally, a little tip on how to get started. If you know of a paper which covers the area you are interested in already, have a look at which articles they reference and perhaps you find some relevant papers in their reference list for your project. While this is not a systematic method, it can help you get started and add to your search strategy (e.g. which alternative terms to use).

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…ready for an in-depth literature search

If you are a little overwhelmed by the prospect of doing a complex search in multiple databases (and who can blame you), you need to start by familiarising yourself with how to build a complex search, what alternative terms are and how to include them and how to use advanced search strategies. We have a libguide that takes you through the whole literature searching process. For those of you who are working on a systematic literature review, have a look at our relevant libguide, which highlights what you need to consider to turn your literature review into a systematic literature review. Watch the following videos to find out more about identifying keywords and alternative terms.

We have introductory videos on Ovid (Medline), Ebsco (Cinahl) and Internurse to get you started. Once you have familiarised yourself with the basics, watch our detailed video tutorial on how to search in Ovid/Medline using advanced search techniques.

Have a look at our Databases A-Z list to see which databases are available to you. Your subject guide will tell you which databases are most relevant to your course.

Don’t forget – you can also ask a Liaison Librarian for help by emailing us at liaison@sgul.ac.uk or coming to one of our daily online drop-ins. We can recommend which databases are most suitable for your topic.

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…finishing up and sorting out your references

To cite correctly at St George’s, most of you need to use Harvard Cite Them Right. While we have a number of physical copies of this in the library, you will probably be using the Cite Them Right website (login required). In case you need a refresher on how to navigate Cite Them Right, we also have a detailed walkthrough video on our YouTube channel and in our Referencing Essentials unit in Canvas.

We strongly recommend you don’t use reference generators such as Cite This for Me as we find that generally the references produced by such tools are wrong. You end up spending longer correcting and double-checking your references than you would have done writing them from scratch. If you find the resource in Hunter, you will notice a “citation” option for each record. This has been formatted to match the requirements of Harvard Cite Them Right but it is not always correct. Make sure you compare it to Cite Them Right and correct it if necessary.

For a longer project, we encourage you to use reference management software as it helps you to deduplicate your search results, manage your references and create in-text citations and references. At St George’s, we support RefWorks, which is a web-based software. You need your St George’s login to access it and create an account. To get started, have a look at our RefWorks libguide. Additionally, our detailed video tutorial covers everything from how to get started to how to create references and in-text citations from within Microsoft Word.

We can also help you with your references, so if you are unsure about anything please email liaison@sgul.ac.uk or come to our drop-ins.

Information Skills Training: January – March

We are restarting our information skills training for university and NHS library users from January. While the sessions were on hold over the past months as we shifted all our training and support services online, we are now in the position to start offering these sessions again. All our sessions are online.

We have specific training for St George’s staff and students, as well as for NHS library users. These generic training sessions are open to everyone and are available in addition to any course-specific training you might have.

Don’t forget, we also continue to run our online drop-in, Monday to Friday 12-1pm. At our drop-ins we can help you with getting started, doing in-depth literature searching projects and referencing enquiries.

Below you can find out more about the different online training sessions we offer and the dates for these sessions. To book, please visit LibCal and register for the session you would like to attend.

Visit our website to find out more or email liaison@sgul.ac.uk.

Training sessions on offer

My Learning Essentials: Hunter & Harvard

Wednesday 27 January 1-2pm
Monday 22 March 12-1pm

This session is suitable for SGUL or FHSCE undergraduate or postgraduate students who have specific referencing or literature searching enquiries relating to their assignments.  You will be able to discuss your query with the librarian, and receive guidance on how to effectively use Hunter to find academic books and articles and how to use CiteThemRight to ensure your referencing complies with SGUL’s specific Harvard Referencing Style.

Book here.

Students sitting in lecture theatre.

Literature searching for your dissertation

Thursday 14 January 11.30-1pm
Monday 15 February 11.30-1pm
Tuesday 15 March 11-12.30pm

We know databases, like Medline (aka PubMed) and CINAHL, can be daunting, but with a little help and guidance, we are short you will get to grips with them in no time. If you have a longer research project, like a dissertation, or you just want to impress in your assignments, this session is for you. You will learn how to effectively run a literature search in a database relevant to your subject. The sessions are suitable for St George’s and FHSCE staff and students.

Sign up here.

RefWorks

Thursday 28 January 12-1pm
Tuesday 23 February 12-1pm
Wednesday 24 March 1-2pm

In this session, we will introduce you to the reference management software RefWorks. We will show you up to set up an account, add references, manage them and how to use RefWorks Citation Manager (RCM), a Microsoft Word Add-in.

Book here.

Book shelf in the library.

Training sessions for NHS staff

NHS Library induction

Friday 22 January 12-1pm
Wednesday 17 February 12-1pm
Monday 22 March 1-2pm

Library induction for NHS staff, introducing you to the range of services and resources on offer to those working for St George’s Hospital, Queen Mary’s Hospital and other community-based sites.

Sign up here.

Finding the Evidence

Monday 11 January 11am-12pm
Wednesday 27 January 2pm-3pm

Tuesday 9 February 10am-11am
Thursday 25 February 3pm-4pm

Friday 12 March 1pm-2pm
Wednesday 31 March 12pm-1pm

Finding top-quality evidence is a priority for health care practitioners. This session will introduce the high-quality resources available to you, as well as provide training in how to use them effectively to support evidence-based clinical practice or decision-making.

The session will cover: The range of evidence-based healthcare resources available, including: NICE Evidence, the Cochrane Library and BMJ Best Practice.

How to use the NHS databases effectively and identify the most appropriate database for your need. This includes how to create and plan a search strategy using subject headings and keywords and how to combine searches and apply limits to focus your results; how to access full-text articles where available or locate articles through St George’s journals page; and how to save your searches and set up alerts.

You can book your slot here.

Systematic Reviews: finding and managing the evidence

This course will focus on in-depth literature searching for systematic reviewers and how to manage your results. It will provide you with an overview of the systematic review process, the know-how of creating effective search strategies, systematic searching of the literature, managing your results and documenting the search process.

You can book this session here.

At the end of this session you will be able to:

  • plan robust search strategies for literature searches in support of systematic reviews
  • carry out systematic, advanced searches on the Ovid platform
  • save searches strategies and create alerts
  • plan how you will manage your search results and report on your search methodology.

If you have any questions about these training sessions, don’t hesitate to get in touch by emailing liaison@sgul.ac.uk.

Top 10 referencing mistakes… and how you can avoid them!

We know that referencing can be laborious, especially if you are new to academic writing or are used to using other referencing styles. However, the good news is there’s plenty of guidance available to you at St George’s. Whether you use the print or online version of Cite Them Right (the book on which our referencing style is based), use our helpsheet, access the referencing quiz via Canvas, visit the Research Enquiries Desk or get in contact with your Liaison Librarians, there’s support available whether you’re at home, on site or on placement.

Even with these resources, it’s easy to make mistakes. The Liaison team regularly meet students with referencing enquiries and over the years have identified a series of common citation and reference list mistakes we see in written assignments. So based on our experiences – and feedback from teaching staff – we’ve compiled for you here (in no particular order) a breakdown of the most common referencing mistakes and some useful advice on how to avoid them!

Read on for the full article, or use the links below to navigate to the sections that most interest you:

1) Using et al. incorrectly
2) Numbering reference lists…
3) …and using numbers as in-text citations
4) Including an author’s initials in citations
5) Forgetting to include page numbers in citations
6) Using footnotes
7) Using ibid. or op. cit.
8) Missing/incorrect dates
9) Chapters in edited books
10) Pesky punctuation

(Please note that any links to Cite Them Right online may require your SGUL username and password if you are reading this post off-site, i.e. not connected to eduroam or the SGUL network)

1) Using et al. incorrectly

A common issue we see at the Research Enquiries Desk is the incorrect use of et al. To remind you, this stands for ‘and others‘ and it can be used in both in-text citations and your reference list to indicate a work has multiple authors.

However, it should only be used if the source you are referencing has four or more authors.

If the source has one, two or three authors they must all be named.

The problems we see most often include et al. being used to replace just two or three authors; inconsistent use of et al. between corresponding citations and references and incorrect formatting and punctuation.

How can you avoid it?

Follow the guidance in Cite Them Right. The page on Setting out Citations provide comprehensive guidance on how to cite one, two, three and four or more authors, but you’ll also find examples of using et al. in entries for individual resources; including books, journals etc.

Remember: St George’s doesn’t require the naming of all authors in your reference list. You can use et al. in both your in-text citation AND the full reference at the end of your work.

Also: et al. should always be written in italics, with a full-stop at the end. Check over your work to ensure you have done this consistently throughout your writing.

2) Numbering reference lists…

The Harvard style of referencing is all about the author of a publication and the date it was published. It’s these pieces of information that dictate the order that your references appear at the end of your work: you should list them in alphabetical order, by the author’s surname:

Cottrell, S. (2019) The study skills handbook. 5th edn. London: Red Globe Press.

Diabetes UK (2018) Preventing Type 2 diabetes. Available at: https://www.diabetes.org.uk/preventing-type-2-diabetes (Accessed: 20 September 2018).

Dimond, B. (2013) Legal aspects of midwifery. 4th edn. London: Quay Books.

We regularly see students who have unnecessarily numbered their references in an otherwise exemplary alphabetical list, or have listed their references in the order they appeared in the body of their work.

How can you avoid it?

This is an easy one – just don’t number them! In all seriousness though, it is always a good idea to double check that your references are in alphabetical order. The sample reference list in CTR can give you an idea of what a complete reference list might look like. The troubleshooting page provides additional guidance on what to do when you have multiple works by the same authors, or authors with similar names and initials.

3) …and using numbers as in-text citations

Similarly, we also regularly see people mixing up different referencing styles in their work. For example, the Vancouver style uses numbers as in-text citations which correspond to a numbered reference list.

This is incorrect: Harvard is an Author-Date style of referencing which requires both of these pieces of information within your in-text citation.

How can you avoid it?

Familiarise yourself with the Basics of referencing section in Cite Them Right. The Setting out Citations page will give you a thorough run-down of what citations look like in the Harvard style and the Sample text and reference list page offers similar examples in a body of writing for illustrative purposes.

4) Including an author’s initials in citations

As we mentioned above, Harvard is an Author-Date style of referencing, so your citation should contain, funnily enough, the author’s surname(s) and the year of publication: e.g. (Williams, 2017)

However, we regularly see people also including the author’s first name(s) or initials within their citations: e.g. (Williams, R., 2018). This isn’t required in Harvard. You do, however, need to include initials within the full reference in your reference list.

How can you avoid it?

It’s as simple as following the guidance in Cite Them Right, either in an individual resource page or in the Setting out Citations section.

5) Forgetting to include page numbers in citations

We’ve often found that there is some confusion over where and when to include page numbers within in-text citations. This is what Cite Them Right has to say on the matter:

If you are quoting directly or using ideas from a specific page or pages of a work, you should include the page number(s) in your citations. Insert the abbreviation p. (or pp.) before the page number(s).

(Pears and Shields, 2019, p. 7)

How you set out your citation depends on the flow of your writing or the idea you are trying to communicate. Follow the advice of the Setting out Citations and Setting out Quotations pages for more information.

When it comes to your reference list, you only need to include page numbers for chapters in edited books and journal/magazine/newspaper articles. The Elements that you may need to include in your references page discusses the various types of bibliographic information required for effective referencing in more detail.

How can you avoid it?

You might be sensing a theme if you’ve read this far – follow the guidance in Cite Them Right! As linked above, the Setting our Citations page will be most helpful here, but we’d argue that it’s just as important to be thorough and methodical in recording the bibliographic details of the sources you are using in your work. Whether it’s in a notebook, a tool like OneNote or Evernote or a Word document on your device, keeping track of these important details will help you produce more accurate citations and references.

6) Using footnotes

In another example of mixing up referencing styles, we’ve seen plenty of examples of written assignments that use footnotes to display references or expand on a point in the text. Unfortunately, footnotes are not used in Harvard (or other Author-Date styles of referencing) so you should avoid using them in your written work.

How can you avoid it?

You should ensure that all of your citations appear in the body of your written work and that your references are listed in alphabetical order on a separate page at the end of your assignment. If you are having trouble succinctly paraphrasing or synthesizing information in your work, have a chat with the Academic Success Centre advisors who can help you develop your academic writing.

7) Using ibid. or op. cit.

In another example of mixing up referencing styles, it’s fairly common for us to see the terms ibid. (referring to an immediately preceding cited work) or op. cit. (referring to previously cited work) in place of the correct author-date style of in-text citation. These terms are broadly used to save on space (or your precious word count!) but as with footnotes, neither of these terms are used within Harvard (Cite Them Right) referencing so you should avoid using them in your written work.

How can you avoid it?

If you aren’t sure about how to set out your in-text citations, or have a question that the Setting out Citations page can’t solve, just ask your Liaison Librarians for advice. Email us at liaison@sgul.ac.uk or drop by and see us at the Research Enquiries Desk (open Mon-Fri 11am – 2pm) where we’d be happy to help. The Academic Success Centre can also advise on the flow of your writing.

8) Missing/incorrect dates

We’ve mentioned this a couple of times already, but with Harvard being an Author-Date style of referencing, you need to include a date! This is usually the year of publication, but what do you do if you can’t find one? Cite Them Right advises you to simply write no date in full in both your citation and reference: e.g. (Cancer Research UK, no date).

Websites are probably the most common references we see that are missing their vital bibliographic details. If you find that lots of your sources are missing dates, ask yourself if you might be able to find a better, more reliable source for your work. eBooks are just as good, if not better than, websites for background information and have the benefit of including all the necessary bibliographic information at the beginning of the book.

Remember: You should avoid using websites for academic work which have no obvious author, title or date.

9) Chapters in edited books

The key to successfully referencing a chapter in an edited book is to ensure you are recording both the author(s) and title of the chapter you have read as well as the editor(s) and title of the book as a whole. A common mistake we see usually involves including only one of the other.

You also need to remember that in your in-text citation you should include the author of the chapter and the date, not the editors of the book.

How can you avoid it?

Follow the guidance in Cite Them Right. There are also examples here and in our Harvard helpsheet. As ever, you can also email us at liaison@sgul.ac.uk or drop by and see us at the Research Enquiries Desk (open Mon-Fri 11am – 2pm) where we’d be happy to make sure you’re getting it right.

10) Pesky Punctuation

Arguably the trickiest – and most tiresome – thing about any kind of referencing is ensuring your references are formatted correctly, with all the necessary punctuation in the right places. If you’ve got an errant full-stop, or a missing comma, you are likely to be marked down.

How do I make sure my formatting is correct?

Attention to detail is key: following the exact layout of the examples provided in Cite Them Right – whatever the source – will help you achieve referencing perfection.

Giving yourself time is also important! Leaving referencing to the very last minute often means forsaking accuracy in an effort to turn your assignments in by the deadline. Marks for correct referencing are easy to earn and easy to lose, so give yourself the best chance and try to reference as you go and keep track of the bibliographic information of your sources too.

A quick word on referencing generators

Another barrier to successful referencing is the use of online, automatic reference generators. We don’t recommend that you use them, although we realise they can be tempting. It’s worth bearing in mind that the references they produce are only as good as the data you feed in – so if anything is missing, you’ll get incomplete, inaccurate results. Even with ‘official’ referencing management software like RefWorks, we always caution that you should check your work before you submit it.

This is something we see a lot at the Research Enquiries Desk (RED) and while it can feel like these generators save you time, unpicking the errors and formatting of these references usually requires more effort than it would have taken to write the reference using the support in Cite Them Right.

If you’re in doubt, come and chat with us at the RED – as ever, we’re always happy to help.


We know that was a bit of a long read, but we hope it was worthwhile. If you are an SGUL student, please feel free to share this with your peers and help them avoid these common pitfalls!


References

Pears, R. and Shields, G. (2019) Cite them right: the essential referencing guide. 11th edn. London: Red Globe Press.

Introducing: Lunchtime Learning workshops

Do you find literature searching laborious? Does Harvard Referencing ruin your day? The library can help.

In response to recent student feedback, the library is offering a new series of workshops to support you with your academic work.  These sessions are over lunchtime so you can fit them into your busy schedule and they will give you a head start for your assignments.

My Learning Essentials: Hunter & Harvard Drop-In

Tuesday 25 February 1-2pm

Monday 23 March 1-2pm

Do you have a burning question about referencing or finding academic sources through Hunter? These drop-ins give you the opportunity to speak to a librarian and find a solution. There’s no need to book, just turn up on the day!

Top down shot of people sitting around a table working on their laptops and other devices.

Literature searching

We know databases, like Medline (aka PubMed) and CINAHL, can be daunting, but we’ll let you into a little secret: Librarians LOVE them! So, not only will you learn how to effectively run a literature search on a relevant database, you’ll also make a librarian’s day!

There are two versions of these Lunchtime Learning sessions. One specifically for medical students and one for other St George’s University (SGUL) and Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education (FHSCE) students…

Literature searching for your Audit, QI project or Research (medical students)

Wednesday 1 April 11am-12:30pm

Suitable for Medical students, T Year and above, who are undertaking a literature review as part of an audit, QI project or research for publication.

Here is the booking form for this session.

Literature searching for your dissertation, review or research project (SGUL/FHSCE students)

Tuesday 11 February 2-3:30pm

Wednesday 4 March 11am-12:30pm

Suitable for all SGUL and FHSCE students, e.g. biomedical, paramedic, midwifery, pharmacology

Here is the booking form for this session.

Picture of colourful folders on a shelf.

RefWorks

Monday 17 February 10:30-11:30am

Wednesday 11 March 2-3pm

Students BEWARE! Free, online Citation Tools can be inaccurate and unreliable. Learn how to manage and store your references using RefWorks – the only Citation Tool supported by the library. 

RefWorks is available with your SGUL username and password. Come along to find out how to import references to RefWorks from various databases. You’ll also get a chance to use Write N Cite to create in-text citations and generate bibliographies in Word.

Suitable for any students undertaking extensive pieces of academic writing such as dissertations, theses etc.

Here is the booking form for this session.

Now on Canvas: Referencing essentials quiz

New to academic study and confused about referencing? You are not alone! It is understandable to feel overwhelmed by how to reference correctly, especially if you are not used to the referencing system used at SGUL.


As we know that referencing can be a little dull and feel overly complicated, we have put together a quiz, which covers the basics and gives you some practice using Cite Them Right. The quiz is available on the Library module on Canvas. You can find it by navigating to “Quizzes” (part of the menu on the left-hand side). You can also access the quiz here.

It is intended for beginners. The first few questions cover some of the basics of why and how we reference. The rest allow you to learn how to do in-text citations and references correctly. The quiz is also suitable for intermediates, so any second-year or third-year students who feel like they could do with a refresher should also give it a go.

Referencing at SGUL

Here at St George’s we use a version of Harvard, a common referencing style, based on the guidance in a book called Cite Them Right by Pears and Shields (2019). The book is currently in its 11th edition and there is a useful accompanying website too. As there are many different versions of Harvard, you can ensure you are referencing correctly by only following the guidance in Cite Them Right or resources produced by St George’s Library.

Cite Them Right

This website is available to you through SGUL and allows you to see at a glance how to reference books, journal articles and websites. The publisher even has included an example of a NICE guideline. If you are not using a University PC or the Wifi, you have to login with your SGUL login details. You can find Cite Them Right through Hunter and most Libguides include a link to the website too. For those of you who prefer to use a physical copy, we have Cite Them Right (2019) as a book available for you to borrow in the Library.

Help available

If you are still feeling unsure about how to reference correctly, please email us at liaison@sgul.ac.uk. The Research Enquiries Desk, located in the Library next to the silent study areas, is staffed every weekday 11 am to 2 pm with Librarians who can help you with your referencing dilemmas. For those of you who are interested in using reference management software, we have a RefWorks libguide and we will be running training sessions on RefWorks in the new year. Check out our training pages for dates.


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Introducing…New RefWorks!

You might be about to embark on a research project, perhaps a dissertation, a case study or longer assignment which requires you to collect, store, manage and use a large amount of references. Or you might be a second-year student realising that as you are progressing through your degree you are expected to use more references. If you are, there is no need to panic as there are some handy tools available to help you manage all this information.


Proquest RefWorks logo

There are many different types of reference management software, each with its own special features. In practice, whichever tool you use, it can substantially increase the speed and efficiency with which you manage your references.

Here at SGUL, we support RefWorks, which is perfectly suited to those preparing longer pieces of academic writing. This term we have moved away from using Legacy RefWorks to (new) Refworks!  RefWorks is freely available to all SGUL students and staff. We also provide training to people who want to learn how to use RefWorks effectively and efficiently. There is a lot of online support available too, like our recently updated Libguide.

What is RefWorks?

RefWorks is one of the most popular reference management applications and it allows users to:

  • collect references – no need to type details in manually
  • store references
  • organise references
  • link to full text, web pages and documents
  • cite your references and create bibliographies in different styles

How does it work?

Unlike other reference management tools, RefWorks is a web-based software, so no need to download anything!

Go to http://refworks.proquest.com and click on “Use login from my institution”. Then, under Shibboleth find or search for “St George’s, University of London”. All you need is your SGUL username and password to log in.

Use login from my institution

The first time you do this you have to fill in some information about yourself and then you’re all set to start collecting references.

There are multiple ways to populate your RefWorks account with reference data. Depending on the search tool or database(s) you are using, there are different ways to add references:

  • Direct export from a database
  • Downloading and importing a text file from a database
  • Drag and drop PDFs into RefWorks
  • Adding references manually
  • Use the ‘Save to RefWorks’ browser extension

For more information on how each of these options work, have a look at our RefWorks Libguide.

Be sure to always check if the information that was added is correct and complete! As you start adding more references, you will want to organise them so that they stay manageable. You can for example assign references to different folders and subfolders. You can also deduplicate them, if you are in the habit of adding big batches of references in one go.

Top tips

  • Quality check your references by looking at citation view, that way you can see what details are missing. Make sure to select Harvard – SGUL & FHSCE and save this as the default setting to ensure that you are using the right citation style. It is a good idea to double-check your reference in citation view immediately after adding it, so you can compare it to the original document without having to retrieve it.
Citation View
  • Refworks can generate an in-text citation in the correct style for you and it can create a bibliography too. Just click on the “Create Bibliography” icon at the top of the page. Follow the guidance on the screen and copy/paste what you need, done!
  • Much easier and more effective is using Write-N-Cite which is a small separate programme you can download which connects your Refworks account to Word. An equivalent is available for Word on Mac devices as well. On SGUL computers, this programme is built into Word so no need to download anything!

Legacy RefWorks vs (New) RefWorks

The new RefWorks is intuitive to use and has better functionality than Legacy RefWorks. However, if you have used RefWorks before, you will have created a Legacy RefWorks account. If you are interested in migrating your references from the old to the new version, please be aware that it is currently not possible to edit documents in new RefWorks if they have previously been used in Legacy RefWorks.

We recommend that you continue to use your Legacy account until you have finished the projects you are currently working on. More information on migrating from Legacy RefWorks can be found here.

Referencing styles at St George’s

Screen capture of Cite Them Right website

We have also updated our guidelines around using the Harvard referencing style, which is the referencing style used across St George’s, in line with the recent new edition of Cite Them Right (2019). Although the new edition doesn’t contain big changes, it includes a lot more examples, including of a NICE guideline and a systematic review published on the Cochrane Library. For more information, have a look at our user help sheet for Harvard.

If your lecturer requires you to use the Vancouver style, you can have a look at this help sheet. Vancouver at SGUL is based on Citing medicine: The NLM style guide for authors, editors, and publishers (2007) by Patrias.

Further help

Make sure to have a look at our Libguide on RefWorks and Reference Management and check out RefWorks’ own YouTube tutorials.

Many of you will receive RefWorks training as part of your degree, but if you want to get ahead or missed out on training, get in touch by emailing liaison@sgul.ac.uk to book a session with us in which we cover the basics of using RefWorks.


For general research and referencing questions, be sure to make use of the Research Enquiries Desk (RED) located in the Library and staffed every weekday from 11 am to 2 pm.

Libraries Week 2019: Celebrating Liaison Librarians

Libraries Week takes place between 7th – 12th October 2019. This year’s campaign is focused on celebrating the role of libraries in the digital world. Over the course of the week we’ll be introducing you to different teams within the Library and explore how they use technology to support our community.


To round-off this year’s Libraries Week celebrations we’d like to highlight the work of our Library Liaison team and how they can help you connect with the right digital resources at the right time to grow your learning and, ultimately, improve your grades, practice or research.

Meet the team

For each of our distinct user groups – students, academic staff and researchers and NHS practitioners – you will find dedicated Library Liaison staff, available throughout the year to provide specialist help and support with the Library’s resources, in print as well as online.

Your Liaison Librarians for SGUL students, staff and researchers are:
Zena Ali zali@sgul.ac.uk
Beth Jackson eljackso@sgul.ac.uk

Your Liaison Librarians for Faculty of Health and Social Care students, staff and researchers are:
Anna El-Jouzi aejouz@sgul.ac.uk
Anne Binsfeld abinsfel@sgul.ac.uk

Your Liaison Librarians for NHS staff, researchers and placements students are:
Karen John-Pierre kjohn@sgul.ac.uk
Stephen Reid sreid@sgul.ac.uk

The team provides one-to-one support for staff and students and offers innovative, practical teaching sessions for all on a range of topics such as online literature searching for your assignments or evidence-based practice and managing your references.

How do we support our users?

Finding Information

For each course or trust clinical workforce group, Liaison Librarians have developed online Subject Guides curated by the relevant Librarian. These guides outline the key high quality digital resources (think literature search databases, websites, search engines and evidence-based tools) for your bespoke area and are a great launch pad to start your resource exploration.

Liaison Librarians also design and run curriculum-embedded and open information skills courses to help you use these digital tools efficiently and find the best available evidence. Users can also make an appointment to see one of the team or drop in to our Research Enquiries Desk for advice.

Evaluating Information

In this era of fake news and health scams, how do you know you can rely on the information you find online? Liaison Librarians can empower you with useful frameworks to help you be more discerning when looking for academic information for your assignment. Liaison Librarians also know about the best checklists to use to critically appraise the quality of scientific papers and we’re happy to share this knowledge with you during one of our training courses.

Managing Information

To keep information overload at bay and assist you in keeping track of your references, ask your liaison librarian about tools like RefWorks or Mendeley. These tools allow you to create personalised databases of references which can be integrated into Microsoft Word, saving you time when writing  up assignments or research manuscripts. They can also introduce you to Cite Them Right, the online bible for formatting citations for a whole host of material ranging from academic journal articles to tweets.

Get connected, get creative and learn new skills

If you want to brush up on your searching or referencing skills, there are plenty of opportunities to get face-to-face help from the Liaison team

Visit the Research Enquiries Desk (RED)
When? Monday to Friday 11am – 2pm (subject to change)
Where? Small, quiet study area towards the rear of the Library

Book on to our Information Skills workshops
See the Training pages of the website for course information and our booking form.

Book 1-2-1s or bespoke group training
By emailing liaison@sgul.ac.uk

Library @ IMBE
Zena Ali runs office hours on the 6th floor of Hunter wing and the 2nd floor of Jenner wing. Upcoming dates include:

Hunter:
Thursday 7th November 1pm – 4pm
Tuesday 3rd December 1pm – 4pm

Jenner:
Thursday 17th Oct 1pm – 4pm
Tuesday 19th Nov 10am – 1pm
Thursday 19th Dec 1pm – 4pm

We hope you’ve find this brief introduction into the range of work and support our liaison team carry out informative and inspiring. To find out more, visit our new website  where you will find audience-focused pages that highlight what’s on offer for students, teaching staff, researchers and NHS staff, as well as contact details for your Liaison Librarian.

Libraries Week 2019: Celebrating Digital Skills Training

Libraries Week takes place between 7th – 12th October 2019. This year’s campaign is focused on celebrating the role of libraries in the digital world. Over the course of the week we’ll be introducing you to different teams within the Library and explore how they use technology to support our community.


Today’s post focuses on the Library’s role in developing the digital skills of staff and students across the University and the Trust. Read on to find out more about the range of training on offer in the Library.

Meet the trainer

Fiona Graham is our IT Trainer and has over 18 years experience in delivering training for St George’s University staff and students as well as St George’s Trust staff.

Her aim is to provide hands-on training and guidance for various Microsoft Office applications and equip our community with the practical digital skills needed in the workplace. From helping students draft essays in Word, to supporting staff with plotting data in Excel, Fiona plays a vital role in improving the digital literacy of the St George’s community.

How do we support our users?

Free Microsoft Office 365

St. George’s Information Services has made Office 365 and Microsoft Office 2016 available free for all students and staff to use on personal devices.

Office 365 is an online set of apps designed to allow you to work anywhere on multiple devices. As it is cloud-based, you can upload, access and edit your work quickly and easily, share your work with others and collaborate using the various apps in one place with internet access. It can be used on Microsoft Windows, Mac, Android and iOS devices for all your study and communication needs, with 1 TB of storage space. 

As well as well-known applications like Word and Excel, Office 365 also provides access to collaborative tools like Planner, Yammer and Teams that are perfect for sharing in the workplace, or for group assignments and case-based learning

All current SGUL students and staff can download free copies of the desktop version of Microsoft Office 2016 on up to 5 personal devices, with access provided for the duration of their course or employment at St George’s. See our Microsoft Office FAQs here for download instructions.

Improving digital literacy

Providing access to these tools is just the first step, we also want to support you to use them effectively, and transform the way you work, learn and teach.

As we mentioned in our introductory post, digital literacy skills are vital in a digital world. Research shows that people with good IT skills earn 3-10% more than those without and that digitally competent and confident citizens are far more likely to lead healthier, happier, more productive and satisfying lives.

To help you get the most out of MS Office, there are a whole suite of training sessions are available to all St George’s students and staff, including the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education. Sessions can also be arranged for NHS Trust staff.

Find out more by visiting the IT Training and Digital Skills pages of the Library website or contact Fiona Graham directly:

Phone: 020 8725 5662 (ext. 5662)
Email: ittraining@sgul.ac.uk

Get connected, get creative and learn new skills

Besides our bookable sessions, there are other opportunities to get face-to-face support with Microsoft Office

Visit the MS Office Drop-in Clinic
When? Tuesdays and Thursdays 11am – 1pm
Where? Main computer room, 1st floor Hunter wing

Book 1-2-1s or group training
Email ittraining@sgul.ac.uk for more information

Online Training for Office 365

If you can’t make it to a session, or prefer to learn at your own pace, there are a number of useful online resources to help you get started with Microsoft Office:

Office 365 Basics – video training
Office 365 Training Portal
Office 365 Training Centre

Libraries Week 2019: Celebrating our Content and Digital Infrastructure team

Libraries Week takes place between 7th – 12th October 2019. This year’s campaign is focused on celebrating the role of libraries in the digital world. Over the course of the week we’ll be introducing you to different teams within the Library and explore how they use technology to support our community.


Today’s post features a contribution from our Content and Digital Infrastructure Team and will be highlighting what goes on behind the scenes to facilitate user access to our physical and digital resources.

In terms of connecting our library users to content, digital has transformed the parameters of our service and brought many benefits to our users, but with it has also come additional complexities and challenges. The Content and Digital Infrastructure team work together closely to meet these challenges and facilitate the opportunities offered by digital innovations to better meet the information needs of our users.

Meet the team

Lawrence Jones, our Content and Digital Infrastructure Manager, oversees the library’s activities in this area and has particular responsibility for systems such as our Library Management System and our library search tool Hunter – these integrated systems enable all the core activities around the library from access to the library space itself through to finding and accessing articles online.

Clementina Sanchez, our Acquisitions Librarian, supported by Georgina Coles, Information Assistant – takes care of the purchase, processing and cataloguing of books and e-books to ensure our book stock is kept current and in good condition – ready for when you need it!

Verity Allison, our Journals and E-resources Librarian, supported by Hilary Garrett, Information Assistant – manages the journals that the library subscribes to along with other specialist e-resources such as healthcare databases like Medline, and audio-visual resources such as Acland’s Video Atlas of Human Anatomy.

Interlibrary Loans Team – AKA Jane Appleton and Hilary Garrett, Information Assistants, locate books and articles from outside our collections on those occasions when we just don’t have the item you’re after.

Further information about using our resources can be found on the Using the Library webpages and on our  Help with Library Resources webpages.

How do we use technology to support our users?

Using the benefits of digital to enhance our physical services

The move from print to electronic journals has had a fairly dramatic impact on the physical layout of the library. With most journal subscriptions now online, we no longer require the rows and rows of shelving to accommodate print copies and can offer far more study spaces, which is of real benefit to our users today. The slideshow below shows before/after images of our silent study section after our last refurbishment:

In addition to this, recent upgrades to our Library Management System, Entry Gates and the installation of RFID self-service machines have made it easier than ever for our library users to self-manage their library accounts and borrowing activities, enabling the library to offer extended 24-hour opening. As long as users have their ID/Library access card with them they can access study spaces in the libraries and computer rooms 24 hours a day, borrow and return books throughout the day or night. Given the 24-hour nature of healthcare this facilitates better access for both our students and NHS trust users, as access to the library and our resources can be accommodated around any shift or study pattern.

To further support continuity of access for our users, our collection development policy supports where possible the purchase of e-book copies in supplement to print copies for reading list materials – so even if a physical copy of the book is not available, or if you are unable to be onsite, the content remains available.

Using the benefits of digital to enhance online access

The Library now manages access to thousands of journal titles, far in excess of what we ever could have accommodated physically in print, giving staff and students at St George’s access to far more content than before, with the added convenience that in most cases it can be accessed from anywhere and at any time.

However, with online journals the Library typically licenses the content for a specific period of time, whereas with print journals we owned the volumes and issues of the journals we purchased. The Journals and e-resources team negotiate the terms and conditions of these licences with our suppliers each year, making these transactions far more complex, but giving us the opportunity to ensure the licence enables us to use the content in ways that meet our needs in the ever changing Digital context. For example, in recent years we have seen improvements in licence terms around the use of content in VLEs (Virtual Learning Environments – such as Canvas, used at St George’s, University of London) to better support teaching and learning, and improvement in terms around data-mining to support research activities.

Supporting access to online subscriptions also requires maintaining a number of key systems, such as our link resolver, in addition to the more conventional library catalogue – which is also completely digital these days. The upgrades to our Library Management System and Library Search Tool – Hunter, implemented over the last two years have now integrated the functionality of the library catalogue and link resolver in to a single search tool, Hunter, enabling users to search in one place for books, journals, articles and more with live holdings information for all books and links through to the full text of articles that we have access to. These full text links are also integrated in to our other healthcare databases, and popular free tools such as Google Scholar (some set-up steps required, see below) and PubMed – look for the ‘Find it @ SGUL’ links to check for availability via St George’s Library.

Get connected, get creative and learn new skills

Use our library search tool Hunter– it is designed to search on material that St George’s University of London owns/subscribes to, focusing your search on the high-quality information resources selected by St George’s academics, researchers and librarians that you will be able to access with your university login.

Set up ‘Find it @ SGUL’ links in Google Scholar – for easier access to the full text of your search results where available via St George’s Library:

  1. Click on the menu at the top left of the Google Scholar home page
  2. Select ‘Settings’
  3. Select ‘Library links’
  4. Search for ‘st george’
  5. Select ‘St George’s University of London’
  6. Click Save

Bookmark the Library’s PubMed link: this link is customised to our holdings so that you will see ‘Find it @ SGUL’ links in for your PubMed search results, giving you easier access to the full text where available via St George’s Library.

Check for access via your local library:

At St George’s Library we manage a highly specialist collection – occasionally we get requests for resources which are just too general for our service but these can often be accessed for free via your local library. Wandsworth Libraries provide online access to the Encyclopaedia Britannica, Oxford Dictionaries Online, and Press Reader (offers instant access to over 4000 newspapers and magazines) and more…why not register online today?

Need help?

We can provide help and support in person from the Library’s Helpdesk and Research Enquiries Desk, or if you have a query for a specific member of the team contact us on journals@sgul.ac.uk

We look forward to hearing from you.