Friday, 28 November 2014

How to check if you have library fines

Library fines, at some point most of us will accumulate library fines whilst at university. So how do you check if you have fines?

From the Library homepage click on the Library Account link  (circled  in yellow in the picture) and log in with your JCU User ID and password.

Select Fines and Messages option near the top of the page. It's important to note that if you owe $25 or more in fines the your results will be withheld.

You can play your fines by making payments in person, by telephoning, or by mailing a cheque or money order.

Thursday, 27 November 2014

Summer movie: Spirited Away

JCU Library has a great collection of films! You can find them in 791.4372.

'Spirited Away' won the 2002 Oscar for Best Animated Feature against 'Ice Age' and 'Lilo and Stitch', and is considered one of the best animated films of all time.

The film follows the adventures of 10-year-old Chihiro, a sullen girl who enters the spirit world when her family moves to a new neighbourhood.  After her parents are mysteriously transformed into pigs, Chihiro sets out to free them, while encountering strange spirits and assorted creatures, as well as a grumpy sorceress who seeks to prevent her from returning to the human world.

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

The slab has been poured for Townsville Mabo Library's outdoor seating

If you didn't know already, the Eddie Koiki Mabo Library Townsville is having some construction work done outside, at the south western Cafe' entrance, to provide more seating and tables.

Today the slab was poured and we are one step closer to the finished product. The concreters did a pebble aggregate top finish to match the other paths nearby, after doing the hard yards of wheel barrowing the concrete to the more distance spaces of the area.

This should be a well used space as JCU Townsville campus is located in a dry tropical climate, and for most of the academic year it is comfortable enough outdoors under shade. You can sometimes get a wireless connection to the eduroam network outside of the Mabo Library, so I expect some of the Cafe' and study culture might drift outside.

And on more concrete and JCU related news, JCU researchers have found a way to replace the metal mesh or rebar that reinforces concrete with recycled plastic fibres. 

Tuesday, 25 November 2014

Summer viewing: The Gods of Wheat Street

JCU Library has television shows on DVD! Browse for them at 791.4572

Follow the trials and tribulations of the Freeburns, an Aboriginal family of local legends, as they learn to let go of the past with the aid of a little magic and enough deadpan humour to tackle the future.

Monday, 24 November 2014

New items on display: Journals and magazines

Each week, new purchases and the latest issues of journals, magazines and newspapers are made available for immediate use and placed on display at both Cairns and Townsville (and made available online when purchased as such). Please browse while waiting for your friends or in Townsville if you are waiting for a coffee at Juliette's.

For new books, you can subscribe to the New Books email and for some journals you can set up an online alert called a Table of Contents service.

This week two journals that caught my attention were:

Choice: Journal of the Australian Consumers' Association 
Issue November 2014
Call number: 640.73 p1
Has some great articles for academic Christmas presents like the best tablets to buy on page 54. It also covers travel insurance and of course appliances like air conditioners.

Publication: Australian Copyright Council.   
Issue Nov 2014 Interactive Games & Copyright .
Call number: 346.940482 p1
A very simple explanation of copyright and clearing copyright and other related questions. Might be of interest to IT or ICT innovators.

Summer Reading: Next Semester Textbooks

If you what to find out some of next year's textbooks, you can go to the Co-op Bookshop online website and check there. The Co-op staff have pointed out they do not have all of the textbook lists just yet though. Checking out the textbook is useful if you are considering enrolling and want to see what might be covered and get an idea of the upfront costs. Textbook lists are usually available only after you enrol and have access to LearnJCU to see the subject information.

The biggest problem most students would argue is deciding, whether the time and hassle saved by buying the textbook versus borrowing for free from the library is best. As a former uni student I would always recommend buying the textbook. It is always handy to have the text for revision available, especially during exam and assignment times when the library copies may all be on loan. After working in the library and seeing upset students unable to get a copy from the library, I know that the stress and cost of buying a copy is often less than failing a subject. Choosing to not buy a textbook and then not being able to access a copy is almost Shakespearean with my kingdom for a horse overtones.

So my recommended option is, if you can find what the textbook is early, come in to the library and borrow or browse it before next semester starts. You can then judge whether it might be worthwhile to buy the textbook or rely on the whims of the library lending gods to favour you at peak lending periods.

Summer reading: Perfect Skin by Nick Earls

Jon Marshall, a thirtysomething plastic surgeon, has come a long way. He's a partner in his own medical practice, owns a house in the suburbs, and cruises town in a BMW. He also has a six-month-old daughter, Lily, affectionately known as the Bean.

But Jon's life hasn't taken the path he thought it would in his twenties. Newly single, he's facing the challenges of dating in a post-Duran-Duran world. His computer has been seized by surly software. He accidentally peed on his date's cat. And while the Bean reminds him of life's possibilities every day, his new running buddy, Ashley, reminds him that relationship rules were made to be broken.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

Google Scholar - temporarily without Find It @ JCU Library Links

Google have advised that due to a data retrieval problem 'Find It @ JCU Library' links will not be available in Google Scholar until Tuesday or Wednesday next week (American time).

One Search is better anyway (it includes ebooks and the library catalogue as well journal articles and ResearchOnline @ JCU)

Wednesday, 19 November 2014

Opening Hours: Semester Break 2014 November 21st to December 16th

JCU libraries' opening hours

The end of year exam and teaching period is over for most students for 2014.

The JCU Library has different opening hours throughout the year depending on campus, study periods and public holidays.

Eddie Koiki Mabo Library Townsville:

Friday 21st of November to Tuesday 16th of December 2014

Monday to Friday:           8.00am to 5.00pm
Tuesday:                           8.00am to 7.00pm
Saturday and Sunday:     Closed

JCU Library Cairns

Friday 21st of November to Monday 26th of January 2015

Monday to Friday:           8.00am to 5.00pm          
Saturday and Sunday:      Closed

Both Libraries will be CLOSED:

Christmas Day 25 December 2014 to New Year’s Day 1 January 2015.

Australia Day 26th of January 2015

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Exam Tip: Prepare like a cheater

If you thought you could get away with sneaking a piece of paper into the exam that had tips and clues for all the things you have trouble remembering, what would you write on that sheet of paper?

You should go ahead and write it.

Creating a "cheat sheet" is actually a really good way to revise for an exam.  It helps you work out where all your weak points are and makes you come up with strategies for reminding yourself of what you've forgotten.

Start by pretending you can sneak in a whole A4 sheet and fill it with useful notes.

Then try the "tiny piece of paper" option of putting the most important notes in short, concise (perhaps even coded) messages on tiny pieces of paper that you could hide on your person.

Go over the notes a couple of times until you feel really familiar with them.

Then burn everything so you don't feel tempted to actually use it for cheating.

Journals, Periodicals and Newspapers: Latest Issues on Display

Each week, new purchases and the latest issues of journals and newspapers are made available for immediate use and placed on display at both Cairns and Townsville (and made available online when purchased as such). Please browse while waiting for your classmates to turn up for a study group or in Townsville if you are waiting for a coffee at Juliette's.

For new books, you can subscribe to the New Books email and for some journals you can set up an online alert called a Table of Contents service.

This week two journals that caught my attention were:

Capture November December 2014. The Annual issue. Held in the Townsville Periodicals collection at Call Number 770.232 P1.

Capture is a professional photography magazine with, of course, beautiful images and interesting articles. The main article touches on the ongoing need for high quality photojournalism and a shift to journalists being targeted again by warring parties.  My favourite images are on page 22, 29, 35 and 53; these being Steve Wise's Maureen, Troy Goddall's Free Your Skin-Ginger Beard, Karen Lunley's Dante's Inferno and Jon Wright's The Salt Kingdom.

Mathematics Teaching Issue 243 November 2014. Special Edition: Cockcroft Report Legacy or Missed Opportunity? In the Townsville Periodicals collection at Call Number 510.7 P1 (also online).

This is a journal about primary and secondary maths teaching and this issue appears to concentrate on the British educational experience after the release of the 1982 Cockcroft Report (or its proper title Mathematics counts: Report of the Committee of Inquiry into the Teaching of Mathematics in Schools under the chairmanship of W.H. Cockcroft Call number 510.7042 GRE). This should be interesting for people looking at the impact of policy and pedagogical choices on actual numeracy.

Monday, 17 November 2014

Great vacation viewing

When the exams are over, fill the void caused by an lack of study with some of these fine films available now at JCU Library.  After the 21st of November, the Mabo library will be open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday from 8AM to 5PM, and from 8AM to 7PM on Tuesday. The Cairns library will be open from 8AM to 5PM Monday to Friday.

All these titles and more can be found in the main collection at 791.4372.

The Intouchables

After he becomes a quadriplegic from a paragliding accident, an aristocrat hires a young man from the projects to be his caretaker.

Redfern Now

Six extraordinary stories one unmissable series. Redfern Now is the first drama series written, directed and produced by Indigenous Australians. The highly celebrated and multi award winning drama of 2012. Recipient of Most Outstanding Drama at this year's TV Week Logie Awards, the critically acclaimed Redfern Now returns for another extraordinary season.

The Adventures of Priscilla Queen of the Desert

When drag queen Anthony (Hugo Weaving) agrees to take his act on the road, he invites fellow cross-dresser Adam (Guy Pearce) and transsexual Bernadette (Terence Stamp) to come along. In their colorful bus, named Priscilla, the three performers travel across the Australian desert performing for enthusiastic crowds and homophobic locals. But when the other two performers learn the truth about why Anthony took the job, it threatens their act and their friendship.


Gentle farmer Arthur Hoggett (James Cromwell) wins a piglet named Babe (Christine Cavanaugh) at a county fair. Narrowly escaping his fate as Christmas dinner when Farmer Hoggett decides to show him at the next fair, Babe bonds with motherly border collie Fly (Miriam Margolyes) and discovers that he too can herd sheep. But will the other farm animals, including Fly's jealous husband Rex, accept a pig who doesn't conform to the farm's social hierarchy?

City of God

In the poverty-stricken favelas of Rio de Janeiro in the 1970s, two young men choose different paths. Rocket (Alexandre Rodrigues) is a budding photographer who documents the increasing drug-related violence of his neighborhood. José "Zé" Pequeno (Leandro Firmino da Hora) is an ambitious drug dealer who uses Rocket and his photos as a way to increase his fame as a turf war erupts with his rival, "Knockout Ned" (Seu Jorge). The film was shot on location in Rio's poorest neighborhoods.

Guess Who's Coming to Dinner

When Joanna Drayton (Katharine Houghton), a free-thinking white woman, and black doctor John Prentice (Sidney Poitier) become engaged, they travel to San Francisco to meet her parents. Matt Drayton (Spencer Tracy) and his wife Christina (Katharine Hepburn) are wealthy liberals who must confront the latent racism the coming marriage arouses. Also attending the Draytons' dinner are Prentice's parents (Roy E. Glenn Sr., Beah Richards), who vehemently disapprove of the relationship.

New Resource: Modern Languages Online

In addition to subscribed content, James Cook University eJournals also provides access to a number of open access journals.

One of our recent additions is Modern Languages Online
  • Interdisciplinarity across the modern languages and engagement with other fields from a modern languages perspective
  • Gold Open Access under a CC-BY or CC-BY-NC license
  • Rigorous peer review pre-publication interactivity post-publication
  • Rapid turnaround from submission to publication
  • Rewards for article reviewers
  • Flexibility on article length from 3,000-15,000 words
  • International dissemination under the imprimatur of a university press
MLO is published by Liverpool University Press, one of the world’s leading publishers in the modern languages, in partnership with the University of Liverpool Library.

Current sections are: Chinese/Asian languages; French and Francophone; German Studies; Hispanic Studies; Italian, Portuguese and Lusophone and Russian and Eastern European Languages.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Exam Tip: Look for Past Exams

Going over past exams with a study group
can be an effective way to study
When you are preparing for your exams, you should check to see if the Library holds digital copies of past exams.

You can find them on the Readings & Past Exams page, linked from the Library's home page.

Go into a Basic Search and put your subject code in the search box, then change to the Search Type to Subject Code and the Item Type to past exams.

The Library does not hold copies of all past exams - only the ones that have been released to us by the lecturers.

When looking at past exams, try the following activities to get the most out of them:

  • See if you can identify questions turning up in different "guises" over multiple exams.  Do they keep asking different questions about the same information or themes?  Focus on being able to discuss those themes so that you could answer a range of different questions on that topic
  • Make sure you could actually answer any question on the past exams - don't take anything for granted.  It's strange how often the ones you skip over because they seem "easy" are actually really challenging when you sit down to try them.
  • Take any essay questions and do a bit of extra research.  You don't need to write a whole essay for each of them, but be able to jot down the main details and theories.  Lecturers are seriously impressed when you can give them information in an exam (that is true, accurate and relevant) that they didn't give you in class.
And if you *really* want to put past exams to good use, form a study group and convert the exams into a question bank.  Take turns pulling a question out of the bank and asking everyone in the group to come up with an answer.

(Don't forget to put some effort into making sure you can each put an individual spin on your answers - you don't want to accidentally give the same answer as one of your classmates in the exam.)

New Outdoor Seating at the Mabo Library Townsville

Day 1 , Nov 11 2014.
Construction work commenced on 11 November 2014 to create a new outdoor seating area at the Mabo Library Townsville campus.

Soon students, staff and visitors will be able to enjoy their coffee, gelato and other goodies in the great outdoors near the wonderful Heart Space and Collections sculpture by Col Henry.

The north western (café) entry to the Mabo Library is expected to remain open during the 4 week construction period. 

Monday, 10 November 2014

Keep in touch with the library over the semester break.

As we move out of the main academic teaching period, you can keep in touch with Cairns and Townsville Libraries' news online.

JCU library has an official JCU library page on Facebook, this blog and contributes to ITR week in review so there are several ways you can hear directly from us about interesting facts for: utilising the library and its resources; general Uni life, study and research; and the not so study orientated facts.

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Eddie Koiki Mabo Library added to the Townsville local heritage buildings' list

The Eddie Koiki Mabo Library building has been added to the local historic buildings list by Townsville City Council. According to the Townsville Bulletin reporter Emma Chadwick (October 30, 2014) the building has been added along with 27 other buildings including Townsville Magistrates Court on Walker St, Townsville City Council’s city administration building, Railway Estate State Primary School, and the Metropole Hotel on Palmer St.

You can read more of the online article and the surprise of some owners at the Townsville Bulletin website.

The Library Special Collections holds some items in our Library archival holdings related to the architect James Birrell. Special collections is open to all, so don't be afraid to come in for a visit.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014

International Game Day: Are you a gamer or noob in the photos on JCU Library FaceBook?

To celebrate International Games Day and the end of the semester 2 study period, the Library hosted a games day event in our library spaces.

Townsville had a range of board games with modern favourites like Monopoly, Connect4 and Trivial Pursuit being opened immediately. Townsville JCU Board Gaming group also brought along some games and what appeared, to this noob, to be a version of Dungeons & Dragons. An old-school Nintendo gaming console for Mario Bros was set up and got a work out. Peter Hanley brought in a selection of handmade traditional games which would have made archaeology and anthropology students cry with joy, as the selection ranged from Nine Men's Morris (similar copies have been found engraved on ancient Roman sites) to Mancala.

At one point 70 students crammed into the  iLearning rooms (especially once word got around that food and drink was supplied). Check out the photo album on Facebook.