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Our Teaching Offer

Provides information on teaching that the Library can deliver for your students to help them develop their skills, as well as highlighting supporting online resources.

What do we offer?

Our Academic and Research Services team can work with you to embed information and research training within your modules. We also offer our core sessions as open workshops throughout the year that you could direct your students to. These sessions are designed to help students develop their information and digital literacy skills, and become confident Library users.

Through the range of teaching that we offer, students become equipped with both an awareness of relevant information resources, and the skills to evaluate and use those resources effectively and responsibly. This enables them to succeed in their studies and beyond. 

A menu of workshop sessions that we offer can be found below. Please contact your Academic Liaison Librarian  to discuss your requirements, and to arrange teaching sessions or other support.

Library inductions for new starters

Student searching library shelvesWe offer a range of instruction and support for new starters at Essex to help students become familiar with online and physical Library resources. This instruction can be offered as live taught sessions and activities, or as asynchronous learning content. Our Academic and Research Services team can work with you to embed taught sessions and/or asynchronous materials within your modules.

Inductions Offer

The Introduction the Library session is recommended for all new starters at Essex, and is regularly offered as part of our open workshops programme. The standard format of this session is a 20 minute presentation, which covers the following basic information skills outlined in our Library Teaching: Skills Recommendation document:

  • Accessing reading lists
  • Navigating the Library website and finding resources
  • Understanding different types of resources and when to use them
  • Finding additional help and support

This session can be offered in person or online and adapted to the below options to fit your students' needs:

  • 10 minute session - This gives a basic introduction to the Library and the different services available to students, including reading lists, online resources, and our physical space and collections
  • 20 minute session - The standard presentation, including demonstrations on the Library search and website
  • 50 minute session - A 20 minute presentation followed by a self-guided tour activity that can be offered in-person or online (the 2021/22 version of our self-guided tour can be found here).

Arranging October inductions: October inductions are scheduled on a first come, first serve basis. Although we try to accommodate all requests, we recommend booking October Library sessions 4 weeks in advance to avoid disappointment.

In-Person Teaching & Activities

Teaching sessions are scheduled on a first come, first serve basis, and we recommend 4 weeks notice for arranging in-person teaching and guided activities.

Colchester

The Albert Sloman Library at Colchester Campus is able to accommodate groups of up to 20 students for in-person teaching sessions and activities. Available options for in-person activities include:

  • Introduction the Library session (available as 10 min or 20 min presentation)
  • Self-guided tour activities of the Albert Sloman Library and online Library resources
  • Guided "bus-stop" tours - informal ad hoc tours offered to individual students or small groups by Library staff

Southend & Loughton

In Loughton we can accommodate groups of up to 25 and inductions will be held in the Library. At Southend we can accommodate most group sizes but a suitable room will need to be booked with your department’s timetabling officer. Rooms should preferably be booked in the Forum to allow us to incorporate a tour of the Learning Hub and Library spaces into the induction. Available options for in-person activities at Southend and Loughton include:

Online Teaching & Activities

Live online teaching sessions are scheduled on a first come, first serve basis, and we recommend 3 weeks notice for arranging online sessions and activities. Available options for online activities include:

Decorative image showing a laptop

We have a variety of online resources available, designed to help students develop their information and digital literacy skills and become confident Library users. These resources can be embedded in your module on Moodle and used in support of your teaching. For new starters, we recommend the below activities to help them become familiar with the support the Library offers and how to find resources.

Asynchronous induction materials

A list of our online resources and what they cover can be found on the Online Resources page, and students can also access these materials via our Skills at Library page.

Our workshops menu

Workshops at Library logo with students viewing documents

 Overview

This session provides an interactive introduction to the Library for your students.

 Key areas covered

  • Navigating the Library website to search for information and support
  • Introduction to reading lists, subject guides, and referencing guidance
  • Using a physical Library space and equipment, and finding books on the shelves

 Duration

30-50 minutes

 Context

This session is recommended for all students in their first year of study. It is designed to help familiarise them with the Library, and the services available to help them throughout their studies.

 Learning Outcomes

  • Understand how to navigate the Library building and check out/return books
  • Recognise the support available via the Library
  • Know that resources can be searched for using the Library catalogue

 Supporting Online Resources

 Overview

This session is a practical introduction to advanced techniques that can be used when searching e-resources, as well as how to find material the Library doesn't have.

Key areas covered

  • Developing a search strategy
  • Making searches more efficient using advanced search techniques
  • Where to search

Duration

50 minutes

Context

This session is recommended for second or third year undergraduate students, as well as postgraduate taught and postgraduate research students. It is aimed at those who may need to undertake more advanced searches for assignments or research.

Learning Outcomes

  • Recognise the benefits of developing a clear search strategy
  • Understand how to apply advanced techniques to make searches more efficient
  • Know where to get support from the Library on undertaking searches

Supporting Online Resources

  • Our Search Skills guide  covers how to develop an effective search strategy, and the search techniques that can be used to improve searches and get better results. This guide also covers other important topics that will help students develop their search skills.
  • Our advanced search skills webinar introduces students to developing a search strategy and provides tips to help make searches more efficient. There is an alternative version for postgraduates which also talks about open access materials and saving searches.

 Overview

This session provides an introduction to how to use Google in a more advanced way, including specific tips and shortcuts.

Key areas covered

  • What Google actually searches
  • Advanced search techniques in Google and Google Scholar
  • Alternatives to Google

Duration

1 hour

Context

This session is recommended for final year undergraduate students and postgraduate taught/research students.

Learning Outcomes

  • Know how to remove personalisation from your searches
  • Understand the different techniques that can be used to enhance your Google search
  • Recognise that there are other search engines and the benefits of using these

Supporting Online Resources

  • Our Google Search Skills  tutorial gives students tips on conducting advanced searches using Google and Google Scholar, as well as highlighting some alternative search engines.
  • Our Search Skills guide  covers ways that students can get the most out of Google as a search engine. This guide also covers other important topics that will help students develop their search skills.

 Overview

This session introduces students to the principles of referencing for academic work through Lego and other "hands on" activities.

Key areas covered

  • What referencing is
  • Why referencing is important
  • How to construct references in the departmental style

Duration

50 minutes

Context

This session is recommended for first or second year undergraduate students.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand what referencing is and why it is needed in academic work
  • Reference resources using the appropriate referencing style for the department
  • Know where to find support from the Library on referencing

Supporting Online Resources

  • Our referencing pages  provides students with general guidance on referencing, and highlight resources for more information on their departmental style.
  • Our online referencing tutorial  is a great, interactive introduction to referencing which gives the opportunity for students to practice creating referencing.
  • For law students, we have a series of short videos introducing the general principles of OSCOLA.

 Overview

This session provides students with a "hands-on" introduction to evaluating resources for use in academic work.

Key areas covered

  • Why we need to evaluate resources 
  • Different types of sources and how they can be used
  • How to critically evaluate resources using the CRAAP test

Duration

50 minutes

Context

This session is recommended for first or second year undergraduate students.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand how to locate and choose appropriate information sources for academic work
  • Be able to evaluate these sources
  • Think critically about the origins and purpose of information found

Supporting Online Resources

  • Our Search Skills guide  covers evaluating information, as well as other important topics that will help students develop their search skills.
  • Our Evaluating Resources  tutorial is a great interactive introduction to this topic, where students can learn about the CRAAP test, avoiding predatory journals, and spotting fake news.

 Overview

This session introduces students to some of the e-resources available in their subject area, which they can use to find information and sources for their assignments.

Key areas covered

  • Functionality you might expect to find within e-resources
  • Key e-resources for your specific subject/discipline
  • Where to find help from the Library

Duration

50 minutes

Context

This session is recommended for second year undergraduate students. It works best with students from the same department or discipline.

Learning Outcomes

  • Know how to access e-resources via the Library website and subject guides
  • Understand some of the main differences between different e-resources in terms of content and functionality
  • Recognise tools for limiting/narrowing search results

Supporting Online Resources

  • Our Subject Guides  provide subject specific guidance, highlighting key resources for each discipline.
  • Our Search Skills guide  covers finding resources, with information on how to find different resource types. This guide also covers other important topics that will help students develop their search skills.
  • We have a short video which provides an introduction to finding and using e-resources through the Library.

 Overview

This session provides an introduction to special collections and archives, and how they may be useful in an academic context. We can provide tailored sessions, so please do contact us with your requirements and we will do our best to accommodate them!

Key areas covered

  • What are special collections
  • Special collections at the Albert Sloman Library
  • Finding special collections and archives elsewhere

Duration

2 hours

Context

This session is recommended for any level of study.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand what special collections are and why they are useful sources of information
  • Know where special collections can be found
  • Be aware of the special collections held at the Albert Sloman Library, and how to access these

Supporting Online Resources

  • Our Art and Special Collections pages provide an overview of the collections that we have here at the Albert Sloman Library.
  • We have a short video which introduces using primary source materials and special collections in research.

 Overview

News & media sources can be incredibly useful across many areas of the social sciences & humanities, whether for current or historical research topics. This session will share with some of the key resources available and how they might be relevant to your students.

Key areas covered

  • Importance of news and media
  • Contemporary and historical sources
  • Social media
  • Data

Duration

50 minutes

Context

This session is aimed at students on modules involving study of news and media, or undertaking research requiring knowledge of news and media sources. It can be adapted for undergraduate or postgraduate level.

Learning Outcomes

  • Learn about the range of news and media resources offered by the library (and open access)
  • Understand which could be useful to your research
  • Practice searching selected resource

Supporting Online Resources

  • Our Subject Guides provide subject specific guidance, highlighting key resources for each discipline. Where news and media resources are relevant to the discipline, these are highlighted in the subject guide. Examples can be seen in the Sociology, Politics and History subject guides.

What other support is available to you and your students?

As well as delivering teaching, we provide additional support to help students develop their skills, and make the most of the Library and its resources. 

We have a variety of online resources  designed to help students develop their information and digital literacy skills. You can direct your students to these, and can easily link to them via your Moodle page.

Subject Guides  are a collection of resources put together by your Academic Liaison Librarian. The guides are designed to help students with specific subjects and topics they may want to explore.

If students need any help, or have specific questions, they can Book a Librarian  for a 1-to-1 session with their dedicated Academic Liaison Librarian.

If you have any additional questions, or would like to discuss ways that you would like to collaborate with the Library on your module or programme, please contact your Academic Liaison Librarian .