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Suggestion: Printing

By Curtin Library 11 October 2018 News & events Comments off

From the suggestion box@Curtin Library…

Hi, Every time I try to print at Uni it takes ages for the file to load, usually it times out. There needs to be an easier way to print multiple files without it taking hours. There also needs to be more printers set up around the uni. Also student hubs for quiet studying around the uni, with printers and white boards would be a lot easier than having to find a spot inside the library would be beneficial.
thank you!

The Library responds…

Thanks for your feedback. The Library doesn’t have direct control over the computing and printing facilities, but if this is a recurring problem then I’d suggest making contact with the IT support service that is available in either the Library (next to the Library Help point in the main level), one of the Abacus labs (like in building 303) or the IT Help Desk in building 200B, opposite the Aroma café. They should be able to assist you with the printing issue.

In regards to other areas across Curtin, this is probably a good thing to raise via the Student Guild.

Colin Sinclair
Curtin University Library

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The latest from the Makerspace

By Curtin Library 8 October 2018 News & events Comments off

It has been exciting to see the Curtin Library Makerspace thrive in its quest to provide a creative and supportive learning environment in the Library where members of the Curtin community access materials, tools and equipment to make things, both digital and physical.

Since moving into its location on level 5 of the Robertson Library in mid-2017, there has been a significant increase in awareness and use of the space. In just the first 9 weeks of Semester 2, the Makerspace has attracted upwards of 1600 visitors and facilitated over sixty events!

Makerspace 2

Many students are enjoying the Makerspace as a relaxing place to work on assessments or to explore their own interests. The space is also proving popular with teaching academics as a venue to run workshops involving hands-on, real-world, problem-solving making activities that develop their student’s creative and critical thinking skills. Other co-curricular events supplement this learning, such as the recent Creative Jam: digital innovation hackathon student competition that we ran in collaboration with the School of Design & Built Environment, resulted in the development of 6 interactive media prototypes from participating teams.


Library staff have facilitated a number of creative workshops in the space, and we have also had the privilege of benefitting from the expertise of others, such as a Linked Open Data workshop led by Prof. Tim Sherratt and a ceramics workshop taught by artist and Curtin phD student Graham Hay.

The space has also been well used for regular events such as CIC’s Hacky Hour, student groups such Curtin Bloom, and sessions with school groups through Curtin programs such as AHEAD in School. Community and education groups often drop by the Makerspace to find out more about our work.

A rewarding aspect of the Makerspace has been seeing the fruits of our efforts to encourage an experimental, explorative and a playful approach to learning. By emphasising the importance of sharing experience and knowledge and learning from one another, the Curtin Library Makerspace is successfully building a vibrant maker community with the ability to make a real difference to the learning experience.

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Hot topics – engaging faculties with Curtin Conversations

By Curtin Library 8 October 2018 News & events Comments off

Curtin Conversations

An important part of the Library’s role within the University is to keep researchers informed on topics and trends in academia. To connect the University community with these ideas, the Library created the Curtin Conversations panel discussion series.

Experts from across the University are invited to speak on a panel, with discussion centred on a ‘hot topic’ – such as open access publication, emerging technologies or academic engagement with industry. The event is casual and collegial, with audience members encouraged to participate and ask questions. The panel is followed by a networking morning tea, which allows attendees to mingle and establish cross-faculty connections. In addition, the panel is livestreamed to allow colleagues who cannot attend to also participate in the conversation.

“We’ve found the panel discussion format is ideal for bringing out complexities, different viewpoints and contrasting opinions on these trends, which is a great way to introduce attendees to an idea,” said organising committee member and Law Faculty Librarian Jaya Ralph. “Researchers also appreciate the opportunity to network outside their faculty in a neutral space.”

The first Curtin Conversations event held in June this year addressed academic publishing choices; for example, where a researcher may choose to publish and how this decision can impact their career. The event generated strong attendance and good feedback:

“Many folks found Curtin Conversations useful, we need to help researchers with writing and publishing strategies; particularly within the changing context of academia.” – Professor Fran Ackermann, Faculty of Business and Law

“This is a fantastic initiative which has been well received in our school” Professor Ba Tuong Vo, Faculty of Science and Engineering

The upcoming Curtin Conversations event in November will focus on measuring engagement with the community. It will showcase academics who actively provide media comment and use social media to promote their research. In addition to the panel, there will be short presentations on using Altmetric to measure engagement and the support offered to Curtin researchers when making media comment.

By positioning the Library as a hub of learning on current academic trends through Curtin Conversations, we hope to continue to connect and provide service for our researchers.

To register for the next Curtin Conversations panel discussion, go to the event registration page.

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Mapping our services

By Curtin Library 8 October 2018 News & events Comments off

Service portfolio As Library services become more diverse and complex, it can be difficult for clients to find and use services relevant to them. It can also be challenging for Library staff to manage and evaluate existing services, and create new service offerings in response to changing conditions. To help with these issues, the Library has been working to create and implement a service portfolio.

A service portfolio is a core repository for information about services in an organisation. It is commonly used in information technology businesses, but is a useful framework for any service provider, including libraries.

Throughout 2017 and 2018, workshops were held with staff to develop service descriptions in areas covering:

  • research and copyright services;
  • services for borrowing and requesting items;
  • The Library’s Makerspace; and,
  • Library spaces and facilities as a service.

This portfolio of services can be mapped to clients and their needs over time. For example, when students start university they need to know basic library skills such as searching the catalogue. Later in their studies, they may require help managing references through software such as EndNote.Services Portfolio - Library hexagons snapshot

A clear understanding of our clients and the services they require during their studies will help the Library surface information where we know clients will see it. For example, undergraduate students are more likely to attend a referencing workshop advertised on Facebook than a poster.

Library staff also benefit from the service portfolio. Internally, the service portfolio is accompanied by documentation with detailed service descriptions. Teams can use this to inform each other of the services offered by other areas of the Library. Additionally, the service portfolio helps teams identify gaps in client services, and examine the purpose of services in more depth. Ongoing maintenance of the service portfolio is a reflective activity in developing services that meet both client needs and the strategic aims for the University.

The next steps in the project include refining descriptions around information literacy and the services in providing, maintaining and curating the collections.

As the work continues, the service portfolio provides a map of our current library services and a direction for future service development.

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Implementing University-wide ORCIDs

By Curtin Library 8 October 2018 News & events Comments off

The Library’s Research Services team and several other University areas recently implemented Open Researcher and Contributor IDs (ORCIDs) across Curtin University to easily link researchers with their work, track their impact, and save time filling out applications.

ORCID is an open, non-profit, community-driven effort to create and maintain a registry of unique researcher identifiers and a transparent method of linking research activities and outputs to these identifiers.


The collaborative project led by the Library, Research Office and Graduate Research School has incorporated ORCID into Curtin University’s publications management, which has benefits for both the University and researchers.

ORCID is now integrated with Curtin’s publications management system Elements, enabling quicker and more accurate importing of publications. Curtin University Higher Degree by Research students will also be required to provide their ORCID in their candidacy application, ensuring their research impact will be easy to track over time.

One of the key benefits of ORCIDs is their interoperability between systems and wide use in the publications sphere. For example, many publishers require authors to provide their ORCID at manuscript submission. Additionally, from November 2018 researchers will be able to automatically fill Australian Research Council grant application forms using data from ORCID. Increasing the number of Curtin University researchers with ORCIDs will help ensure they can get the greatest benefit from these systems.

To assist researchers in registering for an ORCID, connecting their ORCID profile and maintaining their record the Library has created an online help guide. Hands-on ORCID workshops will also be offered to help researchers get the most out of their ORCID. In addition, the Library will be running a competition in October to encourage researchers to create an ORCID or connect it to Elements.

ORCID merchandise1000

So far, feedback from researchers on this project and using ORCIDs has been positive:

“The ORCID is rapidly becoming the standard for tracking research and identifying researchers in my field. Increasingly, high profile journals are adding ORCIDs to author lists in hypertext form, providing high visibility to ORCIDs in publications and easy access to other work by the same author.” Professor of Astrophysics, Steven Tingay

“By linking everything to my ORCID ID (submitted papers, other databases etc., including, in the near future, submitted research proposals) I can have more confidence that my track record is consistently defined.” Professor of Analytical Chemistry, Damien Arrigan

“A great, easy and effective way to manage all of your academic outputs, submit papers and increase your visibility.” – Professor of Econometrics, Mark Harris

“I’m lucky as I have an unusual name, but for many researchers it is almost impossible for others to get an idea of how brilliant your ideas and work actually is. Just get an ORCID –  it’s easy. You can also link your ORCID to lots of databases (such as grant profiles) so your publications can be automatically uploaded.” Professor of Epidemiology, Lin Fritschi

For more information on how to connect an ORCID to Curtin University’s publications management system Elements, see our Library blog post.

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2018 JCPML Anniversary Lecture & Julia Gillard scholarship

By Curtin Library 8 October 2018 News & events Comments off


On July 19th the John Curtin Prime Ministerial Library was honoured to host the nineteenth Anniversary Lecture presented by Wiradjuri man, journalist and author Stan Grant. On the subject of The Return of History: Can Liberal Democracy Survive? Stan spoke to a capacity audience including JCPML patron Hon Julia Gillard, Vice Chancellor Deborah Terry, and members of the Curtin family.

In his tour de force, Stan began with a train journey to Beijing, then took the audience via the wartime pledge of the Curtin government ‘pulling knee to knee’ as Australia looked to America, through the ‘Golden Age’ of capitalism and growth of democracy and onto the ‘end of history’. During the lecture, Stan Grant proposed that we are not witnessing The end of history as Francis Fukuyama’s wrote in his 1989 essay, but rather that ‘the very idea of liberalism that undergirds democracy is under attack’.


In his closing paragraphs, the author of Tears of Strangers (2002) and Talking to My Country (2016) expressed his hope, as an Indigenous Australian, that the Uluru statement will ‘find its place …. it could stand as our “End of History” moment, completing our liberal democracy: one of the oldest and most resilient on Earth’.

Stan’s lecture was warmly received by the audience, and the broad subject matter stimulated lively discussion among guests afterwards.


At a separate event held at the Old Perth Boys’ School following the lecture, Vice-Chancellor Professor Deborah Terry announced the launch of a new scholarship named in honour of JCPML Patron, the Honourable Julia Gillard AC. Part of the John Curtin Undergraduate Scholarship Program, The Julia Gillard Women in Leadership Scholarship has been named after Julia Gillard in recognition of her ongoing commitment to education. It will be open to academically gifted female students who display leadership and community service qualities and have the desire to develop themselves as a leader in their chosen field.

To view the recording of the lecture or read the transcript, visit the JCPML website.

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Meet Kate Conway

By Curtin Library 8 October 2018 News & events Comments off

Kate Conway

Kate Conway recently rejoined Curtin University Library as Associate Director, Learning, Engagement & Global. We asked her to share her thoughts on academic libraries:

What do you like about working in an academic library?

Academic libraries are at the cutting edge of new technologies and trends; there is a lot of scope to try new things. The library is the intellectual and cultural heart of a university, which means we have the chance to have a real impact on the experience of students and staff.

How are academic libraries important in supporting teaching and research, from your perspective?

I believe that supporting teaching and research are core parts of what academic libraries do. We are vital in enabling teaching staff, students and researchers to do their work as easily and efficiently as possible. Library services play an important role in giving students the confidence and sense of belonging they need in order to persist and succeed in their studies. As an influential part of the sector, we also have a responsibility to advocate for systematic changes which will benefit all – such as policies supporting open access.

In your opinion, what are some of today’s challenges for library and information science (LIS) professionals?

Libraries must continually transform in response to trends in the wider environment, such as technological change and changes in our client populations. As LIS professionals, it can be challenging to keep up with these changes – learning throughout our careers is essential to continue offering a great service. It’s also important for LIS professionals to always assess and refine our services, in order to have the capacity to meet new needs.

Where had you worked before your current role?

My first librarian job was at Curtin University as a reference librarian, and I’ve worked at both Edith Cowan University and Murdoch University libraries. I have also managed a medical and consumer health library. Moving between library sectors and experiencing their different challenges has been a valuable learning experience.

Before becoming a librarian, I taught English as a second language and I have spent some time in customer service roles. Both were great experiences which taught me a lot about interacting with different people.

I’m excited to be back at Curtin after seven years and can’t wait to get started!

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Suggestion: Recalls

By Curtin Library 8 October 2018 News & events Comments off

From the suggestion box@Curtin Library…

When changing due date of a library loan because of recall by another students, could you make the new due date for the Tuesday of the week instead of the Monday. This would be of great help to people who don’t normally attend uni on Monday and if people do then there’s no problem.

The Library responds…

Thank you for your suggestion. We are currently reviewing our recall processes and the way that we loan books to our clients. We will incorporate your feedback into our review.

The current system, which allows you to have an item for 7 days following a request by another client is the fairest way we have found so far to share a limited resource. You may return the item at any time during the 7 day period.

If you have any other suggestions, please let us know.

Adele MacDonald
Curtin University Library

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Feedback: Group Study Room

By Curtin Library 4 October 2018 News & events Comments off

From the suggestion box@Curtin Library…

Kicked from group study room as third person took too long in the bathroom. Room was booked previously, not just wandered into as well. Very angry.

The Library responds…

Thank you for the comments regarding your experience in the library. I apologise if the service you received was not as you expected. If you would like to discuss your concerns in more detail please let me know at

James Robinson
Curtin University Library

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Open Access Week 2018 22-28 October

By Curtin Library 2 October 2018 News & events Comments off

OA Week 2018 Banner Website

Celebrate Open Access Week 2018 by attending the events below. This year’s theme is “designing equitable foundations for open knowledge”.

Paywall: The Business of Scholarship screening

A documentary which focuses on the need for open access to research and science that questions the rationale behind the $25.2 billion a year that flows into for-profit academic publishers. The documentary also examines the 35-40% profit margin associated with the top academic publisher Elsevier and looks at how that profit margin is often greater than some of the most profitable tech companies like Apple, Facebook, and Google.


Date: Wednesday, 24 October 2018

Time: 12.30pm to 2pm

Location: 401.001 Hollis Lecture Theatre, Curtin University, Bentley



Beware the Publishing Trap!

Want to learn more about open access, publishing, copyright, and the evolving scholarly communications environment but don’t want to sit in another presentation? Come along and play “The Publishing Trap” board game with fellow researchers. Each character in the game needs to balance the relationship between knowledge, impact, and money. It’s a fun way to learn how the choices you make throughout your academic journey might impact on your academic success.

Bring your friends or form teams on the spot. We hope to see you at one or both of the sessions!


Date: Tuesday, 23 October & Thursday, 25 October

Time: Tuesday 1pm to 3pm & Thursday 10am to 12pm

Venue: Library Makerspace, Building 105, Curtin University, Bentley


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