McClay Library – What to expect

Following the latest advice from the Northern Ireland Executive and the Public Health Agency regarding COVID-19, the McClay Library has worked closely with colleagues across the University, to ensure we can safely open our doors again.

Please consult our opening hours before you come.

The safety of everyone is our greatest priority, so we have made some changes to the way we work, and our service will look a little different to usual.

Please take the time to view the video about using The McClay Library before making your initial visit so you are aware of the changes within the building.

When we first open it will be for:

  • Queen’s staff and students, HSC members and AFBI staff
  • Access to books (self-service borrow and return), study space and some PCs

Social distancing and hygiene measures will be in place including:

  • A limited number of people allowed in the building at any one time
  • A one-way system
  • Cleaning stations with hand sanitiser
  • No access to the water fountain
  • No laptop loans 
  • Book quarantine for 72 hours when returned.

Due to the limited number of seats in the building, you may be required to queue. Please use the hand sanitiser as soon as you enter the Library. Please remember to bring your own water as the water fountain is not available.

A new one-way system has been put into place with separate stairways for entering and leaving the upper floors of the building. Please refer to the floor plans to inform yourself about the one-way system (see below).

We encourage everyone to respect these measures to help reduce the spread of the virus. If you have a high temperature, a new, continuous cough, or loss or change in your sense of taste or smell, please stay at home and follow the Public Health Agency guidelines on self-isolation.

Special Collections is also open to staff and all students, by appointment only. Further information can be found here:

Individuals considered to be at highest risk from COVID-19 who have received letters from their GP or hospital care team advising them to shield can be provided with a scanned chapter from books that we have in the Library. Please contact your Subject Librarian for further advice on this.

If you need advice or assistance with any other Library queries you can talk to us using Library Chat (click on the blue box on the right of the Library homepage).

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Introducing our Information Services Marketing and Communications Internship – Emily Brumskill

Did you know that Information Services offered a Marketing and Communications Internship this year? Read on to hear Emily talk about the project and how you might help:

I am absolutely loving my time working for QUB Information Services. I started in mid-June and I have learnt so much already. It wasn’t quite the situation I expected as I am currently working remotely from home in Liverpool due to COVID-19, but I am planning on returning to Belfast soon.

The purpose of the internship is to undertake an action research project as part of my final semester. The project I have chosen is to produce an internal communications plan for staff and students to enhance their knowledge of the current services that the Information Services offer.

I would be really grateful if you could take the time to fill in a quick survey about your understanding of the Information Services at Queen’s to help facilitate my research (Please see link here)

During my first three weeks I have already had Microsoft Teams meetings with all of the Information Services Assistant Directors to introduce myself and gain an insight into their division and upcoming projects. It really is fascinating what goes on behind the scenes in the ICT and Library departments. I have been extremely lucky to be invited to join the monthly social media meeting. I found it so valuable and interesting to see the planning and organisation behind the campaigns.

I cannot thank all of the staff enough for being so helpful and making me feel so welcome and part of the team from day one. I look forward to continuing my Internship and expanding my marketing knowledge further.

Thank you for taking the time to read this blog. If you have any questions regarding my research, internship or are seeking advice regarding a MSc programme please do not hesitate to get in touch my email is –

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University Press Scholarship Online – trial access until 7th August 2020

The Library now has trial access to University Press Scholarship Online. This will run until 7th August 2020

Please access the trial here

University Press Scholarship Online is “a vast and rapidly-expanding online research library providing full-text access to the best scholarly publishing from around the world, making disparately-published scholarship easily accessible and fully searchable on a single online platform.”

In numbers …
31 subject modules
32,000+ books
Thousands of authors from over 100 countries

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6 months until RefWorks cancellation

The Library is cancelling its RefWorks subscription so you will no longer be able to access Refworks from December 2020 onwards.

The replacement for RefWorks is a reference management software package called EndNote. Instructions for installing EndNote and transferring your RefWorks references into your EndNote account are available.

If you would like training or advice on using EndNote please contact your Subject Librarian.

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Trial Access to Wiley Digital Archives

QUB staff and students have trial access to Wiley Digital Archives. To access follow this link:

Please note access ends on 31st July 2020.

Wiley Digital Archives restores, digitizes and catalogs the archives of some of the world’s most influential academic and scientific societies and universities, connecting the brilliant minds of the past with the researchers shaping the future.

Content includes the archives of the Royal College of Physicians, the Royal Anthropological Institute, the New York Academy of Sciences, the Royal Geographical Society, and the just launched British Association for the Advancement of Science, still on demo mode.

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McClay Library Book Collection Service

Attention Academic Staff and Postgraduate Students

The Library is pleased to announce that we are introducing a book collection service in the McClay Library for academic staff, research postgraduate students and taught postgraduate students

Requested books will be made available for collection on Tuesdays and Thursdays until the Library reopens on 3rd August (NB. there will be no collections on Tuesday 14th July).

Items which can be requested:

  • McClay Library items only (we do not currently have access to the Biomedical and Medical Libraries)
  • Standard loan items which are not already on loan
  • Short loan items which are not already on loan
  • DVDs which are not already on loan

Items which cannot be requested:

  • Theses
  • Special Collections items
  • Journals
  • Scanned journal articles
  • Reference items

Books can be requested by email to Please give the following information:

  • Author
  • Title
  • Edition
  • Your name
  • Staff/student number.

Requested books will be issued to you until September 25th and you will be informed by email when they are available to collect from the McClay Library Reception.

Collection will only be possible between 12pm and 3pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Books which have not been collected within the one week will be discharged and returned to the Library shelves.

Please note, only one person at a time will be admitted to the Library to collect books.

Library staff will be using personal protective equipment when handling book stock and packaging them for collection.

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Nature Masterclasses: Scientific Writing and Publishing Course

As part of the researcher development programme at Queen’s, staff and research students have access to Nature Masterclasses Online (NMO), which provides online training in writing and publishing for researchers, taught by editors from the Nature Research journals. The course contains 16 modules, taking users through the entire scientific publishing process.

What do I need to do? Login using the link below and follow the instructions

Comments from Queen’s researchers who have used the resource include:

“Very informative – gave good practical examples of what is expected and how to improve writing.”

“It was interesting. It helped me think about writing papers and showed me how to structure a papers and what editors are looking for which was very valuable. It was a nice balance of video, written guidance and interaction with questions. I could do this at my own pace which was also important to me.”

“Nature Masterclass provides hard and soft skills advice for journal article writing from the editors of a world leading journal. This is invaluable.”

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Mass Observation Project 1980s – trial until 6th August 2020

The Library is running a trial of the Mass Observation Project archive from the 1980s. This content has just been released by Adam Matthew and covers topics ranging from the Falklands War to European elections and gardening and clothing. Read more on the Adam Matthew blog here.

Please access this trial by clicking here.

The trial will run until 6th August 2020.

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UKRI Open Access Review Consultation: Queen’s University Belfast Response

Queen’s University Belfast has responded to UKRI’s Open Access (OA) Review consultation. UKRI is reviewing its OA policies for research articles and academic books that result from research supported by UKRI. The response was submitted by Professor Emma Flynn, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Research and Enterprise, with input from academic and professional support staff across the institution. Key messages in the University’s response include:

  • The new OA policy and REF-after-REF-2021 OA policy should be closely aligned to reduce complexity and administrative burden for researchers
  • Complying with the new OA policy will pose a number of challenges around funding and resources because of an increased demand for gold OA
  • 1 January 2022 is a reasonable timescale for implementing the new OA policy but it may not be possible to commit to this at present until the full implications of the coronavirus pandemic is known
  • The new OA policy should permit the use of a CC BY-ND licence because a CC BY licence may not offer sufficient protection for some researchers
  • Many journals are not covered at present by transformative agreements, especially in arts, humanities and social sciences, therefore short-term of funding for OA in hybrid journals should be considered
  • The OA policy should apply to monographs, book chapters and edited collections from 1 January 2024 onwards but factors such as financial implications and embargoes require further investigation

Any queries can be directed to the Research Policy Office at

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7 months until RefWorks cancellation

Seven, 7, Number, Ranking, Rating, Business, Symbol

This is your monthly reminder that the Library is cancelling its RefWorks subscription at the end of 2020.

Access to, and Library support for, Legacy and ProQuest RefWorks, and RefWorks add-ons such as Write-N-Cite, will end on 31st December.

You must transfer your RefWorks references to EndNote (now available via the Library) or to another tool such as Mendeley, if you wish to continue using them from 1st January 2021.

For more information, and links to Library Help FAQs about transferring your RefWorks references to EndNote, please visit the Library’s dedicated EndNote LibGuide:

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