Dear Library…exam week special

A very warm Library welcome to our new intake of researchers who start their induction this week – we hope you enjoy your time here at Brunel! An equally warm welcome back to everybody else. Oh and Happy New Year! (Although, I don’t know about you, but the festivities feel an awfully long way away now to most of us…)

You’ll remember that at the end of last year we held a ‘Dear Library…’ day? (Yes, I’d forgotten too, but it’s in my PDR to write these things up).  Anyway, we promised to keep you updated with the feedback we’ve received and that we’d make the event a monthly fixture and….guess what? We’re going to do just what we said we would. More on the January event in a mo, but first of all here are the chief findings of our most recent survey…

Thank you very much to everyone who submitted comments and suggestions. Perhaps because we’d just launched our new laptop loans service, unsurprisingly feedback cards about laptops were the runaway winners in our unofficial sweepstake – so congratulations to whoever pulled that one out of the hat (and do feel free to share the penny chew prize with your less fortunate colleagues…it’s terribly bad for your teeth you know.)

So what did you tell us about our new laptops? Well, you seem to like them that’s for sure, and you want more of them and for longer. A reminder when they’re due back was also requested and we’ve noted that, thank you. We’ll be adapting the service in response to your feedback so please do let us know if we’re on the right track with our actions.  All in all, the laptop loans have been a success so far, so we’re really pleased you value the service.

The second most popular topic was requests for more books – some were non-specific as to the format whereas there were a couple of specific preferences expressed for print copies. While we would love to cater for all preferences in relation to format, the fact is space is finite.    However we accept we have some work to do in relation to e-resources.  ‘E-books don’t match up. Can’t save pages, quick reference and come up in c***py small box on the screen’ is a quote that seems to sum up the least liked aspects of the electronic format. We’ve been working with you to improve the things you don’t like about them or that seem to be putting some people off using this format. Please do keep the comments coming or – even better – if you feel strongly about using (or not using) e-books let us know so we can involve you in our on-going focus groups and forums on the subject of e-resources.

There were also more requests for a prayer room – something we’ve been asked about before and responded to as part of previous feedback reviews. Unfortunately addressing this request would need to be part of a campus-wide solution as we do not have space in the Library for prayer facilities.

As we’re fast approaching our word limit – and, this being a Library, the fines per word for going over it are quite extortionate, as you can imagine – we’ll just briefly note the other runners and riders. These have all been noted and we will take what we can from them going forward, so don’t feel that because they weren’t so widely commented on that they’re any less important to us. We had two cards each on the following:

Group Study Rooms are too hot (we will see what we can do about that….)

Accessibility – lifts and entry gates (we know, and we are sorry and have responded in person where we had your details…)

Longer book loans/renewals (we’re looking into it)

Puppies (….aaaahhh!)

More study spaces (we’re working on this too. It’s on-going but probably will not happen until the summer as these are big projects that can’t rely happen until then…)

You also asked for, in no particular order:

Better copiers and more space for your work near them (Noted)

Sleeping booths (…..??!!??)

An outside eating area by the drinks machines (in the foyer, we’re guessing? Also noted…)

More information for 1st years on where everything is (…also also noted…)

You liked…

Plugs and sockets (…”great, but more is always good…)

You didn’t like…


“Library is a study space not a social space” (…)

Look out for the ‘Dear Library…’ banner on the ground floor (and possibly elsewhere) next week. We’ve chosen an exam week as we felt you might have exam-specific comments and suggestions you wanted to tell us about – if you can spare the time to fill out a ‘Dear Library…’ card, please do. We may not realise there’s an opportunity to improve our service unless you let us know.

Thanks again to everyone who fedback… feededback? Took part. Keep those comments coming.


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