Category Archives: Tips for students

What if the article I need isn’t full-text online?

Unfortunately, not all databases or online searches will lead to full-text articles, but there is always a chance that we have a print copy of the journal. In order to check whether the library has copies of the journal, check the online catalog:

  • You can either search by “Journal title keywords” or “Title begins with…” from the library homepage search box
  • Be sure to type the name of the journal in the search box (not the article title)

We also maintain a handy guide of helpful tips and instructions for finding journals. If you’ve ever been confused about journal abbreviations or how to find journals on your topic – it’s a great place to look!

Written by Kathi Matsura

What should I do if the book isn’t on the shelf?

Yes… I guess it’s happened to all of us. You make a trip all the way to the library, and then realize that the book you want is nowhere to be found.

Before leaving in frustration, try one of these steps:

  • Look around the surrounding shelves a bit. It’s possible that the book was inadvertently misplaced. Nearby copy machines and tables are also possible spots to quickly look.
  • Check the catalog record again, and make sure that both the call number and location are correct. Bound journals, for example, are not shelved with the other books, and you might be looking in the wrong area (maybe even the wrong library). Here’s a quick glance at our book location chart.
  • When double-checking the catalog record, make sure that the book hasn’t already been checked out. Take a look at the “Library (Owned/Out)” column in the catalog record. The first number indicates how many copies the library owns, and the second number will let you know how many are checked out. If all the books are available, the second number should read “0”.
  • Is the book still missing? Try checking the re-shelving area in Perkins. Before going back to the shelves, the books are organized in a room behind the circulation area – Level A. Follow the pathway with the library lockers, e-print stations and copy machines. The re-shelving area is the first door on the left.
  • Finally, you can request a search for the book. Submit this missing book form electronically, and library staff will try to locate the book for you. This request form includes both Perkins and Lilly (plus a few other branch libraries). You would be contacted by email regarding the status of the book. If the book is found, it will be held for you. Otherwise, an inter-library loan might be suggested.

Additional information about the shelf maintenance at Perkins Library can be found here.

Written by Kathi Matsura

Save time! Learn EndNote!

Jump start your research and writing by using EndNote, a reference management tool that is sure to save you time and frustration. Duke faculty, students and staff may download EndNote to personal or work computers, free of charge.

Perkins Library is offering four free EndNote sessions:

Interested? Register today — space is limited!

Watch Your Laptop

Yesterday there were two laptop thefts reported in Perkins-Bostock in the course of the morning. The police officer who responded walked around the building and noted that he could have taken three more laptops that he saw unattended. Please do not leave your laptop alone, even if you just plan to run to the Perk or to the stacks for 2 minutes!

Laptop thefts are a financial blow to students, but they often cause academic harm as well. Many students do not regularly back up their files, so the loss of a laptop can mean the loss of projects and papers you haven’t turned in yet.

Sometimes it feels like we’ve seen it all at the Reference Desk (there was the squirrel living in a trash can on Perkins 4 one spring), but we never get used to the heartbreak of seeing students who have lost significant work. I’d estimate that laptop theft is the number 2 cause of loss of student work; the number one cause we see is saving to the desktop of a public computer, then getting logged out (which wipes the desktop of all files). Take the time to back up your files, and keep your belongings with you. It’s worth it.

Written by Phoebe Acheson

How do I cite sources?

There is a citation help guide available through the library website.

The section on the left explains how to cite sources within your paper. The section on the right explains how to compile a list of references at the end of your paper. Styles covered in this guide include: MLA, APA, Turabian, Chicago, and CSE. If this source does not include what you are looking for – try a Google search. Many libraries create similar citation guides, and one of them just might have what you need. Complete style manuals can also be borrowed from the library. Check the online catalog for availability.

For keeping track of citations and managing your references, be sure to consider some of the bibliographic software options available to Duke students:

  • EndNote, for example, will import references into a document as you write, and papers can be automatically formatted according to many different bibliographic styles.
  • The open-source Zotero (part 1 / part 2) is also an exciting new Firefox extension that allows you to store, retrieve and organize your reference sources for a more streamlined citation process.

Any of these can be fabulous time-saving options, and worth taking the effort to learn and explore!

Written by Kathi Matsura

Search Duke Library Resources from Facebook

Hang out in Facebook a lot? Do you think you might want to search the Duke library catalog and other library databases directly from there some times? You can now using the Duke Libraries Facebook application.

duke-library-facebook-app.jpg

To install it, go to http://apps.facebook.com/dukelibraries/ and follow the usual method for installing Facebook applications, checking or unchecking the settings you want for this application. Then look for it on your profile page. The box should be able to be moved around on your page and fit in either column. With this app, you should be able to do any of the searches that you can do on the library home page.

Try it out, and let us know what you think!

Written by Phoebe Acheson

Working over Spring Break? We are.

For those of you who are working hard instead of (or in addition to) playing hard this spring break, here are some tips for using the library remotely:

You have automatic access to all the library’s article databases and other resources while you are home (or in Myrtle Beach.) Use the “database search” box on the library home page to find the resource you need, and when you click through to it you will be prompted for your NetID and password. More information on remote access is here.

460956814_59e9cfa83f_m.jpg

We’re here for questions via email, IM, and phone. We’ll be keeping short hours during the week, but if you email overnight we’ll get back to you first thing in the morning.

For those staying in town, come on by! We’re only open days, but we’d love to see you.

(Photo of Myrtle Beach taken by Curtis and Eric, found at Flickr, and used under a Creative Commons license.)

Written by Phoebe Acheson

Documentary Films for Research

Documentary films can be a great resource for academic work, and Duke is a great place to find documentaries. The Center for Documentary Studies offers undergraduate classes, workshops, and public programs and events; Lilly Library has an excellent film collection including many documentaries; and Durham is home to the world-famous Full Frame Documentary Film Festival.

DocumentaryFilms.net has a useful directory of documentaries by broad categories like Biography and Nature and Wildlife, and includes a search box. You can also search for documentaries, and often find free streaming video of the trailer or even the entire film, at YouTube or Google Video.

This is a trailer for Born Into Brothels, which won the Academy Award for Best Documentary Film. Duke has this film at Lilly Library; it’s DVD 5317.

You can search the library’s online catalog for films relevant to your research using the search tips provided by Lilly. While most films are in the Lilly collection, we have government videos, medical training videos, and other valuable items in libraries across campus. Lilly has stations where you can watch video cassettes, and most DVDs can be checked out.

Written by Phoebe Acheson

Where are the books?

I guess you have the Call Number and Title, but now you’re wondering where to go? Given the ongoing construction at Perkins, this is a very common question – and fortunately easy to answer!

* For Perkins/Bostock Libraries:

  • Most books are located either on Perkins Lower Level 2 or Bostock 4
  • Some exceptions include: current periodicals or newspapers, microfiche, East Asian collection, Reference sources and government documents. Locations are indicated in the “Find Books” link near the center of the homepage (under the How Do I… heading)

* For materials at the Library Service Center:

  • Use the GetIt@Duke “Request” link for retrieval and delivery to a library location convenient to you. Email notification will be sent when it arrives.

* For “In-Process LC” books:

  • These sources can still be retrieved with the GetIt@Duke “Request” link, and an email will be sent to you when it is available for pick-up.
  • These materials have Dewey call numbers (notice they begin with numbers- not letters), and haven’t completed reclassification into the Library of Congress (LC) system.

* For materials at other libraries:

  • Includes information for locating books at both Lilly and the Divinity Library

You can also check with the Circulation or Reference desks if you are unable to locate a book on the shelf, or request a search for the missing book.

Written by Kathi Matsura

How do I look for specific books, journals or movies in the catalog?

It may sound like a lot of questions rolled into one, but the process for locating resources in various formats is fairly consistent.

* Basic Search:

  1. From the library homepage, type the title into the search box under the catalog tab.
  2. Choose “Title begins with” from the drop down menu, and click “Go”. This will search the entire library catalog and retrieve the results.
  3. Because the search included all formats of the title, you may need to scroll a bit to find what you need.

* Advanced Search: (Limiting to specific types of materials)

  1. Click on “Advanced Search” from the library homepage search box.
  2. Under “Format” in the blue box on the right of the screen, select “Film/Video”, “Audio Books” or another type of resource from the drop down menu
  3. Select “Title Keywords” from the drop down menu
  4. Enter Title keywords and click “Go”

*“How Do I…?” Feature Box:

The feature box linked above offers numerous helpful hints and guides when searching for specific types of materials.

Some of the helpful links include searches for books, journals, movies and lots more. Explore it a bit. You might learn a useful thing or two!

Written by Kathi Matsura

Introducing Zotero (part 2)

(Since my first post introducing the research tool Zotero, its development continues apace. Several new features have been added, and over 60 institutions, according to the Zotero blog, now recommend Zotero, including MIT and Rice University–both having published their own tutorials on using it.)

Zotero Tour ThumbnailIn my initial post I promised to explain why I thought Zotero was something worth writing home about, not just yet-another-piece-of-software. In case you’re still wondering if Zotero is worth the hype, I’ll make good on the promise. First, since Zotero is an open-source extension to the Firefox browser, anyone can modify it to support their needs—for example, by adding new citation styles or integration with word processors like OpenOffice.org. Of course, being open-source software, Zotero doesn’t cost a dime, making it an even more attractive alternative to expensive proprietary options like EndNote. Second, Zotero makes use of the evolving Firefox extension platform (also open-source) which will, I think, become ever more useful and functional development platform, as software proliferates that lives in the space between the internet and your computer. Lastly, Zotero is a modest coup for open access. As Zotero not only creates a citation to the material you’re reading in your browser—a journal article from PLOS Biology, for example—but also a copy (Zotero calls it a “snapshot”), when you need to refer or share the material later, you’ll be able to provide not only the citation but also the content itself. No trip back to the database or journal’s website is required (“Research, not re-search” is among Zotero’s mottos). Imagine thousands of researchers making use of this feature and you can imagine how this might constitute a modest push toward faster, easier access to research material for those who need it.

If any of this interests you and you’re not already a user, the Zotero folks have a short video introducing the extention.

Where is the best place to find information on a specific subject?

There are a number of ways to approach a subject search, and I’d recommend exploring all of these options:

  • Subject guides: These guides can be found through the library website, and introduce multiple resources which are particularly useful for specific subject areas. They have been created by our own subject librarians, and can provide an excellent starting point for your research.
  • Databases: For step-by-step instructions, watch this brief tutorial (1 min, 5 sec) on choosing a database for your topic. In addition to a database search, both the article tab and advanced search e-journal tabs offer pull down subject headings which can help narrow the field.
  • Print Resources: When searching the library catalog for books, it might be useful to try a subject search using the Library of Congress subject headings. Find a book that is relevant to your topic using a keyword search, and then explore the topic by either displaying other records that match your topic or browse other subject headings that may be related to it.
  • Research Consultation: Still having difficulty or unable to find what you need? Individual research consultations can be arranged by appointment with one of our reference or subject librarians. Consultations can be arranged within a week, but feel free to email, IM, call or stop by the reference desk if you need some pointers to get you headed in the right direction.

Written by Kathi Matsura

Online Encylopedias for Specific Subjects

We recently wrote about some all-encompassing online encyclopedias. But there are also some very useful encyclopedias on specific scholarly topics. Increasingly the standard print reference works in any given field are becoming available in keyword-searchable full text online. Here are some great ones:

Oxford Reference Online
has excellent encyclopedias and dictionaries for fields from Art and Architecture to Science, and also includes foreign language and quotation dictionaries. Titles include The Oxford Classical Dictionary, A Dictionary of Food and Nutrition, and The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Politics. They even have a browser toolbar you can download and install allowing you to search their products.

oxford.jpg

AccessScience @ McGraw-Hill gives you keyword searchability of the McGraw-Hill Encyclopedia of Science and Technology as well as science biographies, yearbooks, and some news articles.

Blackwell Reference Online has especially strong collections in Business, History, Linguistics, Literature, and Philosophy.

Next in our tour of online reference works we’ll look at some specific titles. If you want an overview of the things we subscribe to, look in the Resource Finder under the subject heading Reference, and look for Encyclopedias and Dictionaries.

Written by Phoebe Acheson

I need a specific article. How do I get it?

Not a problem… we get asked this question a lot!

If you already have the citation (author, title, journal name, etc.) , you can look up the journal title in the E-Journal Finder.

  • If we have no online full text, click the link to search the catalog for print or microfilm.
  • Need help figuring out what words are the journal title? See Understanding Citations.
  • Have a mystery abbreviation for the journal title? See the book Periodical Title Abbreviations at the Perkins Reference Desk or Ask a Librarian.

On occasion, the library may not have the particular journal either in print or online for the year needed. As long as your paper isn’t due in the next few days, you can always request the article through our interlibrary loan service.

Still having trouble? Maybe you’ve already found the article in a database, but can’t figure out how to access it? The answer is in the “get it at Duke” button. Take a look at our “get it at Duke” tutorial (2 min 12 sec). It could save you a lot of time and confusion in the end.

Happy hunting!

Written by Kathi Matsura

Plagiarism Prevention Tips

Plagiarism is in the news again, most recently when a romance novel writer was found to have copied from an article on (no kidding) endangered black-footed ferrets. Here’s Paul Tolme, the freelance wildlife journalist, on being plagiarized:

In the Internet age, every freelance writer fears that his or her words will be appropriated without compensation. First I was angry. Then I had to laugh. To see my textbook descriptions of ferrets in a bodice-ripper, as dialogue between a hunky American Indian and a lustful pioneer woman who several pages later have sex on a mossy riverbank, is the height of absurdity.

The romance novelist is claiming ignorance as a cause of her plagiarism. Unfortunately, ignorance is no excuse. Most students who plagiarize didn’t mean to: they either are careless in cutting and pasting from multiple sources and forget to attribute their sources, are genuinely confused about whether or how to cite something, or are working at the last minute and get desperate and sloppy.

How can you avoid plagiarism? The library has a tutorial that helps explain the dangers, sets out the rules of appropriate citation, and sends you to writing tutors or counselors if you need more help. A sample:

Chances are that you understand the difference between creating incomplete citations and passing off someone else’s work as your own. Still, you … may occasionally find yourself in confusing situations. Do Internet sources need to be cited the same way as books? How do you cite something from the Web if there’s no indication who wrote it? What if you rewrite someone else’s ideas, putting them all into your own words — do you still need to cite? If you are in doubt, you run the risk of unintentionally plagiarizing.

In the end, it all worked out for the ferrets. The romance novel reader’s community that broke the story has donated $5,000 to protect the black-footed ferret.

Written by Phoebe Acheson

Using the library just got easier

Let’s face it: Navigating Duke library’s online resources can be a challenge — even frustrating — at times. We librarians are trying to cut out some of the guesswork by developing short (2 minutes, tops!) animated tutorials with step-by-step directions designed to illuminate some of the murkier aspects of library research.

Here’s what you’ll find…

  • Choosing the right database — Ever tried to get into a database to find an article for your econ paper but just couldn’t figure out which database to use (there are nearly 500 to choose from, after all!)? This tutorial will help you make sense of those categories and never-ending lists.
  • Requesting books that are checked out — Yes, there is a way to get your hands on that book that’s checked out till May 15. Take a look at this tutorial to find out.
  • Using “get it @ duke” — That little blue button can do oh-so-much good but not without a little confusion when you’re first figuring it out. This tutorial will help shorten the learning curve.

There are more tutorials in the works, and we’d love your input on possible topics or ways we can these guides even more user-friendly. Here’s the place for your thoughts and suggestions!

Do serif fonts get you better grades?

Last week I saw a documentary called Helvetica, which explored the history and culture of typefaces, and the sans-serif Helvetica font in particular. It got me thinking more about the almost sub-conscious power of the fonts used in the writing all around us, and the ones I use myself. (It’s a fun and elegant documentary by the way, and not at all as boring or geeky as it might sound.)

Coincidentally, a couple of days later I came across a blog posting called The Secret Lives of Fonts, in which the author reviewed 52 papers he wrote for university courses and found that on average he got better grades on the ones where he used serif fonts than on the ones where he used sans-serif fonts. He writes:

Well, would you believe it? My essays written in Georgia did the best overall. This got me thinking as to why that might be: maybe fonts speak a lot louder than we think they do. Especially to a professor who has to wade through a collection of them; Times seems to be the norm, so it really doesn’t set off any subconcious triggers. Georgia is enough like Times to retain its academic feel, and is different enough to be something of a relief for the grader. Trebuchet seems to set off a negative trigger, maybe just based on the fact that it’s not as easy to read in print, maybe on the fact that it looks like something off a blog rather than an academic journal. Who knows.

What fonts do you use, and have you noticed patterns like these? Professors and TAs, do you have typeface preferences for the papers you need to grade? Is there something to this?

Myself, I like Verdana, but I’m mostly reading my own words on screens now. Maybe I should think again and change the font just before I print it out…

Bookish Applications for Facebook

If you spend all your time in Facebook, branch out from Scrabulous and movie trivia quizzes to take a look at some applications related to the library and books.

So far we’ve found:

worldcat.jpg
WorldCat, the closest thing there is to a universal library catalog (for US users, anyway), now lets you search their public site directly from Facebook.

minilibrary.jpg

MiniLibrary, which does sort of the same thing except searching European National Libraries.

iread.jpg
Books iRead, which allows you to add your books and rate them, and compare them to what your friends have. It’s sort of a simplified LibraryThing for Facebook, basically.

We hear that an application that will allow you to search the Duke Library catalog from Facebook is in the works; we’ll announce it here when it’s ready.

Have you found any useful and/or fun library, research, or book-related applications on Facebook? Give us a link!

Written by Phoebe Acheson

Webcast on Zotero: Online Citation Manager

Innovate, Journal of Online Education, is hosting a webcast that looks like a good introduction to Zotero, the free online citation management system that Allen raved about here. It’s Thursday Jan. 10 at 2:00 pm EST. [edited to correct date: Thanks, Brandi!]

It looks like you have to register for the webcast, but it’s free. A good way to get your feet wet if you’ve been thinking about Zotero. And how often do you get to hear from an official Technology Evangelist?

Written by Phoebe Acheson

Online Encyclopedias: Wikipedia Alternatives

Why an encyclopedia?

    Fast overview of a topic
    Historical timeline & basic facts
    Find out the right keywords for article searches
    Find out the main issues in the field
    Check for a list of suggested readings to start your real research

Which Encyclopedia?

Wikipedia has quickly become a go-to internet source when you need an encyclopedia. But there have been some concerns about its authority and objectivity, so it should be used cautiously. Use your critical thinking skills – if the article has footnotes, a list of further readings, and feels balanced, it is more likely to be comparable to what you would find in a more traditional encyclopedia. And Wikipedia can be a wonderful source of arcane information: when you really need a list of original air dates for episodes of The Brady Bunch, Wikipedia is the right source!

When your needs are less Florence Henderson-centric, there are other excellent encyclopedias available online. This post will cover the big general ones:

Encyclopedia Britannica online (available by Duke subscription) replicates the authoritative print version but adds web-only tools, including historical timelines and country comparisons.

Enciclopedia Universal en Espanol is also produced by Britannica, but in Spanish and with a focus on Spain and Latin America.

The Columbia Encyclopedia (6th Edition) is available via InfoPlease.com and Bartelby.com; this is a shorter, one-volume encyclopedia in its print version. Both sites also have various other dictionaries, thesauruses, and almanacs – as well as ads (InfoPlease’s interface is far more busy and annoying, IMO).

Browse the list of Reference resources here for more useful starting places for research – and watch this space for highlights of some excellent subject-specific encyclopedias online.

Written by Phoebe Acheson

Cell Phones for Citation

A colleague in the library recently observed a student using a cell phone camera to make a quick “note” of the title page of a book, and the call number label. What a great idea! Very useful for people who are in a big hurry, but want to make sure they capture the full bibliographic citation of something they checked, and also want a reminder of the call number so they can come back for it. Much better than a scribbled post-it note that can be lost or undecipherable.

Plays, and More Plays.

Photo by absent.canadian from the Photo Scavenger Hunt – any interest in doing a new hunt in the new semester?

By Phoebe Acheson

Take EndNote on the road with EndNote Web

Interested in accessing your EndNote library even when you’re not in front of your personal computer? Take your research on the road by setting up an EndNote Web account, and enjoy the freedom to consult or add citations to your EndNote library from any computer with an internet connection.

EndNote Web is designed to complement the more robust desktop version of the citation management tool, but it’s possible to use it even if you’ve never used EndNote (by the way, EndNote may be downloaded for free by Duke students, staff and faculty).

Simply set up an Endnote Web account, and then add up to 10,000 citations to your Web library. Format bibliographies and in-text citations in over 2300 publishing styles (MLA, APA, etc.), or use the Cite While You Write plug-in and Microsoft Word to format papers and insert references instantly. You may also share citations with others who use the web application and search PubMed, Web of Science and hundreds of libraries for relevant resources, all within the EndNote Web interface.

RefWorks

And if you choose to use the two programs together (as they were intended), it’s easy to transfer citations between EndNote and EndNote Web.

Give it a try, and let us know what you think about EndNote’s latest innovation for researchers who don’t want to be tied to their offices or dorm rooms.

The Sad Saga of Library Staplers

Most of the campus libraries provide staplers, hole punches, and other basic office tools for students to use. We also regularly have to replace these items because of theft – accidental due to absentmindedness, or intentional – and breakage.

So, think of the poor librarian (that would be me) who spends all her time buying new staplers and hunting for that magical, heavy-duty stapler that staples up to 60 pages and doesn’t break (our current standby is the Swingline 77701, but it breaks a lot). Please don’t try to force the staplers or hole punches to do jobs they are not made to do. Banging on the stapler never helps, and as for the person who did this:

hole punch

You are very strong – this is an all-metal handle that has been broken in two. Wow. I am impressed, and also a little afraid.

If any of our readers are stapler afficionadoes (or have just watched Office Space too many times), please leave us a comment suggesting the miraculous stapler that will solve all our problems and never break!

By Phoebe Acheson

Lost files? Don’t lose hope!

We’ve all been there. After working for hours, we hit the wrong key or forget to save a file opened from email, and before we know it, lose it all.

To save yourself the headache of these maddening situations, consider ways that you can prevent them from happening in the first place…

Before you make edits to a doc that you email to yourself to work on from another machine, click Save As, and Save it to the desktop or a flash drive (remember, though, that the desktop gets cleared as soon as you log off).

Better yet, bypass emailing yourself altogether by using Duke’s WebFiles, which provide all Duke students, faculty and staff with 5GB of personal file space and web space. Questions? See How to Use WebFiles.

And, believe it or not, there are ways to retrieve those files that appear to be lost in the Ether:

Strategy One: Check the Recycle Bin on your computer.

Strategy Two: Click Start, Search, and use Windows’ “When was it modified?” option under All Files and Folders (in Vista, click Start, Search and then click the down arrow to the right of Advanced Search, and select Date Modified in the Date dropdown menu at left). See your file? Be sure to save it in another location before continuing to work!

Strategy Three: Try a free undelete utility.

Strategy Four: Buy a file-recovery program (File Scavenger goes for $49, while Easy Recovery Professional will cost you $500).

Still no luck? For tips on how to recover anything from Excel files to a lost password, check out PC World’s How to Recover (Almost) Anything.

Have horror stories to tell about work you’ve lost? Have brilliant tips for recovering precious files? Do share!

Introducing Zotero (part one)

zotero logo smallZotero describes itself as a Firefox extension that helps you “collect, manage, and cite your research sources.” Since I’m as technologically trail-weary as the next person, I’ll try to make clear what it is about Zotero that should rouse you out of bed and why I’ve been an enthusiastic user for the last six months.

At its most basic, Zotero streamlines the process of creating citations. Instead of making an extra trip back to the library catalog or a book’s front matter when you need to fill in the required fields (publication year, editor, etc.) in your bibliographic software (EndNote, BibTex), you let Zotero do it for you the first time, when you’re looking at the book’s record in your browser (in Duke’s catalog, Worldcat, Amazon, Google Books, etc.). It’ll grab the relevant details and more from the catalog record at the click of an icon (see image below). Zotero gets much sweeter if you’re viewing the item-to-be-cited itself in your browser, rather than its catalog entry–for example, an article on Le Monde or the New York Times. Not only will Zotero pull out all the information you’ll need to cite the article later, it will make a local copy of the page you’re looking at, so if you or the article is ever off-line, you’ll still have a copy. Once the item is saved, creating a citation or a bibliography in whatever style you’d like (MLA, APA, Chicago) is easy.

using zotero with nytimes

If you’re already using Firefox, treat yourself to Zotero. It’ll save you typing and time. The extension is open-source as well, over a year in development by a crack team at George Mason University. Still have doubts? Zotero recently won an award for best instructional technology software from the American Political Science Association.

All this said, I’ve hardly touched on the features of Zotero that make it well-nigh revolutionary as a piece of software. I’ll save that for part two.

[update 2007-10-12: If you’re eager to read more about Zotero, I recommend Scott Mclemee’s review from a few weeks ago on Inside Higher Ed.]

Taking notes that work

The awesome LifeHack blog has an article today with advice for students on how to take good notes. They write

Note-taking is one of those skills that rarely gets taught. Teachers and professors assume either that taking good notes comes naturally or that someone else must have already taught students how to take notes.

and continue

Not only do good notes help us recall facts and ideas we may have forgotten, the act of writing things down helps many of us to remember them better in the first place.

The short article provides advice on how to take good notes and describes several different note-taking techniques you might want to try.

Check it out here: Advice for Students: Taking Notes that Work.