Tricks and tips for getting the most out of college libraries

Tricks and tips for getting the most out of college libraries

Posted by Roger Molins on Mar 19, 2018 1:27:39 PM

No matter what you study or where in Europe you study it, chances are you will spend a great deal of time within the walls of a college library. The good news is that there is more to your college library than you could imagine.

When you hear the word “library”, what comes to your mind? Fair enough, it’s a place where one rents books. However, the college library naturally ends up becoming the hangout place during the week, in-between courses and during group assignments. The key to dealing with it? Keep reading.


Spot the best spots


Like everything else in life, a college library is about location, location, location. Every library has sweet spots that will cover all your needs: a plug nearby for the laptop or the smartphone charger, a big enough table space, good lighting, a proper Wi-Fi coverage or a window nearby to daydream to while reading that neverending manual. Finding those spots you may end up loving is not tricky, but conquering them is, that’s why the next tip is…







Be there early


This is particularly relevant if you’re gonna stay in the library for a long time during the day: you’ll want to stay in a good spot, and those are gone not long after the doors are open. The quality of your studying time could depend on finding a noise or distraction-free spot. By finals week (or month), college libraries expand their schedules and some are even open all night: find out about those and be there early if you plan on securing your place. College libraries are very crowded during those weeks, to the point that there might be queues forming at the entrance and a rush-in moment like on a mall’s first sales day.


Learn how to navigate the resources


It’s very important to know what the library has to offer, and how you can access it efficiently. Nowadays, most of them have an online catalog, where you can browse and place a reservation over books, magazines or other materials, with your Student ID. Every library has its own way of organizing its resources. Usually, college libraries work with one another and allow to interlibrary loan from another library for free, delivery included. Borrowing periods may vary depending on the item: most books may be loaned for three or four weeks, but others may be loaned for shorter time, specially if another user reserves them.



Reserve a room


If you plan on group studying or working on an assignment with some classmates, it’s best to do so in a separate room, which most college libraries have. They are free, and very easy to reserve for as long as needed. It’s fun to see how these meetings with colleagues evolve into random talks and quickly deviate from the topic at hand. Within these rooms, one can talk a bit louder without bothering anyone and not risking being kicked out.








Lastly, not a tip but a recommendation: enjoy your library time. You’ll find every resource and material you may need to work on your assignments or study for the finals, and while doing so, you’ll get to spend time with classmates and other students as well as meet new people.


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Topics: Europe, studyabroad, friends, university, eurotrip, mysaa, goabroad, travelabroad, library

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