Keyboard shortcuts to use in your studies

There are small short cuts which can be smart to use when studying, as it makes your work a little bit more efficient – read this blog post to get a quick walk through of four of them.

Copy, cut and paste with short cuts

When you want to copy text in a document and paste it somewhere else it’s easy to use the keyboard shortcuts. The keyboard shortcuts differ between different operating systems, and here we show those that apply to Windows and MacOS.

Copy text

  • Mark the text you want to copy.
  • In Windows: Press the keys Ctrl and C at the same time.
  • In MacOS: Press the keys command and C at the same time.

Cut text

  • Mark the text you want to cut out.
  • In Windows: Press the keys Ctrl and X at the same time.
  • In MacOS: Press the keys command and X at the same time.

Paste text

  • Place the marker where you want to insert the text.
  • In Windows: Press the keys Ctrl and V at the same time.
  • In MacOS: Press the keys command and V at the same time.

Search for words within a document

If you want to find a text section in a document, or check for a word, you can use the function Find to search within the document. Using this function you don’t have sit and read / skim through the entire document manually. In different programs you will find the function in different places. Below you can see examples of where you can find it in Adobe Reader and Microsoft Word:

You can also use the keyboard short cut for Find – just press Ctrl and F at the same time.

Text: Katharina Nordling
Photo: Hannah Joshua, Unsplash

What is a DOI?

When writing references to scientific articles, you should include the article’s DOI in the reference, but what is it, and how does a DOI differ from a regular link? We’ll try to sort it all out in this blog post.

A DOI is a persistent link – a link that is supposed to exist forever. Common links on the Internet can be broken and changed, for example if the publisher where the article is published changes their web address. But a persistent link should last despite such, or other, changes.

DOI stands for Digital Object Identifier and is an alphanumeric character string (ie a code containing both letters and numbers) that can be given to electronic documents or objects. An article’s DOI can often be found at the beginning of the article, or in the web page (post) where all information about the article can be found.

Not all articles have a DOI; this is something that the publishers themselves decide if they want to put their articles on, and they must then pay to get a DOI.

Each DOI is thus unique, so with the help of a DOI you will always find a way back to the object in question. Although the DOI might not take you all the way to the actual document. For example, I an article is published behind a paywall, you will at least come to a page with information about the document in question.

However, you cannot simply take the DOI code and paste it into the browser’s address bar, as it is not a URL. A DOI must always be resolved, and it is done using a DOI resolver.

Alternative if you have a DOI you can enter it in a web browser, but you have to put http://doi.org/ in front of the code itself, ie http://doi.org/10.1177/1355819614534836.

So to summarize, one can say that a DOI is a neat way to always find your way back to an article, but you need a tool to be able to use it in a good way.

Text: Katharina Nordling

Books to read if you’re writing your student thesis

It’s spring term and high season for thesis writing, which can be both scary, hard, interesting, and fun at once – here you will find tips on books that can help you in the process of writing your thesis. They cover the topics research methods and academic writing.

As for the method, this is a central part of the process: What method do you use in your studies, and how do you describe this in the thesis? This is where the method books come to rescue. Some of you have had method courses earlier; others will have a method course just before the thesis writing starts. And you will, of course, get some tips on good books in these courses, but there are other books than the course literature, and you’ll find plenty of books at the library. The largest part of all books on quantitative and qualitative methods can be found at department 300 on level 2.5 in the library.

There are also some good books to read on writing in general, and on academic writing in particular. These books will give you tips and advice when it comes to language (for example how to write in a passive voice instead of in first person), how to formulate different parts of the thesis (how to write the introduction), etcetera. You will find most of these books on shelf 808.066 on floor 4 in the library.

Text & photo: Katharina Nordling

Time to choose subject for your thesis? Get inspired by previous students!

For some students at the university it’s time to start thinking about the student thesis, and we are talking about THE student thesis, the one that marks the end of their studies here at the university. When you start thinking about THE thesis, it’s easy to get depressed.

There can be several different reasons for the feelings of depression; but one of the things causing it might be that you don’t know what to write about. You have no idea – totally blank! Or maybe you have a rough idea, but which perspective should you use on your subject? In both these cases it could be a good idea to look at what other students have done before you: What have they written about? Looking at past students work is a way to be inspired (and it’s also a way to realize that it’s not impossible to write a student thesis – many students have done it before you).

There are several different places to search for student theses. If you’re looking for theses published at this university you find them in one of the university publication databases:

  • Search in BADA for student theses published in full text until 2014
  • Search in DiVA for student theses published in full text from 2015

If you want to search for student theses from any of the universities in Sweden, you should try the web site essays.se. Using this web site you can search among over 72,000 different student theses written in English to find inspiration. If you do an advanced search, you can easily limit your search to a certain topic, university, language or publication year.

Good luck in finding the subject for your thesis! If you want help with any of the sources above, don’t hesitate to contact us at the library. You can stop by the Information Point and talk to us in person, or you can send us an e-mail.

Text: Katharina Nordling
Picture: Colourbox & Katharina Nordling

Things to consider when reading a scientific text

To sit down and read a text may seem like a simple thing to do, but there is a difference between texts and texts – here are some tips on how to think when you’re reading a scientific text. 

Scientific texts have often the following structure IMR(A)D: Introduction, Method, Results (Analysis) and Discussion. But first in all scientific articles is the abstract. The abstract is a summary with the purpose to give you a quick indication on whether the article is of interest to you or not. It should contain some type of purpose for the study, how the study was done, what results were found and what conclusions could be drawn.

  • Then, the introduction follows, with two purposes: To create interest as well as to put the study into a general context by presenting previous research.
  • The method section describes which methods have been used to answer the questions. This section is important to read carefully so that you can determine the validity, that is how reasonable and correct the conclusions are.
  • Results present what the research data shows and it can be visualised with figures and tables.
  • In the ending discussion section the current study is related back to previous research and the current results are put in context. In the discussion, you should also find the conclusions made from the study.

When reading a text try to find the main points in the text. Perhaps you can also find what is surprising, unexpected or different from previous research or if there is something that is rarely focused on other research.

When you read a scientific text, you can consider and answer the following questions:

  • What is the problem that this text is trying to answer? Why is this question important to answer?
  • Is the used method the best to answer the questions or is there a better method?
  • What are the specific results? Can I summarize them in a couple of sentences?
  • Are the results supported by the research data?
  • Are there other ways to interpret the research data which the authors didn’t address?
  • In which way are the results unique/new/unusual/ or supporting compared to other related research in the area?
  • How can the results be related to what I am interested in? To other texts I’ve read?
  • Are there some specific applications presented in the text? Which future experiments could be done? Are there unanswered questions or are the results open for new questions?

You can also draw inferences, like in this example:

“Rett Syndrome is a childhood neurodevelopmental disorder and one of the most common causes of mental retardation in females with an incidence of 1 in 10000-15000.”[1]

Comment: Hmmm…can it be related to a gene on the X-chromosome since its one of the most common causes in females… How common is that?

You should also take notes while reading. The best case scenario is that you take notes electronically, because you probably will find a specific note much easier later on. One way to do this is to create a template that you fill in for each text you are reading. Then your reading will be systematically documented and it may also help you in reading. The Library has also created a Google Drive document that you can download and use. You can download the template in a couple of different formats (Choose File and the Download as…).

Text: Pieta Eklund & Katharina Nordling
Photo: Mostphotos

[1] Ballestar, E., Yusufzai, T.M., & Wolffe, A.P. (2000) Effects of Rett Syndrome Mutations of the Methyl-CpG Binding Domain of the Transcriptional Repressor MeCP2
on Selectivity for Association with Methylated DNA. Biochemistry, 31, 7100-7106

Ig Nobel Prize 2018 – research that make you laugh

In a few weeks this year’s Nobel Prize winners will be announced, but last week the ceremony for an alternative Nobel Prize was held: The Ig Nobel Prize ceremony. The Ig Nobel Prize honor achievements that make people laugh, and then think, with focus on unusual and imaginative research.

You can read a summary of all ten prizes if you go to the Ig Nobel Prize blog, but here we name three of the ten prizes that were handed out:

The prize in anthropology went to research conducted at Lund University; research on monkeys where three researchers collected evidence of zoos showing that chimpanzees imitate humans to the same extent, and at least as well, as humans imitates chimpanzees. Here you can find the article describing the research: Persson, T, Sauciuc, G.A. & Madsen, E. (2018) Spontaneous cross-species imitation in interactions between chimpanzees and zoo visitors. Primates 59(1), ss. 19-29.

The prize in literature goes to research that illustrates how users use certain literature, namely manuals. Researchers at Queensland University of Technology have studied users’ use of manuals for complicated products, and among other things conclude that younger people tend to be less likely to read the manual. Here’s a small piece of the abstract to the article (which unfortunately is not openly available, or available through library subscriptions):

We found that manuals are not read by the majority of people, and most do not use all the features of the products that they own and use regularly. Men are more likely to do both than women, and younger people are less likely to use manuals than middle-aged and older ones. More educated people are also less likely to read manuals. Over-featuring and being forced to consult manuals also appears to cause negative emotional experiences.

The price in medicine goes to research on methods to get kidney stones to pass through the body. In the current research, the effect of a rollercoaster ride on kidney stones has been studied. And it was found that a rollercoaster ride can be a way to get kidney stones to pass, and the best results are given if you take a rear seating position in the train.The article describing this research can be found here: Mitchell M.A., Wartinger D.D. (2016). Validation of a Functional Pyelocalyceal Renal Model for the Evaluation of Renal Calculi Passage While Riding a Roller Coaster. The Journal of the American Osteopathic Association 116(10), ss. 647-52.

Now are we just waiting for the announcements of the winners of the real Nobel Prize. The first winner will be presented at 1 October 2018.

Text: Katharina Nordling
Photo– chimpanzee: Kelly Sikkema, Unsplash
Foto – rollercoaster: Multa Media, Unsplash

Print document from the university’s computers – here’s how it works!

Do you need to print a document, but you’re not sure how to do it – then this is what you need to read! This instruction explains how you print from the computers at the university. If you want to print a document from your laptop – please read this blog post instead.

At the computer

The most important part when you’re about to print, is to select the right printer. And that’s not very hard – you should ALWAYS select the printer called Print-and-Collect.

How the printing dialog (the frame where you manage your prints) looks depends on which program you are printing from. Here are two examples, the print dialog in Microsoft Word and in Adobe Acrobat (program for pdf-files):

utskriftutskrift2Click on the pictures if you want to see them better!

 

Make sure that the right printer is selected, that’s Print-and-Collect (it is usually right, so you probably do not need to change) – then you click at the button Print (in Swedish Skriv ut). Done!

At the printer

Okay, so far so good. The document has been printed. Now what? Where do you go to get it? The thing is that you can now go to any printer – at the whole university – at the printer you get your printed document. At the Library, we have printers on each floor (except floor 2.5). The printers are quite big, and looks like copying machines (in fact, they are coping machines as well as printers and scanners). When you found a printer, here’s what you do:

  1. Log in to the printer, using your black chip or your S-number and password.
  2. Select Release by pressing this “button” on the touch screen.
  3. Select the document you want to print by pointing at it at the touch screen. The document will be marked with a yellow line when you’ve selected it.
  4. Press the blue button (it’s a real button – not on the touch screen).
  5. Voila! You document is printed!

If your document won’t print, it might depend on that you don’t have enough printing credentials left on your printing account. Contact the Information Point for directions on how to refill your printing account. When you have done that, you just return to the printer, and get you document (no need to print from the computer again).

If you have any questions – please contact the Information Point by the entrance to the Library. We can help you to print!

Text & pictures: Katharina Nordling