Google (or the database) is not the source!

Question from a student: I found this article in the database ERIC – how do I put that in the reference?

 

Questions about how to write references are common in the library Information Point. Sometimes there´s confusion about where to put the different commas, or the student might be clueless as to how to write a reference to an oral source, and sometimes students also ask how to include the search tool (i.e. the database of the search engine) they used when they found the source. In this last case, the answer is always: It shall not be included in the reference. Period.

When you write a reference in your work (thesis, paper, home exams) there will be several different reasons to why you use a certain reference. Sometimes you might want to show how well-read you are, sometimes you want to prove the argument you just made with someone else’s research, or maybe you include a reference to an article written by your teacher (just to show the teacher that you have read something by her). No matter why your chose to refer to a source, you must include the reference to that source in the reference list. Thus: If you refer to an article by Henderson, the reference to Henderson’s article should be listed in the reference list. And it doesn’t matter how you found the article; if it were a friend that sent you a link, if you found it on Google, or if you’ve searched systematically in one of the databases provided by the library.

The reason to include a reference list in your work is that everyone who reads your paper should be able to find your sources, if they need to. And the reader might not have access to the same databases that you do (or the same friends for that matter – if your received the source as a link from your friend). Consequently is it important that all information about the source – such as title, author, year, publisher and so on) is correct, since it makes it easier for the person who sets out to find the source you’ve been using. But the tool you’ve used is not relevant (i.e. the database, Google, or maybe your friend).

Remember: The database is the road to your source, but it’s not a part of the source!

Text: Katharina Nordling
Photo: Suss Wilén

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? Here is where the method books come in as a savior. 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 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 past 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

The Nobel Prize 2017 – a brief summary

On Sunday it’s the Nobel Day again; here you will get a brief presentation of the prizes and the research behind them, as well as some tips for further reading on each prize.

Medicine

This year’s Nobel Prize in Medicine is shared between three different researchers; the prize is divided equally between Jeffery C Hall, Michael Rosbash and Michael W. Young. They are awarded the prize for their research on the biological clock that all living organisms have inside. That living organisms adapts to the differens phases of the day have been known for a long time, but Hall, Rosbash and Young have found out how this 24-hour cycle actually works. This has led to the development of a new fast-growing research field, important for human health (1).

If you want to read some of the articles where the research behind the prize is presented, you’ll find three of them in the library’s collections.

Physics

This year’s Nobel Prize in Physics is also shared between three different researchers. Half the prize goes to Rainer Weiss and the other half is divided between Barry C. Barish and Kip  S. Thorne. All these three researchers have participated in research on the universe’s gravitational waves. The waves, which was predicted by Albert Einstein a hundred years ago, was finally captured in 2015. This is ground breaking and something that will revolutionize astrophysics as new unseen worlds open up. There will be a plenty of new discoveries about the universe to be made by those who succeed in capturing gravity waves (2).

A big collaborative project for this research is LIGO (Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory) where all three reserachers are involved (2).

Chemistry

This year’s Nobel Prize in Chemistry is, as the previous two prizes presented, shared by three researchers, namely Jacques Dubochet, Joachim Frank and Richard Henderson, who equally share the prize. These three researchers get the prize for their contributions to the development of a method that has played a major role in the development of biochemistry. The method is called cryo-electron microscopy and is used to develop three-dimensional structures in atomic resolution of biomolecules. Among other things, it has been used to take prints on proteins that cause antibiotic resistance and the zika virus (which can be seen in the image to the right) (3).

If your search in Primo, you will find plenty of articles where the method has been used.

Litteratur

This year’s Nobel Prize in Literature is awarded to Kazuo Ishiguro “who, in novels of great emotional force, has uncovered the abyss beneath our illusory sense of connection with the world” (4). Ishiguro’s stories often explores the themes: memory, time and self-delusion, something that becomes very clear in his most famous novel The Remains of the Day – a book that also became a film with, among others, Anthony Hopkins (5). Here you will find a list of all the books available in the library’s collections.

Fredspriset

This year’s Peace Prize is awarded to the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN), according to the Norwegian Nobel Committee, “the organization is receiving the award for its work to draw attention to the catastrophic humanitarian consequences of any use of nuclear weapons and for its ground-breaking efforts to achieve a treaty-based prohibition of such weapons”. Among other things, the campaign has been the driving force behind that the UN member states adopted the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons (6). At the award ceremony in Oslo, Executive Director of the campaign Beatrice Fihn will receive the prize together with Setsuko Thurlow nuclear bomb survivor, who was 13 years old when her hometown Hiroshima was bombed by the United States in 1945 (7). The image comes from one of ICAN’s campaign events around the world.

Ekonomi

The Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel is this year awarded to Richard H. Thaler for his contribution to the behavioral economics. Thaler’s research moves within three subjects: limited rationality, social preferences and lack of self-control. The results within these three areas have laid the foundation for the new and rapidly expanding research area of behavioral economics. In the library there are two of Thaler’s books, including Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth and Happiness – which is about how we daily make a lot of different decisions, but unfortunately it is often quite bad decisions we make. The book is thus about what we can do to make better decisions. In addition, there are a lot of articles by Thaler to read – here is a list of those found in the library collections.


(1) The Nobel Assembly at Karolinska Institutet (2017). Press release 2017-10-02.
(2) The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (2017). Press release 2017-10-03.
(3) The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (2017). Press release 2017-10-04.
(4) Svenska Akademien (2017). Press release 2017-10-05.
(5) Svenska Akademien (2017). Biobibliographical notes.
(6) Den Norske Nobelkomite (2017). Press release 2017-10-06.
(7) ICAN (2017). Atomic bomb survivor to jointly accept Nobel Peace Prize on ICAN’s behalf. 
(8) The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences (2017). Press release 2017-10-09.

Text: Katharina Nordling
Bilder: Mostphotos (om inte annat anges).

Automatic renewals – here’s how it works!

When you borrow a book at the library, the loan will be automatically renewed if it’s possible – here’s a description of how the procedure works.

An automatic renewal is a renewal that’s made by the system. No one has to do anything, nor you or a librarian. However the system is stopped from doing a renewal of the loan if someone else has made a request for the book, or if the loan period has reached the maximum limit.

It all works like this:

You borrow a book at the Library; the loan period is either 7 or 21 days (depending on if it’s a course book or another book). When it’s two days left of the loan period the systems checks to see if it’s possible to renew the loan, then one of the following scenarios happen:

  1. No one has made a request for the book – the loan is renewed and you get a new loan period for 7 or 21 days (depending on if it’s a course book or another book).
  2. The loan cannot be renewed; you will be notified by e-mail and the original due date remains.

If scenario 1 happens, the same procedure will repeat two days before the new loan period ends.

In practice this means that you can keep the book until you get notified by e-mail that it’s time to return the book. But if you are going to use that practice – you need to check your e-mail address regularly, because in the end it’s you who are responsible of returning your books on time.

Text & Picture: Katharina Nordling

Peer Reveiw – what’s that?

When you are a student seeking information for your studies, you sometimes have the requirement that the information should be scientific. Scientific information can be published in different ways, but the common denominator is that the information has undergone a review process, a so-called peer review process.

Peer review means that researchers in the same subject area review the information before it is published. A lot of people claim that this is necessary to ensure that the research published is qualitative and reliable.

But how does peer review really work? This film from North Carolina State University Libraries describes the process of peer review. So why don’t you take three minutes and learn what peer review really is:

This week, the Peer Review process is highlighted around the world through Peer Review Week.

Text: Katharina Nordling
Film: Burke, A; Orphanides, A; Chung, HD; Dorafshar, D; Langdon, K; Duckett, K. Shared according to CC-BY-NC-SA-license.
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Your chip – here’s how it works!

The black chip that you you received when you started at the University, it’s used to a lot of different things, but do you know everything you use your chip for? Here’s a quick review for you.

Library card

You use the chip to borrow books in the library. Together with the four-digit PIN you chose, sign in to our lending devices at the entrance and borrow the books you want. If you want to keep track of what you borrowed, log in to Your library at the webpage. You do not need to use the chip when you return the books you borrowed.

Print / Copy

You print and copy using your chip. Keep the chip over the specified field on the copier / printer and the login will be very smooth. If you have forgotten your chip, you can log in to the copier / printer with your S-number and password.

Access card

The chip is used as an access card to the university’s premises. Your chip is programmed and will open the doors you are entitled to open. During certain times of the day, you will need to enter your four-digit PIN when using your access card.


If you should lose your chip, is it important that you block it as soon as you can – send an e-mail to the Library and to Campus Service. The fee for a new chip is 100 SEK, and you get your new chip either at the Library or at the Student Center.