Scientific papers and empiric data

A scientific paper has several characteristics. You can recognise it by its context, were it is published and how it is structured. If you want to know more about this you can read the following posts: How to recognize a scientific paper? and Essay Tips – Scientific articles.

An other way to recognise a scientific article is to read it. Look at the text: To read scientific texts.

The importance of empiric data
If you read a scientific text, you should see that all claims are built on empiric data. All statements and conclusions must be based on data proving that it is indeed as the author writes. If the author has not collected any data the claims should at least be connected to one or more articles that support the claim with empirical evidence and logical reasoning.

Empirical data can and should look different depending on what is the focus for the study. As an example it is hard to generalise the conclusions from a qualitative case study.

If you can’t find the connection between the text, it’s claims and some kind of data or logical reasoning that you can follow and evaluate, you should continue to the next text. To be able to follow the basis for the claims is also an important part of source critisism.

Now that you have read this far you might notice that this text have no independent references to support the claims. Find documents on: Empiric data, qualitativ/quantitative data, case studies, primary sources, secondary sources and source critisism.

Text: Thomas Nyström

How to forward the student e-mail

It happens that students say that they do not use their student e-mail and therefore miss out on our reminders, so we make this short guide on how to forward your e-mail. If you read our borrowing rules you will find the following text:

Library patrons are to know the lending period of borrowed items. The library is not required to send reminders.

We do send reminders though, but it happens that these reminders end up in the e-mail trash bin or that we have the wrong e-mail adress. So be sure to monitor your lending account on “My Loans“. And now to the guide:

(1) When you log on to your student e-mail account, you click on the gear on the right side of the interface and choose settings. Then you open the tab for forwarding and POP/IMAP.

(2) Use the function “Add a forwarding address” that you find in the forwarding section, and enter the email that you want to forward to.
skarmklipp-3Gmail will send a verification email to this address.

(3) When you are done you save the changes. You shuld be able to se the following message:

You are forwarding your email to This notice will end in 7 days.

Also read Googles guide “Automatically forward Gmail messages to another account”.

Text: Thomas

Professorial inauguration 2016

We are closing in on this years professorial inauguration and we at the library take the opportunity lift up some of the ceremony participants publications from the institutional repository. You can read more about the ceremony on the webpage Professorial inauguration and doctoral degree conferment ceremony.

Berit Lindahl

Berit Lindahl, Professor of Caring Science (Foto: Suss Wilén).

Berits publications in the institutional repository.

Annemaree Lloyd

Annemaree Lloyd, Professor of Library and Information Science (Foto: Suss Wilén).

Annemarees publications in the institutional repository.

Linda Worbin

Linda Worbin, Professor of Textile Design (Foto: Suss Wilén).

Lindas publications in the institutional repository.

During the ceremony there will also be doctoral degree conferment you can find the publications of our new doctors in our institutional repository DiVA.

Text: Thomas
Picture: Suss

Institutional repository and student thesis

In the institutional repository DiVA we collect publications from the University of Boras. Researchers have to register their work, but as a student you have to accept the publishing agreement for the thesis to be searchable and available.

If you do not accept the agreement the thesis will not be searchable in DiVA. This can become a problem if future employers want to look at the thesis.

If you approve of the agreement your thesis will be searchable in the following fields: Name, title, abstract, keywords and subject area. Be sure to carefully choose your keywords and write the abstract, do these describe your work well enough for the thesis to be found in DiVA?

Do you have questions about the metadata fields in DiVA or do you want hints on how to choose keywords or structure your abstract, then you should make a visit to the library Search lab.

Text: Thomas
picture: colourbox

Table of Contents in Word (part 2)

In the previous post Table of contents in Word you can read how to create automatic table of contents. This post will focus on how you can modify and manage the appearance of the Table of contents.

When we left the document in “Table of contents in Word” we had a table of contents that looked something like this:

Table of contents

If you decide to make changes directly in the text, the list changes back as soon as you try to update the table.
References, table of contents, insert the table of contents

If you want to change the style and appearance of the list, you must enter the “Table of contents” and select “Insert Table of Contents”. Here you can choose from ready-made style sheets.

Using “Tab leader” you can choose if you want the dots or lines to lead to the page number. You can also choose the ready-made style sheets using “Formats” and using the “Show levels” function you can ad heading levels.

Format, levelsÄndra
To manage the Table, and change the font, size, and indentation manually, you use the “Modify” function. Make sure to select the title you want to change and press the “Modify”. In this case, TOC 1 is the same as Heading 1.

Once in the “Modify” function you can change the text style template from Times to Arial, size, color, or you can adjust the indentation and spacing. You have to manage your various levels individually. When you are finished, simply press “OK” .

Verktyg för att ändra stil.

After some random changes the table of contents might look something like this:

Table of contents

Note. it does not hurt to play with the options, if it looks strange just change it back. There is no risk that the headings disappear. The table of contents is always based on the headings you have in the document.

Text: Thomas
Bild: Thomas

Thesis suvival guide

For the second library breakfast Johanna Persson from the university language support had a short lecture on valuable information that might help you get started with your thesis work. One of the main point was to make good preparations, and plan for how you are going to structure your thesis.

You might want to name activities and make a time schedule to make sure you have a good understanding for the work effort involved. This will also provide you with something to relate your progress to and make sure you finish on time. Try not to get stuck in a estimation loop: (xkcd)


xkcd (2016) (2016-03-24)

Other hints presented:

  • Build your own reference library on academic writing. That you can consult when you try to decide on how to structure different parts of your text.
  • When it comes to information searching you should make use of the support at the library. Also make sure to get used to different databases within your field.
  • And talk to your advisor.

Next library breakfast will focus on publishing scientific material and will be held the 10th of may 2016.
to attend you need to register

Text: Thomas
Picture: Xkcd

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Disputation notifications 2015

Last year the there were 24 disputation notifications at the University of Boras. When a thesis is finished the doctoral student need to give four copies of their thesis to the library, two of the copies will be added to our collections, one will be sent to the archive and the last copy will be used in the library spikning ceremony.

The spikning ceremony is to make the dissertation available  to the public before the disputation so that anyone has the possibility to prepare constructive criticism for the disputation seminar. This is also the reason to why the ceremony is at least three weeks before the disputation.

This ritual of nailing the thesis is old. And one of our colleagues found written confirmation about the practice as early as year 1755 [1]. If we look further back we can see similarities with an even older practice like when Martin Luther nailed his 95  theses to the church door in Wittenberg 1517.


The machine we use to make holes in the thesis

At the University of Boras the library is in charge of the spikning ceremony. It starts with someone from the library presenting the author and ends with  mingling, snacks and cider (non-alcoholic).

Right now we have an exhibition of last years dissertations. Feel free to borrow one or more of the thesis from the exhibition cabinets, or read an electronic version in our publication database DiVA.




Last year there was 24 dissertations at the University of Boras, we have collected the ones we have in the library collection.

Text: Thomas
Picture: Thomas

[1] Årsböcker i svensk undervisningshistoria nr 68-69 (1921-): Till Gefle läroverks historia 1577-1850,
 Uppsala: Föreningen för svensk undervisningshistoria. s. 307-308.