Information Skills

Staff in the Library can help you to improve your information retrieval skills. We offer practical workshops and a toolkit of resources to help you find information quickly and effectively to meet that all important deadline.

Many of you will have information skills talks and workshops as part of your courses. In addition to these we offer free practical workshops designed to help you find information for your assignments, dissertations and theses more quickly and effectively. Learn how to use important electronic databases such as ebrary, Scopus and Web of Knowledge, search Primo and the Library Catalogue, use RefWorks to create a bibliography, and even Google better. Our workshops help you to develop appropriate information skills for your level of study.

Find it Fast! workshops

are designed for undergraduate and taught postgraduate students.

Unfortunately, there will be no Find it Fast! Workshops running in the first term of 2016/17. They will begin again after the winter holidays. You can still acces the materials from these workshops in our Find it Fast! Wiki.

They generally last an hour and are held at lunch times in a PC classroom on floor 2 in The Sir Duncan Rice Library. You have a choice of different dates and times for each workshop.

To view our range of Find it Fast! workshops, read course descriptions, and make a booking please go to the course booking web page and search for Information Skills courses. Book early to avoid disappointment!

Materials from these Find it Fast! workshops are available online in our Find it Fast! Wiki.

Researcher Development workshops

are designed for research postgraduate students and last between 1½ and 3 hours. They cover all the essential information retrieval and management skills required at research level, and look in depth at major databases such as Scopus and Web of Knowledge.

To view our range of workshops, read course descriptions, and make a booking please go to the course booking web pages and search for Information Skills courses. Book early to avoid disappointment!

Terms and conditions for booking workshops

We respectfully ask you to observe the following rules when booking courses via the course booking web pages:

  • Book each different workshop once only. Workshops are repeated several times over the academic session to allow as many students as possible to attend, so you only need to book once.
  • Cancel your place immediately you find a clash in your timetable which prevents you from attending. It will give a student on the waiting list an opportunity to attend in your place.
  • Failure to attend: The Library Service reserve the right to withdraw you from any other forthcoming courses you have booked onto and further bookings may not be accepted if you consistently do not attend courses that you have booked on, without cancelling your booking and/or sending apologies.

How to cancel a booking

  • Go to www.abdn.ac.uk/coursebooking
  • Log in using your University computer username and password
  • Click on My Bookings near the top of the screen
  • Your Confirmed Bookings will be listed
  • Select the course you want to cancel
  • Then scroll down and click Cancel Booking in the bottom right-hand corner
  • You will see confirmation of your cancellation at the top of the screen

Help and advice:

Contact the Information Consultant for your subject.

Book a workshop.


It is essential you record what you have read and referred to in your written work, both within the text (citing) and at the end of your written work (bibliography). It is vital that you acknowledge what resources – print and electronic (including the Web) - you have referred to in your assignment, dissertation or thesis. If you don’t, you can be accused of plagiarism - the unacknowledged use of other people’s words and ideas. This is cheating.

Check your course handbook or ask your supervisor about the preferred citation style for your School.

REMEMBER - you can lose marks for poor referencing.

Help and advice

Visit the Student Learning Service site for advice on how to avoid plagiarism.

Library Guides on Referencing

Referencing and citing - an introduction

Referencing and citing - Harvard

Referencing and citing - Vancouver/Uniform

Referencing for Business students

Referencing for Education students

Referencing for Law students (OSCOLA)

 

For more information see the section on Avoiding Plagiarism.


What is RefWorks?RefWorks logo

RefWorks is web-based reference management software which makes storing references and generating bibliographies easy.

RefWorks introduced a new interface in Autumn 2016 and refer to this version as “new RefWorks”. However, at the University of Aberdeen we will continue to use and support the previous version – “legacy RefWorks” - until summer 2017. At that point we will upgrade to, and provide support for, the new RefWorks’ interface.

Please note that ReWorks does not support the OSCOLA referencing style used by the School of Law.

Login to or Sign Up for RefWorks.

What does it do?

  • Stores useful references in a personal database
  • Imports references from the University of Aberdeen Library Catalogue
  • Imports references directly from external databases, e.g. Scopus, CSA and Web of Science
  • Formats bibliographies and citation styles automatically for essays, papers, reading lists and project/thesis work

We give advice and training on using this important software.

Learn more about RefWorks

Accessing RefWorks
RefWorks Guides and Help
Write-N-Cite
Using RefWorks after leaving University of Aberdeen

 

Access

Who can use it?

All registered members of the University of Aberdeen are eligible to use RefWorks.

How do I access it?

Go to Refworks login

Do I need a password?

Authorisation to use the RefWorks software is by login name and password. The facility can be accessed from on and off-campus and initial registration is also possible from any location.

Please note that when registering off-campus, you will be required to enter a Group Code in addition to a login name and password. Full details are given on our passwords page. [top]

 

RefWorks Guides and Help

The Library provides a number of guides to using RefWorks. They can be found on our information guides web page. [top]

 

Write-N-Cite

What does Write-N-Cite do?

Write-N-Cite helps you create a document in Word with RefWorks open at the same time - citations can be chosen and included in the text as you write. It can then create a bibliography at the end of your document, in a referencing style of your choice, at the click of a button.

How do I install it?

Write-N-Cite is already installed on the desktop of all classroom networked PCs, but you must install this utility onto your personal computer.

How do I install Write-N-Cite on my personal computer?

  • Login to your RefWorks account
  • From the Tools menu select Write-N-Cite
  • Choose the version you need for your computer (Windows or Mac) and download and install
  • Read the Installation Instructions before downloading and installing. [top]

 

Using RefWorks after leaving the University of Aberdeen

Can I keep my RefWorks account when I leave?

Yes you can! RefWorks very generously allows former members of this University continued access to their RefWorks account.

What do I need to do?

Very little really. Just a couple of things before you leave the University of Aberdeen:

  • If you registered your account unsing your University email address but do not intend to continue to use this in the future:
    • Login to your RefWorks account
    • Click on the Update Profile link located at the top right hand side of the screen
    • Amend your email contact details as necessary
  • Keep a note of the Group Code for accessing RefWorks. This Group Code was sent to by RefWorks via email when you originally registered your account. If you have not kept this on file please use your University username and password to access the code which is held on a protected library webpage : www.abdn.ac.uk/library/passwords  [top]

Be under no illusion, plagiarism - copying another person's words or ideas without proper acknowledgment - is cheating.

It is regarded by the University as a serious academic offence that can result in disciplinary action.

Here are some practical tips on avoiding plagiarism:

  • Paraphrase in your own writing style your interpretation of the work of others and refer to these sources of information consistently both within your text and in full in your bibliography.
  • Show very clearly, by using "quotation marks", all text that is lifted directly from work belonging to someone else. Direct quotes longer than two or three lines should be inserted as a new paragraph, indented and single-spaced, to show clearly that these are not your own words. They should also be referenced both within your text and fully in your bibliography.

Help and advice

Visit the Student Learning Service site for further advice on how to avoid plagiarism.

Library Guides on Referencing

Referencing and citing - an introduction

Referencing and citing - Harvard

Referencing and citing - Vancouver/Uniform

Referencing for Business students

Referencing for Education students

Referencing for Law students (OSCOLA)


Toolkit of information skills resourcesHaving trouble meeting deadlines for assignments?

Taking too long to find information?

No idea how to write a bibliography?

Don't know where or how to start using the library?

If the answer is YES! to any of these questions you might want to investigate the toolkit of resources related to our Find it Fast! Information Skills Workshops which are designed for undergraduates and taught postgraduates...

Our Find it Fast! Wiki is a collection of resources designed to help you overcome problems finding good quality information quickly and using the information ethically, to meet that all important deadline. It contains support materials including slides from workshop presentations, worksheets and various library guides.

Visit our Find it Fast! Wiki to learn more.