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Library Services




Our guides, training and support enable you to develop your library and information literacy skills and make the best use of UCL’s libraries and resources.

Library skills support for academic programmes or modules

Students with library research skills are better placed to produce high quality academic work and to fully benefit from a research-based education.

Library skills incorporates the skills needed to effectively find, evaluate, manage and use information. It is essential for students to develop and refine their library and information literacy skills, knowledge and behaviours in order to achieve academic success and benefit their life beyond university, from the professional workplace to everyday living and participating in society.

Why include library skills teaching in your academic programme or module?

Library skills teaching is most effective when it is incorporated into academic programmes or modules, so students can attain and develop skills at the best and most relevant times, with enhanced teaching tailored to the programme of study. Where possible, library skills teaching should be integrated at different stages of the programme, with essential skills introduced when students first start at UCL, and more in-depth skills teaching offered at various stages, for example at points where students will be expected to do extended reading around their subject or in preparation for a particular research project or dissertation. 

Diagram showing skills to be acquired when getting started, for assignments and for independent research

What does library skills teaching include?

We can advise on what is appropriate and relevant for your students, depending on their programme of study. Our teaching may include:

  • Library induction: introduction to using UCL’s libraries and library resources;
  • Searching for information using online resources including library catalogues, literature databases and data sources;
  • In depth comprehensive literature searching;
  • Evaluating information to assess its quality, relevance and validity;
  • Citing references and avoiding plagiarism;
  • Managing references using reference management software such as EndNote, Mendeley or Zotero;
  • Skills relating to the research cycle and getting published, including understanding open access, research data management and bibliometrics.

What to do next

Consider library skills requirements in the planning stage of your academic programme or module and discuss embedding library-led inductions and teaching in consultation with the librarian for your subject. We can provide face-to-face or live online teaching sessions, tailored asynchronous learning materials, or a blended approach to delivery of teaching.

If your programme or module is already running, we can work with you to ensure your students get the support they need for essential skills development.

Supplementary library skills support for students

To complement and supplement library skills teaching that is incorporated into academic programmes, we offer additional library skills training and support covering the core library skills areas that we know to be important for all students: This can help refresh, reinforce and clarify students' skills, but should not be considered a substitute for tailored, discipline-specific library skills teaching.

Further help

For further help, please contact us.

See our library skills training sessions or contact your librarian.

For general enquiries, see Getting Help and contacting us.