UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology


Queen Square Library User Survey results 2018

This page provides an overview of the main results, including a comparison with our previous surveys where possible, and our replies to comments and suggestions.

Please see the following documents for further details

and .

Question 1. How satisfied are you with the services and resources currently offered?

Over 60% of respondents ranked Helpfulness of staff, Knowledge of staff and Support for information as 'Excellent' (77%, 67% and 63% respectively). This is an increase on previous surveys (where these were also rated highly)

65% of the total rankings overall were Excellent or Good (again, an increase on previous surveys)

Individual services and resources ranked as either 'Excellent' or 'Good' by 50% or more respondents were:

  • Databases (76%)
  • Ebooks (73%)
  • Wifi (68%)
  • Books (67%)
  • Remote ejournals (67%)
  • Library catalogue (67%)
  • Literature searching (67%)
  • Ejournals in library (65%)
  • Print journals (65%)
  • Library environment (52%)
  • Library website (50%)

More services and resources are listed above than in previous surveys (e.g. books ebooks, Wifi, print journals, ejournals in Library, catalogue and literature searching) and most of the above ratings have shown an increase.

However, Library environment decreased (from 64% in 2016) and study space received 42% Excellent or Good (compared to 50% in 2016). These ratings are presumably related - as there were no comments related to other aspects of library environment, e.g. temperature - as there was in the previous survey.

Over half of the services and resources listed had either no or one respondent ranking them as "needing improvement". Only 2% of the total rankings overall were "needs improvement". This is a similar pattern to previous surveys.

Services which received most rankings of "Needs improvement" were

  • Opening hours - 10 respondents (14%)
  • Study space - 5 respondents (7%)
  • Social media - 4 respondents (6%)
  • Wifi - 3 respondents (4%)
  • Access to printing/copying - 3 respondents (4%)

Opening hours and study space have both appeared on previous surveys, though opening hours received fewer "needs improvement" rankings than in 2016.

Suggestions for improvement

Respondents who said that a service needs improvement were prompted for further details. We received 15 responses and have grouped them into similar topics below (which are similar to those raised in previous surveys) including our replies:

1) Range of and access to print and eresources

Our replies:

Requests for more, or specific titles - we encourage users to let us know if there is a print, ebook or ejournal that the library does not currently offer, giving details of the specific title(s). Unfortunately, the high cost of online content and our limited library budget mean that it is not always possible for us to purchase access, but we do purchase all items which are on reading lists which we receive. A 'wishlist' is maintained of all requests received and, if additional funds become available, priority is given to wishlist items.

In terms of print resources, registered Library members have access to books across UCL Libraries, including the LASS and Science Libraries, which also hold resources on related subject areas. Many of these can be requested on inter-site loan for collection at Queen Square Library. We can also obtain items on Inter-Library loan from the British Library.

2) Opening hours
9 respondents referred to opening hours. Most expressed a preference for extended evening opening during the week.

Our reply:
It is good to hear that access to our physical space is still important to our users. Unfortunately, extending library opening hours is not currently feasible due to the absence of a security presence at no.23 Queen Square (the building therefore needs to be locked and secured overnight and at weekends).

Nearly 50% of respondents rated the opening hours as Excellent or Good (similar to 2014 and 2016 survey) and fewer respondents rated this as an area which needs improvement than in the 2014 and 2016 survey.

However, it was cited as the top priority for us to focus on (see Question 5 below) and we will continue to monitor our usage, and investigate  submitting a bid to Library Services for extended opening hours (we do not usually meet the criteria for this).

Registered members of our Library also have access to other UCL Libraries and some of the larger libraries have longer evening and weekend opening - http://www.ucl.ac.uk/library/opening.shtml

3) Printing and copying facilities
3 respondents commented on provision of printing and copying facilities in the Library

Our reply: We investigated the possibility of installing ISD multi-functional devices when they were rolled out in 2013, however, this is not currently possible, as our computers would not be able to print to them. A move to fully UCL networked PCs would also mean that our NHS users would not be able to access them. IoN students also have access to two new Cluster rooms at no. 7 Queen Square, whose computers have access to Print@UCL.

4) Quiet study space

2 respondents commented about the need for more quiet study space.

Our reply:

It is good to hear that access to our physical space is still important to our users.

Space is at a premium in Queen Square, and as part of our refurbishment in 2010 we maximised the use of space, increasing the number of study spaces by a third, and fitting in as many multi-purpose facilities as possible. We monitor usage and know that the occasions where there are no seats available is very rare. Unlike previous surveys, this was not ranked as one of the top 3 priorities for us to focus on.

The refurbishment of no 7 Queen Square has provided more capacity for study space within the Square.


5) Eduroam access within the Library
One person commented on the speed/strength of Eduroam in study rooms.

Our reply: We were aware of this issue in 2014, and it was reported by users in our 2014 survey, which resulted in installation of new Eduroam equipment, which extended Eduroam throughout the Library.

However, we are aware that (due to thickness of the walls) Eduroam access can be reduced in parts of the Library and will investigate the potential for adding an additional hub in the large side room. We encourage our users to let us know if they do experience difficulties with our wifi connection.

6) Other suggestions

Improve social media presence by posting on Facebook and Instagram.

Our reply: the Library has an active twitter account, whose posts are added automatically to our Facebook account. Both accounts are included on all our publicity and in email signatures/website footers.

We utilise existing Instagram accounts, e.g. the Faculty of Brain Sciences and UCLH Arts and heritage, as required, but will consider setting up our own account, e.g. for promoting exhibitions and events.

Question 2. How do you rate the Library overall?

Respondents were asked to choose a rating from 1 ('needs improvement') to 6 ('excellent'). We were very pleased that no survey respondents gave the library service an overall rating of 1. Most people rated the library service within the positive end of the scale (95% of respondents), with 41% giving an overall rating of 6 (‘excellent’).

This is a similar pattern to previous surveys.

2 people (or 3%) gave negative ratings of either 1 (n=1) or 2 (n=3). These respondents are dissatisfied with the areas which were generally rated as needing improvement, e.g. opening hours and study space, which have been discussed above.

Question 3: For what purpose(s) do you use library services?

The top 5 cited purposes from a pre-defined list were:

  1. Research Projects - 82% of respondents
  2. Personal / professional development - 57%
  3. Preparing for teaching/presentations - 36%
  4. Exam preparation -36%
  5. Clinical guidelines - 23%

This is similar to previous surveys, with research projects, exam and teaching preparation being rated highly. Clinical guidelines was new to the top 5 and Personal / professional development also increased.

It is pleasing to see the range of purposes for which the Library is used, which reflect Queen Square's role in teaching, training, research and clinical practice.

Please see Question 4 for some specific examples of how using the Library has impacted upon work and patient care.

Question 4. Please give an example where the library service has had an impact on your work or has helped to improve patient care.

This was an optional question. We received 40 examples of impact which included:

  • QS Library is essential for my work - especially for the administrative work I need to do for the NHNN. I'm a PhD student but also work in the clinics at the NHNN. I don't have a PC access to the UCLH system from my research office so if it wasn't for the QS Library I wouldn't be able to do my hospital paperwork. IoN PGR/NHNN staff
  • It is extremely easy for me to find articles needed by the unit of functional neurosurgery for their research projects and talk. IoN non academic staff
  • Library is essential to me being able to complete my work! I have no access to UCLH computers in my academic location and need this for clinic administration. IoN academic /NHNN staff
  • cost savings. IoN academic staff
  • Library help enabled me to pass the masters module that was a requirement for my job. NHNN nurse
  • to be able to further my knowledge through a literature search to be able to find all the evidence base to educate others and improve patient care and treatment options. NHNN AHP
  • Patient protocol preparation. NHNN Nurse
  • Help with research project to improve surveillance on a high risk treatment. NHNN Nurse

    Question 5. Which of the following should the library focus on as a priority?


    Respondents were asked to select priorities from a list, choosing at least one and up to three priority areas. The three most popular choices were:

    1. Opening hours - 46% of respondents
    2. One-to-one research support - 27%
    3. Wifi - 24%

    Wifi was the only one of the above which appeared in the top 3 in previous surveys (ejournals, which was in the top 3 since our 2011 survey dropped to 4th place) Study space dropped to 5th place.

    The majority of respondents who listed one-to-one research support were IoN students. We can offer one-to-one support for students, but would first refer them to our online resources in Moodle in the first instance. These have been extensively developed this academic year. We cannot conduct literature searches for students, as this is often a marked element of their course.

    Please see Question 1 for our reply to suggestions for improvement to Eduroam and opening hours.

    Question 6. Are there any other comments you would like to make about the Library?

    This was an optional question and not everyone gave a response. However, we did receive comments from 15 people.

    The comments included one further suggestion as below:

    It would be great if some of the [training sessions] could be later in the day, e.g. before closing time, so we can be more easily released from clinical duties.

    Examples of other comments received:

    • The library provides a wonderful resource for me as a research academic in Queen Square. The broad range of books are invaluable and the environment is always inviting.IoN academic staff
    • I love 'the silence' and the quiet atmosphere in the QS Library so I can concentrate on my hospital paperwork much better than anywhere else. Staff is very nice, friendly and helpful. I think that the 'Queen Square' wouldn't be complete without this lovely library. IoN PGR/NHNN staff
    • Nice to have a book swap and a water fountain. UCL PGT
    • The great learning environment provided me with a space to work that was hugely beneficial to my productivity. IoN PGR
    • The library is a fundamental place for all physician-scientists. IoN PGR