Library Services


Positive feedback for LibrarySkills@UCL live online sessions

29 April 2021

We have expanded our live online library skills training sessions following positive feedback and a surge in bookings.

Student studying, wearing a face mask

Prior to the first lockdown, our scheduled programmes of library skills training sessions were delivered face-to-face at many sites across UCL, with support materials available online. In response to the rapidly changing situation, we initially prioritised expanding our asynchronous training and one-to-one live support. We then piloted live online sessions in Term 1 2020/21, delivered by our specialist librarians from across our library sites as a single, co-ordinated programme.

Surge in interest in live online library skills sessions

Our live online sessions were instantly popular. For the pilot we focussed on sessions on reference management software (EndNote and Mendeley), which have always attracted the most interest. We now offer two types of session:

  • Demonstration: an introduction to the software.
  • Getting more out of the software: questions and answers: for experienced users to find out more and ask specific questions.

Overall, nearly 300 people attended these sessions in Term 1 2020/21, a 44% increase on comparable sessions in the same period the previous year.

Building on this success, we have expanded our Term 2 programme to include sessions on literature searching and particular library resources and databases. Total attendance at our sessions from January to 12th March 2021 is 580, which shows an increase of 82% on the same period in the previous year, which was prior to face to face teaching ceasing and going into the first lockdown.

There were 300 participants for online sessions in term 1 2020/21, which was a 44% increase from the previous year.


Listening to your feedback

With the launch of a single library skills training programme across all our libraries, we have implemented a single system for obtaining and analysing feedback from our sessions, so we can respond and develop our programme accordingly.

We are delighted that to date 95% of attendees have rated our sessions 4 or 5 stars and we have received many encouraging comments, along with useful suggestions for making our sessions even better.

Your comments

Introduction to EndNote: demonstration - Very well demonstrated and a very good pace with logical order. Excellent and highly recommended.
Getting more out of Mendeley: Really helpful session. I learnt a lot in a small amount of time, and lots of very practical, useful tips. The hosts were very engaging and knowledgeable.
Introduction to Zotero - demonstration: Great and insightful session, everything was explained well. More of such sessions, please!
Introduction to searching Ovid databases (Medline, Embase, PsycINFO): Very simple, glitch-free, nice flow and made sense! I love these sessions - the trainers are so knowledgeable.
Introduction to PubMed: demonstration: Thorough and clear instructions. Both presenters were very approachable and helpful in answering queries.

Team working

Staff from across Library Services are working together to deliver teaching in a way that would not be possible in a face-to-face context. We always ensure every session has two trainers, for effective moderation of chat and questions and in case of any connection difficulties. The benefits of delivering training with different colleagues are substantial, enabling us to share our expertise and connect across disciplines.

Find out more and make a booking

  • View our full calendar for details of sessions and to make a booking.
  • See our LibrarySkills@UCL: Training and Support pages for more information about the training and support we offer, including our scheduled programme of live sessions, self-paced online tutorials, videos and guides, and how to request an individual library skills appointment with your librarian.