Library Services


ReadingLists@UCL for support staff

Details for administrative staff on how to use the ReadingList @ UCL system, or support academics to use it.

All information on how to set up and use online reading lists is on the ReadingLists @ UCL for teaching staff page. This area is for specific support information for librarians and Administrative staff. Below are some questions we have been asked most frequently.

How do I set up a list for academic staff?

Use the online form or email readinglists@ucl.ac.uk with the course code and we will set it up for you.

Each list needs to be added in to the 'Hierarchy' in order to create the link between Moodle and the reading list: TLS do this automatically when we set up a list.

How do I give editing access to an academic or library colleague?

At the top of the reading list click 'Edit' then select 'Invite List Publishers'; insert the UCL email address of your colleague and press 'send invite'. They will be sent an email inviting them to edit this list.

What training is available?

We offer a brief, 20 minute orientation to anyone who would like editing access to a reading list. 

For a librarian or Departmental Administrator we would tailor this to your role, including information such as how to get readings copyright checked and digitised under the CLA licence, and managing across several reading lists or the whole department. For librarians we offer relevant tips on managing weeding, adding newer editions to reading lists, promoting to your department and more. If you wish to train academics yourself, we are available to sit with you whilst you do the training to answer any niche questions.

Is there any training documentation available?

There is a very simple 'Quick guide' to act as a reminder, and help for students and staff on these library webpages. Otherwise, using the system is intuitive and doesn't need lots of documentation. TLS are very happy to specific answer questions or meet up for refresher sessions, just drop us an email or call our office.

Is there any promotional material?

Some subject liaison librarians compile induction packs for new students, or meet new teaching staff at session start. You may also like posters for your notice boards or departments. Below are some of the materials available (with some images on this blog post), do get in touch to request any.

Making the most of 'Request review'

At the top of your reading list, just below the title, you will see a grey button 'Request review' (you will need to be logged in and have editing access).

Using this will alert the TLS by email. It is most useful for teaching staff or Departmental Administrators who occasionally create reading lists - for example over the summer, once a year - and wish the library to look over their completed readings.

Complete your list before you request the review. If you have made use of the 'Library notes field' this is when the library is notified that there are notes waiting. (You see 'Library notes' when creating a new bookmark, or in Editing mode; it is private between the list editors and library staff).

First, TLS alerts the relevant subject liaison librarian that there are notes for them. The notes are usually to say a newer edition of a text is needed, or similar. If any notes ask for readings to be digitised, the TLS team start to process these.

Second, the review is added to the Review workflow. TLS staff check that URLs are stable and work; that books link through to the library catalogue; we update any incomplete bibliographic data; and check that readings in specialist databases are bookmarked correctly.

Once complete, we email the requester to let them know their list has been reviewed.

Using the hierarchy to see all your department's lists at a glance

To see all lists in your department you can look on the hierarchy (drill down from 'Browse hierarchy'. From any list you can click on 'Recent changes' to see when it was last updated (and if readings were added). From 'Recent changes' you can also set up an RSS feed, so you are notified when changes are made to that list.

How do I create a new reading list for the next academic year (roll over)?

Each summer, all the reading lists are duplicated for the next session and the current year's lists are archived. This is similar to the Moodle snapshot and archive process. Editing access remains the same, so everyone can start editing their new reading lists immediately: the reading lists remain available throughout the rollover period. The only point to stress is that only published changes are copied over into the new year's lists: if you have any unpublished changes you wish to carry forward, please click 'Publish' before the roll over date. The roll over usually occurs in early July, and the TLS will email subject librarians to notify you of the date in advance. We would be grateful if you could forward this to the relevant administrators and teaching staff in your departments.

Archived lists are not available to search publicly, however should you wish to use them in future, just let us know and we can make them live again.

Are there any librarian-specific tips?

Oh yes. These are the top three most requested - and appreciated:

  • ISN look-up on LibNet. This is requested regularly by librarians who are weeding or purchasing new stock, and wish to check if a previous edition is being recommended on an online reading list. Search by ISN and it will show which reading lists from the current year cite this book.
  • Reports. Use the 'Export' button at the top of each list to export the bibliographic details to a spreadsheet. If you need more detailed information about readings, for example across your department, request an 'All items' report from the TLS team.
  • Review. Following on from 'Making the most of request review' (above)... the Review can be useful for library acquisitions purposes. When a review is requested we email the relevant subject liaison librarian. We first highlight any 'Library comments' for your attention; these are often 'book for purchase' or similar. Once in the review screen you can also see how many other lists that reading is used on, which some librarians find invaluable for gauging numbers of texts to purchase.

Finally, check the ReadingLists @ UCL blog occasionally for news, or use the tag cloud 'liaison librarian' or 'Support staff' to check for recent posts specific to you.