Teaching & Learning


Ensure students have online access to your 2020-21 reading lists and essential texts

24 June 2020

Module tutors are encouraged to provide updated reading lists to the Readinglists@UCL service, and to identify core readings for their module to ensure we can deliver essential readings to students next session.

Image of woman sitting on bed with laptop. Credit: Sincerely Media/Unsplash

UCL’s Readinglists@UCL, a service supported by Library Services, delivers an online version of a student’s reading list complete with links to digital versions of core readings, where they are available.

Module tutors are encouraged to provide updated reading lists to the Readinglists@UCL service, and to identify core/essential readings for their modules, as soon as possible to ensure the best chance of essential texts being available to students studying remotely. 

Use of ReadingLists@UCL is recommended as part of UCL’s Moodle Baseline and Programme Readiness Toolkit - two key resources designed to support you with preparing your programme and modules for Connected Learning, 2020-21

Working with tutors to provide essential learning resources

Library Services has commenced a Reading List Enhancement Project to ensure that all term 1 modules for 2020/21 are supported by an online reading list delivered via ReadingLists@UCL. 

Our goal is to ensure we are providing resources sufficient to enable a student to complete the module. This means ensuring there is full-text access to all of these core readings either by licensing textbooks, buying electronic monographs, creating digital versions of chapters under license, or linking to existing resources (e.g. online journal articles). To enable this, module tutors are asked to provide updated reading lists and to identify core/essential readings for their modules.

Details on how to create and edit reading lists are on our service support pagesYour Subject Liaison or Site Librarian are available to provide support and answer questions. We can also join any departmental meetings to provide more information on the project, or set up small group training sessions via Teams to support staff in using ReadingLists@UCL.

To achieve 100% provision, tutors may need to consider substituting some readings that it is not possible to provide digital access to. The resulting “healthy” reading list will include references to readings (indicating which are core or essential), and  links digital content and be regularly updated.

Confirm module information

Library Services are keen to work with departmental administrative teams to confirm correct module information and details of module leads for 2020/21. We are working with Student Registry Services to gather this information, but module planning will be taking place within the departments so any insights you or colleagues can provide mean that we can liaise with module leads as soon as possible.

Building on a successful service

Available since 2011, students report that ReadingLists@UCL is hugely beneficial to their learning experience where their reading list includes digital readings. Academic colleagues, meanwhile, can be confident that students face no barriers to accessing core readings and that they will be able to engage fully in their module.

In previous years, much work was done to create reading lists for UCL’s taught modules – around 63% of Portico modules have at least a partial corresponding reading list in the system. However, in the context of Connected Learning, active engagement with ReadingLists@UCL amongst module tutors becomes more essential as reading underpins most taught modules.

In order to ensure that students are able to succeed, and that we are purchasing digital resources to meet educational needs, Library Services has devised a project to engage with all module tutors to enhance their reading lists to a point that we can be confident all students have sufficient resources available to complete their module.

Reading List Enhancement Project support

Completed work:

  • May 2020: Library Services have contacted all Department Heads with an outline of project and report on “reading list health” to include reading lists currently available within ReadingLists@UCL (this was based on 2019/20 module data as 2020 module data is not yet available), and the relative state of these lists (whether they include links to digital readings or are unpopulated).
  • Late May-early June: Module tutors have been contacted with guidance on what action needs to be taken with their online reading list.

Ongoing and scheduled work: 

  • June – September: Library Services will work with academic colleagues to ensure all reading lists reach the desired standard by the start of session.
  • September 2020: Library Services will provide updated reports to Heads of Departments on “reading list health”, so support can be targeted to those module reading lists not yet meeting the project criteria. 

Setting you up for long-term success

Engagement with ReadingLists@UCL in preparation for Term 1 2020/21 is essential to support our students during a period of disruption. However, this level of engagement must be sustained for Term 2 and future academic years to ensure an optimum student experience that surpasses that provided by peer universities.

This is an ambitious goal given the number of active modules each year. Achieving it will require the same collaborative approach between academic and library colleagues that has served us well in the Covid-19 response to date. 

For any questions, please contact your Subject librarian or email readinglists@ucl.ac.uk

Image credit: Sincerely Media / Unsplash