Three £20 cinema vouchers up for grabs…

…in our competition for Edinburgh campus new students.

Complete the quiz in Skills for Success – get all the answers correct and you will be automatically entered into our prize draw.

Three lucky winners – drawn from all correct entries received by the 30th September – will receive a £20 cinema voucher.

  • Once you are fully enrolled you can log into Vision, the university Virtual Learning Environment. For a quick overview of the system see the Student Guide to Vision.

All new students are automatically enrolled on Skills for Success.

To enter the competition

  1. Log into Vision using your HWU UserID and password
  2. Click on Skills for Success
  3. Choose New students (Edinburgh campus) from the top of the menu on the left
  4. Complete the Getting to know Information Services quiz


You can try the quiz as often as you like – your highest score will count.

The competition closes on the 30th September 2015.

Good luck!

New student reception (Edinburgh campus): 5th September

teaWe look forward to meeting as many new students as possible at the Afternoon Tea on the 5th September.

If you’ve any questions about the university library or IT services our staff will be happy to answer them for you.

You’ll find lots of information to help you get set up ready to start in our Getting Started guide.

We look forward to meeting you on Saturday.

WiFi Clinics (Edinburgh Campus)

Need help to get your devices set up to access the university WiFi (eduroam)?eduroam

Come along to a clinic and we’ll give you a hand.  The clinics are held on the 1st floor of the Library:

  • Wednesday 9th Sept: 1030 – 1200
  • Thursday 10th Sept: 1030 – 1200
  • Tuesday 15th Sept: 1430 – 1600

No need to book – just come along with your device.

Eduroam & Wi-Fi Maintenance (Edinburgh Campus): 1st September 2015

eduroamWe will be carrying out an essential security update on the Eduroam service on the morning of Tuesday 1st September 2015 between 8.00 am and 12.00 pm (BST).

Whilst any disruption to service should be minimal Eduroam should be considered “at risk”.

Please note that following the update which includes a new security certificate, your computer, tablet or phone may ask you to accept the new security certificate.

Guidance on using Eduroam (including the automated configuration tool) can be found at:

Wi-Fi upgrade (Edinburgh campus library): 26th – 28th August

Engineers will be on-site to upgrade Wi-Fi access points and data cabling in the Cameron Smail library from Wednesday 26th to Friday 28th August

The engineers plan to work down through the building, a floor at a time, starting on the 3rd floor.

During this period the Wi-Fi service will be unavailable on the floor that the engineers are working on but it will be available on the other floors in the library.

Up-to-date information on where the engineers are working will be available at the Service Desk on the first floor in the library.


Two Decades of the Information Revolution at Heriot-Watt

We are told that we are living through the Information Revolution, a step-change in human history likely to be ranked with the Industrial and Agricultural revolutions of earlier times. Like the generations who witnessed those periods of change, we find it impossible to see what’s over the next horizon, but a glance in the rear-view mirror can often reveal how far we’ve travelled.

Comparing our most complete annual figures with those of 1993-94, (2 years after the World Wide Web was launched) reveals enormous growth in both the range of information resources we offer and the numbers supplied. This growth has been made possible by the information technologies of 21st century scholarship, which have untethered scholarly information from buildings and shelves, enabling us to deliver it to Heriot-Watt’s students and academics world-wide, 24×365.

HWU (UK Campuses) Library Collection Statistics 1993-1994 2013-2014 % Change
Printed Books 107,926 159,812 +48%
Electronic Books 0 74,711
Total Books 107926 234,523 +117%
Printed Periodicals 1,550 3,000 +94%
Electronic Periodicals 0 44,845
Total Periodicals 1,550 47,845 +2987%
Book Loans 127,284 52,458 -59%
E-Book Section Requests 0 431,325  
Periodical Article Downloads 0  1,085,251  
Total Resource Requests 127,284 1,569,034 +1133%
FTE Academic Staff 496 752 +52%
FTE Students 4,445 8,379 +89%
Total FTE Users 4,941 9,131 +85%
Book loans per FTE Student 29 6 -78%
Periodical Article Downloads per FTE Student 0 130  
E-Book Section Requests per FTE Student 0 51  
Total Resource Requests per FTE Student 29 187 554%
of which Book Loans comprised 100% 3%

Heriot-Watt Information Services Leads Scottish Library Systems Procurement

Heriot-Watt University Information Services participates actively in relevant professional groups in Scotland and across the UK. The Scottish Confederation of University & Research Libraries (SCURL) has collaboratively procured electronic journals and books for many years, bringing negotiating expertise and economies of scale when dealing with publishers. This has enabled Scottish HEIs like Heriot-Watt to develop much richer online collections than any could afford individually.

Traditional library management systems such as Ex-Libris Voyager, currently used by HWU in Scotland and Malaysia, were designed primarily to manage the acquisition, cataloguing and circulation of physical books. In 2013-14 Information Services made 7 book loans per FTE student, compared with 130 online journal article downloads and 51 E-book section requests. Like other Scottish universities, we require a modern Library Management Platform which brings together all our resources on a single system, making them more manageable and accessible for all. Following investigatory work in 2013-2014, led by the Directors of IS at Stirling and HWU, SCURL is now working with the Scottish universities’ purchasing agency, APUC, to procure a common Library Management Platform for our sector.

Iain Young, Head of Resource & Facility Services in IS, chairs the SCURL working group managing this procurement and HWU is the primary vanguard institution. The tender process has begun and a ranked framework of selected products will be in place by December 2015. HWU will adopt the most suitable Library Management Platform from the framework and bring this into worldwide service for A/Y 2016-17. The new system will allow us to change the way in which many of our services are delivered and an internal project has begun to pave the way for this. We’ll update you on progress with this key enhancement throughout the coming year.

Extended #Edincampuslib Opening for Resit Revision

Starting today, Edinburgh Campus Library will remain open until 8pm Mon-Thurs for the summer resit revision period.

For all our opening times, please see

Enhancing Edinburgh Campus Library 2015 #edincampuslib

We told you earlier about the new accessible lift we’re installing, but that is just one of several exciting changes we’re bringing in this summer.

Analysis of paper journals held at Edinburgh revealed that complete runs of 25% of them are already available electronically to HWU students and staff worldwide. Senate’s Information Services Committee agreed that study space at Edinburgh being at a premium, we should dispose of the little-used paper copies.

Thirty eight tons of paper have been removed and 925 shelves will follow shortly . This will enable us to add approximately 35-40 more study spaces on our popular 3rd floor, allow daylight to reach more of the floor, and let more of our readers enjoy the fabulous views across the sunken garden to the ancient woodlands.

The library’s Gibson Craig Wing, which accommodates Information Services management offices and the Director of Music, is isolated from the main body of the building. It included a solitary centrally booked 30 seat classroom, 2.38. We have adjusted our perimeter so that this room is now accessed from the library and we will be refurbishing this as a Quiet Study Room, also offering excellent views across the gardens.

Taken together we shall be adding approximately 10% to the library’s seating capacity for next session. Watch this space for more details!

Have you met Bob?

BobIt’s the holidays – and a good time to review and investigate some of the resources available at HWU to help with your learning and teaching.

A fun one to take a look at is Bob – Box of Broadcasts.

BoB enables all staff and students in subscribing institutions to choose and record any broadcast programme from 60+ TV and radio channels. The recorded programmes are then kept indefinitely (no expiry) and added to a growing media archive (currently at over 1 million programmes), with all content shared by users across all subscribing institutions.

See for more info and then search for the programmes you are interested in.

BoBKey features include

  • the addition of all BBC TV and radio content dating from 2007 (800,000+ programmes)
  • over 10 foreign language channels, including French, German and Italian
  • an extended 30 day recording buffer – more time to record missed programmes
  • a new look website, improved navigation
  • Apple iOS compatibility – watch BoB on handheld devices
  • searchable transcripts
  • links to social media – share what you’re watching online
  • a one-click citation reference, allowing you to cite programmes in your work

Login using your HWU user ID and password.

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