September 2008 Archives

Knovel University Challenge

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The online reference book website Knovel is putting on a contest, the Knovel University Challenge.

The contest begins today and goes through November 7th. It's open to all UMN students. All you have to do is enter via the widget below and get three answers correct using Knovel Ebooks.

If you get three correct answers you will be eligible for Knovel's drawing. They plan to give away 2 Nintendo Wiis, 3 iPod Nanos, and 6 iTunes Gift Cards.

You'll be able to familiarize yourself with this great reference resource and may just win a prize. For more information about rules and regulations, click here.

Oct. 1 RefWorks Workshop

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(Image by alborzshawn via Flickr. CC).

Tired of misplacing citations? Formatting bibliographies? Let the libraries help you make your research process more organized and efficient.

Next Wednesday, October 1 from 11:15-12:15 we’ll be offering another RefWorks workshop at Walter Library (Room 310).

If you’re new to RefWorks it’s a web-based software that allows you to store and organize all of the citations that you discover in the research process. And it’s free to UMN students, faculty and staff!

In this workshop, Jan Fransen and I will be demonstrating:
• How get citations into your account
• How to store pdfs in your account
• How to use Cite While You Write to format your in-text citations
• How to generate a fully-formatted bibliography in seconds.

If you’re interested in attending register here.

Special Advanced EndNote Workshop

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Next Thursday (October 2 ) the Science and Engineering Library will be hosting an Advanced EndNote Workshop taught by a representative from EndNote. EndNote trainer Doug Nguyen will be in Walter Library Room 310 from 12:30-1:30 providing answers to questions EndNote users may have about ways to maximize their use of the software.

This is a great opportunity to expand your knowledge of the EndNote software from an expert on the topic. He’ll start with a quick demonstration on how to set up the journals term list so that EndNote can do full and abbreviated journal names and then he’ll open it up to your questions.

This class will be a great opportunity to learn more about customizing citation styles, personalizing your database to best fit your needs, and troubleshooting any problems you may have run into using the software.

This class is free and open to the public. If you’re interested, space is limited. Register here.

Research Made Easy

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(This image comes from SqueakyMarmot via Flickr. CC).

Looking to start research on a topic, but don’t know where to begin? Come to the Walter Library Workshop “Research Made Easy: Discover the Web of Science?.

This workshop is great for both undergraduates and graduate students looking to begin research on a wide variety of topics. Librarian Lisa Johnston will be providing a guided tour of the large, multidisciplinary Web of Science, a search engine for scholarly journal articles.

The workshop will be held at Walter Library, Room 310 on Wednesday, September 24 from 2:30-3:30. You can register here.

Also if you’re starting your research on a big project, I’m more than happy to meet with you individually and help you brainstorm library resources and search strategies to use to find the best information. Send me an email or give me a call and let me know your research topic and I’ll be happy to help.

Got EndNote?

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Do you own EndNote, but haven’t gotten around to learning how to use it? Do you want to give EndNote a test run before making the software purchase?


If you answered yes to either of those questions then our workshop “Got EndNote? Now What? An Introduction for Science and Engineering? might be for you.

I’ll be teaching a one-hour workshop covering some EndNote basics next Wednesday, September 24 from 11:15-12:15.

I’ll be covering the following topics:
• Adding Citations
• Storing PDFs/Full Text Links
• Using EndNote with Word to format citations and bibliographies
• Accessing your free EndNote Web Account for remote use
If you’re interested you can register here. If you have questions feel free to send me an email.

Also a heads up…On Thursday, October 2 from 1:30-2:30 we’ll be hosting an Advanced EndNote workshop offered by an EndNote Instructor who will be able to answer in-depth questions and show you how to do things like customize styles. I’ll write more about that when we get closer, but feel free to register if you’re interested. You can register for that class now.

Finding Grant Funding

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Looking to find more information on funding your research projects? The Science and Engineering Library will be hosting a workshop aimed at assisting Graduate Students find applicable grants to fund their research.

(from Tracy O via Flickr. CC)

In this workshop, Grant Funding for Graduate Students, you will be introduced to four different grant search engines that you can use to locate grants for which your research may be eligible. Jody Kempf will go over IRIS, SPIN, and Community of Science and the Foundation Directory and show you some best practices in searching.

The workshop is on Tuesday, September 23 from 3:00-4:15. You can register here.

New Books at Walter

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New Book 1.jpg New book 2.gif New Book 3.jpg

We’ve updated our new books list to include the titles that we received in July and August. Follow the links to peruse our newest Mechanical Engineering titles.

To view a list of all the new books that have come into the Science and Engineering Library you can click here.

If you have an idea for a book that you’d like to see purchased or a topic that you would like to suggest that I purchase on, I’m be happy to hear your thoughts.

Knovel Tutorials

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Are you using Knovel?


Knovel is a library search engine that allows you to search the full text of hundreds of electronic reference books focused on science and engineering.

If you're new to Knovel or even if you have used it in the past you may be interested to view the new tutorials they've put together on enhancing your Knovel experience. I went through the tutorials this morning and I learned new tricks and I've been using Knovel regularly for a couple of years.

You can either follow this link or look for the video camera icon Tutorials Icon.png the next time you're in Knovel.

Springer E-Books

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The library has subscribed to a great new electronic book database that may help you in your research.


Springer E-Books makes more than 25,000 full text books available online to you. The books included cover a wide range of topics such as general engineering, robotics, artificial intelligence and statistics.

The next time you need a resource, but can’t get over to Walter Library, this might be a good place to search.

SMART Commons at Walter Library

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A new SMART Commons opened up in Walter Library over the summer up on the Second Floor of the building.


SMART offers a wide variety of equipment for checkout, including:
• Video Recorders
• Tripods
• Microphones
• External Hard Drives

There are also a wide variety of both popular and academic DVDs and videos available for checkout. And a small group viewing room, available for reservation with a 65-inch plasma screen and Blu-Ray Player.
Along with these items for check out, there are computers loaded with useful software. Including programs such as:
• Adobe Creative Suite
• iPhoto
• iMovie
• Final Cut Express
• Microsoft Office
• And much, much more

There are consultants available to help if you’re using this software for the first time.

To learn more about this great new learning resource or to access their online instructional handouts visit their website at

Managing Your Research

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What better way to start off the semester than getting started with RefWorks?


RefWorks is an online citation management software that the libraries subscribe to, intended to help students, faculty and staff with their research. In this one hour workshop you’ll learn how you can use Refworks to:
• Organize your research
• Store citations and full text copies of articles
• Format bibliographies and in-text citations
• Facilitate group work through easy sharing of citations.

All at no extra cost to you.

The class will be taught be Jan Fransen and myself on Tuesday, September 9, at Walter Library, Room 310 (2:30-3:30). To learn more or register, click here

Welcome Back

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Walter Welcom.jpg
(This image comes from .Bala via Flickr CC)

Welcome back to campus and classes! Good luck with the start of your semester. If you have any questions or need any library assistance, just let me know.