Hello there lovely reader!
I come to you today in a break from revising driving theory in preparation for my theory test tomorrow!
Today I’m going to talk about some of the facilities and services available to students on and off-campus here in Aberystwyth, and why they’re really handy to know about. Knowing they’re there is the key to being able to use them if the need arises. So without further ado-
The Student’s Union
Somewhere you will probably visit quite often – for lunch, stationery, a drink. A lot goes on in the union. There’s a shop, a bakery, a bar – pool tables and toilets and a small computer room.
This is where you’ll go if you want to buy a bus pass for the year, a place with loads of volunteering opportunities, a place to study in a more relaxed environment than the library, or to relax on a break from studying. The union can also offer you advice: from housing and finances to sexual health, to paying taxes and how National Insurance works. You can find academic support and personal support; the Union are able to direct you to counselling services if ever you need them. If you’re looking for backup against an unpleasant landlord, advice about choosing accommodation, or even help on applying for special circumstances, your Union can offer advice and support.
The Careers Service
The Careers service is housed inside the Union building, next to the Union shop. They can offer advice and help on what to do when you graduate – from building your CV, identifying what area you want to go into, help with choosing further study or graduate opportunities. Well worth popping in, especially in your second and third years. If you’re thinking of a year in employment, or work experience placement, the careers service really know what they’re talking about and can help you get there. They hold employer events throughout the year, as well as workshop sessions to help you build skills in certain areas – like improving your interview skills for example.
Student Wellness Centre
Now situated on Penglais Hill, attached to Padarn Doctor’s Surgery, the Wellness Centre offers students appointments with nurses and access to counselling. I can vouch for how lovely and helpful all of the staff are, having attended for counselling myself at the end of last year. You can be referred by your doctor for counselling or phone up and ask. They also provide advice on a lot of other topics covering personal wellbeing.
Ahh, the library. One of my favourite places. Full of books that you probably can’t afford to buy, and may not have access to again after Uni. Hugh Owen library has three levels.
On Level D you are allowed food and drink, and there are a limited number of computers to use, as well as desks to work at. The short-term loans collection and a small amount of fiction books are here too. The main reception desk is here, where you can get IT help and books advice; if you recall a book to pick up, this is where it will be held for you. There are machines to return books, to buy printing credit and to repay library fines. There is also the media and sales hatch, where you can buy things like Ethernet cables and when the time comes get your dissertation bound.
The next level up, Level E, has a dedicated computer room, and only allows drinks inside containers. Level E is designed for quiet group study. There’s also lots of desks on this level, as well as the science books. The group study area of Level E also has Folios, the Celtic Collection, Official Publications and the Statistics Collection.
The top level, Level F, is silent study only, and has plenty of computers. On this level only bottled water is allowed. There are computers in the general area, and also the Tom Lloyd study suite, which is a ‘no Facebook’ zone. Again, there’s plenty of work space to take your laptop or just your books, and there’s a choice of comfy chairs with coffee tables or hard chairs at desks. You can also book use of private study rooms on Level F, which comes really in handy when working on a group project.
This level houses the majority of books in Hugh Owen, which is quite a long list:
- General Works
- Auxiliary Sciences of History
- History: Europe, Asia, Africa
- History: America
- Social Sciences
- Political Science
- Fine Arts
- European Languages
- Other Languages & Literatures
- Drama & Performing Arts
- General Literature
- French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese Literatures
- English Literature
- American Literature
- German, Dutch, Scandinavian Literatures
- Juvenile Literature
- Military Science
- Naval Science
- Library Science
There are also materials on effective study, past exam papers, atlases, dictionaries, journals, diplomatic documents and a ‘quick reference’ collection. If a book is stamped ‘Reference Only’, it means you can’t check it out of the library – you can just read it inside.
All levels have printers, and dedicated computers to check Primo (the library catalogue) and to find your library pin – which is a number you use together with your Aber card when you take a book out. You can take out up to 16 books at one time.
The More Books Campaign
This is one really worth knowing about. If there’s a book relevant to your course that the library don’t have, so long as it costs under £50 you can request that the library get it via an online order form – and they will. If the book you request costs more than £50, or there are other copies in the library already, the request gets passed to Academic Services Librarians who decide whether to approve it. If a book you request comes in, it’ll be held for you for three days where you choose so that you get first use of it. This scheme is a really great thing for a library to do, so use it. If there’s a book on your reading list that’s not in the library don’t just moan – order it!
I hope there’s a few helpful nuggets of info in there about Aberystwyth University campus. If anyone has any questions, let me know in the comments!