Fair share: how to share the library with other people

“It’s oh so quiet…”*


The Library Silent Study areas are the only place on campus where you can study in a low-distraction environment.  You will find the Silent Study spaces on all 3 floors of the Library, along the large windows at the back of the building.

Why do we have some areas dedicated to studying in silence?  Blake Hutchings (SU Vice President, Education) sums this up well, “students need to have confidence that you can go to the Library and have a productive session without being disturbed… people work in different ways, some people are easily distracted and prefer a quiet environment.”

So, if you need to discuss some aspects of your work with your group, or find a silent space really stifling and restrictive, then if you do sit in Silent Study, consider that you will end up disturbing the people around you.

“Let me talk”**

We have lots of areas in the Library where you can do group work or have a conversation:

  • 11 study rooms (which can be booked in advance through PC Booking)
  • the side of the Library in between the entrance and the central (stained glass) staircase.  This applies to all 3 floors and includes: the pods on the top floor; School Resources on the middle floor; the white desks and more pods on the ground floor.

The University also provides as many different types of study area on campus as possible, including the Learning Café and Cyber Italia.  These can work well for you if you need to complete a group project or prefer to study in a busier atmosphere.

“Food, glorious food!”***

The Library is first and foremost a study environment.  The smells (& sounds!) of other people eating can be incredibly distracting, especially when you are trying to concentrate on something complicated or meet a deadline.

Alongside this, “students expect to go into the library and have a clean working environment” (Blake Hutchings.)  Food waste left in the study areas of the Library attracted rats into the building a few years ago – we don’t want them back!

Cold food can be eaten in quiet study only. Please be mindful of other students by not eating any food that is too smelly or noisy, and clear up any rubbish or crumbs after you. Food is not permitted in any of the silent study areas.

If you’ve got lots of work to complete it’s tempting to think that sitting in the Library for 8 hours straight is the best way forward. However, this might not be doing your concentration levels any favours. Instead, why not treat yourself to a break outside of the Library periodically? A quick change of scene and activity could help improve your concentration, increasing your productivity.



**Earth, Wind & Fire