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Katie Fraser's blog and website

I'm an academic librarian, working in the UK Higher Educational sector, supporting academics and students. Prior to this, I was a researcher, working with social and learning technologies.

My interests include the application of emerging and traditional technologies, research support in libraries, learning spaces, evidence-based practice and the professional development of library and information workers.

You can find out more about more about me from the links to the left. Note that the views expressed on this website/blog are mine alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of any other individual or organisation.

General update – interlibrary loans and thesis

February 29th, 2008

It’s the last day of February (thanks to extra buffer day of February 29th) and as I have an unofficial self-imposed target to meet of two posts a month, you’re getting two posts in one day. I’ve settled into interlibrary loans, and I’ve become pretty used to the work. There’s lots of different bits and pieces to do. I started out on the basics – opening post from other libraries, acquiring books from the British Library, entering request forms, and many other similar tasks. Now I’ve been here for a while I’m also learning to do other tasks, and today I just completed my first solo Status Report from the British Library – responding to messages they’ve sent about our orders and acting on them by sending emails to patrons, making notes on accounts, and so on.

It feels like I’ve only been here a short period of time, and now I’m nearly heading back up to cataloguing again soon – probably in the Easter holidays to allow my co-trainee to settle in before it gets too busy. I’ve enjoyed my time in ILL so far – there’s always a variety of things to do., and things happening. This week’s excitement was a new stamp for interlibrary loan requests (pictured to the right, with the old stamp) – the requests are all numbered consecutively, and the stamp rolls on each time. The old one was very broken, with an ink pad that did very little in the way of transferring ink onto paper. I have decided that this shiny new stamp will be my legacy to the library, if nothing else.

Today is a Friday, and on Fridays I’m alone in the ILL department. I usually make what I call ‘my Friday mistake’ – it’s always a different mistake, but I manage one every week. This week either it’s still coming, or it’s already happened, and I haven’t noticed, or (whisper it) I haven’t made a mistake at all. I’ll just have to wait and see.

The thesis is, as always, ongoing. The last couple of nights I’ve sat down and written a page and a half summary of the literature review and method chapter, which seems to be really helping me think about the main points I need to get across, the order in which I have to include them, and the ‘story’ of the chapter. I’ve still got no idea whether it’ll take three or five months to finish, though.

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