On track for your Master's

Writing your Master's dissertation?

Join us for a one-week programme of free workshops in the Library to help you boost your research skills!


On track programme

Workshops are delivered by staff from the Library, Talent Development Centre and IT Services.

Take a look at the programme below and sign up to as many workshops as you like - there's no limit!

In addition, we are running Open Surgery (subject specialist) and Writing Clinic (writing skills) sessions. These are drop-in events and do not require booking.

All sessions (except for Shut up and write!) will run for up to 50 minutes and are held in the Library Training Room (Ground Floor, within the Large Reading Room).

Not sure what session is right for you? Find one by theme from our icons!

Introductory session Study skills Specific sources/subjects Introductory session Introductory session Introductory session Introductory session

Workshop summaries and booking

Introductory session

Google search skills

Time: 10 am

This session will cover how to search Google and Google Scholar effectively. You will discover how to find high quality academic material through the use of advanced search techniques.

Book here


Introductory session

Literature searching

Time: 11 am

This session will take you through the basics of literature searching. It will cover effective searching of online resources, evaluating your results, saving and recording your search and accessing the full text.

Book here


Introductory session

Google search skills

Time: 12 pm

This session will cover how to search Google and Google Scholar effectively. You will discover how to find high quality academic material through the use of advanced search techniques.

Book here


Study skills

Planning & writing a literature review

Time: 2 pm

This workshop is relevant to all those in the process of planning a dissertation, long essay or research proposal. We will look at the purpose of a Literature Review chapter, what it will typically contain, possible approaches to structure and organisation and ways that points raised in your Literature Review should link to other sections of your paper.

Book here


Specific sources/subjects

Using news & media for research

Time: 3 pm

There is more to research than just books and journals! An introduction, showcasing the potential of using news & media (including social media) sources for current and historical research.

Book here


Specific resources/subject

Discover "Visible Body" - the Anatomy & Physiology app

Time: 11 am

Find out about our interactive learning apps for human anatomy. Featuring anatomy models and 3D physiology animations that you can rotate, zoom and dissect. Come along to get help with installing and mastering these tools - and bring a tablet if you have one (although this is not essential).

Book here


Specific resources/subject

Using Special Collections & Archives

Time: 12 pm

Interested in using primary sources in your research? This talk shines a light on the Library's collections and those further afield. Includes tour of the Special Collections.

Book here


Study skills

Planning & writing a literature review

Time: 1 pm

This workshop is relevant to all those in the process of planning a dissertation, long essay or research proposal. We will look at the purpose of a Literature Review chapter, what it will typically contain, possible approaches to structure and organisation and ways that points raised in your Literature Review should link to other sections of your paper.

Book here


Specific resources/subject

Searching for "grey literature" in the Health Sciences

Time: 2 pm

There is an ever-growing amount of grey literature available and with the right approach it can be an invaluable resource. It includes, but is not limited to: government reports, committee reports, policy statements, conference proceedings and theses. Discover the best way to search this important and unique content in this session.

Book here


Study skills

Structuring your dissertation

Time: 3 pm

What different possibilities are there for structuring a disseration? How can you find out or verify what is 'best'? In this session, we will examine a number of models, and consider the factors which need to be taken into account when planning a dissertation.

Book here


Introductory session

OPEN SURGERY (Drop-in session)

Time: 4 pm

Looking for advice and support regarding your research topic? Then come along with your questions and speak to your subject librarian in a 1:1 session.

This is a drop-in session, no booking required (though if demand is high, be prepared to wait to be seen!).


Databases

Introduction to business databases

Time: 10 am

Whether data or information, you will need resources to support your argument in your dissertation. This workshop will go through strategies to locate business data & information and introduce you to a range of business databases available through the library. The session will include hans-on tasks, so be ready to get your hands dirty!

Book here


Introductory session

Literature searching

Time: 11 am

This session will take you through the basics of literature searching. It will cover effective searching of online resources, evaluating your results, saving and recording your search and accessing the full text.

Book here


Databases

Finding statistics & data for your research

Time: 12 pm

Need to get hold of data on a topic, but unsure where to start? This talk outlines some of the major places to look for high quality data.

Book here


Study skills

Structuring your dissertation

Time: 1 pm

What different possibilities are there for structuring a disseration? How can you find out or verify what is 'best'? In this session, we will examine a number of models, and consider the factors which need to be taken into account when planning a dissertation.

Book here


Referencing

Reference management made easy with Mendeley

Time: 2 pm

Mendeley is a free reference management tool that can save you time! Discover how to organise your papers, automatically insert citations and bibliographies into your paper.

** This will be a "hands-on" session - please bring your own laptop **

Book here


Databases

Introduction to Datastream

Time: 3 pm

Want to find economic or financial data? A basic introduction to a key library database: Datastream.

Book here


Referencing

Introduction to EndNote reference management software

Time: 10 am

Find out how you can use EndNote, the University's recommended and supported reference management tool, for free to: collect references from a variety of sources; to store and organise your references using groups; find, attach and annotate full text articles; and insert your references into word processing software using EndNote's unique, mouse-free Cite While You Write (CWYW) function.

Book here


Evaluating information

Thinking about Open Access

Time: 11 am

What is Open Access and why is it important in research? This session will explain the benefits of sharing research openly, and explore some ways to find articles and data that might originally be behind a paywall.

Book here


Evaluating information

Fake or real? An introduction to fake news and how to spot it

Time: 12 pm

Do you know fake news when you see it? In this workshop we will:

  • Learn about fake news and why it exists
  • Think about how our own opinions and beliefs affect the way we view information
  • Practise using some techniques to evaluate news and other information sources

Book here


Study skills

WRITING CLINIC

Time: 1 pm

Need help or advice with a writing problem? Drop into our writing clinic to talk it through with one of our academic skills advisers. Whether it's structuring your dissertation, integrating research, discussing data or just some tactics for beating writer's block - we can help.

This session is drop-in only - but if you'd like a longer, dedicated session, please contact the TDC helpdesk to book a 1:1.


Evaluating information

Predatory publishing & evaluating resources

Time: 3 pm

Predatory publishers are 'fake journals' that only exist to exploit academics for money. These can be extremely damaging to science, as they publish pretty much anything without verifying the research. Learn how to spot a predatory publisher in this session to make sure you're not misled by fake science!

Book here


Referencing

Introduction to EndNote reference management software

Time: 11 am

Find out how you can use EndNote, the University's recommended and supported reference management tool, for free to: collect references from a variety of sources; to store and organise your references using groups; find, attach and annotate full text articles; and insert your references into word processing software using EndNote's unique, mouse-free Cite While You Write (CWYW) function.

Book here


Referencing

Getting started with Zotero (reference management software)

Time: 12 pm

Wondering how to manage your references and bibliography efficiently? Come along to this session and find out how Zotero - a free reference management tool - could help you.

By the end of the session you will:

  • Understand how reference management software can help you to save time and be more consistent with your referencing
  • Be able to add references to your Zotero library from a variety of sources
  • Know how to use Zotero to generate citations and a bibliography in Microsoft Word

** This will be a "hands-on" session - please bring your own laptop **

Book here


Study skills

Shut up and write!

Time: 1 pm - 4.30 pm

Location: Special Collections (Floor 1)

Do you struggle with procrastination, or find it difficult to get started? This workshop is facilitated by an experienced tutor, and is for students who want a distraction free space to focus on writing.

Using a varation of the Pomodoro Technique, you will be given blocks of time in a peaceful environment, where you will be asked to switch off mobile phones and wifi/internet access, and encouraged to get down to work.

In the regular breaks, you can ask the workshop facilitator any writing related questions you may have, whether they're about grammar, structure, whether something makes sense, or overcoming writer's block. Tea and coffee will be provided, along with some snacks to keep your energy up.

All students must bring their own laptop or device to write with, and other than that, there is nothing you need to do, except exactly what the title says - shut up and write.

Book here


Introductory session

OPEN SURGERY (Drop-in session)

Time: 4 pm

Looking for advice and support regarding your research topic? Then come along with your questions and speak to your subject librarian in a 1:1 session.

This is a drop-in session, no booking required (though if demand is high, be prepared to wait to be seen!).




Enquiries

Library
The University of Essex
Wivenhoe Park
Colchester
Essex
CO4 3SQ
+44 (0) 1206 873192
libline@essex.ac.uk