Hi everyone! My name is Brittney and I’m a Senior Library Ambassador for the Winter 2019 term. I’m currently in my 4A of Geography and Environmental Management with a Climate Change specialization and a French minor. I still have another semester left but I already have that bittersweet feeling of leaving but also entering the real world soon. This is my third term as a Library Ambassador and I’m still learning new things about the library!
One of my favourite things about this job is that the library always has something new, whether it’s a new renovated room, new staff, or new services. So far, I found out that the library has online tutorials (https://uwaterloo.ca/library/services/online-tutorials) for students to familiarize themselves with the library database. It is interesting to see how the library is evolving to incorporate more technologies and digitalizing their resources to make them more accessible to students. As a student, I find these resources really helpful because I have lots of essays and research papers to write throughout my undergrad career.
In my first year, I remember having a course where someone from the library came to my lecture to teach us how to use and search for things on the database. It may be difficult to ensure that someone goes to all of the lectures of various programs, so some students may not know how to use this feature. Luckily, there are online tutorials now that show you the process through videos. There is a video talking about the ‘tips and tricks’ for database searching which is really useful when completing research. For example, I look for Peer-Reviewed articles almost daily, and I use the Boolean Operators (AND, OR, NOT) to help narrow my search. As well, they mentioned in the video that most people are familiar with the single-search bar, but the Advanced Search is way more effective. I did not know this until I was in second-year and someone told me how it works. I hope that more students take advantage of these online tutorials as they are super convenient and handy to use!
The library is definitely a great place to be in and staff are happy to support you. They want you to succeed in school (and in life!), and they are always trying to make the University of Waterloo a better place while adding resources. If you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to come by the library – friendly people and fun events await! Stay tuned by following our social media accounts :)