See what’s new – exciting changes for the Library website

We’ve redesigned our homepage to better communicate with you and made our online help services easier to find. 

From Monday 6th July, you will notice some changes around the Library website.  

New homepage 

To help you discover Library initiatives and services, we’ve redesigned our homepage so you can see featured information without having to scroll down the page. 

Say hello to Live Chat, on all pages 

Previously called ‘Chat Now’, you’ll now find a ‘Live Chat’ tab in the lower right of your screen on all pages, so where ever you are on our website help is one click away. Even better, it’s now easier to start chatting with our staff – just type your message and connect instantly. 

‘Ask Us Now’ renamed to ‘Frequently Asked Questions’ 

This is the same service you know and love. Use Frequently Asked Questions to find the Library’s answers to your top questions, 24/7. Can’t find the answer you’re looking for? It’s still easy to send a new question our way. 

We’d love to hear your feedback about these changes as we continue to make improvements to the Library website.  

new homepage layout of Library website

Virtual Information Desk in Fisher Foyer

student speaking with virtual information desk staff

Remember when you’d walk up to the information desk and ask for assistance? Now we’re here, in virtual person, to help you.

In Fisher Library foyer we have our Virtual Information Desk to greet you and help you with any questions. There’s no need to log in and no mobile devices are required – just walk up and chat.

In the first weeks of reopening we’ve had enquiries ranging from how to find books at Fisher Library, to asking if the staff member they are talking to is real! Students love it and some feedback includes ‘Brave New World’, ‘Cool!’, ‘It’s great to be talking to a human!’

As Library staff we’ve enjoyed reconnecting with you face-to-face, even if it is virtual, and it was wonderful to be able to wish students good luck with their exams.

The Virtual Information Desk is open 10am – 4pm Monday to Friday. Come and have a chat, or wave and say hello!

student speaking with virtual information desk staff

Collecting your COVID-19 University Experience

section of quilt designed and made during COVID-19

We want to collect your stories describing your experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Library is creating a collection that documents the university experience of staff and students during the COVID-19 pandemic. We want to collect your videos, personal reflections, artworks, photographs, stories, poetry and other expressions of your own experience to help us record this essential part of University history for generations to come. This collection will be made publicly available to be used in research, teaching and for public interest.

Not sure where to start? Consider writing a message to the future:

Imagine you’re sending a message to someone in the future. This may be your future self, your descendants, your community or even someone opening a time capsule from today in a future century. What would you like them to know about the pandemic as experienced through your daily life, your hopes, your fears, what you’ve observed or learnt, unexpected surprises and joys? Your message may take in any form – written, illustrated, composed, sound-based, video, a zine, 3D, or something else entirely. You can give it to us as a digital file(s), or a physical item.

Visit the Collecting COVID-19 website to find out how to share your story. All submissions will be reviewed in line with scope of this collection. Unfortunately, this means we won’t be able to accept everything for the final collection.

The COVID-19 pandemic has been a particularly tough time for many people, please remember that there are ways for you to get support:

Support through the University of Sydney (for staff and students)

Other sources of support in Australia

Here are some of our submissions to inspire you!

New Library Hours & Extended Online Support for 2020

UPDATE***** 25/03/2020

Library spaces have closed and services have changed.

To prioritise wellness within the university community, all University Library sites on all campuses are closed from today, 6pm, Wednesday 25 March 2020 until further notice. This includes all 24/7 Library spaces.

For more information on the University Library’s response to COVID-19 and to learn about the library support available to you, please see our COVID-19 Support webpage: https://library.sydney.edu.au/help/covid-19/.

  • The Library will remain open online and continue providing support for research and study. A Chat Now service will be available Monday–Thursday 8am–10pm, and Friday 8am–8pm.
  • Additionally, the Library’s extensive electronic collection of more than 1 million scholarly ejournals and eBooks are available 24/7 from any global location.
  • External library return chutes will remain open at Fisher, SciTech and Health Sciences libraries.

We look forward to seeing and helping you soon online!


Starting Monday 24 February 2020, opening and information desk hours during semester will change in some Library sites.

We will also expand our online support available to staff and students through our live online chat service, Chat Now. From Semester 1, Chat Now will operate from 10am-10pm Monday to Thursday, and 10am-8pm on Fridays.

Chat Now is the Library’s live online chat service which enables clients to ask questions and talk to Library staff in real-time. The extended hours mean clients can access support when they need it most, wherever they might be: in the library, at home or anywhere in the world!

Changes across sites include the following:

Fisher and Law Libraries

Fisher and Law Libraries will remain open to staff and students 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. However, Library information desks (and equipment kept behind the desk) will close at 8pm, Monday to Friday.

After 8pm, you can chat with Library staff online via Chat Now until 10pm, Monday to Thursday.

To provide more support to students on Sundays, the Fisher Information desk will open from 9am-5pm each Sunday. This means staff and students in Fisher and Law Libraries can get more in-person support Sunday mornings at the Fisher Information desk. However, the Law Information Library desk will be open on Sundays from 1-5pm.

  Monday-Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Fisher & Law Libraries 24/7 24/7 24/7 24/7
Fisher desk 8am-8pm 8am-8pm 9am-5pm 9am-5pm
Law desk 8am-8pm 8am-8pm 9am-5pm 1pm-5pm
ChatNow 10am-10pm 10am-8pm

_

Members of the public, Alumni and community borrowers only have access to this space during information desk hours.

SciTech Library

SciTech Library will remain open to staff and students 8am-10pm, Monday to Thursday, with extended hours on Fridays. However, the SciTech Information desk (and equipment kept behind the desk) will close at 8pm, Monday to Friday.

After 8pm, you can chat with Library staff online via Chat Now until 10pm, Monday to Thursday.

  Monday-Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
SciTech Library 8am-10pm 8am-10pm 9am-5pm 1pm-5pm
SciTech desk 8am-8pm 8am-8pm 9am-5pm 1pm-5pm
ChatNow 10am-10pm 10am-8pm

_

Members of the public, Alumni and community borrowers only have access to this space during information desk hours.

Nursing Library

Nursing Library will now open at 9am, Monday to Friday.

  Monday-Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Nursing 9am-7pm 9am-5pm
ChatNow 10am-10pm 10am-8pm

_

Health Sciences and Conservatorium Libraries

In response to feedback from you, there are no changes to opening or information desk hours at the Health Sciences and Conservatorium Libraries.

  Monday-Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
Health Sciences 8am-9pm 8am-6pm 10am-5pm 1pm-5pm
Conservatorium 8am-8pm 8am-6pm 10am-5pm
ChatNow 10am-10pm 10am-8pm

_

Chat Now

We will extend Chat Now hours to provide you with live online support when you need it most! You can now chat live with Library staff with any questions you might have from 10am -10pm, Monday to Thursday and 10am-8pm on Fridays.

  Monday-Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday
ChatNow 10am-10pm 10am-8pm

_

_

All these changes will be implemented from Monday 24 February 2020.

For more information on Library site and opening ours, visit the locations & opening hours page on our website.

Staff and student questions, suggestions and feedback can be made through the Library’s Suggestion & feedback form

Did you know the Library houses an extremely rare copy of Principia with hand written notes by Newton?

Safely resting in the archives of our Library lives a copy of the text that rewrote the rule book on Earth and space Principia (Philosophiae Naturalis Principia Mathematica), recently featured on ABC’s 7.30 report.

Title page of The Principia, 1687. 

First published in 1687, the text is one of the most important books on natural philosophy in which Newton establishes the modern science of dynamics and outlines his three laws of motion.

The University of Sydney copy is one of only four known copies that were sent by Newton and his assistant Roger Cotes to other mathematicians in order to eliminate any errors in a second edition. The other copies are all located in the Northern Hemisphere – two in the University of Cambridge Library and one in the Library of Trinity College.

The report uncovers how the Library came to have this important copy and the significance of the rare text.

Re-watch the story online, read the University’s media release or explore Principia online via our Digital Collections.

Enhance Your Research and Teaching with the Library’s New Text and Data Mining Support Service

__

Do you need to analyse large volumes of text in your research? Would you like your class to learn about text and data mining research methods? The Library can assist with our new text and data mining support service.

__

Text mining is the process of applying computational methods to large scale text datasets to discover new insights that may not be revealed through reading and analysis at a human scale. This approach can open-up new areas of scholarly enquiry, enhance your research practise or provide your students with new research methods.

The Library is currently trialling a text and data mining support service for Higher Degree Research Students and Academic Staff.

Some of the support services include:

  • Access to online information & subscribed tools
  • Advice on resources for text and data mining
  • Consultation on text and data mining concepts
  • Consultation for forming a search strategy for corpora creation
  • Delivery of lectures and hands on training sessions for undergraduate classes
  • Negotiation for expansion of Library subscribed collections & digitised cultural collections for mining

__

See the support available to you, or visit the text and data mining page for more information.