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Wellbeing on Wednesday

Digital Eye Strain
We have found a useful graphic on eye strain 

but one of the most important tips is this:

Look away frequently, or the 20-20-20 rule
Often eyestrain occurs when you engage in a single activity for too long a period of time without a break. You should shift your focus to something other than the activity every 20 minutes. What you focus on should be 20 feet away, and you should look at it for at least 20 seconds. This is known as the 20-20-20 rule
See: Health Online (2020) 8 tips to prevent eyestrain. Available at: (Accessed: 27 May 2020)

Image source: Visique Optometrist (2020) 10 Quick Tips for Avoiding Eye Strain. Available at : (Accessed: 27 May 2020)

Time management – Thursday tips

Regular followers of our blog will realise this post is late !   So, in a change to the plan, let’s look at time management hints and tips …

  1. Time is a valuable resource so approach it with the same care and effort you would use to manage your money or your career.  
  2. Prioritise your activities and create a personal plan to fit in everything you need to do along with things you want to do.
  3. Break it down, turn large projects into a series of smaller tasks which are easier to manage.
  4. Be flexible, remember that your plans may change to accommodate unexpected demands or exciting new opportunities.
  5. Take a shortcut, find ways to save time using software and apps. Also learning how to use technology more effectively when you have some spare time can prevent you wasting time in future when you are under pressure to meet deadlines.  
  6. Say *no*, it’s ok to turn down requests which are neither urgent nor important. Your plan will stop you taking on more than you can achieve in the time you have available. 

As always, we have a Time Management LibGuide with more information, online tutorial and example plan.  

Wellbeing on Wednesday: Mental Health Awareness Week

Kindness matters

This is the theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week.
The research briefing is well worth reading and most of the articles that are cited are available electronically via the Library, just copy the title of the article and paste into Discovery.  

The evidence from the research is that kindness has a very positive impact on mental health. Be kind to others and to yourself!

Tuesday Top Tips: Being concise

Writing concisely is a skill that takes some time to fine tune but the results are definitely worth it!
Some things to avoid in your writing:
1. Repetition: Remove repeated information or words which are only slightly different.
2. Description: You should make sure that you only include key information rather than unnecessary details.
3. Definitions: You may be asked to define topics in your early assignments, but as you progress through your course, you will increasingly be writing as an expert. You don’t need to give definitions of commonly used technical terms.
4. Detail in introducing references: Your reference list includes all the bibliographical information about your sources. You shouldn’t give titles or other details in your assignments.
5. Redundant terms: Some words or phrases don’t add anything to your argument, so can easily be removed.
6. Excessive signposting: It’s easy to overdo your signposts, which can then irritate your reader by slowing them down. If you feel that you need to include lots of signposting, it might indicate that your structure should be revised.

Mental Health Awareness week

The theme of this year’s Mental Health Awareness Week which runs from 18-24 May is kindness.  

We’ve included information from the official website below.  You can find more information and resources at  

You can also follow the week on social media

Facebook: @mentalhealthfoundation

Twitter: @mentalhealth

Instagram: @mentalhealthfoundation

Kindness and Mental Health  

Kindness is defined by doing something towards yourself and others, motivated by genuine desire to make a positive difference.   Research suggests that kindness and our mental health are deeply connected. Kindness can act as an antidote to isolation and create a sense of belonging. It helps reduce stress, brings a fresh perspective and deepens friendships. Kindness to ourselves can boost our sense of identity and self-esteem, improving feelings of confidence and optimism.  

Here are some ideas to add a little kindness into your day.

  • Call a friend that you haven’t spoken to for a while
  • Tell a family member how much you love and appreciate them
  • Make a meal or even just a cup of tea for someone you live with
  • Arrange to have a cup of tea and virtual catch up with someone you know
  • Help with a household chore at home
  • Arrange to watch a film at the same time as a friend and video call
  • Tell someone you know that you are proud of them and why you are thankful for them
  • Send a motivational text to a friend who is struggling
  • Send someone you know a joke or a funny picture to cheer them up
  • Send an inspirational quote or an interesting article to a friend
  • Spend a little extra time playing with your children or your pet
  • Donate your time, skills or money to a charity
  • Arrange to have a video lunch with someone 
  • Offer to skill share with a friend via video call – you could teach guitar, dance etc.
  • Offer support to vulnerable neighbours
  • Offer to send someone a takeaway or a meal

Please remember that there are also University resources and trained staff to help you with mental health issues, find out more on our Student & Library Support update.

National Walking Month

National Walking Month ideas
Suggestions from Living Streets for National Walking Month in May 2020

We’re half way through May which is National Walking Month.  As the weather seems to be improving and many of us are getting outside more often we thought we’d share some walking inspiration from Living Streets.  

They have a great website of ideas to help everyone get active, including suggestions for indoor walking!  Why not try some of them this weekend.  Taking proper breaks is essential for physical and mental wellbeing, especially if you are working towards deadlines or coping with stressful situations.  Getting outside, looking at the natural world, or simply moving around indoors can all help to release tension and give you a different perspective.  And if you need some immediate inspiration why not try a spot of birdwatching, find out more on the Living Streets blog.

Have a happy Friday everyone! 


Referencing- Last minute checks!

We get a lot of referencing questions through our Learning Hub and in tutorials.  Unsurprisingly, recent enquiries have included more examples of online resources. So here are some quick  Thursday tips for those of you working hard to finish assignments.  

Cite Them Right

Don’t forget that you have online access to Cite Them Right. You can find guidance and examples by searching for the type of resource, for example ‘website’, ‘ebook’ or ‘journal article’.  Just follow the link from the Library website and log in using your University details.


How do I reference information on a website which doesn’t have an author?

Firstly  make sure you are satisfied the information is reliable, accurate and legitimate.  Then you need to include enough information to enable your reader to find your source, including a link and the date you accessed the material.

For example, where the page belongs to an organisation, institution or company you would follow the format below for a Harvard style reference:

  • Organisation
  • Year that the site was published/last updated (in round brackets)
  • Title of web page (in italics)
  • Available at: URL (Accessed: date)

This means that a Harvard reference to the BBC News page would look like this:

BBC (2020) News. Available at:  (Accessed: 14 May 2020)  

The Accessed date is the day you last accessed the website. This is important because online information is frequently updated so you need to tell your reader when you viewed it.

And if the website has no author, organisation or title?  In that case you would follow this format in Harvard:

  • URL
  • Year that the site was published/last updated (in round brackets)
  • (Accessed: date)


What about ebooks?

Happily, if the ebook includes all the information you would find in a print copy, such as publisher and place of publication, you can follow the same format as a print book.

If you do not have publisher and location details you should include enough information to direct your reader to the source you used.  In Harvard style, this would be:

  • Author/editor
  • Year of publication (in round brackets)
  • Title of book (in italics)
  • DOI or Available at: URL (Accessed: date)

For example:

Adams, D. (1979) The hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy. Available at: (Accessed: 29 January 2020).


Where can I get more help?

You can find information, more examples and online tutorials on our Referencing LibGuide

You can send questions direct to our Learning Hub on Teams using this address: 

Or you can book a virtual tutorial with your academic librarians, just follow the links on our Tutorial booking page