Last days for the library survey!

August 22, 2014 – 1:32 pm

The library survey closes at 9am on Monday 25 August. And 1960 of you have completed the survey :)

Thank you to all who have generously participated so far.

Ballarat and Canberra campuses are pulling above their weight when you factor in their relative student population!

An updated tally:

2407 people have started the survey.
1960 (81%) have completed the survey.

Breakdown of responses
Which Campus Library do you use most?

  • 352    Brisbane (McAuley at Banyo)
  • 507    North Sydney (MacKillop)
  • 353    Strathfield (Mount Saint Mary)
  • 128    Canberra (Signadou)
  • 141    Ballarat (Aquinas)
  • 709    Melbourne (St Patrick’s)
  • 217    Unspecified

Your input is appreciated and will shape future library services. We want to know what’s important to you, how we perform and how we can do better. If you haven’t already…complete the library survey now.

Have a great weekend!

photo of student in the library


ACU Literature Prize winner for 2014 announced

August 22, 2014 – 11:52 am

Sydney poet Helen Thurloe has won the 2014 Australian Catholic University (ACU) Literature Prize with her poem Surgeon Mother. The winner and runners up Lucy Williams and Jenny Blackford were announced on Thursday night, 21 August 2014 at ACU’s Melbourne Campus as part of the Melbourne Writers’ Festival.
Thurloe’s poem was chosen from more than 200 entries nationally on the theme ‘The Language of Compassion’. The Sydney-based poet won $7000 for her poem, and $2000 and $1000 were awarded for second and third place.
Poet, author and academic Professor Kevin Hart, ACU Literature lecturers Dr Carolyn Masel and Matthew Ryan, and Academic Board chair Professor Margot Hillel OAM judged the award. The prize was made possible through the sponsorship of ACU’s Directorate of Identity and Mission. Vice-Chancellor Professor Greg Craven and Director of Identity and Mission Father Anthony Casamento presented the awards.
The theme of compassion had resonated with poets and the standard of entries was particularly high, said Professor Hillel.
“The judges were delighted and impressed by the way poets responded to this year’s theme in moving and sometimes surprising ways. At least one of the judges confessed to shedding more than a few tears while reading the entries. Among other things, poems addressed compassion of the everyday, compassion for animals, the elderly, the ill and refugees,” she said.
The ACU Prize for Literature aims to support writers and to continue the tradition of the Catholic Church as a key patron of the arts.
“Australian Catholic University was delighted to be sponsoring this important event in the Australian literary calendar. As with last year, the breadth and quality of the entries for this year’s prize has been remarkable, and is a testament to the eagerness with which the Australian literary community has embraced this prize,” Fr Casamento said.

Sara Coen/ Media Coordinator ACU

2013 prize winner

The 2013 Inaugural prize went to Stephen Edgar for his poem, The Dancer. The 2013 theme was ‘everyday immanence’. Copies of the book, ‘A sudden presence’ are available at campus libraries.  See Library News post for 2013 details – ACU Literature Prize winner.

Rose (Rosa Poetry in Motion 'Harelan')

Image credit:

Rose (Rosa Poetry In Motion ‘Harelan’). [Photography]. Retrieved from Encyclopædia Britannica ImageQuest.

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On trial: SAGE Research Methods Cases

August 21, 2014 – 2:25 pm

ACU Library already subscribes to SAGE Research Methods Online (SRM), but this trial is for Cases, which is a new component on the SAGE Research Methods platform.

What are SAGE Research Methods Cases?

SAGE Research Methods Cases (SRMC) is a collection of over 350 case studies of real social research that faculty can use in their teaching. Specially commissioned and designed to help students understand often abstract methodological concepts by introducing them to cases of real research projects that are interesting and engaging and designed to add colour, context and understanding to the teaching of research methods or statistics”.

To search for case studies:

  • on SRM landing page along the top tool bar next to ‘Browse’ Open the Menu under Content and click on Cases – an alphabetical index should appear.
  • alternatively on the SRM landing page you could search for “big data” and several Case studies should come up – eg first one ‘The Use of ‘Big Data’ for Social Sciences Research: An Application to Corruption Research’ Mihaly Fazekas 2014.

We have SAGE Research Methods Cases on trial until 20 October.

Please take a look and send us your feedback via the quick online feedback form.

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Improvements to Search

August 20, 2014 – 4:01 pm

Our Library Search had an upgrade over the weekend. So what’s new?

screen dump of library search box

There has been lots of tweaking behind the scenes to bring better, more relevant search results and a few obvious things like…

New year of publication slider

Now you can refine your search results by the date slider.

screen dump of date slider


Get help with your citations! Works for books, ebooks and journal articels. When you want to cite, go to details > actions > citations and select your citation style

screen dump of a citation example

If you have any comments, problems or if you don’t think things are working as they should be – please let us know!


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Woohoo! 1480 surveys completed so far!

August 19, 2014 – 2:30 pm

Thanks to everyone who has completed the survey so far. We have surpassed our 2012 survey total which was 1102 surveys completed, but we do have more students now, so if you haven’t already the survey, please do the survey now!

We run this survey every two years. Why? The responses to the survey give us really valuable feedback about what’s important to you, and how we can improve our services and programs. The more responses the better!

And by completing the survey, you may win the Samsung Galaxy NotePro, valued at over $1000.

photo of two hands clapping

Image credit:


Racism: It stops with everyone at ACU

August 19, 2014 – 12:21 pm

You may have noticed that the Library website and also the students and public ACU website all have the image -


What is this all about?

Media release from 11 June:

Racism: It stops with everyone at ACU

Australian Catholic University (ACU) has thrown its support behind the Australian Human Rights Commission’s anti-racism campaign as a Community Supporter of the policy.

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Students, Learning & Teaching) Professor Anne Cummins and Chief Operating Officer & Deputy Vice-Chancellor Dr Stephen Weller will sign a statement of agreement with Race Discrimination Commissioner Dr Tim Soutphommasane at ACU’s North Sydney campus on Monday.

Professor Cummins said the agreement was an acknowledgement that ACU’s own values were aligned with those of the Human Rights Commission. “Our Mission positively states our commitment to the dignity of the human person and the common good,” she said.

Dr Weller said the university’s proactive approach to equality and fairness was fundamental to the philosophy that “cultural diversity be embraced and the university is a safe and respectful community where racism is not tolerated”.

Initiatives in place to support the agreement include:

  • A Discrimination and Harassment Policy which reinforces that race based discrimination and harassment are not tolerated; support is available for staff members and students to deal with their concerns and complaints,
  • A proactive approach to enhancing inclusiveness and respect; staff members are encouraged to come together in a safe environment to share their knowledge and increase understanding of various cultural perspectives,
  • An Indigenous Employment Framework provides opportunities for staff members to build their cultural competency regarding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander culture,
  • Staff and students are encouraged to support Harmony Day every year, which coincides with the United Nations International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination,
  • ACU’s National Student Association (ACUNSA) supports the diversity of our campuses and the right of our students to study in a hate free environment; ACUNSA will include its statement of support at all events and in written communications.


True to type

August 18, 2014 – 1:50 pm

ACU Strathfield Campus Library recently hosted an exhibition of paintings inspired by the acquisition of The Saint John’s Bible. Now visitors are being treated to a display of graphic posters designed by ARTS111 students. An exploration of typography, the students researched the influence of Modernist art movements such as Cubism, Futurism, Dadaism and Constructivism on various typefaces. They were tasked with creating a poster to advertise a Sydney Design Festival in the style they chose to research.

image of the ten posters

Arts Liaison Librarian Maria El-Chami was on hand with lecturer-in-charge Mr Xavier Beau-Davis during the presentation phase of the assignment. Together they singled out 10 works for honourable mention which can be seen on the back wall of Strathfield Campus Library, Level 1. The other works are bringing a welcome splash of colour to various locations within the Library.

If you can’t make it into the Library, check out the works on the Library’s Facebook page and like your favourite. We’ll be loading the ten posters onto Facebook this week – two an afternoon :)

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Thank you 787 times!

August 15, 2014 – 3:27 pm

Thank you to everyone who has completed the survey so far. 787 of you have completed the survey. The survey runs until Monday 25 August, so please – have your say!

We run this survey every two years. Why? Your feedback will help us plan and action changes.

And you may win….this survey we are offering one prize – a  Samsung Galaxy NotePro 12.2″ 32GB WiFi Tablet that retails for just over $1000.

thank you spelt out in coloured blocks

Image credit:

By Flickr user vistamommy [CC-BY-2.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons


Downtime: Library Search upgrade this Sunday morning

August 15, 2014 – 11:00 am

Library Search will be upgraded between 7pm-10pm on Sunday evening (17 August).

Library search may be unavailable for approximately 20 minutes during this time.


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Vote now: North Sydney Library’s designers up for Design Excellence award for the Library.

August 14, 2014 – 9:12 am

**Update – we are now a FINALIST in the awards! Show your love for the North Sydney Library and vote now! Voting closes 17 August **

About the design and the design process…

YouTube Preview Image

Last month we posted the exciting news that North Sydney Library had been nominated for an IDEA Award, that’s an Interior Design Excellent Award in the public space category.

Last week we heard more exciting news as we found out that the North Sydney Library refurbishment has been shortlisted for a second design award! Interior Design – Public or Institutional for the 2014 Sydney Design Awards.

And you can vote for the Library! Public votes accepted, but voting closes 17 August.

Below is some of the information from the designer – BigCity Design or read about the full nomination.

Project Overview

“This striking internal ‘neighbourhood’ within an existing library has brought a sense of belonging and identity to the Australian Catholic University’s compact North Sydney campus. The comprehensive refurbishment has delivered social and learning facilities that embrace the cultural identity of the ACU and offer young, vibrant, welcoming environments that are reminiscent of home and community.

“When strangers start acting like neighbours…communities are reinvigorated” Ralph Nader

Spaces to gather, places to learn and quiet corners to be on your own have all been included in this home away from home”

Project Brief

“Australian Catholic University’s student facilities in North Sydney lacked the sense of community and belonging for which the university is renowned. The North Sydney campus attracts students from around the world.

The brief was to create a new learning hub in the location of the existing North Sydney library and adjacent teaching spaces. The refurbished environment was to be inclusive and familiar to the student community while encouraging social interaction and supporting teaching strategy.

The project site, on the lower ground floor of an existing late 20th century building, was neither inspiring to its occupants, nor engaged with its environment. As a building located within a small site adjacent to a restrictive residential zone, it offered little opportunity to create dialogue with its surrounds.

Existing student facilities lacked a sense of place, or belonging. Wasted space and poor environmental services were uninviting and lacklustre. Groups of students strewn along narrow corridors would roll aside to allow passers-by through. There was no sense of purpose and no purposeful ownership.

The refurbishment project provided an opportunity to introduce vitality, youth and place into the previously uninspired campus”.


“This project focused on three sustainability aims – replace, reuse, consider.

The existing premises required significant upgrade works. Measures were implemented to lower energy consumption, improve environmental comfort and optimise the user experience.

The design was carefully developed to optimise furniture and finishes reuse where possible. Chairs and library stacks were redeployed throughout – significantly reducing demolition waste and environmental impact.

Existing painted brick walls were retained, reinvigorated and featured throughout the new fitout.

New materials were carefully selected for their green credentials including wool fibres, timber features, low VOC paints, and durable finishes.

Life cycle and adaptability were carefully considered to allow ongoing modifications and maintenance without needing to totally replace the fitout.

Purposeful furniture was nominated and impractical ‘embellishments’ were eschewed.

Fabrics were specified for high rub, low maintenance qualities. They were applied in colourways in a ‘patchwork’ style to furniture. This allows for a single panel of fabric to be replaced without the need to reupholster an entire suite of furniture due to fabric unavailability”.

What’s your favourite space at North Sydney?

photo of students studying in one the of the new North Sydney library spaces

North Sydney Library


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