A number of improvements have been made to help you study:
- Extension of lecture capture: To support you in your studies, we have extended the use of lecture capture in the Central Lecture Block so that you have access to real-time recordings (via Blackboard Learn) to help with your revision and for your reference.
- New online process for requesting extenuating circumstances and course work extensions: To help you more easily request a coursework extension and to receive your confirmation within 48 hours,we have introduced a new online process. This is available if a significant event negatively affects your ability to submit work, attend an assessment or perform to your usual standard in an assessment of any type and the event was unavoidable, unexpected and beyond your control.
- Guaranteed feedback on your exam scripts: You are all guaranteed feedback on your exam scripts thanks to the monitoring initiative set up by the Union of Brunel Students.
- More support for your dissertations, academic and research writing: Our Academic Skill Services (ASK) team has increased the number of support sessions and worked with academics to put on specialised activities to help you with your dissertations and academic writing, research methods as well as preparing for exams and using statistical packages such as SPSS.
- New Teach Brunel fund: To support initiatives which improve your teaching experience, we have created a Teach Brunel fund. Money is set aside to support a new student change maker programme, run by students for students.
- More work spaces in our Assistive Technology Centre.
- Extended the opening hours in the Computer Centre: We have extended the opening hours of our help desk until 7pm (from 5pm) to support you with any wifi and printing issues.
- New password portal: This new portal means you can now reset your own passwords.
- Improved the software on the open access PCs: We have started a programme to install the latest version of software, Chrome and operating system on our open access PCs; the ground floor in the Bannerman Centre is now complete with PCs on the remaining floors due to be upgraded by Easter 2019.
- Print credit given for final-year students: £10 of printing credits is now added directly to ID cards to help towards the printing costs you may incur doing your final year dissertations.
- Access to Microsoft Office 365: All student Brunel accounts were migrated from Google Mail (Gmail) to Office 365 email in 2018 which is the first step in our move towards cloud collaboration tools. Next up is the launch of new tools such as Skype for Business, OneDrive, OneNote, Groups, Sway, Forms, Planner, and Yammer.
- Improvements in the student portal: There have been some exciting developments in eVision so that you can now request a change in your course online. You can also self-serve for letters that you might need ie proof of student status, council tax exemption letters, etc. Your tutors also have a new dashboard to record your progress to help you reach your academic goals.
We have introduced a range of improvements to address issues you have raised such as wanting more books in the Library, improving the space and IT, extending the opening times and reducing the reading lists:
- Invested a further £85,000 in books, e-books and e-journals this academic year which means the Information Resources fund is now over £2.2m. The Library has more than doubled the amount spent on print books over the last two years and continues to increase the number of electronic books. Electronic library resources count for 90% of your library sources so you can access these over the internet anytime, anywhere, on or off campus. We have a three-year plan in place to continue this level of investment.
- Extended Library opening hours to 24 hours for certain periods of the year.
- More powered study spaces to help laptop users.
- New automatic renewal of book loans to make it easier and to reduce the amount you have to pay in charges for late returns.
- More group study rooms available for general use, easier access to Library Special Collections and a larger Law Library with additional powered study spaces available for general use.
- Extended the laptop loan scheme introduced in 2016 to increase workstation availability and flexibility. We had over 22,000 loans, doubling from the previous total of 11,000 and extended loan times for students with DSB profiles. The laptops can be used anywhere on campus and are just like mobile desktop PCs, giving you easy access to Brunel information, personal drives and printing.
- More sockets put into desks without PCs in the Open Access area to help those with mobile devices / loaned laptops. We have added approximately 130 powered study spaces since October 2016.
- Increased the number of student self-study areas. We have added approximately 100 study spaces since October 2016, and replaced 100 study chairs.
- Increased book availability, by piloting a new system so you can order books not held in the Library directly from suppliers.
- Introduced the Digital Content Store so that you have access to copyright cleared digital course readings on your online reading list.
- Diversified our Library via the Liberated Library campaign: To enhance your experience, we now offer new books by authors from the global south, people of colour, female, LGBT+, and disabled authors. This has helped to liberate your education away from standard white male and Eurocentric reading lists and enable you to look at different perspectives of life, and use this knowledge in your education to help you obtain a good degree.