Welcome to the new school year!

Summer vacation is over (yes, it went really fast!) and a new school year lies ahead. Now that the weather is getting cooler and the leaves are starting to hint at color changes, we can look forward to an exciting and rewarding semester at McGill. I remember my first few days as a University student… I had a lot of trouble finding my way to the different buildings, everything was new, and there was so much to learn! Right from the start, my favorite place was the library. I quickly learned that the secret to academic success was to learn how to use the library and all the resources that it offered, and to befriend the librarians! (Some of the information that was withheld by my professors was happily shared by the library staff). So I would like to share this little piece of advice: if you spend around one hour learning about your library at the beginning of the semester, it will save you hours of your time later on. When your Professors will later start talking about the requirements for your papers – only peer review articles, citations in Chicago style, using primary sources, etc. – you will be very happy that you already know what they’re talking about!

So to get you started, we are offering tours at all the library branches, as well as Library Quick Start 101 workshops. These take place in different days and at different times, so you should have no problem finding a session that fits your busy schedule. There is also no charge for these sessions, and you don’t need to register. Just drop in whenever it’s convenient for you! In these tours and workshops you will learn essential university survival skills such as: how to reserve a study room, how to send your documents from home to be printed at McGill, how to look for your courses’ reserve reading list, who is the liaison librarian for your area of study, and much more!

Check out this link for more information: http://www.mcgill.ca/library/services/workshops

Have a wonderful and productive session!

Improve your language skills this summer!

Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to speak with the locals when you’re on vacation? What about learning some useful sentences in Spanish, Italian or Russian?

Well, through our eBook and audiobook collection, you can have 24/7-hour access to hundreds of titles on foreign language study. In fact, the library currently has 419 titles on language study that are all accessible through OverDrive.

Parlez-vous français? Want to travel around the beautiful Province of Quebec but your knowledge of French is limited? Check out any one of the French languages study titles such as: “Beginning French for the Utterly Confused” or “Behind the Wheel Express – French 1”. Want to learn Mandarin? Have a look at: “Chinese for Dummies”. If you’ve been trying to forever get rid of your foreign accent that always makes you stand out in an English crowd you should read “Accent Reduction Made Easy” (maybe I should check out this book myself! After 27 years in Canada, people still detect my Spanish accent).

All you need to borrow materials from McGill OverDrive is your McGill ID barcode and PIN number. Once you log in, you can borrow e-audiobooks for a period of 7 to 14 days in MP3 and WMA format. For transfer to Apple devices iTunes is required as well. And the greatest thing about these books is that you don’t need to worry about getting water or sand on them or about returning them to the library on time. The e-audiobooks you borrow will be returned to the OverDrive collection automatically after a set number of days (between 7 to 14) so you have nothing to worry about while you are traveling!

So the next time you are at the beach in Cuba, or walking in some plaza in Madrid, think about the thrill of being able to ask the waiter: “una cerveza fria porfavor” (a cold beer, please) while secretly knowing that you just learned how to say that in Spanish a few minutes ago!

For more information about OverDrive go to: http://www.mcgill.ca/library/library-findinfo/ebooks/borrowing-eaudiobooks/

Have a wonderful summer!