Category: Services

EOP Students Visit the Oviatt

Matty in front of LibraryIncoming CSUN EOP Bridge freshmen have been visiting the Library during the last couple of weeks finding out about all of the resources and services available to them as new CSUN Matadors. The Oviatt Library and CSUN’s Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) work together each year to help prepare Bridge students for university-level academic expectations and experiences.

Many new Bridge students already have attended Library tours this summer and seen, firsthand, where they can receive help with their research, and where to locate a group study room that will be useful to them in the fall when the Library fills with students preparing for exams and midterms.

Services such as the Creative Media Studio were one of the many highlights of the Library tours. Specialized computers and software are made available to students in order to support them in developing multi-media projects. Students were also introduced to the Library’s Teacher Curriculum Center that offers them the opportunity to check-out instructional materials and young adult novels; and the Music & Media Department which provides students with materials associated with music, cinema and theater curricula.

Other services covered within the tours include information about borrowing iPads and laptops; Course Reserves; Interlibrary Loan; and the CSUN Learning Resource Center that is located on the third floor. Of course, one of the highlights of the Library tour includes a visit to the Library’s Automated Storage & Retrieval System. Students are impressed with the technology and how it is able to house and retrieve approximately 700,000 items within the Oviatt collection upon demand.

We are very pleased to have Bridge students in our Library this summer, and we look forward to working with them during the upcoming academic year!

Coleen Martin

The Oviatt Provides CSUN Students with Amnesty for Late Fees on Books During National Library Week

National Library Week Display

The Oviatt Library has several activities and offerings planned to celebrate National Library Week, April 10-16, 2016. To start, overdue fines will be forgiven for current CSUN students with overdue books. Simply bring your overdue books to the Guest Services Desk in the lobby, and someone there will assist you in removing your fines. Please see our National Library Week page for more details as some restrictions apply. Also, please be sure to visit the Oviatt Library’s Favorite Book display in the Learning Commons. Oviatt Library staff members have selected their all-time favorite books. You will be able to see what we are reading and have the opportunity to check out one of these titles as the books are on display. While you are looking over our favorite books, make sure you enter the drawing for a $50 Barnes & Noble gift card. The drawing is open to all current CSUN students. Finally, “I Love the Oviatt” temporary tattoos will be available in the Library lobby on Tues., April 12 from 12-1 p.m. Please join us for the fun!

National Library Week Favorite Books and Raffle

Coleen Martin

Matadors Can Scan Materials at the Library

Two students scanning documents in the LibraryCSUN students can now scan documents at the Oviatt Library. Three user friendly, self-serve scanning stations allow students to scan items to: USB, email, Box and phone or tablet. The stations are conveniently located in the:

  • Learning Commons Technology (Main floor);
  • Music & Media (2nd floor East); and
  • Reserves, Periodicals & Microform (RPM – 4th floor East).

The ability to scan documents is a service students had been requesting at the Library. Since self-service scanners with multiple capabilities can be costly, members of the Library Technology Committee performed a needs assessment, and surveyed the products of multiple vendors. Last semester, three scanners were purchased with funding from the Campus Quality Fee (CQF).

The scanners support convenience and enhance student experience at the Library as they decrease paper waste, and assist the accessibility of materials by students with visual impairments. There is no charge for students to scan materials. The Oviatt Library appreciates the funding made possible through the CQF and is excited to offer scanning to CSUN students.

New Matadors Tour the Library

Matty at Library This month new CSUN first-time freshmen, transfer and international students will be visiting the Library to see, first-hand, all of the resources and services available them. Many new students begin their academic experience at CSUN during the spring semester and the Library participates in campus coordinated orientations to welcome these students. The new Matadors will be touring the Library’s Learning Commons and finding out where they can: get help with their research needs and borrowing materials; check out laptops and iPads; receive IT support; and learn about the technology that is available to them in our Creative Media Studio. In addition, these students will have the opportunity to tour the Learning Resource Center located on the third floor of the Library. It is our intention that these new Matadors feel welcomed and that they are supported to succeed within their new classes and throughout their CSUN academic journey. The Library looks forward to serving and working with these students during the coming semester and beyond.

– Coleen Martin

Refill Your Water Bottles at the Oviatt!

Water Bottle Refilling StationIt’s common to see a line of students waiting for their coffee or other drinks at the Freudian Sip coffeehouse in the Library Learning Common’s lobby. Now there is another line you will often see on the other side of the lobby, a spot where students are eager to fill their empty bottles with cool, filtered water.

The Oviatt Library recently installed a water bottle filling station in the Learning Commons lobby through funding from the Campus Quality Fee. The installation and use of the station increases campus sustainability efforts, and provides students with the opportunity to save money, as they can refill their water bottles instead of buying a new one each time. Having a new water bottle filling station for students to use in the Library also means there will be fewer plastic bottles to be thrown away.

According to those at the Library who initiated and carried out the project, “Students will be made aware of campus sustainability goals in terms of water consumption . . . Students and visitors to the Oviatt will be able to see that our University and student body are continuing to take steps to become more environmentally conscious.” Team members who coordinated with campus facilities to bring the water bottle filling station to the Library Learning Commons lobby include Sarah Sayeed, Lynn Lampert, Marianne Afifi and Jason Billick.

These Oviatt Library efforts join others on campus who also have taken steps to make our campus more eco-friendly. A partnership between the Associated Students Environmental Affairs Committee and CSUN Physical Plant Management is responsible for installing other water bottle refill stations in eight colleges throughout the CSUN campus. These other stations can be found in Juniper Hall, the Education building, Chaparral Hall, Sierra Hall, Jerome Richfield Hall, Manzanita Hall, Redwood Hall, and Sequoia Hall. So if you are thirsty, and need a refill, please feel free to visit the Oviatt Library Learning Commons water bottle filling station or any of the other many refilling spots on the CSUN campus!

– Coleen Martin

CSUN Students Welcomed at Booths

Matty the Matador in front of LibraryHello Matadors! During the coming weeks the Oviatt Library will be participating in many campus events welcoming new freshmen to CSUN. You will find us at the New Student Orientation booths held at the Matador Bookstore Complex throughout the month of August. On most days, you will be able to speak with a librarian, from noon to 1:30 p.m., to find out about all of the resources and services available to you as CSUN students. We will be handing out information that can assist you in utilizing our resources during the upcoming academic year, and we will be distributing lots of giveaway items such as pens, notepads, highlighters and canvas bags to support your success. Please stop by our booth, say hello, and ask any questions you may have about the Library. We are looking forward to seeing you there!

– Coleen Martin

CSUN Bridge Students Visit the Oviatt Library

Incoming Bridge freshmen are visiting the Library during the coming weeks to find out about all of the resources and services available to them as new CSUN Matadors. Many of these students will attend Library tours and learn, firsthand, where they can receive help with their research, and locate a group study room that will be useful to them in the fall, when the Library fills with students preparing for exams and midterms.

Bridge Students 2015

These Bridge students will visit many Library departments including the Creative Media Studio which provides all CSUN students with access to specialized computers and software in order to develop multi-media projects; the Teacher Curriculum Center which offers students the opportunity to check-out instructional materials and young adult novels; and the Music & Media Department which provides students with materials associated with music, cinema and theater curricula in addition to other instructional media for many departments campus wide.

Other services covered within the tours include information about borrowing iPads and laptops; Course Reserves; and Interlibrary Loan. Of course, one of the highlights of the Library tour includes a visit to the Library’s Automated Storage & Retrieval System. Students are impressed with the technology and how it is able to house and retrieve approximately 700,000 items within the Oviatt collection upon demand.

We are very pleased to have Bridge students in our Library this summer, and we look forward to working with them during the upcoming academic year!

– Coleen Martin

CSUN Student Workshops Offered at the Creative Media Studio

The Creative Media Studio is now offering workshops for CSUN students that provide hands-on assistance in using software programs such as Pro Tools, Final Cut Pro and the Adobe Master Collection programs. Working with 27-inch iMac computers, students learn how to utilize software programs in creating videos, digital audio recordings, and other multimedia projects. Reservations are required as seating is limited. To register please visit For more information about the Creative Media Studio and its workshops and offerings visit and watch the video below.

– Coleen Martin

Check Out the Oviatt's Free Textbooks on Display

Textbook displayThe Oviatt Library is excited to be a part of OpenStax College’s efforts to save students money when buying textbooks. Please come by and check out our free textbooks display on the fourth floor of the Oviatt Library in the Reserves, Periodicals and Microform (RPM) Room. You may be able to use some of these free textbooks in your courses.

There are currently nine textbooks on display and 11 titles online:  Anatomy and Physiology; Biology; College Physics; Concepts of Biology; Introduction to Sociology; Introductory Statistics; Pre-Calculus; Principles of Economics; Principles of Macroeconomics; Principles of Microeconomics; and Psychology. Two are coming soon: Chemistry and U.S. History.

CSUN Faculty can re-tool these open textbooks to meet course design needs. Faculty members are able to use or adapt these materials to their liking thanks to a Creative Commons Attribution license. The Oviatt Library invites CSUN faculty to review OpenStax College textbooks. These textbooks are free to download from or check out a print copy on the fourth floor of the Oviatt Library. There is a sign in sheet at the RPM desk for this purpose. In addition, faculty members who would like to explore further the possibility of utilizing these free peer reviewed texts within their courses may visit

OpenStax College is a nonprofit organization that offers students free textbooks that meet the scope and requirements for most college courses. These textbooks are peer-reviewed and have been written by professional content developers. There is truly no fee for many textbooks and other texts are offered at a very low cost. OpenStax College is supported by foundations that would like to help alleviate the high cost of student textbooks.

Students who would like more information about free textbooks through OpenStax may visit

OpenStax College development standards can be viewed at development standards.

For more information please contact Oviatt Library Digital Learning Initiatives Librarian, Laurie Borchard at

– Coleen Martin

New Lab Printing @ CSUN service comes to the Library

printing at copy machineWelcome Matadors to the Spring, 2015 semester and the Oviatt’s new Lab Printing @ CSUN service! If you have printed in the Library before or if you are brand new to campus and have never printed here and you like free stuff – keep reading. The Oviatt Library is now a part of CSUN’s print management system called, GoPrint. Here’s how the new printing system works. Every CSUN student has been allocated $10 to go towards printing each semester. The funds can be accessed through your individual student GoPrint account. This means you will be able to print approximately 100 pages (black & white at 10 cents a sheet) per semester for free. And, if you happen to run out of funds, don’t worry; you will have the opportunity to add money to your GoPrint account at any time. GoPrint is available for CSUN students who are printing in the Learning Commons main area, Learning Commons west wing and in the RPM department on the fourth floor of the Library. Best of all, GoPrint is convenient since it requires no debit card and it helps the campus go “green” as double-sided printing is the default print setting. For more information about GoPrint in the Library, visit Happy printing!

– Coleen Martin

Research Therapy: Let the Library Help during Finals Week

Finals Are You Stressed ComicHow the Library Can Help ComicThere’s no need to worry, the Oviatt Library can help! The Oviatt is open extended hours beginning December 4 to help you prepare for Finals week. We know that none of you would wait until the last minute to do your research, but just in case you did and you’re struggling, you can get help from a Librarian 24/7. Come see a librarian at the reference desk in the Learning Commons. During finals week from Monday to Thursday there will be a librarian at the desk from 8am to 9pm, Friday from 8am to 4:45pm, Saturday from 12pm to 4:45pm and on Sunday from 12pm to 5pm. You can also contact us online, via chat or email as well as text messaging, check out our Ask a Librarian page. You can also get help online with our subject and course guides, including a guide for Citing Your Sources.

The Learning Resource Center is located on the 3rd floor of the library in the East wing; they offer tutoring, help with paper writing and citations. Check out their webpage for more information and hours. You’ll want to make sure to call ASAP to make an appointment.

If you just need a place to study, don’t forget that you can reserve group and individual study rooms in the library. You can reserve these rooms in advance online, using our online booking system.

In case you need a break we have special events happening during Finals week. We’ll be handing out pillows all week along with special events like: arts & crafts, board games, a graffiti board and therapy dogs. Check out the flyer for dates and times of these events.

For more suggestions on how to de-stress, check out our Pinterest page for tips on relaxation, motivational memes and cute photos of animals.

Just remember to keep calm and carry on and if you can’t do that, then scream, dance, or shake it out!!!

-Laurie Borchard

Innovation Sparks Imagination in the New, Student-Funded Creative Media Studio

The Learning Commons’ Creative Media Studio (CMS) opened recently thanks to Campus Quality Fee funding awarded to the Library. The CMS provides students with access to specialized hardware, software and support in order to create videos, digital audio recordings, and robust multimedia projects.

The CMS is fully equipped with a wide range of resources for students, with eight 27” iMac computers, a well outfitted audio recording room, and an extensive software selection including Adobe Master Collection, Final Cut Pro, and Pro Tools. This media studio provides students with a dedicated space to create multimedia, and offers educational programming and assistance in creating digital projects that look and sound professional.

Creative Media Studio Coordinator Sarah Sayeed worked tirelessly with Library staff and faculty, and consulted with other areas of campus during the studio’s planning process. “We started working on the CQF about a year and a half ago. During that time we met with coordinators from the Cinema & Television Arts (CTVA) and Music departments, and toured their facilities to get a better idea of how to model our lab,” Sayeed says. In addition, “Facilities planning was such a huge help in putting this together. It was a seamless experience since we had already worked with them during the Learning Commons renovation.” This coordinated effort helped to integrate the CMS into the ever-evolving Learning Commons. “It feels like a very fluid addition, and on top of that students have already commented on what a positive energy this space has. It feels really fresh and lively, with all the resources to make it a truly dynamic space,” Sayeed added.

Like many areas of the Learning Commons, the CMS boasts highly configurable equipment and furniture, allowing students to create a workspace that is most conducive to their learning and working styles.  Beyond using the space for projects, students are able to check out a wide variety of equipment for four-day loans – which is something Sayeed is quite proud of. “Students can check out everything from cameras and tripods to green screens. After they have finished recording, they can come back to the CMS and use programs such as Final Cut Pro or Pro Tools to edit their content and create complete multimedia presentations,” she says. This allows for a greater range of freedom in how students produce creative content.

The Creative Media Studio is now open on the main floor, west wing. Friendly, knowledgeable staff can assist students with all the available resources to help them create wonderful, new, original content. All students on campus are invited to come to the Oviatt Library’s Creative Media Studio and “Get Creative!”

– David Morck

This article originally appeared in the Fall 2014 Library E-News. For more information about the Oviatt Library please visit

Create Your Own Interactive Study Space in the Learning Commons

The Learning Commons features amazing study spaces equipped with whiteboards to facilitate collaboration and create interactive learning spaces. Each of the study rooms located in the Learning Commons is equipped with whiteboards in addition to glass walls that can be used as a dry erase board.

Learning Commons Study Space

The Learning Commons is also equipped with four moveable whiteboards. These can be moved anywhere within the first floor of the library. So if you were not able to reserve one of our study rooms feel free to create your own study space utilizing the furniture and whiteboards.

Located next to the research consultation desk, the whiteboard wall is an ideal space for collaborative study sessions. Students often use this wall for brainstorming, working through math formulas, graphs, or drawing out scenes. Assorted chairs and tables in this area can be rearranged to fit your study needs.

Dry erase marker kits are available for a two hour checkout at Guest Services located in the lobby across from the Freudian Sip.  The kit comes with fours dry erase markers, an eraser and whiteboard spray.

So come explore different library areas of the Learning Commons and create your own study space.

–      Jamie Johnson

Research Therapy: Finding Fiction Books at the Library Is Easy

Need a break from academic reading and looking for some fun books?

Well you don’t have to go very far to check out the Oviatt Library’s fiction collection. We have a variety of fiction books to fulfill your reading needs. Watch the new Research Therapy video session to learn where you can find them!

fiction books video

In addition, here is a quick guide of the different locations you can find our fiction books:

Books on the Garden Floor of the Oviatt Library
For Young Adult and Children’s fiction visit the Teacher’s Curricular Center (TCC).
Books on the Main Floor of the Oviatt Library
Try looking in the Bestsellers Collection for popular fiction – just next to the reference desk.
Books on the Second Floor of the Oviatt Library
The Bob and Maureen Gohstand Leisure Reading Room located off the Tseng Gallery in the West Wing houses a variety of fiction literature.
Books on the Third Floor of the Oviatt Library
Try browsing the Language and Literature section. These fiction books will be shelved with other literature such as essays, drama, poetry and literary criticism. Generally speaking, English-language fiction can be found in the PR and PS sections on shelves. PR for English fiction and PS for American fiction.

 Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey.

Thank you.

– Anna Fidgeon

  – Jamie Johnson

Research Therapy: You Don’t Have to Come to the Library to Get a Library Book

You know you don’t have to come into the library to get your hands on some books, right? And if you’ve ever checked out a book from the library, only to find it doesn’t have any information you need, you should try looking at Google Books first.

The Oviatt has hundreds of e-books available, straight off of the website. Even if the book you want isn’t available electronically, you can still use Google Books to take a peek at the content. You might save yourself a trip! Watch this video to learn more:

ebooks video image

We want your feedback! What do you think of Research Therapy? What would you like to see in future episodes? Please, fill out our survey:

– Anna Fidgeon

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

Research Therapy: Citing Your Sources

The sixth installment of Research Therapy gives you a brief overview of why you need to cite, when you should cite and how you should cite.

Do you have a research paper or project coming up and your instructor wants a specific number of sources? Knowing when and how to cite your sources can be a little confusing. The most important thing that you need to know is that you need to cite anything you use that doesn’t originate from you. Not only should you do this when you’re writing a paper or working on a research project, but also when creating a presentation or a website. You should cite tweets, blog posts, images, podcasts, and YouTube videos, basically anything you use that you did not create yourself.

citing image

Citation Styles
Different academic disciplines have different citation styles, it’s important that you know what style your instructor wants you to use. Here’s some examples of the different styles.

citation chart

Citing Special Resources?
Here’s a list of resources and guides for citing less common sources.
Government Documents
Business Resources : a comprehensive guide from Harvard Business School on citing various types of sources, including reports, interviews, and legal cases (just to name a few).
• This guide from Boise State gives examples of citing images, Twitter, Facebook, blog posts, maps, and videos.

Need More Help?
For additional help on creating citations using various styles check out Oviatt Library’s Citing Your Sources guide. For a quick how-to on creating an annotated bibliography, check out session three of the Research Therapy video series.
Still confused, about plagiarism? Check out this online tutorial created by UCLA students.

-Laurie Borchard

Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.

Welcome Back to Research Therapy!

So you’re going to cite a website in that paper? If you want to impress your professors with a great bibliography, you need to to evaluate your sources carefully. Watch this short video and read below to learn what you should know about researching using the web.

What qualities should your web source have?
As a scholar-in-training, you are learning to decipher good information from the lousy in order to have an informed understanding of a topic. If you’re going to use a web source for your project, it should have these qualities:
Authoritative- the information comes from a qualified source
Unbiased– the information is balanced and shows both sides in a non-persuasive manner
Current– the information is up-to-date for your particular topic
Accurate– the information reported is verifiable and opinions are distinct from fact
Ask yourself these questions to determine if your source is right for your needs:

But what about domains?
Let’s take a look at what common domains mean, and why you might want look beyond where it was registered to determine if the information you’re getting suits your research needs.
Now that you’re equipped to evaluate the website you want to use, you can handle these issues. Know who is posting this information online and why. Make sure you’re getting your information from experts. Provide a balanced view of your topic. And, be sure you’re capable of understanding and synthesizing the information. It takes time to learn this stuff! Be a little skeptical and you’re already on your way.
Still don’t get it? You can always Ask A Librarian for help.

– Anna Fidgeon

 Please tell us what you think about our Research Therapy videos at our survey. Thank you.