AskAway Blog

Logging into Libraries via OpenAthens

Six AskAway libraries now use OpenAthens software to provide access to online resources. If you're using the Guest Logins at one of these libraries to access resources on your shift, that's no problem. But, if you're using the guest logins to access resources at two or more of these libraries simulatenously or within a short time frame, that can create problems. See below for more information on what's happening and workarounds.

AskAway Opens Today

AskAway opens today September 7th at 9am (PT). For the first two weeks (September 7th-19th), we'll be open Monday to Friday 9am-5pm (PT). Regular hours will resume September 20th. In this post, you'll find information about updates to LibraryH3lp as well as important reminders heading into this Fall term.

Making Research Accessible with the Downtown Eastside Research Access Portal

I’d like to tell you about a resource you can use to help students and other AskAway patrons access research relevant to Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside (DTES).

The Research Access Portal (RAP) is an easy-to-use resource that makes research relevant to the DTES more accessible and easier to discover. We provide access to academic materials such as scholarly articles and theses, as well as community materials such as reports, historical newsletters, and other, more accessible forms of scholarship such as clear language research summaries, podcasts, and more. We have been working with researchers to help make more than 70 per cent of these items freely available to anyone. That means that most of this material does not require a subscription or institutional log-in to access.

Responding to Students in Stressful Circumstances

The move to remote learning, coupled with the isolation of COVID-19 means that many are feeling stressed and this is especially true when exam and final assignment season approaches. On AskAway, we've heard that the overwhelming majority of interactions are positive but on rare occasions, a student or other AskAway patron may lose patience and openly express their frustration. As AskAway service providers, these interactions can be hard on our well being and resilience and having some scripts in our back pocket can help us be prepared with the aim of turning the conversation around.

Rolling out APA 7th edition

The 7th edition of APA Style was released in fall 2019, and AskAway participating libraries are launching the new edition at varying times.

In general, it's good practice during this transition to ask students which edition they've been instructed to use. When in doubt, you can check the library's AskAway policy page and/or the library's citation guides to see which edition is currently in use.

Below you'll find resources that you can use to provide relevant and up to date citation support to all students during this transition.

UNBC Library: Library Notices Turned On

Just a heads up that you may be receiving questions via chat about library notices. We recently turned on our recall and overdue notices as normal circulation borrowing periods have started again. If you receive a question about this, the key thing is to reassure the patron that any fines accrued during the COVID period will be waived (March onward).

UBC Library: Accessing Online Resources Off-Campus

Many Users (Students, Faculty, and others) are accessing the Library’s online resources for the first time. If you get general questions from new Users, please direct them to read this: If you get specific questions about access, please direct Users to our Help Form: