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So this is Christmas …and what have you done?

Christmas is typically a time for spending time with loved ones, watching Christmas specials on TV and stealing all the green triangles from the Quality Street tin before anyone else gets a look in. Not so typically, it’s also a time for study, essays and revision. Here’s how to overcome the obstacles of the holidays

Obstacle 1: Bed


You may have previously believed that your willpower was made up of steel (because how else did you make it to those occasional 9 o’clock lectures?) However, it has now become clear that it’s nothing more than a googey marshmallow, which melts into your duvet with a delicious delight whenever you try to get up to move to your desk. Did you actually think that you’d stick to a rigorous work schedule when deep down you know that you could just as easily get away with staying in bed all day?

Solution 1: There are loads of great apps that ensure you actually get up in the morning if your less empathetic self decides to set them before you go to sleep. Your alarm will go off but in order to silence it, you’ll have to complete a selected task, the likes of which include: simple/advanced maths problems, making it over to the other side of your room to scan a QR code, fun games that you need to complete. Have a browse of some apps available straight from the app store or on app blogs like this.

Solution 2: Put yourself at the mercy of your parents/friends/pet dog. Your chosen person (preferably one that actually gets up in the morning) will seize the chance to wake you up in the morning and drag you out of bed. Cue flashbacks to the school run.

Solution 3: Accept that you are only going to get out of bed for bodily necessities and prepare for a lot of reading in bed. We’ve got a whole other blog post about doing your course from your bed but the main highlights include the Library’s bountiful collection of e-resources at your fingertips and the importance of Endnote Online for keeping track (don’t trust those scrawled notes on a piece of paper that’s inevitably going to end up lost in the abyss that is your bed sheets).

Obstacle 2: You’ve left Warwick for the holidays


There’s a good chance you’ve taken the opportunity to go home for the holidays and raid the food cupboard/fridge. Is that fresh orange juice? WITH BITS?! Unfortunately, Tropicana can’t help you access all the texts you need for your revision or assignments… but the Library can! (Bet you didn’t see that one coming.) Being snowed in isn’t an excuse, I’m afraid.

Solution 1: SCONUL and Inspire access to other Libraries. These schemes allow you to access other public, university and private libraries when you’re not based at Warwick, read up on the options here.

Solution 2: Why not go to the British Library? Apart from being an amazing building, which radiates scholarly vibes (you can probably get smarter just by hanging out there for a few days), it’s a great study space with so, so many books. Like, all the books (published in the UK). If you are currently studying then you can request a Reader’s Pass. More info here.

Solution 3: Just find a decent place to study that has enough wifi to access our e-resources. Yeah, it’s that simple. No excuses (unless you were too bewildered by Starbuck’s coconut milk option to focus on your study). You can narrow searches by e-resource in Encore.

Obstacle 3: The crowd has changed


Either you’ve gone back home to your family, are visiting those carefree friends, who spend the majority of their time hanging out in the cute little vegan café down the road, or you’re abroad (somewhere with a decent Christmas market, I hope). Or perhaps just your loyal pets. Either way, you probably haven’t got an Academic Support Librarian on hand to help with database searching or your course mates who know what style of referencing you need to use.

Solution 1: Check online. We’ve got lots of Library info online, from the best databases for your subject to guidelines for referencing. These should be your first point of call to help with any assignment panics. Don’t worry, we’ve all been there…

Solution 2: There’s help at hand. Our knowledgeable Library staff are still working past the end of term and a week before term 2 starts. You can email in with any questions: Just don’t email on Christmas day, as our Library staff will no doubt be cuddled in front of an open fire with a good book. So typical. 

Solution 3: Contact your pals! Your course probably has it’s own Facebook page where your peers are on hand to help out. Expect a lot of course-related GIFs floating around too. And if there isn’t one? Then set one up.

I hope this helps you kick into gear over the holidays! Let us know in the comments if you’re facing any other obstacles! The Great Christmas Bake Off for example…

Images: Cheyenne nestled all snug in her bed/T/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Snow Prints/bestfor / richard/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

-195 : piggy kissmiss/Katherine McAdoo/CC BY-NC 2.0

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