Author Archives: Pepler Head

BLogUCT’s size-and-shape strategy commits it to becoming a research-intensive institution, where postgraduate students make up 40% of the student body. Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Danie Visser explains the university’s research plans and ambitions. (more…)

South African Book Fair

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If you spend more time sneakily reading that bestseller rather than journal articles and books related to your research, or like me, happen to be pursuing research related to literature, then this post is for you. Calling all bibliophiles. This weekend, the African and South African publishing world will descend on Cape Town for the annual South African Book Fair at the CTICC. Here is your chance to rub shoulders with some of your favourite local authors and their publishers. Follow the link below for more about the event, as well as the programme.

Book Fair Programme

SA book fair 2SA book fair

The PhD journey can PhD Journey 1be an extremely isolated one, and students are often not aware of all the various resources at their disposal. If you have recently started your PhD and have felt this disillusionment, then take note.

Hosted annually by the Centre for Higher Education Development (CHED), the workshop aims to introduce first year PhD students to various resources available at UCT, as well as to provide a platform for students to build supportive relationships with peers. This year will see the assembly of the Careers Service, ICTS, UCT Libraries, The writing Centre, Doctoral Degrees Board, International Academic Programs Office (IAPO), Postgraduate Centre and Funding Office and Postgraduate Literacies. (more…)

Writing Centre

Research Commons Librarian, Amina Adam, with Writing Centre consultant, Ilse Groenewald.

Building on the library’s strategic plan to foster and maintain collaborative relations with key stakeholders across campus in support of research, the Research Commons is elated to announce its latest collaboration with the UCT Writing Centre. This collaborative effort will see the Writing Centre making themselves available to postgraduate students for consultations in the Research Commons, encouraging and enforcing their motto of good writing practices. This will serve the need for further support for the postgraduate student body as well as forging the way for both the Research Commons and the Writing Centre to be a prominent partner for research at UCT.

Writing Centre consultant Ilse Groenewald will be availing herself to students in the Research Commons Seminar room weekly, on Fridays from 9:00 – 13:00. Struggling to write that proposal, reworking a chapter, need a fresh eye to peruse your writing… we can assist. See the brochure below for the online booking procedure.

Writing Centre Brochure

If you are interested in using a reference manager for the write up of your thesis, then click on the link below. UCT libraries’ experienced librarians have compiled this comparative table, to assist you with making the decision of which reference manager to use. In the link below is the “must know’s” of the 3 most commonly used reference managers at UCT. Have a look and see which of these meet your research requirements.Endnote Mendeley Ref works

Bibliographic Management Tools


Research Week Day 5

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Day 5 of Research Week marks the successful conclusion of Research Week 2014. It seemed quite fitting that the Friday’s sessions focused more on student needs as the day was started by Sr. Joy Knighton-Fitt from student wellness, who spoke on research related stress. She approached the subject holistically, discussing the wheel of health and how to balance the various spheres thereof.

The open agenda took the stage for the rest of the afternoon to discuss topics that emerged from the Library’s Inspire Idea Tree. A successful talk, as subject librarian Glynnis Lawrence addressed postgraduate challenges such as supervisor relations, loneliness and funding to name a few. (more…)

Research Week Day 4

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Nelleke Bak, Director of Postgraduate Studies


The Research Expo saw the influx of academics and post-gradate students alike, as we reached day 4 of Research Week. The expo provided students the opportunity to promote their research by presenting it to academic staff and fellow students. Among the people crowding around posters, was a panel of judges who scored students in various categories. The winners of the day were: (more…)

Research Week Day 3

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The conclusion of day 3 of Research Week at UCT Libraries marks the halfway point of the long awaited event. It has been quite an eventful week with panel discussions, author workshops and a lot of banter around the barista as attendees patiently wait on that aromatic cup of java.

Research Ethics and Open Access were the hot topics at Research Week yesterday. The morning session was lead by Dr Robert McLaughlin from UCT’s office of Research Integrity. Joining him was Prof Francois Viruly from the department of Construction Economics, Prof Mastin Prinsloo from the UCT School of Education and Dr Bert Mohr from the UCT Centre for Animal Research, for a lively discussion on Research and the Ethics that underpin it.

This was followed by a teleconference presentation by Iryna Kuchma from EIFL (Electronic Information for Libraries) out of Kiev, who opened the afternoon session on Open Access. Partnering with her on the topic was UCT’s Laura Czerniewicz and Ina Smith from Stellenbosch University.



Research Week was well underway as day 2 of Research week arrived. Springer editor, Fritz Schmuhl, addressed attendees on scientific writing for publication, sharing his vast editorial knowledge and experience from the past 20 years.

Speaking to the difficulty of getting published, Fritz touched on both the author’s and the editor’s challenges, giving attendees great insight into the processes that govern publication, as well as common mistakes that go along with article submissions.

Make sure to have a look at his presentation, which will be available on the blog soon. (more…)

Research Week Day 1

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Danie Visser at Research Week.

Professor Danie Visser (Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research, UCT) talks at the beginning of Research Week.

Monday morning 12 May saw the opening of Research Week hosted by our very own UCT Libraries and the UCT Post-Graduate Centre, and marks the inception of what will confidently be an annual event of this kind. Born out of the Library’s strategic plan to foster and maintain collaborative relationships with key stakeholders in support of research, the Research Week will offer various talks and panel discussions for post-graduate students ranging from research ethics, open scholarship to publication.

The event was opened by UCT Libraries Executive-Director Gwenda Thomas and Deputy Vice Chancellor for Research, Danie Visser. Prof Wieland Gevers and Prof Valerie Mizrahi kicked off the talks with a discussion around Research and Publication in South Africa.

As part of the open agenda, which will commence on Friday 16 May, the library has created a Research Tree to elicit research struggles from attendees. This will allow for discussion about common difficulties within the post-graduate experience. A number of research posters are also on display and will be judged on Thursday 15 May, when authors will be presenting their research. Feel free to stop by and have a look at the posters on display as well as interact with the researchers. (more…)