Get Connected Through Your SA!

It’s that time of year again – the leaves are changing colors as the last few days of summer wind down and we all go back to campus! Luckily, here at the SAMHC we have five helpful tips and tricks to share with you to make sure that this is your best year ever at Medicine Hat College!

  • Number one, did you know that the SAMHC has an app?!? It’s true! Download it today for easy connections with your classmates, to be kept in the loop on all the awesome events that are happening on campus (and in the library!) and to organize your class schedule too!!
  • You know what’s a drag – lugging around a winter jacket and boots in the colder months of the year! Don’t fall victim to the winter blues, come in the SAMHC and rent a locker to store your coat and more. Just please, remember to clean out all your food ;D
  • Number three is one of the best services that we offer as the Students’ Association – and it’s all about the Health and Dental Plan. In order to ensure that students don’t drop out of college because of medical bills, we got you covered with our extensive H&D plan. Pop by today or hop onto www.studentbenefits.ca to see all the awesome things you’re now covered for as a full time, domestic student!
  • Number four on the docket is a service that we love providing to students in need and is our Campus Food Cupboard! If you’re experiencing food insecurity because of short funds, come and see us for access to food right here on campus!
  • And last but certainly not least, no college experience is complete without some fun and that’s just what our Ping-Pong tables are made for! Located in the Den, the Ping-Pong tables are free for students and are a great way to hang out and relieve some of that college stress!

And there you have it, our 5 best tips to help get your year starting off great! Don’t forget to grab the app and remember to get involved to make the most of your MHC experience!!

First Week Back…

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First week back… and it has already flown by! We opened the Library to new faces flooding our spaces as New Student Orientation took over the campus on Tuesday, September 3, 2019. The smiling faces increased as our returning students headed back to classes on Wednesday. The excitement and readiness to tackle the year ahead was obvious, and we were happy to lend some new tools for the conquering!

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We launched our self-serve printer credit load on ALL drop-in computers across campus. Students can now load their printing accounts from their credit cards, even if the Library is not open. Log-in to any drop-in computer across campus, and utilize this new service! It will like the icon featured below:

Students took to our Library and discovered all-new spaces from what they knew of the Vera Bracken from last year. The former Makerspace has transformed into a comfy front Lounge complete with 3D printer and Cameo Sillohette (sewing machine, lighting studio kit, and electronic piano can be sign-out via our Multimedia desk), while the alcove was converted into a quiet study space for solo or two-person study. The Quiet Study Room has turned into a cozy corner, and the full West side of the Library has completely opened up to provide a huge light-filled space specifically designed for group study. Drop by the library to discover the possibilities! Whether you’re a new student or returning, come find your new favorite spot on campus!

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Though the students were in numbers filling the hallways and classes, it seems that the Robots are taking over the library!

Lego Mindstorms has been added to our collection for use by our MHC staff, faculty, and students…and the learning is only dwarfed by the fun! Ask at our Multimedia Service Desk (Vera Bracken, Main Campus) or Library Desk (Brooks Campus) for more details on how you can take one home for a week using your library card!

As we look forward to the year ahead, the first week back has certainly set us up for a fun, empowering, refreshing, and all-around electric year!

Congratulations to Another Close!

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As we move towards the end of this week, we say goodbye to our students as they close their textbooks and begin their plans for the Spring and Summer and, for some, so much more.

The end of the semester is always bitter-sweet. It is the triumphant conclusion to hard work and diligent perseverance. It is also, a period of fond farewells. Team work and camaraderie were built and knowledge was gained, and though we turn the page on the next great adventure, always remember the Library is here waiting to welcome you, always!

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To those of you heading for the stage this June, congratulations, we can’t wait to celebrate with you. To those who joined us this year but will not return, thank you for adding so much to our college community. And to those who will return again next school year, well, see you soon!

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Have fun, take a moment to relax and enjoy, and drop by if you need a book recommendation!

Library Spaces

It’s that time of year again, finals are almost here. Only a few short weeks stand between you and the freedom of summer, but in the interim, you may be looking for a comfy spot to hunker down and get through those last few assignments. Don’t worry, the library has you covered.

Group Spaces

Do you have a group assignment or presentation coming up? Here are a few spaces you might be interested in visiting.

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The collaboration station is a great place to put those finishing touches on a group paper or slideshow. Multiple devices can be connected to the main screen at once, making collaboration easy! You can check out the remote and keyboard with your student ID card at the circulation desk.

 

 

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B132 is one of the group study rooms located just outside the computer lab in the library. Unlike the other group study rooms, this one is set up for presentation practice. The seating is movable and a projector is installed. The closer it gets to exam time the more in demand the group study rooms become. You can book this room in advance by asking for the booking sheet at the circulation desk. For week of bookings, you will find the booking sheet posted outside B132’s door.

 

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Just looking for a space to study with your classmates? We’ve got lots of those too.

Individual Spaces

Sometimes you need a quiet space to get some work done without distractions. Here are your best bets in the library.

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We know it can get pretty loud in the library, the quiet study room is the best place to go when you need some silence. It’s located at the back of the library. It doesn’t have any computers though, so if you need to do work online make sure to bring your own device.

 

 

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Have you had a chance to try out the black privacy chairs along the library windows? Not only are they comfy, they’re functional too. You can charge your device with the plugin on the armrest and relax while enjoying the view.

 

 

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The noise level at the back of the library tends to be a bit quieter than in other areas. Individual study cubies give you your own private space to camp out in.

 

 

 

Still not finding the study space you are looking for. Check out our blog post on Places to Study Outside of the Library.

 

Avoiding Plagiarism

What is Plagiarism

Plagiarism means using someone else’s work without giving proper credit.

“Work” includes but is not limited to written words, art, music, information from the Internet, videos, interviews, data or statistics.

“Giving proper credit” means carefully following the formatting rules of a documentation style such as APA, MLA, Chicago, etc.


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Whether intentional or unintentional, plagiarism is a serious academic offense. It is important to inform yourself of what constitutes plagiarism and how to avoid it in your work.

The following are some examples of plagiarism:

  • Improper paraphrasing or summarizing even if cited correctly. When restating information in your own words you must ensure that you are synthesizing the information in your own writing style and are not simply changing a few words or reversing the order of words in the sentence.
  • Handing in someone else’s work as your own, such as another student’s paper or purchasing a paper from a paper mill.
  • Not citing information that has been paraphrased or summarized (information or ideas that have been put into your own words).
  • Providing an incorrect citation for borrowed information. Accidentally mixing up the citation and the source is still considered plagiarism.
  • Failing to put quotation marks around information that was copied even if it was cited.
  • Self plagiarism, using a previous paper for a current assignment without permission from your instructor.

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Tips to Avoid Plagiarism

  1. Start early: give yourself enough time to complete your assignment. When short on time, it is easy to make mistakes when taking notes and citing your sources. Research, citing, and writing the paper often takes much longer then anticipated; try an assignment calculator to help you manage your time.
  2. Keep track of your sources: either save your research in your email or use a reference manager such as Mendeley or Zotero.
  3. Cite correctly: learn the required documentation style APA, MLA, Chicago, etc. Check with your instructor on which style you are required to use for the assignment.
  4. Complete the bibliography BEFORE writing: complete your list of sources in the required style before taking notes and writing, so it is clear what is needed for your in-text citations.
  5. Take accurate and complete notes: when taking notes or writing your first draft, make sure to always indicate:
    • copied information – enclose in quotation marks AND provide a citation
    • paraphrased or summarized information – provide a citation
    • your own thoughts – nothing is required
  6. Take time to review and ask questions: proofread your work to make sure you cited everything correctly. Seek assistance from library staff or your instructor if you have any questions about your sources.
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Google it: Five Tips to Search like a Pro

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Just “Google it”— often friendly disputes about factual matters will end up with that phrase. We have grown so familiar with the search engine, and the way it resolves our everyday questions. Yet we have forgotten the amazing features up its sleeve.

Here is a brief overview of the most useful Google search tips:

1. Search within a website

The search engines of most websites are poor. Instead, use Google’s site or domain limiter to search within a single website. For example, searching with site:cbc.ca followed by a search term. In other words, site:example.com text goes here

2. Find influential papers

Some papers are of central importance to a research topic, often because they report a major breakthrough, or theories that have an accepted validity among the scholarly community.  At some point in your student life, you will be required to find influential or seminal papers. Fortunately, Google offers a database devoted only to scholarly papers, called Google Scholar, which allows you to track how often and how recently a paper is cited in other scholarly literature.  Simply look for “Cited by”.

3. Find similar websites

Quality research demands synthesis—combining ideas from a number of sources to form a coherent whole. For this reason, if you found something you really like online, try your best to find similar websites. Simply type in “related:” in front of a web address, you already know. For example, related:adidas.ca., without a space between words. This Google search technique is especially useful when conducting market research.

4. The Power of the Asterisk

Like the blank tile in Scrabble, the asterisk * works as a placeholder within searches. Use it when your cunning memory prevents you from recalling a word, or parts of a word. For example, a search for child* will search for child, but also childhood, children, and any other word which starts with child.

5. Exact Phrase

This is the simplest way to specify that you only want websites—where the visible body text—exactly matches the sequence of words enclosed in quotation marks. For example, “Access to Information Act, RSC 1985, c A-1”. Use this search technique to find fragments from texts, or exact titles.

Remember…

All these tips solely focus on discovering information, yet this is a tiny part of the research process. If you want to learn more about research, this guide is for you!

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Bibliography

Gibbs, Samuel. (2016, January 15). How to use search like a pro: 10 tips and tricks for Google and beyond. The Guardian. Retrieved from https://www.thegaurdian.com/technology/2016/jan/15/how-to-use-search-like-a-pro-10-tips-and-tricks-for-google-and-beyond

Google LLC. (2019). How to search on Google. Retrieved March 4, 2019, from https://support.google.com/websearch/answer/134479?h1+en

Stetson University. (2018). Google Advanced Search & Google Shortcuts. Retrieved March 4, 2019, from https://guides.stetson.edu/c.php?g=431278&p=2942376

International Women’s Day

March 8, 2019 is International Women’s Day.  It is a day when we celebrate all that women have accomplished and is an important day for the women’s rights movement. The 2019 campaign theme is balance, specifically gender balance, and people are encouraged to take a picture facing the camera with arms bent, palms facing up and posting it to the hashtag #BalanceforBetter.

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The Library has many books on the women’s movement.  Here are a few that can help you celebrate International Women’s Day.

Women in science:  50 fearless pioneers who changed the world by Rachel Ignotofsky.  Q 141 I33 2016

Women who dig:  farming, feminism, and the fight to feed the world by Trina Moyles and K.J. Dakin.  HD 6077 M69 2018

The glass ceiling in the 21st century:  understanding barriers to gender equality by Manuela da Costa Barreto, Michelle K. Ryan and Michael T. Schmitt   HD 6060 G63 2009

Malala’s magic pencil by Malala Yousafzai   LC 2330 Y6825 2017

I can be anything!:  don’t tell me I can’t by Diane Dillon   PZ 7 D57917 Iak 2018