Learning Commons - Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the John B. McNair Learning Commons?
Our Learning Commons is a vibrant, student-centered learning space encompassing the first floor of Harriet Irving Library. There are many components to the Commons including print and electronic resources, group study rooms (with Wireless Presentation Systems - AirMedia), the Commons Café, comfy leather armchairs, the Service Desk, expert research help, UNB's ITS Help Desk, teaching rooms, wireless access, desktop computers offering access to email, UNB standard software and file storage space, and printing and scanning. Collaborating with the Library to offer service in the Learning Commons are UNB's ITS Services and Writing Centre.
2. When is the Learning Commons open?
The Learning Commons is open the same hours as Harriet Irving Library. See our hours of operation.
For hours of operations for specific service points, follow the links below:
- Research Help Desk
- ITS Help Desk
- Digital Media Editing Studio
- Writing Centre (Drop-in Hours in Room 116)
- Commons Café
- Library Accessibility Services
- Accessibility Services now located on the third floor (Room 303) is generally open Monday to Friday, from 8:30am until 4:30pm.
3. What kind of help is available?
Research Consultations: Expert guidance and instruction in the best use of digital and print resources is available at the Research Help Desk and by appointment with subject specialist librarians.
ITS Help Desk Service: Student Consultants provide assistance with computer and network related questions. For more information visit the ITS website.
UNB Writing Centre Drop-In Service: Staff can help you with your questions on essay, report, and thesis writing, and also offer advice on effective note-taking, time management, active reading, and exam preparation. For more information, visit the website of the Writing & Study Skills Program.
Instruction Sessions (including RefWorks): Library instruction sessions, workshops, and presentations are offered to class groups and by individual registration.
The Commons Accessibility Centre (CAC) is located in Room 117 of the Learning Commons, near the Research Help Desk, and provides a variety of specialized assistive technology software. In the Commons Accessibility Centre, there are 3 workstations with large-screen monitors, scanners, USB headphones, 3 height adjustable tables, and an electronic video magnifier available for use. In the Third Floor Accessibility Centre, located in Room 303, there are 4 workstations, one of which is a Macintosh, all with large-screen monitors, scanners, USB headphones, 2 height adjustable tables, and an electronic video magnifier available for use.
4. How do I print?
As a student you can print using the money on your UCard (UNB photo ID).
UCard: You need to have money on your UCard (UNB photo ID) to print or photocopy on campus. You do not need to swipe your UCard to print. When you click print, it will automatically deduct from your UCard account. When photocopying, you will need to swipe your UCard at the photocopier.
Printing using the money on your UCard is available from library-owned laptops, registered personal laptops, student network computers in the main Learning Commons area adjacent to the Research Help and ITS Help Desks, the Seminar Room, and the Learning Lab.
Choose PRINT as you normally would from the file menu. The proper local monochrome printer should already be set as the default, but it is a good idea to check.
Printing: The Learning Commons is normally two-sided. Follow posted instructions if you wish to print one side only.
Colour Printing is available only if you are logged in to a computer with your UNB login ID and password. You will need to choose to print to the colour printer.
Print jobs in the Learning Commons all print to the Print Hub beside the Research Help Desk.
5. Can I eat in the Learning Commons?
You are welcome to eat in the Commons Café seating area. In some areas of the Library, no food or drink is permitted. We ask that you follow the guidelines indicated on our signs.
6. What services are available for students with disabilities?
7. What kind of study space is available?
- Group Study Rooms are available for booking online. Four rooms are equipped with Wireless Presentation Systems.
- Quiet study is available in the Learning Lab, the Milham Room, and the Seminar Room when these rooms are not booked for Instruction. An instruction schedule is posted at each door.
- Individual study carrels can be found at the end of our book stacks, on most floors of HIL.
- Soft seating is available at either end of the Commons.
Study space of different types is also available throughout Harriet Irving Library.
8. How do I book a Group Study Room?
Students can book a Group Study Room online for a two hour period. All four rooms available in the Commons equipped with Wireless Presentation Systems. Instructions for connecting to Air Media are available in the rooms and at the Commons Service Desk.
Commons Service Desk: 453-4756, firstname.lastname@example.org
9. What software is available on the computers?
Standard software includes:
- Internet Explorer
- Windows 7
- Microsoft Office
- Adobe Acrobat Reader
- SPSS Statistics
- Beyond 20/20 Professional Browser
Access to available research resources is available through the Library's web site.
Limited access to such databases as LexisNexis is available in the Learning Commons. Ask at the Research Help Desk.
10. Where can I find films?
The Harriet Irving Library film collection consists of more than 1500 documentary and feature film titles in DVD and VHS formats. The collection is located in open stacks on the first floor. Browse the collection in person or search for films using UNB WorldCat, the online catalogue in "Advanced Search" mode, including "Visual material" among search criteria, or go to the Guide to Sound, Film, and Image Collections.
11. Can I view films in the library?
There is a viewing station in a group study room 104. The station can be booked in tandem with a VHS or DVD film that is signed out at the Commons Service Desk. Note that some films have licensing restrictions (indicated by a red sticker on the case) such that they can only be viewed at home.