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  • Writer's pictureThe Gaudie

"This schedule makes no sense": Students Call For Extended Opening Hours in SDR

University library will not be open for 24/7 access until 21 April- nearly two weeks after RGU

By Josh Pizzuto-Pomaco

As exam season grows closer, students have called on the University to extend opening hours at the Sir Duncan Rice Library. 

Currently, the library is open 8 AM to midnight on weekdays, 8 AM to 10 PM on Friday, 9 AM to 10 PM on Saturday, and 11 AM to midnight on Sunday. 

This year, SDR will not close for twenty straight days, beginning on Sunday, 21 April. However, for some final year students working towards dissertation deadlines, this isn't early enough.

By contrast, RGU's main library will remain open from 8 April to 3 May, a period of twenty-five days.

Andrew, a fourth year student, told The Gaudie: “It’s quite annoying, I’m a regular of the library. It’s the only place I can get really solid work done.

"My dissertation is just over the horizon and by the time the library goes 24hrs, I would only have a week to utilise the full effects that I would normally have by now."

A fourth year Primary Education student added: “We have been given two weeks to complete all remaining coursework which is due on the 16th."

"The library keeping the opening hours the way they are at the moment does not give me the flexibility to come and hard graft the way I need to.”

Another student agreed, noting: “This schedule makes no sense for those completing their dissertations as most of them have been submitted or are due at the end of April. It’s most likely to be fourth year students needing it open that late anyway!”

Kirsten, a third year student, suggested an alternative solution if the University is unable to open SDR overnight due to heating or other associated costs. 

She said: “I can see why it might not be affordable to have the SDR open 24 hours during the whole period, but I certainly feel that the Taylor Library could be cheaper to heat, and I suggest that university bosses look into using the Taylor library as an affordable alternative.”

However, some students suggested that opening the library overnight promoted ‘unhealthy’ work habits. 

One third year law student said: “24/7 access is unhealthy and the uni shouldn’t be encouraging it.” Another student criticised our methodology, adding: “Students shouldn’t be working in the middle of the night - it just encourages unhealthy habits.”

Of 96 students polled by The Gaudie, 84 (88%) told us that SDR should offer 24/7 access before the 21st of April. 

University says data drove decision

Speaking to The Gaudie, a University spokesperson confirmed that the library would be open ‘round the clock’ between 21 April and 10 May.

They added: “User data guides the dates chosen for 24-hour opening and are ahead of dissertation deadlines and cover the exam period. 

“The most recent 24-hour library opening in December saw occupancy of just 3% and 10% between 3am and 7am, with fewer than 10 students in the building on some occasions.

Spring break and the lack of classes mean the library is currently very quiet with peak occupancy this week so far at 30% of the last seven days. Despite that, the library remains open until midnight each weekday. PC classrooms in the MacRobert building are also available 24/7.” 


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