Stellenbosch University Library and Information Service - News from research support services

Author: Kirchner van Deventer (Page 1 of 4)

Save the Date: Library Research Week 2024

Stellenbosch University Library and Information Service’s Library Research Week will take place during the week of 13 to 17 May 2024. Keep your eyes peeled for updates on the programme and the range of exciting topics that we will cover this year. In line with one of Stellenbosch University’s core values, the theme for Library Research Week 2024 is Let’s achieve excellence in research. So, save the date and be ready for what will be an innovative and relevant learning experience that we believe will help you excel in your research!

Library induction for new staff and postgraduate students

If you are new to Stellenbosch University, but you are a postgraduate student or a new staff member, it can be daunting to have to discover all the services and facilities available to you and, especially, how to access them. As part of the Library and Information Service’s #SmartResearcher training series, we offer a Library induction that specifically caters to postgraduate students and academic staff. This three-hour session will introduce you to all of the services and facilities that the Stellenbosch University Library has to offer. You will learn how to find your faculty librarian, how to navigate the library’s website, how to access library guides that are important to your research area and how to contact the library for assistance.

You will also be introduced to Research Impact services, Research Data Services, Open Access publication, the Carnegie Research Commons, the Makerspace and our institutional repositories.

Below are the dates available in the first semester:

Both sessions will be presented in hybrid format, so you can choose to attend in person or online.

Remember, we are here to help you excel in whatever you aim to achieve!

Migrating from Mendely to EndNote

January has come and gone and we at the library are in full swing getting ready for the academic year. Part of that preparation involves preparing our clients for the use of the newly acquired EndNote 21 reference management software. For new clients, or for those who are embarking on a new degree, journal article or research paper, switching from Mendeley to EndNote will be fairly easy. However, if you are mid-way through writing up your degree or other academic work, then it can become more complicated to switch to an entirely new programme.

In fact, we strongly recommend that those who are already working on documents using Mendeley Cite (the MS Word add-on for Mendeley Reference Manager), should stick with Mendeley until they are finished with their current research. There is currently no way to convert a document formatted with Mendeley Cite to EndNote. If, however, you are still using the original version of Mendeley, called Mendeley Desktop, then it would be possible to convert your document. Along with the document conversion, you will also have to transfer your Mendeley references or library to EndNote. This is an easy process, but if you have multiple PDF articles attached to your references, then these will not be transferred along with the Mendeley records. To clarify everything that’s been said above, we recommend following the below steps in the order:

  1. Move all of your PDF articles to EndNote.
  2. It’s only then that you can convert your Mendeley library to an EndNote library.
    • Take note that if you have organised your Mendeley library into multiple folders, there is unfortunately no way to copy the folders to EndNote. You will either have to create new folders (called Groups in EndNote) in EndNote and export the contents of each folder separately.
  3. If you have a Word document (formatted with Mendeley Cite-o-matic), then you can convert it to an EndNote formatted document.
  4. If you are using the new version of Mendeley (Mendeley Reference Manager), then you won’t be able to convert your document.

Instructions on how to do all of the above are available on our EndNote Library Guide under the Moving your Mendeley Library to EndNote tab.

Remember, if you struggle at any stage with switching to EndNote, do not hesitate to contact Kirchner van Deventer and we will gladly assist you!

If you would like to schedule and appointment regarding EndNote, please fill out the form below:

Tools for thought: Rayyan

Rayyan is a powerful, intelligent systematic review platform that allows you to do large scale analyses of thousands of records. It allows researchers to organise, manage and accelerate their collaborative systematic literature reviews. Rayyan understands language, learns from decisions, and helps research teams work quickly through even their largest sets of references reducing around 80% of your screening efforts. Rayyan is user-friendly and 93% of our members report learning to use Rayyan took them less than an hour or a day to master (Tryphosa, 2023). In the video below, we go over the Rayyan’s key features and introduce you to its potential benefits when using it for systematic (or other) reviews.


Update on EndNote implementation


With January nearing faster than some of us might hope, we are working hard to have everything in place so our users can download, install, and access EndNote in the first week of January 2024. The SU Harvard Style is ready for use and once we have the full license, our clients are welcome to make recommendations or request changes to the style. We have also identified six “super users” who will be responsible for providing EndNote support and training in their respective areas. They are:

Kirchner van Deventer, Manager: Carnegie Research Commons

Letlao Seloma, Librarian: Carnegie Research Commons

Sanda Nyoka, Law Librarian

Lucinda Raath, Arts and Social Sciences Librarian

Yusuf Ras, Head: Medicine and Health Sciences Library

Heila Mare, Theology Librarian

These six librarians have received advanced training in EndNote. The next phase in EndNote training will be in-house training for other library staff. This training will be more basic in nature, but will allow most of our staff members to assist in basic queries and troubleshooting. If advanced support is needed, you will be referred to one of the librarians listed above.

In addition to our in-house training, we will also provide monthly training to all SU staff and students who need it. This training will form part of our popular #SmartResearcher training sessions, so keep an eye out for the 2024 schedule! There will be two types of training. The first will be a session on how to migrate your existing Mendeley or Zotero Library to EndNote. During this training we will also take you through the process of downloading and installing EndNote on your device(s). The second type will be a practical training session where we will take you through all of EndNote’s features and capabilities. We will show you how to import references from databases, how to search some databases from within EndNote, how to navigate your library and how the MS Word plugin, Cite-while-you-write, works. Our EndNote Library Guide will also be up and running by January 2024 and it should prove a useful resource for FAQs, troubleshooting and other guides on how to use the tool.

We hope that you are as excited as us about this new reference management tool and may it contribute to the success of your research journey!


Stellenbosch University to get EndNote license

EndNote - Ritme

Stellenbosch University Library and Information Service is very pleased to announce that, starting January 2024, staff and students will have access to EndNote 21. The decision to acquire EndNote follows a survey we conducted earlier this year on our clients’ satisfaction with Mendeley as the supported reference management tool at Stellenbosch University. The survey indicated a large level of dissatisfaction with the reliability of Mendeley. At the same time, we conducted a benchmarking exercise to see what reference management software other institutions were using. It was notable that most of the research-intensive institutions were subscribed to EndNote. Given the overall dissatisfaction with Mendeley and what appears to be the software of choice at other institutions, the decision was made to subscribe to EndNote.

EndNote is one of the best reference management software packages available. With EndNote you can manage and format your citations with ease and its integration with cloud services and word processors are some of the best. Here is a short list of some of EndNote’s features:

EndNote’s style customisation feature is especially promising as we will be able to create custom styles according to our clients’ specific needs. In addition, EndNote offers a level of software stability that open-source reference managers unfortunately do not provide as yet. Naturally, we will offer support and training in how to migrate from Mendeley or Zotero to EndNote, if you wish to do so.

We will share further announcements regarding training and other resources as we get closer to January, so keep your eye on Library Research News for further updates. In the meantime, have a look at this video to see what some of the new features of EndNote 21 are.

Enquiries: Kirchner van Deventer

Tools for Thought: A brief overview of Keenious

Keenious | LinkedIn

In what will hopefully be the first of many, we have made a video that gives a short overview of a tool that can be very valuable for academic research. In this video, we discuss Keenious and, specifically, how it works as a MS Word plugin. Keenious analyses pieces of text and then automatically recommends academic articles that may be relevant. The tool is free to use for individuals and it really works like a dream! Have a look at the video below:



If you have any questions or you want assistance in setting Keenious up on your computer, feel free email us!

#SmartResearcher webinars for September

September’s #SmartResearcher webinars will focus on improving your research impact and the visibility of your research, data sharing and dissemination, data visualisation with tools such as MS PowerBI, Tableau Public and RawGraphs and, finally, an introduction to ORCID and why it is such a valuable resource for researchers. Below is the list of the upcoming webinars:


These workshops are aimed at postgraduate students, emerging researchers and academic staff and the focus will be on the research process. The sessions vary in length depending on the subject matter, but cover a wide range of subjects related to the postgraduate research journey.

Maximise your research impact

This workshop will show how to improve your impact as a researcher. The following two sessions will be presented:

Session 1: Increase the visibility of your research (1 hour)

Participants will learn to:

  • Find and navigate social research networks (ResearchGate,, Mendeley, etc.)
  • Develop research profiles
  • Understand how to increase your visibility as researcher
  • Understand the role of science communication and social media

Session 2: Measure your impact (1 hour)

Participants will learn about:

  • The different citation metrics and altmetrics and where to find it
  • Awareness of methods to increase citations
  • Responsible use of metrics

Date: 21 September 2023 @ 14:00-16:00

Register Here

Enhancing the visibility of your research output through self-archiving

Stellenbosch University’s institutional policy on the self-archiving of research output is curated by the Library and Information Service. Complying with this policy, which asks researchers to deposit copies of their research output in SUNScholar, our institutional repository, can greatly increase the visibility and impact of research output. This workshop will teach participants more about the policy and how to comply with the policy in order to improve access to and visibility of their research outputs.

Date: 6 September 2023 @ 14h00 – 15h30

Register Here

Data sharing and dissemination: ethical and legal considerations

The workshop is designed to illuminate the methods and platforms of data sharing and highlights various ways in which data can be shared and disseminated within acceptable ethical and legal considerations.

Date: 7 September 2023 @ 14h00 – 16h00

Register Here

Data Visualisation with Power BI

The workshop will be a hands-on introduction to Power BI, available for free through SU’s subscription to Microsoft 365.

Participants will learn the following:

  • How to install the desktop application and connect to Microsoft Excel
  • Start visualising data easily with an extensive library of data visualisations.
  • How to build reports and dashboards

Date: 19 September 2023 @ 14h00 – 16h00

Register Here

Mendeley for reference management

Managing your references can be a daunting task. This workshop will introduce you to Mendeley, a free tool focusing mainly on reference management. Mendeley offers various services, including reference management, organising and annotation of PDF documents and collaboration.

Date: 20 September 2023 @ 11h00 – 13h00

Register Here

Introduction to Tableau Public and RawGraphs for data visualisation

This workshop will be an introductory course to visualise your data with Tableau Public and RAWGraphs. Both are free tools and fairly user friendly.

Date: 26 September 2023 @ 14h00 – 16h00

Register Here

Managing your unique author identity with ORCID

ORCID is an open, non-profit, community-driven effort to create and maintain a registry of unique researcher identifiers and a transparent method of linking research activities and outputs to these identifiers. This workshop will explain what ORCID is, how to register and populate your profiles.

Date: 28 September 2023 @ 14h00 – 15h00

Register Here

Elsevier Author Workshop 4 & 5 September


You are invited to attend the upcoming Elsevier Author Workshop to be held on the 4th of September and repeated on the 5th. The workshops will be held in the Library’s auditorium. The first session on each day will be from 11h00AM to 13h00PM, followed by a practical session at 14h00 to 16h00. The workshops will be in person only, however, we will record them and make it available upon request. Below is more information on what will be covered:

Efficiencies in the Research Process

  • Step 1: Learn how to create an effective Boolean search string that will give you more relevant search results related to your topic of interest
  • Step 2: Evaluating topics and documents. Learn how well cited a topic is, identifying trending keywords for searching optimization and increased visibility of your article, evaluating the performance of a document
  • Step 3: Creating reading lists of relevant literature, finding authors and identifying potential collaborators or mentors
  • Step 4: Creating alerts to stay updated on your topic
  • Step 5: Qualifying characteristics of trustworthy literature

Journal Selection and Author Profiles

  • Step 1: Creating a candidate Journal list
  • Step 2: Understanding Journal Metrics, Editorial Board, Publishing options (Open Access/Subscription)
  • Step 3: Evaluating aims and scope
  • Step 4: Predatory Journals
  • Step 5: Finding Authors and updating your own Author Profile

Tips for Journal Article Publication

  • Step 1: General dos and don’ts
  • Step 2: APCs, Publishing options (Open Access/Subscription)
  • Step 3: Visibility, search engine discoverable and viewership
  • Step 4: Structuring an article
  • Step 5: Peer review and becoming a peer reviewer

To register, click on the appropriate link:

We look forward to seeing you there!

Save the date: Elsevier Author Workshop

You are invited to attend the upcoming Elsevier Author Workshop to be held on the 4th of September and repeated on the 5th. The workshops will be held in the Library’s auditorium and eClassroom and they will be in-person only. However, we will record the workshop for those who are unable to attend. Keep an eye out for the announcement with a link to register for the workshops.

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