Answered By: Ewan McCubbin
Last Updated: Aug 25, 2015     Views: 164

Thanks for your feedback to the Library last week about 24/7 opening.

We did trial 24/7 during the 2012/13 academic year – the first time we’d opened 24/7 for about 10 years – and did this precisely when you’re suggesting we do it.  In the December we tried it for 2 weeks – the second week of revision and the first week of exams.  A few students commented that we’d picked the wrong 2 week period to offer 24/7 so before the second semester’s revision/exam period, we polled students using how our technologically advanced table tennis ball voting box.  Students voted for the second week of revision and the first week of exams so we did that again last May.

Our observation was that whilst students loved the idea of 24/7 (and our “zombie apocalypse” campaign artwork) they didn’t actually use it that much when it was offered.  Figures were reasonable until about 3am and then dropped dramatically between then and after 8am, sometimes down to single figures.  It was obviously great for people who did want to be here during the night but with so few students in such a big building that costs money to keep open, it’s difficult to justify doing this again.

You are right that 24/7 is available at other libraries but my sense is that St Andrews is somewhat different and that there really isn’t the same need or desire for the service here.  We do increase our opening hours at weekends during exams and hope to make even more improvements to hours throughout the year from September.  However, for the time being, we have no plans to repeat 24/7 any time in the foreseeable future.

Thanks again for your comments.

Best wishes

Ewan McCubbin (Assistant Director)

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