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Ocean and Earth Science: Undergraduates

Subject guide for oceanography and earth science.


On this page you will find information for Ocean and Earth Science undergraduate students. 

Welcome week (week 0)

Welcome week (week 0)  - new Undergraduate students


As part of your Welcome Week activities this week you will have been asked to start looking at the induction content on your Virtual Learning Environment called Blackboard (BB). You will find all of the University induction content in the Faculty of Environmental and Life Sciences Students Hub on BB.  

  • The Welcome 2021 includes the first part of the Library induction which all new undergraduate students should do. The section covering the Library Service is in Section 3: Preparing to study alternatively you can find the information on this Getting Started website
  • Watch our short Welcome Video from the University Library staff  (opens in YouTube)
  • To support your studies we have created a Ocean and Earth Sciences subject guide. Watch the short video to find out how to get to the page and  why it’s helpful, Your SOES subject page (opens in Panopto) 

For students taking modules SOES1013 and SOES1014 you will receive further library and study skills training in the Library Orientation Programme starting in week 3 of your modules. You will receive more information about this nearer the time and there is information in the box below.

Embedded teaching programme for new undergraduate students

Library Orientation Programme

  • For students taking SOES1013 and SOES1014 there will be a link to the Library Orientation Programme on BlackBoard  embedded in your course module.
  • You are expected to work though this programme independently.
  • There are practical exercises included where you will need to email some information to your Personal Academic Tutor.
  • Work through the materials over the following 4 weeks, you will need to plan time in to do this around your lectures, seminars and other activities.
  • You should complete a test in BlackBoard to demonstrate that you have engaged with this programme


For any students not taking one of these core modules or visiting students who would like to complete this self guided learning programme to develop key library and study skills you will find the materials and exercises on this Library Orientation Programme site (page opens in a new tab in your browser)

Returning undergraduate students - years 2, 3, 4

Don't forget to look at your subject page for resources to support your studies and research:

For a useful refresher on library and research skills complete our online training course:

If you need help with the library resources or academic or research skills see some of the training we have on offer:


LinkedIn Learning

Also, you have access to LinkedIn Learning which is an on-line library of business, software skills, technology and creative courses to which all staff and students at the University have free access. It includes courses on:-

  • R - statistical processing language
  • SPSS - statistics and data analysis programme
  • ArcGIS - create and manage maps, data and analytical models
  • Linux Command Line
  • MATLAB - create programs to model data and hypotheses
  • Excel
  • Over 16,000 courses!

Log on and start learning here: LinkedIn Learning

If you need help with the library or any of our resources don't hesitate to get in contact with us using one of the following ways:

Using the literature databases

Your library subscribes to a wide range of literature databases which allow you to search for journal articles which are specifically relevant to your subject. This is helpful when you want to find information your the literature review section of your Thesis or to help you solve a problem in you research.

Why use the literature databases?

  • They save your time
  • They have searching features and filtering options that Google cannot compete with
  • They are focused on subject areas
  • They have content which is not openly available on the internet and you can click to access articles from our subscription journals

Explore the home page and databases section of this subject guide to discover the Explore the home page and databases section of this subject guide to discover the literature databases recommended for Ocean and Earth Science students and staff.

If you find something that looks useful for your assignment or dissertation but we don't have it in our collections consider using our Inter-Library Loan service to source it for you.

Further training


Using Google and Google Scholar to find literature for your research

These can be good starting points for your research, but remember:

  • Don't just use Google/ or Google Scholar, it is only one of your search tools. 
  • The literature databases on our subject guide will get you to good quality, peer reviewed information and you can filter the results to focus on what you need much quicker that working through all the pages from your Google search.
  • Prepare your search - have a search strategy ready.
  • Not all information is publicly available on the internet or freely available, much of the content of journals or ebooks will only be available to subscribers. If you find something that looks useful for your assignment or dissertation but you are being asked to pay for it check if we have access though the library. If we don't have it in our collections consider using our Inter-Library Loan service to source it for you.
  • Critically evaluate the information that you find on the internet, is it from a trustworthy source?
  • More tips on Getting the best from Google [University of Bedfordshire].