Posts by: Sarah Passinhas-Bergman

How does one write about the sciences? Feeling threatened by your thesis? Never fear, Writing Consultants appointments are available!

picture of the writing consultants calendar

This is what the Writing Consultant schedule looks like

Registration is now available for 45-minute long appointments, conducted over Zoom. This semester, appointments will be held on Tuesday and Thursdays from 10am-3pm, and Sundays from 12pm-5pm.

Spots go fast, so sign up now! Never met with a writing consultant before? Visit our Writing Consultants Guide for more information about what she can help with and how to prepare.

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Solaten omnes saculorem tuba nriirum est – If lit by a patron, despite knowing that checkouts are for four hours only, this black flame candle will resurrect… A Block!

When you come to the desk to check out chargers, beware! Returning the item on time is the only waour blocking mascot dressed up as winifred sandersony to save you from the curse of the block.

The first time you keep an item late, you cannot checkout items for 24 hours once you’ve returned it. The second time lasts a week; the third, a month and a note to the dean. The fourth time results in another note to the dean and a block for the rest of the academic year. Plus, every day you keep the item late beyond the original due date, we shall add another day to your curse.

We urge you to take these matters seriously, and remember to return or renew your reserve item before your four hours are up. Perhaps you are worried you will not be able to return the item before the sun rises (and the item is due). In that case, give us a call or send us a chat saying you’ll be late. We understand life happens.

These curses accumulate during the academic year, so be sure to set yourself a timer.

For the facts behind this ancient curse, please visit our Reserve Policy page.


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We at the library are gearing up for Affiliation week! (Well, more like Affiliation month…)

Twice every year, we walk around with a clipboard and find out how many students from each school is using the library. We do a survey for each day of the week, four times a day.

Maybe you’ve noticed people already walking around with clipboards, counting. That is for our statistics on the popularity of different spaces, like the study rooms or the couches. Affiliation week is different. During Affiliation, another library staff walks around and counts how many dental or TMC staff are using the library space. But we need your help. Our staff may have to ask you for you ID in order to count you and your study group. So, we wanted to give you some tips to get through this Affiliation season!

1. You can leave your ID on your desk beside you, so no one will interrupt you while you’re studying.

2. You can write down your affiliation on a piece of paper beside you.

3. We are leaving sheets in front of study room doors, intended to be filled out for each survey time (11 am, 3 pm, 6 pm, 9 pm)

4. Just tell whoever walks by.

We really appreciate your cooperation. This helps us put together our budgets for different resources. And, if you have any questions, you can always come down to the desk.


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Our library reference assistant holding up her favorite heart anatomical model

Ariel holding up our heart model, just as she did when she first started!

What a bittersweet announcement! Our beloved part-time library reference assistant, Ariel Flowers, is leaving Hirsh! She has accepted a stellar contract at Brown University, aiding the Divide America Project as Supervising Archivist.

In her short time at Hirsh, she has worked at the desk, getting to know you all. Behind the scenes, she has helped manage our course reserve collection and supervise student assistants. She tells us that she has enjoyed working with the Hirsh team. So, we are going to take her word for it!

Her last day is Friday, September 23rd. Stop by the desk and wish her luck in Providence!


We at Hirsh loved seeing everyone for Afternoon Tea last week. But with the weather getting cooler, and warm drinks gaining popularity, we came up with a craft idea that will… hold you over until pumpkin painting. (Get it?)

Examples of coffee cozies… Can you do better?

On Thursday (9/22) and Friday (9/23), we are going to have a craft setup at the Library Service Desk, where patrons can come up and make Coffee Cozies. Rather than grabbing a sleeve every time you get coffee, you can make a re-usable and totally customizable cozy. Here are some examples.

We hope to see you at the Library Service Desk at noon on Thursday!


For some people, autumn is leaf peeping, or warm tea lattes on a rainy day, or maybe pulling out your favorite orange sweaters. But for me, autumn is course reserve season! And today, I’d like to share some info about the Reading List tool in your Canvas courses.

The Reading List feature on Canvas serves one specific purpose: it consolidates your course material. Since library staff have some admin privileges, we can go through courses and see the same materials you do. We, at the library, add required textbooks (and maybe a PDF or two) that we have found in your professor’s syllabus to the Reading List tool. We prepare those materials and add them to a course’s Canvas page. Then, professors can add articles or other resources to the same Reading List. Thus, an entire course’s reading can be accessible all in one place.

The Reading List tool as seen in a Canvas course

Or, if a professor has liked a previous Reading List, they can simply “roll” that list over for their current course.

Everything on a Reading List either has a link directly to the resource, or tells you exactly where to find the physical copy. No need to download or flip through the syllabus every time you need a resource; nor do you have to search for resources yourself. This tool is great for organizing resources and updating the list as the course continues.

And, if you happen to need to, you can always report a resource or link being broken directly on the site. We check these all the time to ensure students and faculty can access their resources without much trouble.

Working closely with faculty about their use of the Reading List has contributed a lot to the program itself. Reading Lists has changed features due to our feedback, so as more people use it we can report more concrete suggestions for improvement. And this includes all of you! We enjoy hearing the ways you all interact with the tool.

We hope to hear how you use the tool soon. And, don’t forget to email us if you have any questions about finding your course material or accessing articles.

And, as an aside, I highly recommend a Darjeeling tea with steamed milk. There is no better time of year to try it. Happy fall!

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Well. It’s been a wild few months for the MBTA. We at Hirsh know many of you commute in from other parts of Boston. (Some of our staff certainly do.) So, we decided to create some helpful guides so you can navigate the new school year– or even just navigate to class– with relative ease.

A picture of a map of the different Blue Bike stations in Downtown Boston

As long as the weather’s nice, biking part of your commute might be part of your commute plans.

And today, I’d like to bring your attention to… Blue Bikes! These bikes are all around Boston, and courtesy of the University, you can get a discount on a yearly membership (~60$ a year, whichy is cheaper than a monthly link pass with the MBTA)

Here is a more comprehensive map of the Blue Bikes available around the Greater Metro area. You can see a few of them are within a block from 145 Harrison Ave.

Watch out! The Mass Department of Conservation & Recreation reports any changes to bike paths or detours for the greater metro area. For instance, the Southwest Corridor Bike Path might have rolling repairs during September, so keep your eye on the MassDCR Twitter feed.

And, please: WEAR A HELMET!

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We here at Hirsh Library have been so thrilled to spend the last full academic year with you all. And, more activity in the library means more books have been circulating among our student body.

If you or a friend have checked out library books and have not returned them yet, please return them now! We would really appreciate having them back. You can turn them in here (at Hirsh), or at any Tufts Library– Medford, Grafton, SMFA.

If you need to mail them back for any reason, just contact us at, and we can give you all the information and labels to bring them back to the Boston Campus.

Returning your books not only clears your accounts– it also eases the strain on our Acquisitions department, who buy replacements for lost books.

We hope you enjoy your summer break, however long it may be, and hope to see you all soon!

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Magically Floating Dental Supplies

Photo by Daniel Frank on Unsplash

Congratulations to all dental students graduating!

We at Hirsh Library just wanted to remind you that clearing from the library is among your responsibilities in order to be cleared for graduation. This means all books must be returned and all fines must be paid. If you have any questions, you can send us a chat or give us a call at 617-636-6705 . We have loved working with you all through your research projects and presentations, and we are excited to see you off to the next portion of your career. Good luck (and please remember to return your books!).


Hi all!

This Monday, April 18th, the desk will be open from 12pm – 7pm for reserve and tech checkout. Our librarians will answer your reference questions on Tuesday.

Have a great weekend and cheer on your Tufts University marathon team!

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