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The Gateway study spaces  

Thank you for telling us if you knew about the Gateway space – 60 study spaces in the Gateway Well (lower floor) on the North Haugh, which is open to all students 7 days a week from 0900 – 2145 – and if you would use it. We were thrilled with the amount of engagement: 923 ping-pong balls and 63 post-it notes (65 if you include seconded comments)!

Results from ping-pong poll box


We left the voting box at the Main Library entrance for 2 days and counted all 923 balls! Here is a breakdown of the results:

  • Green: Didn’t know but I still wouldn’t use it 347 balls  37.59%
  • Red: Knew about it but I don’t want to use it  267 balls  28.93%
  • Grey: Didn’t know but I would use it 185 balls  20.04%
  • Blue: Knew about it & I have used it  124 balls  13.43%



This suggested to us that 58% of respondents didn’t know about this space, so we were happy to be able to get the word out, but we also learned that most people wouldn’t use it anyway. 67% indicated that this space wasn’t for them. This is very useful information for us, but as we are nosy-by-nature we wanted to find out more…why did people choose the different options? By now, you all know how much we love a feedback wall (we think you love them too!) so we set this up to gather more qualitative information.

Results from feedback wall


The feedback wall was up for just one day and we got 63 individual post-it notes and two with “I’d second that!” comments. Here is how we collated the results:


Green: Didn’t know but I still wouldn’t use it 16 comments 1 seconded

Split into categories these fall into:

  • Location (too far away/inconvenient):  10 comments
  • Books/resources: 4 comments
  • Lack of food/coffee: 4 comments
  • Dark: 2 comments
  • Noise (too quiet, not silent): 1 comment
  • Opening hours: 1 comment
  • Space (too small): 1 comment
  • Other: 1 comment “Useless”



Red: Knew about it but I don’t want to use it  15 comments 1 seconded

  • Location (too far away/inconvenient):  6 comments
  • Books/resources: 5 comments
  • Lack of food/coffee: 3 comments
  • Noise (too quiet, not silent): 3 comments
  • Temperature: 3 comments
  • Dark: 2 comments
  • Other: 1 comment “Habit”


Grey: Didn’t know but I would use it 4 comments

  • “Good to know :)”
  • “I would try it and see how it was, near to my science and my hall :)”
  • “Always want to mix it up!”
  • “OK but must have coffee bar”



Blue: Knew about it & I have used it 4 comments

  • “Usually quiet in Gateway but also very cold!!”
  • “Less air-conditioning”
  • “FOOD please”
  • “Good but more spaces needed still”


From all of these comments, we gathered that the top concern about the space was where it was located, but there were other points to take into consideration:

  • Where is was located – 17 comments in total.
  • That it didn’t contain books and other resources – 9 comments, and the cafe/food options were limited – also 9 comments.
  • There were concerns about the temperature – 5 comments and also that the noise levels were important – 5 comments.
  • The lack of natural light or that the space was dark was also mentioned – 4 comments.


Your notes on other issues

As well as these comments about the Gateway space, there were also 5 about Main Library facilities (our responses in green):

  • “Create a 5th floor please. Ta” – Wouldn’t that be nice?!  However, we’re afraid it’s not something Library staff can do. The University is committed to the redevelopment of the Main Library with another 375 study spaces due to be delivered on Level 1 but that’s not for another 3 years. 
  • “More study space – as much as every computer spot gets on the top floor” – We are working with colleagues elsewhere in the University and the Students’ Association to help promote awareness of alternatives to the Main Library.
  • “More than 3 access passes if you forget matric card! :)” – Sorry, we think 3 is plenty!
  • “We need a smokers room” – Obviously we can’t put a smokers’ room inside the Library (that would be illegal 🙂 ) but we are looking to make changes for the space outside, possibly next year. The University doesn’t provide external smoking shelters but we are considering moving the designate smoking area further away from the front door.
  • “Back left section of this floor – flickering lights give me headaches” – Thanks – we’ll investigate!

We were also concerned by some of the notes you left about how you are feeling at the moment with revision and exams approaching and dissertations. 12 comments were left that we have categorised as about your wellbeing These include:

  • “How to revise 10 weeks of lectures in a day?”
  • “I’m tired”
  • “This semester is ATTACKING ME!!!”

Please remember that the University offers help and support for you. Talk with the ASC if you are feeling overwhelmed.

Thank you all again for giving us this information. We will use it to try to improve the provision of study spaces as much as we can.

If you’d like to know more or give any comments, please email:

Gateway study spaces consultation results
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