Trimester 1 orientation activities for your students

While you’re preparing to start a new year of trimesters and teaching, we have a new influx of students preparing to start the university experience.

To help, the library is offering a range of orientation activities to ease their transition into uni-life. These include:

Earlybird workshops

We are running workshops across all campuses on:

  • Writing university assignments
  • Getting started on an ePortfolio with PebblePad
  • Researching and referencing for your assignments

Orientation tours

These 15 minute tours run throughout O Week at each Griffith library and give students an opportunity to see what’s where and how it all works. We also have online virtual tours for students who miss the on-campus library tours.

Market days

You’ll find our Griffith Library team at each campus Market Day, ready and willing to share everything we know about Library and IT at Griffith. We’ll be able to help students:

  • Set up their Wi Fi
  • Navigate the Griffith Uni app
  • Access workshops to get uni-ready

Find out more information on the Library’s orientation activities at the Library Orientation webpage.

Better scope your audience using Griffith Personas

Personas, or ‘User Stories’ are a useful tool to help you understand the different needs and requirements for a particular user group. They are used to create reliable and realistic representations of your key audience segments for reference.

Planning new subject content? Trying to scope future research areas? Doing qualitative research? You may like to look at using Personas.

There are myriad benefits of using Personas, including:

  • They can help your team/collaborators share a consistent understanding of the user group.
  • They give stakeholders an opportunity to discuss critical features of a redesign.
  • Reduction in time to find and manage information delivering benefits to users . 
  • Prioritisation of high‐value information management initiatives with confirmed business benefit .
  • Reduction of information security risk due to implementation of role‐based identity and access management.
  • Business process improvement aligned with user personas delivers cost reduction and productivity increases .
  • Create foundation work for the development of future customer journeys.

Griffith University is invested in acquiring and developing Personas across business areas. Recently, a project was undertaken to collate existing Personas and create a single repository for use by all Griffith staff.

These are now available and can be accessed via the Griffith Personas SharePoint Community

It is important to note that these Personas are to be considered generic base personas. As there is no ‘one size fits all’ Persona, they must be tailored for individual use and context. The Personas SharePoint site also provides information on how they should be used and updated based on guidance received from the vendor who developed the base personas.

How to stay cyber secure when travelling

Welcome back! As you embark on another year of research, teaching and/or life-long learning, you’re probably looking back fondly on your holiday memories of lazing by the pool, sleep-ins and enjoying the absence of impending deadlines.

Or maybe you’re so swamped with a busy to-do list of 2018 tasks and priorities that the holiday period seems as far away as the walk from your vehicle to your office now is.  

Cyber security is probably the furthest thing from your mind at the moment. However, it’s something we should always be conscious of.

As we enter the new year, you may have some exciting conferences planned, or maybe even some research field trips. So we’re here to give you a little reminder to stay cyber safe while travelling.

Our cyber security team have put together some helpful tips to ensure you stay vigilant on vacation:

  • Ensure your devices are protected with strong passwords.
  • Disable Bluetooth unless required, as this can be used as an attack vector.
  • Ensure anti-virus and all system and application software is up to date before you leave.
  • Remove auto authenticate on browsers.
  • Be careful with public Wi-Fi networks; these can often be setup without strong security controls.
  • If you are using public Wi-Fi for any sensitive data or communications it is recommended to use a VPN – eduroam wireless can be used at universities while travelling.
  • Only use a device that belongs to you for sensitive web browsing such as finances and commerce.
  • Monitor your accounts for any unusual activity.

For further information, visit our cyber safe travel webpage.

What can you do in February to become a better researcher?


You can attend our series of Higher Degree Research (HDR) Workshops. They are targeted to support you through all stages of the research lifecycle.

All staff and students are welcome to attend these workshops but preference will be given to HDR candidates. Once you have registered you will receive an email confirmation, please select add to the calendar.

Week 12 (T3) (29 January – 4 February)

Date Time Workshop Location Campus
Mon 29/01 10.00 am Endnote N53 1.49 Nathan
Tues 30/01 10.00 am Improving writing quality before submission G10 2.25 Gold Coast
Weds 31/01 10.00 am Improving writing quality before submission N53 1.51 Nathan
Thursday 01/02 10.00 am Strategic publishing N53 1.49 Nathan

Study week (T3) (5 – 11 February)

Date Time Workshop Location Campus
Mon 05/02 1.00 pm Editing your writing G10 2.25 Gold Coast
Wed 07/02 10.00 am Editing your writing N53 1.51 Nathan
Thu 08/02 10.00 am Endnote G10 2.04 Gold Coast
Fri 09/02 10.00 am Strategic publishing G10 2.04 Gold Coast

Exam week 1 (12 – 19 February)

Date Time Workshop Location Campus
Tue 13/02 1.00 pm Endnote N53 1.49 Nathan

6 of the best photo editing apps for mobile devices


You may not think you need a photo editing app on your device. But you do. There are so many situations that require you to take a photo on your phone – that will ultimately be seen by other people.

Whether you need a profile photo for LinkedIn or some snaps of an important work function, it’s important that the photos you take are presentable. And sometimes your device just doesn’t take a photo that does justice to your amazing photography skills.

Here are six photo editing apps you can use on your mobile device. Most of them are free!

Adobe Photoshop Fix
Developer: Adobe
Available: App Store and Google Play
Cost: Free
Adobe Photoshop Fix enables powerful, yet easy image retouching and restoration on your iPad or iPhone. Heal, smooth, liquefy, lighten and make other edits and adjustments that give you the precise look you’re after.

Developer: Visual Supply Company
Available: App Store and Google Play
Cost: Free
VSCO is a photo editing and publishing tool that offers dozens of exclusive filters and presets. Each of the presets can be tweaked which means there is an almost infinite number of actual filters.

Developer: Google
Available: App Store and Google Play
Cost: Free
This photo editing app provides the precision and control of professional photo editing software. It features non-destructive editing workflow and the ability to selectively apply edits with brushes, masks, and control points. Snapseed was rated as one of The 100 Best Android Apps of 2017 by PC Magazine.

Facetune 2
Developer: Lightricks
Available: App Store
Cost: Free
The next generation of the award-winning Facetune app is here with a new, amazing collection of the best pro retouching features. There’s super advanced technology behind every fun, powerful and easy-to-use tool. In only a few taps, you can whiten teeth, remove blemishes, smooth out skin, slim faces—and so much more!

Available: App Store and Google Play
Cost: $1.49
With AfterFocus, you can create a DSLR-style background blurred photo by simply selecting the focus area. Also, various filter effects offer you the ability to create the most natural and realistic photo.

Developer: Adva-Soft
Available: App Store and Google Play
Cost: $2.99
TouchRetouch offers you all the tools you need to efficiently remove unwanted content from your photos. Remove photo bombers, surface breaks and scratches, skin blemishes or objects like poles and trash cans!

How to write a tweetable abstract


Just when you have finally mastered how to write a coherent and concise abstract for your research paper, publishers have changed things up. A number of publishers also now require a ‘tweetable abstract’.


Tweetable abstracts should provide the main conclusions or the key message of a paper in a way that is easily understood.

A common mistake made by academics in writing tweetable abstracts is not using tags or hashtags. Methods in Ecology and Evolution, Assistant Editor, Samantha Ponton said ‘very few authors use the symbols ‘@’ and ‘#’ in their tweetable abstracts, to refer to an author’s Twitter username or to tag a keyword, respectively’.

‘Hashtags can be used to increase the visibility of a tweet, as users can search Twitter for keywords using this symbol as a prefix, for example, #ecology or #statistics’ she said (Submission requirement aims to boost social media engagement, 2013).

Other common mistakes include using overly technical scientific jargon and superfluous hashtags, or exceeding the character limit (How Twitter Literacy Can Benefit Conservation Scientists, 2013)

Not sure how to write for Twitter? Check out this helpful guide from the University of Pennsylvania. Or the 2014 BRW article 14 tips for getting the most out of Twitter Audience Platform.

Further information
Social media library guide
This guide provides links to helpful social media resources online and in the library.

Griffith University Social Media Guidelines
These guidelines outline the University principles concerning the use of social media and provide advice that assists staff in establishing and using social media spaces. They are framed within the University policies relating to conduct, copyright and intellectual property, privacy, use of information technology and information security.

6 ways to cut back on your iPhone data usage

Photo of iPhone

Do you love your iPhone, but hate the amount data you’re churning through? We can help! Check out our handy tips and tricks to reduce the mobile data usage on your iPhone.

Android devices have similar data saving capabilities – just check your online manual for details.

1. Disable Wi-Fi assist
Wi-Fi assist lets you stay connected to the Internet when Wi-Fi signal strength is weak by automatically switching over to mobile data.

2. Disable Background App Refresh
Background app refresh automatically updates your app content. But fear not, you can disable this function and it may even help with your battery life.

3. Disable automatic downloads
Purchased something new from iTunes on a different device? You can select to download it to your iPhone via Wi-Fi only.

4. Turn off cellular data usage for iCloud
If you use iCloud to transfer documents and data, it could be syncing using your mobile network and draining your data.

5. Avoid streaming high-quality music
Apple has created the option to stream high-quality music regardless of your being on Wi-Fi or mobile data. The higher the quality, the more data is needed to stream!

6. Disable auto play videos on apps
Some social media apps such as Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Vine and Twitter automatically play videos which can use a lot of data. Switch off auto-play via the app settings.

Head to the Mobile Phones Self Help page to find out how to turn off these settings, improve your mobile coverage and more!