The Hive – Changes in response to student feedback

We always knew that we would be making changes once we saw how the Hive operated in practice, and have been very grateful for the way that students have worked so positively with us to get it right.

We have been working with StARs through the V-P Forum; the SU; and groups of students have been invited to walk around the Hive with members of staff to give their views and make suggestions. I hope that what follows demonstrates that we have been listening!

Noise and behaviour issues

Level 4 has been changed from a ‘quiet’ designation to ‘silent’ and this is being respected

There is much clearer space definition, and the staff are being very active in managing behaviour in a way that wasn’t happening at the beginning of the academic year. Signage on the tables is being introduced which makes it very clear where there should be silence, or quiet speech only, or where talking is allowed.

Additional security officers are in place.

There is a good, purposeful atmosphere at the Hive. We are aware that we need more staff on duty on Saturdays to maintain standards.

Perception that there is a reduced access to computers

The log-in statistics tell us that even at the busiest period, 40% of the computers were available. We are re-positioning them to ensure that more are available in the quieter areas, and that they are more spread out, and therefore more visible.

We are also installing a PC availability screen in the entrance (should be there in a couple of weeks from now), and a PC booking system which will be in place soon.

Power towers for laptops, and additional desk top computers have been installed on Level 4.

Having a drop off point at St Johns

We are looking at the feasibility of a return point for short loan books only, but the downside is that they will not be so quickly available for other students while in transit. A drop off point for all books is not feasible. It is common in many universities where buildings are spread around a city, or with a particularly large campus, to have a 20 minute walk to the library.

All books except short loan items can be returned at any county library in Worcestershire.

Easier access to university librarians and study advice needed

There is a new study advice point on Level 3 just outside the lifts, staffed by university librarians until 7 pm Monday to Friday, and until 5 on Saturday.

Concerns that the web filtering is hindering access to required academic material

The filtering is being removed for members of the university, which should be in place at the beginning of January. Students remain bound, of course, by the acceptable use policy of the university.

We are reviewing signage generally to ensure that the Hive registers a more ‘university’ feel, with greater emphasis on study, as well as the other aspects of the building. This will take a little longer to implement.

Please don’t hesitate to feedback to us. And excellent ideas are always welcome.


  1. In my experience the short loan system severely disadvantages students who live outside of Worcester. I have a 40 minute Journey to return a short loan book. I had to pay to park, received a large fine, because my internet was down and I couldn’t renew it. To cap it all off there wasn’t enough time to read and use the book in my assignment.

    1. I couldn’t agree more with Alan Totty. Even as a uni student living in Worcester I find the short term loan system very frustrating and I know I am not the only one who finds it like this. Because of all the hassle of returning books etc, I decided to purchase the core texts books (not a cheap venture!) However, some students may not, simply have the money to buy text books and thus their studies could suffer as a result of the short term loan system.

  2. 1. We were told as students that there would be a facility available to reserve computers – as far as I’m aware this hasn’t happened.
    2. I have had trouble when reserving books – as when I do get chance to visit the Hive (I live 20 miles away) they have already been redistributed.
    3. Apparently we can return books to any Worcestershire library, so why hasn’t this information been passed on to all students?
    4. It would be useful to have a pick up/drop off point for reserved books at the St John’s campus to save parking twice (once at St John’s and once at the Hive)

    As a third year student the Hive has been a great inconvenience.

    1. 1. There is a computer booking system in preparation which has taken us a little longer than anticipated to implement. We are working on it and hope to have it ready in the next fortnight. Apologies for the delay. It might be worth knowing however that even at the busiest times, there are always computers available at the Hive. According to our log in stats there has never been more than 65% in use even at the very busiest times.
      2. On reservations being redistributed because you cannot get in then do email askalibrarian to ask for an extension to the books being set aside.
      3. We try to make it known to everyone that they can return books to any Worcestershire library with the exception of the orange sticker short loan books.
      4. There are no plans to have a pick up point for books at St Johns, but we are investigating the possibility of being able to drop off the short loan books there. We will let you know as soon we have established the feasibility.
      5. There will be a 24 hour access to the study space and computers at Peirson next semester.

  3. Surley if books can be returned to ‘any Worcestershire Library ‘, why can’t the Pierson at St John’s be included in this?

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