Teaching and research

For instructors

Library services for teaching are twofold. Information specialists provide instructions in information searches and information use, and the library offers diverse materials for use as course material, supplementary material, and sources. Introductions are available for instructors, both individuals and groups. Each RU School has a liaison librarian who specializes in information in the academic field of that School and strives to offer its faculty the best possible service.

Project and thesis work

  • Book an information specialist for a class when students are about to start work on projects

    In consultation with the instructor, the information specialist puts together an instructional package which is customized for the project in question. The coverage includes how to conduct information searches  in key databases in the respective academic field and how to cite sources according to the standard in question if requested.

    - Further information on information specialists who provide instruction at the library and details about their specialties

  • Citing of sources according to a citation standard

    Information specialists have compiled, translated into Icelandic, and localised instructions and example collections for the main citation standards used at RU.

    -  APA – Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, a popular citation standard in the humanities and social sciences, as well as in various physical sciences. The standard is used, for example, in the School of Business and in Sport Science in the School of Science and Engineering.

     -  OSCOLA The Oxford University Standard for Citation of Legal Authorities, a citation standard in law. The standard is used in the School of Law.

     -  IEEE – Citation standard of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, widely used in technology and engineering fields.

  • Skemman.is 

    Skemman.is is the online institutional repository of Icelandic university libraries where electronic copies of final theses of undergraduate and graduate students are stored. According to resolutions of the Curriculum Council and Executive Board of RU, all final theses shall be stored in Skemman and it is recommended that they be open unless they contain confidential information.

  • Turn-it-In

    Turn-it-In is a plagiarism detection software that universities in Iceland have taken into use. The software compares texts with a database that is built into the system and returns a comparison report. Students can make use of the software when working on assignments and receive training in working with sources, preparing references, and citing sources. Instructors can use the software as an aid to detect possible plagiarism.

  • Rules on project work (Your original work)

Learning material

  • Coursebook Library: contains one copy of all textbooks used in undergraduate programms during the current semester, in addition to selected books used in graduate programms. Instructors have the option of reserving material from the library collections, acquiring material from elsewhere and/or adding material from their private collection to the coursebook library for students in individual courses. Material from an instructor's private collection is only for use within the library. Anna Kristín Stefánsdóttir, information specialist, supervises the coursebook library.

  • Purchasing request for coursebook library (e-form). Please use this online form to fill out requests for purchases for the coursebook library for books that are not already available at the library. You can look up existing books on Leitir.is. The library will only purchase one copy of the book.

  • Electronic material on a course reading list in Canvas: Electronic learning material and supplementary material are best distributed by directly linking to it from individual courses in Canvas, whether it be Icelandic or foreign material. Users shall follow rules and procedures to be certain to  respect copyright law and honour agreements that have been concluded with owners of materials by the library.  Journal articles on course websites in Canvas

  • Making material from Leitir.is available on course reading lists in Canvas. Leitir.is contains information on all printed material available at LIRU (select the tab Books, journals and more on the library's homepage), as well as information on material in the main databases which the library purchases access to (select the tab View online). At Leitir.is, users can  mark material, books and/or journal articles with a subject heading of their own choosing - a course title, such as V-502-ADFR, is a good chose. Students can then locate material which the instructor has specially marked by entering the subject heading in question. For further instructions speak with your School's contact at the library.

Information literacy

Academic work requires students to possess the ability to find, assess, and use information and sources in an efficient and responsible manner. According to the definition of the American Library Association (ALA) from 2000, a person who possesses those skills is information literate. The Prague Declaration from 2003 on the enhancement of information literacy in society and the Alexandria Proclamation on Information Literacy and Lifelong Learning from 2005 on information literacy and lifelong learning might also be of interest.

The Icelandic Ministry of Education, Science and Culture refers to information literacy in its National Qualification Framework from 16 May 2011 where it is stated for example, that students who complete a Bachelor's degree from a university accredited by the Ministry according to the Higher Education Institution Act no. 63/2006 shall be able to apply applicable methods of their field or profession. This consists in students being able to “… recognise when further data is needed and have the ability to retrieve it ... use reliable data- and information resources in the relevant scientific field …”

 LIRU offers diverse instruction designed to promote information literacy.

 Instruction provided by the library:

  • Introduction to the library and it's services on orientation day
  • First-year students. Instruction with an emphasis on searching key databases in the relevant academic field. The instruction is carried out in consultation with each School and/or individual instructors.
  • Review in connection with final theses: searching for sources, citing sources, submitting to Skemma, etc. The instruction is carried out in consultation with Schools and/or individual instructors.
  • Instruction designed to the needs of the respective course according to the wishes of the instructor.
  • Instruction on using the reference tool Zotero and the Turn-it-In plagiarism detection software.

Book an instruction session with your liaison information specialist for your School

For researchers

Information specialists at the library possess extensive knowledge of library collections in the academic fields of RU. They can provide information on what is available and where it is located and thus facilitate information searches. Furthermore, they can assist users in locating primary sources, conference papers and reports, as well as provide various practical services.


Information specialists:

  • Provide practical information on the reference management program Zotero

  • Provide practical information on the main citation styles used; APA, IEEE, and OSCOLA

  • Search for sources. Please send us a Request for information search.

  • Find information on specific sources for a bibliography

  • Assist with impact factors for journals and authors

  • Provide information on the strategy of individual journals regarding open access

  • Assist with alerting services to monitor new material concerning specific topics

  • Provide material from other libraries when needed. Please send us Article and book requests, interlibrary loans

  • Offer access to databases and electronic journals outside campus via off-campus access

  • Skemman.is is the online institutional repository of Icelandic University libraries. Skemman mainly contains copies of student theses but also academic articles and other material from faculty members. Instructions for academics on how to submit to Skemman.

Publication and open access

Selecting a journal
Individual research journals are evaluated with regard to their influence within a specific research field and given an Journal Impact Factor (JIF). The higher the JIF the higher ranking the journal. InCites Journal Citation Reports (JCR) contains information on this evaluation of international research journals that are indexed in Web of Science (WoS) from 2006 to the present. Information on journals indexed in WoS are found in InCites Master Journal List .

Other useful lists for scientific journals are;

Open access
When publishing it is recommended to consider publication in open access (OA). OA is an online open and free full text access to journal articles, research data and reports. Publishing in OA allows reading, usage, distribution and copying the OA material as long as the author is cited correctly. Such publication is in some instances a choice, but demands for publishing research in OA are steadily increasing. The RU policy on Open Access from 2014 urges RU researchers to publish in OA.

There are two main routes to OA publishing; the Golden Route and the Green Route. The Golden Route is publication in OA journals which usually entails costs that the author or the author's institution have to cover. The Green Route consists in concurrent publication and archiving in a repository, either institutional or a subject repository (i.e. arXiv.org, Europe PMC).

Information on OA publication strategy of individual publishers and journals is accessible at SherpaRomeo.

  • Opin vísindi (Open Science) - is an institutional repository for peer reviewed articles published in open access by Icelandic Universities i.e. data published in Iceland or abroad by scientists affiliated with Icelandic universities and/or research institutions

  • OpenAIRE - Portal and repository for scientific product of research sponsored by EU, i.e. a collection of scientific articles and data, information on scientists and their ID's, grants and scientific institutions 

  • OpenDOAR - List of open access scientific repositories

  • ORCID - stands for Open Researcher and Contributor Identification - facilitates application and search for scientific and academic author identification number
    ORCID provides a persistent digital identifier that distinguishes authors from other authors (disambiguate their name) an essential part of how researchers can keep track of their identity as they publish material

  • Creative Commons - a collection of terms and licenses authors can label their intellectual property with and thereby allowing its usage as long as it is properly cited

Declarations and strategies on open access

Further information on open access


A traditional way to assess the visibility and impact of scientific writing, within a field, is to calculate an impact factor for individual authors. Impact factors are an important part of evaluating the research contribution of faculty members.  

Impact factors for authors

The best known impact factor is the h-index which is available in several versions. It is easy to calculate the h-index of individual authors in Web of Science (WoS). InCites Master Journal List provides information on journals indexed in WoS. Anne-Will Harzing, professor at the university of Melbourne Australia, has developed the software Publish or Perish which facilitates comparable analysis from Google Scholar. The software can be downloaded free of charge. It is advisable to begin by looking at Google Scholar Citations. Other impact factors are the g-index and the i10-index.

Altmetric is a system that tracks the attention that research outputs such as scholarly articles and datasets receive online. It pulls data from: Social media like Twitter, Facebook, and Google+, traditional media - both mainstream (The Guardian, New York Times) and field specific (New Scientist, Bird Watching), blogs - both major organisations (Cancer Research UK) and individual researchers and Online reference managers like Mendeley and CiteULike

More on impact factors and evaluation of scientific writing
Citations metrics. (1990-2013). In Publish or Perish 4 User's Manual
Garfield, E. (1955).  Citation indexes to science: A new dimension in documentation through association of ideas. Science, 122(16), bls. 108-111 (PDF skjal).
Marnett, A. (2010). H-index: What it is and how to find yours

For doctoral students

Information on materials in an academic field and searching for sources
The subject librarians possess knowledge of the library's material in all of the academic fields of the University. They can give information on what is available and where it can be found and thus facilitate information searching. Furthermore, they can provide assistance in locating original sources, conference publications, reports and more.

Information for working with sources
The information specialists at the library have put together detailed instructions on the main citation styles used at the university: APA, IEEE, OSCOLA. They also provide instructions in using reference management programs, especially Zotero, and assist with the use of the plagiarism detection software Turn-it-In.

PhD thesis
Doctoral students have to submit their thesis into Opin vísindi. See instructions.

We can also:

The information specialists recommend Phd on track where detailed information for doctoral students in English can be found.

Contact the information specialist for your School and book an appointment.


Irma Hrönn Martinsdóttir

1st floor in Uranus (Ú103) | irmam@ru.is | Tel: (+354) 599 6249
School of Business | Preliminary studies

Kristína Benedikz

Information specialist  

1st floor in Uranus (Ú103) | kristinab@ru.is | Tel: (+354) 599 6410
School of Law

Ragna Björk Kristjánsdóttir

Information specialist

1st floor in Uranus (Ú103) |  ragnabjork@ru.is  | Tel: (+354) 599 6235
School of Computer Science | School of Science and Engineering

Sara Stef. Hildardóttir

Library director

Book orders
Open access

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