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Can’t find a seat in Glasgow University Library? Neither, try these study spots instead

For the days when trawling 11 floors just isn’t for you


I like the library as much as the next person, however, we all have to admit that sometimes you just don’t have the patience for it. Don’t get me wrong, if you are one of the maniacs that wake up at 6am and queue outside during exam season, then good for you.

But, for the sleepy people amongst us (myself included) who can’t possibly imagine possibly being awake that early, finding a seat is a task and a half. It will probably involve sweating profusely, as you search all 11 floors for a seat, in the winter coat you had to wear to survive the freezing Glasgow weather.

Luckily for you, the weather is improving day by day and even luckier for you, I have the solution for the library struggle too. For those days that you cannot bring yourself to search the library, here are my top picks for lesser known library alternatives.

1. The St. Andrews building

The St Andrews building is like Marmite, you either love it or you hate it and I happen to be the former. I may be slightly biased as it is right next to my house, however I just think it has everything.

It has study spaces on the ground and fifth floor and several bookable classrooms for private study. It also has a secluded computer cluster on the second, third and fourth floors.

Not only this but in the upstairs study space has kettles, microwaves and, leaving the best-for-last, beanbags! Okay, yeah, maybe I am easily pleased, however, I think this building is underappreciated this is why it sits at the top of my list.

2. The new Adam Smith Building and the ARC building

I have put these two together as they are right next to each other and so you can kind of just change between them as you fancy. I have to say these are some of my favourite places to study, they would have had the top spot if it wasn’t for the fact they were further away from my house.

They both have loads of seating and study space, they are also very fancy and modern. Think JMS vibes. The ARC also has a very yummy but equally as expensive cafe inside.

3. Spoons!

They both have loads of seating and study space, they are also very fancy and modern. Think JMS vibes. The ARC also has a very yummy but equally as expensive cafe inside.

3. Spoons!

Name a more popular student hotspot than spoons, and where else can a study sesh turn into a full-blown night out? And that’s why we love it.

On a more serious note, I actually have had some of my most productive study sessions in spoons, especially if you can get a booth at John Moore. You can get yourself cheap food, £1.55 unlimited coffee refills. Or a pint if you are having a more laid-back vibe. It really caters for all occasions.

4. Graham Kerr Building (Hunterian Zoology Museum)

This is by far the coolest study space on this list. It may not have all of the fancy amenities that some of these other study spaces have but it still is more than deserving of its place on this list.

The study area is in the museum itself, so you will be surrounded by skeletons of elephants, deer, you name an animal it’ll be there. It is certainly an interesting place to sit and study for a while.

5. The Fraser Building

This one you will have more than heard of, even if it is just because your GP is in there. This is convenient because it is in such proximity to the library.

It has three vending machines with a very good selection of snacks, and even microwaves and hot water dispensers if you want to bring food and heat it up.

My one warning about this place is, to charge your laptop before going. The place has a shocking lack of plug sockets and if you are like me and always forget to charge your laptop that is less than ideal.

6. Mitchell Library

The Mitchell Library is the largest public library in Europe and it is equally as beautiful as it is large. It is located just out of Kelvinbridge near the M8, so a bit of a trek from campus.

However, it is definitely worth the walk, you can be inspired by the stunning architecture, and maybe they’ll have the book you need in there to save you from going to our library.

7. QMU Games Room

This one is probably the most random wee place that’s on this list and it’s kind of hit or miss if you get a good seat. The games room is located on the first floor of QMU and they have like a small, but good selection of seats.

Technically, studying is not the entire purpose of this room but it’s comfortable and there are tables and plugs. So it works just as well as any other place.

8. Strathclyde Union

This is my most controversial pick on the list, rivalries and all that. However much I hate to say it, their union is amazing. The food is good, they do pitchers for £8 (not that that’s related to studying) and as their union/learning and teaching area are in the same building you’ll definitely get a seat.

A good seat at that, it’s like JMS but you don’t have to get there at 6am to find a space. However, it depends on if you can face walking up those Cathedral Street hills to get there.

So there we have it, a study space for every day of the week, and one to spare. Forget waiting eternities for the lift, trudging up the stairs and the fruitless search for a seat.

On the days that even leaving the house feels like a step too far, you could be more productive than ever before, with a revitalised study space. You are welcome.

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