Maybe I’m in the minority, but I love changing up my work space.

I basically never work in the same place twice in a row. It does mean I’m constantly on the lookout for new places to work both on and off campus. So this week I thought I’d share some of my favourite, slightly off the beaten track, work spaces on campus.

Barber Fine Art Library (and Lobby)

If you want to work in a quiet, old-fashioned library then the Barber Fine Art Library is probably the place for you. I only discovered it recently, but it’s quickly becoming a favourite of mine. It’s only small, the whole place consisting of two rooms with around seven wooden tables but it has that quiet, old, reverent library atmosphere. You have to swipe your student card to get in and it’s definitely a quiet working zone but that’s good if you want to get some writing done. In contrast, I also love working in the lobby of the Barber Institute when I want a more vibrant, busier atmosphere.

Aroma Cafe in Staff House

Again, the extent to which this space is off the beaten track is questionable, but it is usually less busy than other cafes on campus. If like me you love working in a cafe but often struggle to find a seat as you hate mornings, then Aroma could be a good bet. It’s a university cafe so has similar food to the library cafe but with the addition of big sofas to while away the hours in.

Aroma Cafe

PGR Suite in the Arts Building

Now, this one is only for Postgraduate Researchers as you need a special code to get in, but that makes it perfect for when you want to escape the masses. Found on the ground floor of the Arts building, this room is great if you want to get some work done whilst also socialising and meeting other researchers. It has a more casual, working lounge atmosphere so probably not the place to go if you want to do some serious PhD work.

4th Floor of the Library

This isn’t that off the beaten track but if you really love working in the library and are struggling to find a seat, the fourth floor is usually pretty deserted. Take the lift (or the stairs if you want to be healthy) to the fourth floor and head to the training rooms. Outside the two training rooms, there are a bunch of desks that are usually completely empty.

Winterbourne Cafe

Roughly a five-minute walk from the centre of campus (let’s say that’s Old Joe, our infamous clock tower) Winterbourne cafe isn’t on most student’s radar. But it really should be for several reasons. Firstly, as students of UoB, we get in to Winterbourne for free. Secondly, it has an adorable tearoom that can actually make a fairly decent work space. This is especially true when you don’t need a laptop and just want to catch up on your reading!

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to contact me about any student life related questions on Instagram: @phdlifewithlucy