Public Libraries (Singapore)

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F October 16, 2012
 
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11 reviews with 4 stars

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4.1  (17)
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4.4  (38)
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Bedok Public Library - The Best Place For Studying, And More
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
All students would know how difficult finding a good study spot can be. I don’t claim to be a picky person, but I knew the place needed good lighting, comfortable chairs, a quiet atmosphere, and good food in the area. It was by chance that I realised Bedok Public Library ticked all of these boxes.

On a typical weekend, you’ll find Bedok Library crowded with students buried in their notes, parents with excited children in tow, and uncles taking their afternoon naps in air-conditioned comfort. Personally, I love the serenity of the environment, which is broken only by occasional snores or children’s shrieks. It brings my productivity levels to a record high. In terms of makan choices nearby, this place wins hands down. Unlike other studying spots I’ve been to, Bedok Library is within a stone’s throw of hawker centres, coffee shops, and numerous food outlets, so you’ll be spoilt for choice. Add in stuff about free wifi, power points / what would your friend want to know about the place?

Besides being a great spot for studying, you should drop by to borrow Malay books from its extensive collection. An entire area is dedicated solely to Malay books and audiovisual materials, making its catalogue the biggest one you can find in Singapore’s public libraries.can add smth about how bedok was a traditionally malay area // link to “bedok” and drumbeats calling people to the mosque for prayer

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Recommend to a friend:
Yes
SS
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quiet atmosphere, great for studying
Overall Rating 
 
3.5
NLB is one of my favorite places to study because of the materials provided and perfect quiet setting available. Lee Kong Chian Reference Library has got to be my favorite outlet.

It is spacious and well litted, with sufficient power sockets for everyone seated at the same table so you never have to face a problem of not having one. Aside from the space and ambience, there are so many places around for you to take a break and eat at and is conveniently located between Bugis and Bras Basah.

Overall, the Public Libraries is one of my favorite places to be whenever I need to be alone or have a quiet place to study at.

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C
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NLB: Conducive Study Environment, but CRAZY Crowded
Overall Rating 
 
3.5
The National Library Board (NLB) is one of the most iconic buildings in the Bugis area, with 13 glass-paneled floors housing over 600,000 media and print resources. If you’re in search of a book, whether it’s an academic journal on Singapore’s history or a Romantic-era play, you’ll definitely find it in the Lee Hong Chiang Reference Library.

With long wooden tables and chairs at almost every floor, NLB is an extremely popular study spot amongst JC, Polytechnic and university students. I spent a significant fraction of my JC study life mugging away at NLB. I find the silent, brightly-lit environment very conducive for work, although some of my friends can’t stand the complete silence. NLB can get insanely crowded though, especially as the exams approach. People even arrive before opening hours to queue for seats.

There are probably other study spots you can find around Singapore that are less crowded. NLB will remain as one of my top choices though. Its proximity to the Bugis street area means that you’ll never run out of lunch options, and with the newly-opened Downtown line, NLB is close enough to most places. Arriving early is a MUST, if you want to secure study seats.
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My favourite place to study!
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Value 
 
4.5
Service 
 
4.0
Quality 
 
3.5
Satisfaction 
 
4.0
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
This is definitely my favourite hangout to study because it offers a quiet atmosphere and also has power plugs for you to conveniently use your laptops and work/ study. It also saves a lot of money as compared to studying at Starbucks where you got to purchase a drink. Also, the books there could be of good reference if you ever need them.

Sometimes, for neighbourhood libraries, around 3-5 pm, many secondary school students will hangout at the library and chit chat making the library less conducive but with the help of the librarians, it does get better almost always. However, the most disappointing thing is that during study peak periods near examinations, you have to queue to get into the library when the library opens and if you come any later than 1 hour after opening, probably you wont get really good seats.

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Great place to simply relax or to do some serious studying!
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
I love the public libraries in Singapore because of the peaceful and quiet environment for readers to simply relax and indulge in the world of books on a lazy afternoon. All readers can borrow up to 6 items including 2 Audio Visual materials such as movie DVDs. You can actually find popular movie titles such as High School Musical as well as classics such as Jane Eyre which is hard to find online.

The children's section in almost all of the public libraries I've visited are always beautifully decorated. I remember how I used to love visiting Woodlands Regional Library when I was a kid simply because of the irresistibly adorable decorations that made me feel as if I am in a wonderland.

For teenagers and adults, the library also proved to be a popular choice of place to study and do research. Most of the bigger libraries have tables for use as well as powerpoints for users to charge their electrical devices in case they run out of battery.

However, certain libraries may be really noisy and crowded on weekends but I appreciate the fact that library staff are always around to do their best to keep the noise level down.
PJ
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I'd rather learn here than in school.
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
My mother first brought me here when I was 7 to foster my love for reading. I started reading simple non-fiction books. I learnt all about endangered animals, the continents in Earth, basically anything simple to read and able to learn new facts at the same time. All the facts I've read have since been permanently in my head until now. I really think I learn better in the library than school. Comparing myself reading a geography book on rocks in the library or a teacher teaching all about rocks, I probably would have comprehended the book better than the teacher.

The library also offers a multitude of great fiction books. I could spend the whole day going through all the books and have a hard time deciding what to borrow. The library also offers a very comfortable and cozy environment to read in.

Of course, it gets a trifle too crowded at times. The tables and chairs may be fully occupied and I end up reading on the floor. Perhaps a good idea is to expand some of the libraries and put more tables and chairs.
R
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Great place to kill time
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
NLB 

Whenever I have any free time on my hands, and am feeling really broke, there will always be this one place that I can head to. Yes, this place is the national library. You can do so many things at the library, not just read. You can borrow their books, read your own, surf the net with their computers, read the newspapers or magazines available, or simply just enjoy a comic from their collection of graphic novels! 

The best thing about the library is that it's available almost everywhere! Yes. Be in the heartlands of Singapore, or the bustling city. The outlets I frequently visit would be the one at Bishan, ang mo kio, hougang and serangoon. 

The possibility of books there are endless. If there is that one book which you might need for reference, but costs like a substantial portion of your pay cheque, you should definitely check for it at the library's before going out to buy it. I recall having faced this situation once.  I was doing a research on certain foods for a project at school and found this great reference book at the Bishan library. It had such an in depth explanation on everything I needed to know. 

So remember, if you have some time to kill while waiting for a friend to arrive or if you're just feeling bored, read to the library for a quick read! Or if you don't get caught, a quick snooze. 
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I love the library but not the users
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
I am giving a score of 4 simply because I love the library. It doesn't matter which branch it is. I have been a very long library user ever since I was 6 back from those days when library cards were made of cardboard and computers were non-existent back then for library users to use for multimedia purposes.

I do remember being able to watch VHS videos on the players that were available in their AVA rooms. However, I was there to read books and I must have read thousands. Facilities have improved, multimedia and computers are the norm nowadays. There are now cafes in the libraries. We are able to study in libraries now but there was a time when we were not even allowed to bring in our own study materials or books into the library, so we could forget about studying. We could only perform research and jot down notes. There was a big advantage, the library was much quieter.

Now that the library has welcomed people wanting to study in the library, it is impossible to find a seat at the tables on a daily basis. You get students "studying" (I've been a student once, so I know when someone is studying and when they are not). Some sleep at the table depriving others of the chance of using it. Some would leave their things behind in an effort to reserve the table while they disappear for long periods of time doing god-knows-what.

I am not going to comment on the children's section. it is literally a zoo which kids running around and screaming but with a sizeable number of parents not doing anything to rein them in.

If there is anything I would like to do, is to shoot these parents and "studying" students to be able to enjoy the library conducive for reading & studying and not let them spoil the library experience for genuine users.

I just wish that the library staff are not that impotent simply because the management wants to avoid complaints from recalcitrants being disciplined when they ought to be given marching orders for spoiling the library for everyone. I have no idea what they are afraid of.

K
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For reading & relaxing!
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
Being one who does not enjoy reading books, I tend to visit the library often because usually when I am out with friends or family, someone is bound to want to visit the library to browse through books. Although initially I would be groaning and dragging my feet there, upon entering, I would never find myself bored from start to end.

My typical trip to the library consists of a lot of browsing. I can literally walk around the whole library browsing for books without any aim, other than Nicholas Spark's "A Walk To Remember" because boy that is so hard to find, it's rare like a diamond. If I'm not browsing books, I'm probably browsing CD-roms and DVDs, or just sitting down with a book in hand to relax a bit. I guess even though I dislike reading, there is this relaxing feeling I get whenever I am inside the library and with all the things that I mentioned above that I do, I hardly ever get bored inside the library.

I do borrow books on occasions, but I hardly ever finish one. If I do finish a book, I'd add it to my achievements list and eventually talk about the book as if I know about it more than anyone else (other than the author, heh!)

Nevertheless, the library, to me, is an ideal place to go to for relaxation whether you are a reader or not. Go inside, enjoy the aircon, walk around, use your phone, read something...as long as you don't become noisy, it's cool.
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A place of wonders and oldies?
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Quality 
 
4.0
Overall Rating 
 
4.0
I had the chance to visit a large number of libraries this year, from the ones in the heartlands areas, to the Esplanade and the LKC Reference library. It was a eye opener as I had the chance to really find out how much things that the library really keeps.

The heartland libraries typically includes mainly fiction books for all ages and CD-ROM/DVD-ROMS, which also include some of the computer games that one would buy from outside. If you want to save some money, you can also visit the libraries first to see if they have the game available for loan.

If you are looking for old movies from your parents' or even your grandparents' time, do visit the Esplanade library, they have tons of old movies ranging up to the 1930s in one of its room for viewing within the premises. There is also a music room, complete with guitars and drum sets, but I am not sure if it is for renting or reserved for usage. Esplanade Library is also one of the classiest and cozy decor and well, it is easy to fall asleep there as the ambiance is really too good. Classical music scores can also be found here.

the LKC reference library at Bugis is even more amazing, fancy looking for Zoe Tay, Fann Wong and any artistes on the old versions of U-magazine or I-magazine or 8 Days, drop down for a visit. They have tons of old magazines kept them. Magazines even include those that you see on air flights like SIA or Silkair, but I really wonder who will be interested in those. There are also mini exhibitions on every levels, and the ones going on now is the Raffles Exhibition. Looking for any posters but in the good old days, try here as well, as they have kept copies of old posters even those from election campaigns many years back or even newspaper cuttings in micro film format from the 50s.
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