The ultimate guide on where you should be sitting in Sir Duncan Rice Library

How to succeed in the Rice Cube.


The second semester is nearing its end, and for most of us that means one thing: stress. The realisation that you haven't caught up on those lectures (even though you promised yourself you would), there's that essay you haven't even started, a group presentation for Friday, and exams are looming.

At this point, there's only one way you're going to save yourself and your degree. Armed with highlighters, your laptop and way too many snacks you venture out of the comfort of your room and head to Sir Duncan Rice Library. But the first challenge comes sooner than expected: where is the best place to sit? This is a definitive guide on the best seats in SDR.

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So much choice…

Ground floor

You're doomed if you even consider this as an option.

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Find the person actually doing work

First floor

Almost as bad as the ground floor. Full of people too hungover to walk up more flights of stairs. It's impossible to focus because of the noise and the smell of meal deals, thanks to The Hole™.

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I bet all of these guys will be gone in thirty minutes

Round group study tables

People don't actually sit here to do group work. Instead, they have heated arguments about which VK flavour is the best while passing a pack of crisps around. The poor librarian will walk over every other minute to shush them, but to no avail.

These tables also lack plugs, so your laptop will run out of battery within twenty minutes. You might get up to try and find another free seat, but the lifts are temptingly close and before you know it you're in the ground floor cafetaria.

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Do you really think you'll get ANYTHING done here?

Quiet study rooms/co-lab cubicles

These seem decent, but unless you're willing to show up before 9am you won't be able to get a seat – and let's face it: you aren't.

Even if you do find one that's empty, you'll get kicked out by someone who has "booked" before you even get the chance to spin around on the chairs.

Seats in the middle of the floor

Now that we've established you should go for a regular white, square-shaped table, it's time to decide on exactly the best place to sit.

These seats seem like a decent option; close to the bookshelves, away from most distractions, people are (mostly) quiet and there's plugs. However, the attractive person sitting across from you (or their attractive pastry from the downstairs cafe) will probably be more interesting than your notes. And hey – isn't that the guy your friend snogged in ATIK the other day?

Before you know it you slide down the slippery slope of people watching, Facebook messenger, and checking your pockets for spare change (that pastry looks really good)

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Do I see a can of Irn Bru?

Window seats

The view was only fun that time you went to the seventh floor during freshers' week. Aberdeen's grey skies and even greyer buildings will suddenly make your textbook seem like the most interesting thing on Earth.

Far away from the lifts and other people maybe you can get some proper revision done here.

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Such grey, much wow

But the best place to sit has to be….fifth floor.

It's best to avoid the lowest and highest floors as these are usually full of people too lazy to walk multiple flights of stairs and freshers thinking the view will provide them with good pics for their Instagrams.

The fifth floor provides a happy concoction of empty chairs, decent views and enough quiet to actually get started on that essay. Anyone else sitting there has the same idea, so guaranteed you won't accidentally join in on the morning-after chats of a night out you didn't even go on!

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tried and tested: i've never been more productive

So, no excuses. Get down to the lib and watch those A1s roll in.