I tried the ‘study crawl’ trend through the west end of Glasgow and here’s what I found
The west end crawl your lecturers would be proud of
I, like many people, procrastinate doing anything at pretty much any time. I’m an absolute veteran of sitting in the library for five hours straight without opening my laptop and, in my fifth year at university now eight weeks into my postgrad degree, I decided that maybe something needed to change.
Then, as if the universe heard my pleading for productivity, I found the “study crawl” trend on TikTok. The premise is a full day of studying except you change spots every few hours, choosing only your favourite spots or places you’ve been wanting to try.
The theory behind it is the change of scenery every couple of hours helps to reset your brain, bolstered by the small breaks and exercise in the form of moving from place to place. The selection of places also seems important, because why would you be excited to go to level one of Glasgow University library?
So, with these in mind, I made my list, grabbed a couple of pals, and set off to attempt an eight hour study crawl, 10am until 6pm across the west end of Glasgow.
First stop: Mitchell Library (10am-12pm)
The Mitchell is an old favourite of mine. Having studied here a lot during exam diets to save myself the fight for a seat in GU Library, I was more than familiar with her. I live nearby and there’s something quite encouraging about studying in such a beautiful building, even if the study spaces aren’t quite at the same level as the outside. We went up to floor four and sat near the windows for a couple of hours.
We had no problem finding a seat, it was possibly a little too quiet noise-wise for my personal taste, but all in all, I’d rate it pretty highly.
Would we recommend to a friend? Most likely.
Second stop: iCafe Kelvingrove (12pm-2pm)
We then moved onto iCafe on Woodlands Road for some much-needed caffeine and a nice change of scene.
This was the first time we could test the crawl theory and all found the walk over to be a great reset. Thank god we did this on a nice day and chose spots that were quite close together but all in all, I was really glad for the scheduled break and air. I have studied at various iCafés before and forever enjoy the low background noise of the coffee machines and the strong WiFi connection. I’ve always thought it was a nice bridge between the library and a random café as everyone is in there working but it’s not quite the scary vibes that the library can be (I’m looking at you, floor nine). We grabbed a coffee and found a wee table in the larger back bit.
All in all, I really enjoyed this. I got quite a lot done but the noise levels meant we could have a wee conversation alongside our work, which suits me a lot better as said self-proclaimed procrastinator. However, coffee prices were pretty steep, even for the west end (£10 for two coffees?!), so with a pinch of salt I say this is a great spot.
Would we recommend to a friend? Absolutely, if you want a chill study session.
Fourth stop: McMillan Reading Room (2pm-4pm)
We as a study unit are not library goers, so the McMillan Reading Room felt like the obvious on-campus choice for academia vibes. However, it being 2pm on a Tuesday, it was insanely busy to the point we had to sit in the basement. I also always find that Eduroam isn’t the best in the Reading Room, so there’s that to contend with too.
I did, however, get a good chunk of stuff done, and at this point in the crawl had ticked many things off of my list, so already it had achieved what I wanted it to. Post coffee in iCafé, I felt okay to keep going at a good pace and being sat downstairs meant we could continue our intermittent natters.
In summary, whilst busy, I always work well here, and we seemed to get more than enough done. Would I return? I always do.
Would we recommend to a friend? Yas.
Final stop: Bank Street Bar and Kitchen (4pm-6pm)
After six hours on the grind, we were all gagging for a pint, even if it was only 4pm. We finished at Bank Street Bar and Kitchen, home of many a post-lecture pint and “study session” on a Thursday afternoon.
If I’m being truthful, not a lot got done here. Whilst I sat for about 20 minutes doing some Tab related admin, most of the time was having a gossip or catching up, though sometimes we did talk about uni stuff. It was really nice to sit outside and enjoy the not quite Baltic autumn day with a pint.
Would we recommend to a friend? Yes but only if you want the most non-studious study session ever.
I would absolutely recommend a study crawl to anyone and everyone, especially with company. We all enjoyed it and got a lot done.
I ticked off 90 per cent of my to-do list in six-ish hours which I had previously predicted would take me three days. The novelty of it didn’t wear off and I think if we were to make a habit of it, there are dozens of spots we could try in the west end to keep it new and fresh.
Next time you’re feeling a little down and out about sitting on campus for five+ hours, consider hopping from place to place instead.