Category Archives: Updates from UC staff

Important information for students from UC staff.

Strike action, Thursday 6 October

The TEU, PSA and E tū unions have advised us of their intention to strike on Thursday 6 October from 1pm to 3pm.

We anticipate some teaching and learning activities during this time may be impacted and, although striking staff are not obliged to do so, have asked them to advise students of any impact via AKO | LEARN.

The University of Canterbury bargaining team believes the talks at UC have been constructive and we will continue the dialogue that aims to address the issues that are relevant to UC staff.

UC Services Portal is coming to replace Assyst

As part of UC’s Strategic Vision Tangata Tū, Tangata Ora, Digital Services is changing to make your life at UC easier. Last year, the team launched the “Service Experience Programme (SXP)” and the first major system change will happen on Wednesday 29 June 2022 at 8am when Assyst will be replaced with UC Services Portal for all of your IT support, including queries related to Ako Learn and Echo360.

Finding UC Services Portal

From Wednesday 29 June, if you go to Assyst you’ll automatically be redirected to the new UC Services Portal.

What do I need to do?

UC Services Portal uses Single Sign On, so you will just use your usual UC Microsoft username and password to login.

You’ll be prompted to take a virtual Guided Tour which will explain everything you need to know to log new requests.

Open requests in Assyst

If you have any open requests on Assyst that you logged before 8am on Wednesday 29 June, you will still receive email notifications about the status of your request for up to four weeks following 29 June.

If you would like further updates, you will need to log a new request on UC Services Portal quoting the Assyst ticket number as reference. You can find the ticket number on the acknowledgment mail received from ‘’ in your mailbox. All this information will also be available on the new portal.

Need help or got questions?

You can call IT Service Desk on 03 369 5000 or 0508 824 843 or visit the in-person IT Service Desk on the ground floor of Matariki.

OpenAthens: A new authentication system for access to Library electronic resources

Over the mid-semester break (April 11 – 29th 2022) UC Library will be moving to a new authentication system for accessing e-resources e.g. databases, e-journals and e-books.  The new system is called OpenAthens.  It is an authentication service that lets you use your UC account to access subscription-based electronic resources both on and off campus.

How will this affect me?

You will notice the login screen that pops up when you try to access an article/e-journal/ebook via a library link will look different than before.   From April 11 you will start seeing a Microsoft login screen instead of the classic “Remote Access Login” screen you’re used to.

old and new library resource sign in
Sign in screens – original and new

In the Microsoft sign in you should enter your uclive email address ( and IT account password.

If you get an error message trying to sign in, or if a link doesn’t take you to the full text of the resource, please email Library Digital Services.

New opportunities with OpenAthens

Similar to the old authentication system, links to e-resources via Library website links will take you directly through OpenAthens sign in to the resource where you will be recognised as part of UC’s subscription.

However, with OpenAthens, you will also be able to access some research articles you find from a web search outside the library.
Many publishers e.g. EBSCO, Elsevier (ScienceDirect, SciVal, Scopus), Emerald, Informit, Sage, Taylor & Francis, Wiley online library etc. offer OpenAthens sign in.

Look for a sign in option (sign in is often in top-right corner of webpage) like “Access through your Institution” or “OpenAthens sign-in”.  If you have to choose a federation, choose OpenAthens Federation.   As long as University of Canterbury appears in the list of institutions you will be good to go after sign in.

example Open Athens sign in button
example Open Athens/Institutional sign in button from Emerald

For publishers that offer personal accounts (e.g. Elsevier, EBSCOhost, Oxford Academic), the OpenAthens sign in may create a personal account for you and give you the option to utilise personalisation features e.g. saved searches, folders, email alerts etc. without having to separately register an account and keep track of those login details.