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Yale University Library eBooks: Home

What can I find in this guide?

What can I find in this guide?

  • General information about eBooks including where to find them and how to identify them
  • Information about our most popular eBook platforms. Each resource has a dedicated tab that provides information about access to the platform, limitations and resources for additional help
  • Frequently asked questions about some of our top eBook platforms

Need help? Contact

General Information

What is an electronic resource?

An electronic resource is a source of information that is provided in an electronic format. The library purchases subscriptions to these resources so they are available to the community free of charge. E-resources include a wide variety of sources, including eBooks, newspapers, articles, dictionaries, encyclopedias, images, market research and more.

Where can I find eBooks?

You can find eBooks in a variety of places. Titles are available through Orbis and Quicksearch. More information about finding eBooks in our online catalogs is available here.

The library also subscribes to a number of databases that will give you access to eBooks. Try using Overdrive, Ebook Central, Skillport 8i, or Project Muse, to name a few!

How do I know if a book is available electronically?

If you are interested in reading a book electronically, search for the item in either of our online catalogs, Quicksearch or Orbis. 

In Quicksearch, you will see "Yale Internet Resource >> Online Resource" listed under location and "Books/Online" listed under format.

In Orbis, the phrase "electronic resource" is often included as part of the title.

What are the common types of eBook formats?

You don't need to be an expert in file formats to use eBooks. If a site has HTML available, that's web-only so you can read it in your browser. For a PDF file, there aren't any device restrictions so you may download it and use it as you would any other document. If the site says a file needs software, it will probably also advise you on the apps you can use to read it on a phone or a dedicated e-reader.

The most restrictive file type is for Kindles because it can be only be used on those devices.

An EPUB file can be used on a wide variety of devices, but may also include Digital Rights Management.

Do I need to create an account to use an eBook platform?

Some eBook platforms do require users to create a separate account. This guide provides information about which platforms require logins and the type of login required.

Do I need to pay to use an eBook?

No! If the library has purchased access to the electronic content, you do not need to pay to use an eBook or other electronic content. If you are being prompted for payment, please contact

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