Loughborough University provides access to a range of eBooks to support your studies and research interests. These include eTextbooks, monographs, and reference works such as encyclopaedias.

How to access our eBooks

From your module reading list in Learn

  1. Go to your module home page within Learn and locate the link to your reading list (usually found in the Module Information area).
  2. Optionally, set the Type: all filter on the reading list to Book and set the Filter: all filter on the reading list to Online resource to show only e-books.
  3. Click the VIEW ONLINE button next to any eBook to access it. 
Access Learn

From the reading list system

  1. Go to the reading list for your module on the reading list system. You can do this by clicking on the reading list link on the module page in Learn (usually found in the Module Information section), or by searching for the module on the reading list system.
  2. Optionally, set the Type: all filter on the reading list to Book and set the Filter: all filter on the reading list to Online resource to show only e-books.
  3. Books that are available in e-book format have a link next to them labelled VIEW ONLINE. This link will take you directly to the e-book. It is recommended that you sign in using the VPN for off-site access.
Access the reading list system

From the Library catalogue

  1. Go to Library Catalogue Plus and search for your topic.
  2. Look at the options on the left side of the page and click on ‘eBook’ in the ‘Format’ section to limit the results to eBooks.
  3. Click on ‘Get full text’ to open the eBook.
Search Library Catalogue Plus

From the Library's database resource list

The ‘All databases’ list’ provides information on some of the eBook collections that the University has access to.


The University has licensed access to Kortext which is a platform that allows staff and students digital access to some of our key texts. For any texts made available on the Kortext platform, links have been added to the relevant module reading lists and the eTextbooks can be accessed directly from our online reading lists system.


eBook availability

Why isn't the text I need available as an eBook?

Unfortunately, not all texts are available to purchase as eBooks by institutions. Whilst the University does try to make content available digitally, this is not always possible. Some of the reasons for this include:

  • The publisher has only made their text available in print.
  • The book may have been published a long time ago and no digital copy was ever made available.
  • The eBook is only available for individuals to purchase, not institutions.
  • The cost of the eBook is prohibitively expensive when compared to the price of a print copy.
  • The text is only available to purchase as a subscription to a whole collection of eBooks.

How do I request that a title be purchased, or made available as an eBook?

Not all titles are available to purchase as eBooks but the Library is happy to check availability for you. Please complete our Book Recommendation form with the details of the book you require and why it is needed. If you are a member of staff requiring an item for a specific module, please request this via the reading list system.

Access the reading list system

Access the Book Recommendation form

Will I be able to access digital texts during my online exam?

The Library provides access to digital content which can be used on and off campus. However, you should be aware that some publishers only make their content available under certain license conditions which may impose limits on features such as downloading, copying and printing. More importantly, these conditions may also limit how many people can access a text at any one time. This is particularly true of digital books.

Whilst this doesn’t usually cause too many difficulties, it can become more of an issue for popular books during assessments. With this in mind, we advise you not to rely on being able to access a digital text during your exam and to make your own notes in advance.

Does it matter which Internet browser I use?

Our eBooks should work on all Internet browsers, but if you are experiencing access problems, please try a different browser, if you are able to, as that may help.

Do I need a username and password to access an eBook?

Most of our eBooks are authenticated via IP address so if you are on campus or using the Virtual Private Network (VPN,) no passwords are required. However, there are a few platforms, such as Kortext, Ebook Central and VLeBooks, that require you to login with your University username and password.

Find out more about the VPN

Do I need to create a separate account to access eBook titles?

Most of our eBooks do not require you to create an account to access them but there are a couple of exceptions. Kortext provides access to a number of our key eBook texts and they ask that all users register to use their platform. eBooks that are hosted on the EBSCOhost platform require you to create an account if you wish to download them, but you can read them online without creating an account.

Printing and downloading

Can I print or copy text from an eBook?

Yes, you can print and copy from an eBook. Copyright law and licences apply to eBooks in the same way as it does for print books. Some providers ensure that copyright is adhered to by using Digital Rights Management (DRM) software to limit how much of an eBook can be copied, printed, or downloaded. The exact amount of these eBooks that can be printed or copied is often set by the publisher and so can vary, but when you access the text, the number of pages you can print or copy will display.

Loughborough University also has access to many DRM free eBooks that do not use specialist software to limit copying and printing but please be aware you must still comply with copyright law.

Can I download an eBook?

Most of our eBooks are available for download. Some providers allow the eBooks to be downloaded directly from the platform, others require you to use specialist software such as Adobe Digital Editions or Bluefire Reader. This software manages the Digital Rights Management (DRM) of the eBook and only allows it to be downloaded for a few days at a time; it also restricts how much of the eBook can be copied or printed.

Do I have to be online to read my eBook once downloaded?

No. If you have downloaded your eBook to Adobe Digital Editions or the Bluefire Reader, you will be able to access the text offline for the duration of the loan.


What do I do if an eBook doesn't work, or if I can't access it?

Most of our eBooks are IP address authenticated so they should work on campus or off campus if you are using the Virtual Private Network (VPN) and Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA) for access. Some of our eBooks require you to login with your University username and password but once you have done that, you should be able to access the resource. If you are struggling to access any of our eBooks please contact our Content Provision team.

Contact the Library Content Provision team

Why am I unable to access an eBook and get a message such as 'reserve,' 'add to queue,' or 'sorry, we are not able to acquire a licence?'

Some of our eBooks limit the number of people who can simultaneously access a text. With these eBooks, it is possible that you may not be able to access the item as all copies are in use. If this happens then please try again later when a copy may have become available.

Why can I only view some eBooks for 5 minutes?

Some of our eBooks are credit models. This means that we have a certain number of uses or loans of that eBook each year. If we need to use more than that, the Library must purchase a second eBook copy. Ebook Central allow users to freely browse an eBook for 5 minutes before they class it as a loan or use a credit. After the 5 minutes, or if you are copying or printing from the eBook, a pop-up message appears stating ‘Check out the eBook.’ This is fine, just click on the ‘Check out the eBook’ option and you will then be able to continue reading the eBook.


How accessible are eBooks?

In compliance with accessibility regulations, most eBooks can be customised so you can increase font size and change colours or contrasts. They also work with assistive technologies such as screen-reader software and you should be able to navigate the platform/text using just a keyboard or speech recognition software.

Does the Library have access to RNIB's Bookshare?

For learners who have a qualifying disability we can arrange access to the RNIB’s Bookshare platform. Please contact the Library to discuss this.

Contact the Library

Where do I go for help with eBook accessibility issues?

Help on how to make changes to the accessibility of eBooks is available from the hosting platform, and our database resources list provides links to accessibility information and guides for our platforms where they are available. Alternatively, please contact our Content Provision team.

Contact the Library Content Provision team