Research Guides

E-Research Basics

Simple how-tos for the first steps of finding materials through the GC library's website.

E-books in the GC's Collection

The Graduate Center library has an extensive collection of e-books, both within subscription databases and acquired as individual purchases.

Almost all of our e-books can be accessed through the catalog, using the OneSearch discovery tool. Make sure that the "Material Type" is set to Books in the Advanced Search interface, or, using the search bar on the home page, that the Catalog tag is active (light text will appear in the search bar saying "Find books & e-books"); when you have a results list, limit to e-books by selecting "Full text online" on the right-hand side of the page.

We have put together a few resources that may make your search easier. Try looking at our e-books guide, which brings together all the sources that we use ourselves to find digital titles; searching these individual databases will offer you more specific results than the OneSearch tool. We have written on the library blog detailing the steps of our own searches, and there is additionally a video of a workshop we presented on finding e-books.

If you remain unable to find a book you need, you can submit a request to our e-book search service and/or suggest that we acquire it.

While we actively seek to purchase e-resources with the least restrictive licenses, it is unfortunately true that publishers place significant restrictions on the use of e-books. There may be e-books in our catalog that are not available for full download, or that have limits on the number of simultaneous users. Additionally, e-books move in and out of subscription platforms, meaning that a title we were able to offer at one time may no longer be available. (The opposite is also true, of course!)

E-books Outside the Mina Rees Library

The New York Public Library is a first stop for finding materials that the Graduate Center does not hold, both because of our ongoing special relationship with NYPL (which includes additional borrowing privileges) and because of the extent of NYPL's publicly accessible holdings. You can search NYPL's circulating holdings here. The research catalog has recently been upgraded to include items shared with NYU and Columbia, as well as the Digital Research Books Beta.

The Internet Archive and its sibling site, OpenLibrary, provide controlled digital lending of thousands of e-books.

Open access book sites include the Library of Congress, Digital Public Library of America, Project Gutenberg, and many others; see the Open Access Books page of our e-book collections guide.

For a fuller accounting of e-book collections to which you have access, see our E-book Collections guide.