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Mathematics: Links for Faculty

Requesting books for purchase

How eBooks work when used as textbooks


eBooks that you intend to serve as textbooks for a small or large class have some tricky limitations on use working in the background. For example, academic publishers often limit the number of "seats", meaning that many eBooks can only be purchased if the number of concurrent users can be stipulated by the publisher. Sometimes it is limited to one person at a time, sometimes it is three people at a time or sometimes hundreds of uses in a calendar year. Expecting the library to buy one book that allows unlimited use is not always an option. If you would like to use an eBook as a textbook, the math librarian would be glad to tell you what the access options are given the publisher, so that you can decide what the best option is for your class.

  • Print books do not have these access restrictions
  • The math librarian can sometimes pay more to "add seats" to an eBook, by paying a smaller price for the book the library has already purchased. This may still be worth the increase in cost to increase access.
  • This access issue built into eBooks is one of the reasons many of the Top 100 Textbooks program is mostly print  (90%)
  • Title by title, eBook copying, printing, and download and copying can still be limited.
  • Some publishers do offer unlimited access to eBooks, and this is sometimes via chapter by chapter PDF.
  • You can check on the access restrictions, or lack of restriction, under various headings in the catalog record: Description, Description Details or for older versions, Access. 

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