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Using Ebooks

Search the Online Catalog

To locate ebooks in the online catalog, first conduct a simple search using the text search box as usual.

Main simple search bar

Refine your results to Digital Resources



Then, use the "Refine Your Results" menu to select "Digital Resources" under Resource Format to limit your results to ebooks.


Ebook results will include a green link that reads "Available Online." For books with both print and ebook versions available, you may see both "Available Online" as well as the location of the print book on a single result. In some cases the print and ebook versions of a book will be grouped together, with a link to "See all versions" that will display two or more records for that title in different formats or editions. Select the record from those versions that includes the "Available Online" link.

Results with "Available Online" tag

Click to enlarge image

When you open an ebook item record, select the link beneath "View It" to access it. The text of the link will vary depending on the ebook platform (Ebook Central, EBSCOhost Ebooks, etc.):

Full text link from an item record 

This guide focuses chiefly on Ebook Central as the primary interface, you will find ebooks available from other platforms including:

  • EBSCOhost Ebooks
  • Oxford Handbooks Online Religion
  • Routledge Handbooks Online Religion
  • Cambridge Companions to Philosophy, Religion and Culture

If you are signed in to the online catalog, you will automatically be signed in to access ebooks from the above sources. If you haven't, you will be prompted to enter your Populi login information.

There are also a host of open access ebooks available through the online catalog that do not require signing in. These can be identified by the text in the "View It" link, which will include phrases like "Open Access" or "Free." If these resources are included in results, it will be possible to limit results to just open access by using the "Refine Your Results" menu to select "Digital Resources" under Resource Format.

Course Reserve

In addition to the physical books put on course reserve each semester, the Wiggin Library provides access to ebook copies of required readings when they are available. The library will email all students in a given class just prior to the start of the semester with a list and links to available ebooks. Terms may vary depending on the title, but ebooks in Ebook Central can be read online, borrowed for 21 days, or downloaded or printed by chapter. All ebooks owned by the Wiggin Library are unlimited access, meaning multiple people can have the ebook borrowed at the same time. Ebooks do not count towards the maximum of 3 course reserve books a student can have checked out at a time.

For more details on accessing ebooks in Ebook Central, see the Reading in Ebook Central section of this guide.

For more details on accessing ebooks in other platforms (which can be included in course reserve lists), see the Other Ebook Platforms section of this guide.

For more details on Course Reserves, see the Course Reserves and MFC Reading List guide. 

Meadville Lombard Wiggin Library
180 N. Wabash Ave.
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Chicago, IL 60601

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