Searching for ebooks

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Searching for ebooks

Books and ebooks are a good way of getting a greater understanding of a topic. Your lecturer will have recommended some books to use throughout your studies. These will be listed on My Module Resources.

You will also be expected to read around your subject and find your own relevant titles.  All books and ebooks within Sunderland collections are available from the Library Catalogue. You can search the Library Catalogue directly from the library web page. You don’t need to login to search the Library Catalogue but you will be prompted to login at the point when you want to access the ebook.

Before you start…

  • do you know exactly what book you are looking for or do you need to do a keyword search?
  • do you have some keywords to search for? Our 5 steps to a successful literature search may help you think of some
    keep in mind you can be a bit more general with keywords when searching for books – think of the general subject area for example if you were looking for books about the drug ‘codeine’ you may struggle to find enough books but if you were to search for ‘painkillers’ you may find enough books that have chapters on ‘codeine’.

The video below has closed captions as well as chapters.


Using the Library Search on the University of Sunderland Library web page, find the following book:

Student leadership challenge: five practices for becoming an exemplary leader

Ebook FAQs

Why can I only read the ebook for 5 minutes before it becomes unavailable?

This is happens when you are reading a book that is not included with Sunderland subscriptions. Sometimes when you’re reading an ebook the supplier may recommend similar ebooks. If you find books on suppliers site, you may come across some that we have not purchased. Make sure you always check the Library Catalogue to see if we have the ebook in stock.

For how long can I download ebooks?

Most ebooks are available to downloads as a pdf for 24 hours. This enables you to read offline. If you need to continue reading the ebook you will be able to download the ebook again. We recommend you use the ‘Read Online’ option if you can.

When I try to read the ebook I only see a blank page!

This can happen if the required software is not installed on your device. You will usually need to install Adobe Digital Editions (for free) or if you are using a mobile device the Bluefire app. Sometimes when you try to download a pdf your browser will try and open it. The pdfs are usually designed for with advanced features and may not work with other software. If you are downloading an ebook to read offline, save the pdf to your computer, navigate to the folder, right click the file and choose to open with the required software. Some suppliers may require you to have different software. Follow any online instructions and contact the libraryLinks to an external site. if you have any problems.

What accessibility features can I use with ebooks?

Our Librarians have written some help using Read Out Loud features and colour overlays on ebooks.

Tips for using ebooks if you have a slower connection

You do not have to download full ebooks. There is nearly always an option to read the title online. If you have a slower connection and are struggling to download an ebook in full, it may be best to choose the ‘Read Online’ option, especially if you are focusing on a particular chapter. This may be less intensive on your bandwidth.

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Staff at partner colleges

Feel free to use this induction with your students. You will also find some induction resources in additional formats on the Library Web Pages for Partner.