Hamilton

McMaster students now able to access 832K books through online library

The university joined the Emergency Temporary Access Service program by HathiTrust, a community of research libraries, to help students borrow books as closed campuses don't allow for physical books to leave shelves on school grounds.
McMaster University students and staff will be able to access more than 800,000 books through a new partnership during the COVID-19 pandemic. (Bobby Hristova/CBC)

McMaster University students and staff will be able to access roughly 832,000 books through a new partnership between the school and an online international library during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The university joined the Emergency Temporary Access Service program by HathiTrust, a community of research libraries, to help students borrow books as closed campuses don't allow for physical books to leave shelves on school grounds.

The online library will feature as many full-text copies of a book as there are physical copies in a school's on-campus library.

That means while universities like Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Johns Hopkins, McGill and the University of Toronto are all participating in the program, McMaster students can only access books included in their school library (which will only appear if HathiTrust has a copy).

Students have 60 minutes to access a book on the HathiTrust website but can continue to use it if no one else requests the same book. Only individual pages are available for download.

A release from the school notes "this service is intended for individual research use and cannot accommodate group use (such as for a course)."

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