Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Guide to Finding Online Resources: How to Find Ebooks


How to Find Ebooks

It's always best to start with the "Books & More" tab, which searches NYU Libraries' catalog. If you don't find your ebook there, you can try HathiTrust.


Using the"Books & More" Tab: STEP 1

NYU Libraries home page with "Books & More" search tab highlighted and social media protest typed into search box

STEP 1: Use  the "Books & More" search tab. The most efficient way to find online books is to start at the NYU Libraries homepage ( and use the "Books & More" tab (also known as the NYU Libraries catalog). In this example, we'll search for ebooks on the topic social media protest. 


Search results page with callouts highlighting “Full text online” and “Books” filters and title and “Online Access” links

STEP 2: Filter your results to "Full Text Online" only. Our initial search results include all resources, both physical and online. To limit to online books only, use the "Tweak my results" filters. Select  "Full Text Online" (under the "Availability" heading) and "Books" (under the "Resource Type" heading), then select the "Apply Filters" button. To view a book, select its title or "Online Access" link.


Full record of a book with a callout highlighting two “View Online” link options

STEP 3: Select the link provided under "View Online" to get the full text. In this instance, there is a choice between two links because the book is available on two different platforms, Ebook Central and Elsevier Science Direct. Let's take a look at each platform, starting with Ebook Central.

About Ebook Platforms: Ebook Central

Book displaying in Ebook Central with callouts highlighting “Sign in” and downloading and printing permissions.

Ebook Central pulls together ebooks from a variety of publishers into a common platform. If you set up an account within Ebook Central, you can:

  • Highlight and annotate a book as you read online
  • Download a book, according to its stated permissions
    • To download entire book:  Most books can be downloaded to your device for a specific loan period. You'll need to download and install Adobe Digital Editions to your device, which Ebook Central will prompt you to do. The loan period varies per book, but for most, it's 365 days. (Note that printing is disabled for downloaded books on loan.)
    • To download print and chapter pdfs: For each book, there is a specific limit on how many pages you can permanently download and print — in this case, the limit is 40 pages.

For detailed instructions on using Ebook Central features, see this guide.

About Ebook Platforms: Publisher Platforms

Book on Elsevier ScienceDirect publisher site with callout highlighting link to download book.

The Elsevier ScienceDirect link brings you to the individual publisher's site. Individual publisher sites are less likely to restrict the number of pages for permanent downloading and printing.


Detail of the "Articles & Databaes" page highlighting the search box for entering the name of a database.

If you don't find your ebook by using the "Books & More" tab, then it might be worthwhile to try HathiTrust, a partnership of 120 research libraries that contribute and share access to digitized books and journals. To access HathiTrust, start at NYU Libraries home page and click the "Articles & Databases" tab to view the page represented in the above image.  In the search box under the purple "Databases A-Z" button, type: HathiTrust. Then, in the result list, click on the HathiTrust link.


HathiTrust opening page highlighting the "Log In" button and resulting drop-down menu for choosing "New York University."

On the HathiTrust opening page, click the "Login" button and choose "New York University."