eBooks @ CQUniversity Library

This guide is designed to help you find and use e-Books held by CQUniversity Library.

About ebooks

eBooks in the Library collection are accessed via many different platforms. Consequently, there may be differences between individual ebooks in terms of how you use them:

  • reading online vs downloading
  • printing, copying and saving
  • Digital Rights management

General information is provided in each of the boxes below, in addition to some common myths about ebooks.  However, if you need more detailed information, see the details included under each platform icon on the eBook Platforms page of this guide. If you need to identify which platform an ebook belongs to, look at the upper right or left of the page to locate the platform logo.

Please contact the Library if you require any assistance using ebooks.

General information

Reading online vs downloading Printing, copying and saving

Generally speaking:

  • Reading online is like reading a book in the Library, whilst downloading is like borrowing a book.

  • If you are using a library computer, read the book online rather than downloading it where possible. Some platforms, (e.g. EBL), will ask you to download the eBook after reading it for a certain period - normally 10 mins.

  • Both reading online and downloading may require you to install additional software; the most commonly used is Adobe Digital Editions (to read and download). Please link to the relevant platform icon on the eBook Platforms page for further details.

  • Downloading some eBooks will require you to create a personal account for the platform. The eBook Platforms page will include information about this requirement.

  • Some platforms do not offer a download option (e.g. ABC-CLIO and IGI Global eBooks).

  • Sometimes, and depending on licensing restrictions which may apply to a particular e-book, downloading or reading an e-book online will make it unavailable to other users who wish to download or read it online.

Most eBooks have some form of printing/copying restrictions:

  • Actual amounts can vary from platform to platform, and even from book to book. There may also be differences between how much you can print vs how much you can copy or save.

  • If you experience issues printing/copying, check the 'Help' section on the eBook site (this will usually specify the amount of printing/copying you are entitled to, and provide some trouble-shooting advice). If you can not find the 'Help' section on the page, a link is available from the eBook Platforms page of this guide.
  • You may also need to check the restrictions which may be applied by the book's platform. Do this by following these instructions:

    1. Determine which platform the book is located on. The easiest way to do this is to look at the top of the page. Either the upper left or right of the page will show the logo of the platform.

    2. Visit the platform's section on the eBook Platforms& page of this guide to check printing/copying restrictions.

    3. If you are within platform limits but still experiencing issues, contact the Library to check whether the book has specific restrictions.

Common library eBook myths

Digital rights management and copyright

1. All academic books are available as eBooks.

This is not the case. Like journals, some titles are only released in print format. Even titles that are available as eBooks from places such as Amazon may not be able to be purchased by the library.

2. Staff and students can download Library eBooks – at any time.

This varies based on the eBook platform that the book is located on and additional restrictions that are put in place by the publisher. Some titles only allow one user at a time to have a downloaded copy of the title.

3. Staff and students can read Library eBooks online at any time.

This varies based on the eBook platform that the book is located on and additional restrictions that are put in place by the publisher. Some titles will only allow one user at a time to read the title online, others will allow unlimited users.

4. Staff and students can print sections from Library eBooks.

This varies based on the eBook platform that the book is located on and additional restrictions that are put in place by the publisher. Some titles have no printing options while others will allow a user to print off the full 10% allowed by Copyright law.

5. The Library purchases eBooks.

What the Library purchases when acquiring an eBook title is a license for access to the eBook, rather than the title itself. Restrictions on access to a title can be changed after the license is originally paid for.

6. All Library eBooks can be accessed in the same way.

Unfortunately different titles are only available on certain platforms. Each platform has its own system in place for reading, downloading, printing and copying titles.

7. eBooks are less expensive for the Library to buy than print

Generally eBooks are more expensive than their print counterparts. Many titles that the Library holds are part of subscriptions that need be renewed annually. Other titles cost a significant amount more than their print counterparts due to the fact that multiple users can read them at once.

It is important to understand that the Library does not ‘own’ the eBook; rather the Library purchases a licence to ‘use’ the eBook.

The copyright laws that apply to the use of eBooks vary depending on the country of origin. Most collections are based in the United States of America and refer to the United States Code, 17 USC Sections 106-110.

Digital Rights Management (DRM), also referred to as 'Technological protection measures', is a broad term that covers many different types of technologies used to control access to copyright content, or to prevent users from copying protected content such as electronic media (including eBooks, digital music and movies).

Publishers use DRM technologies to limit copying, printing, and sharing of eBooks. Most eBook formats allow DRM to be applied to the files. The level of restriction varies from title to title and is determined by the publisher.

More information about DRM and eBooks is available.

The Australian Technical Protection Measures and the Copyright Amendment Act 2006 provides details of permissible copying within Australian educational institutions.