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Online reading lists: a guide for students

A guide to using your online reading list.

Making reading lists items available

Not every item cited on your reading list will be available to you online.

The Library has access to a large number of e-books and e-journals you will find many of these linked to from your reading lists.

We are also permitted under the CLA HE Licence to digitise certain extracts from books and journals and make these available to you. However, due to copyright restrictions, we cannot digitise every chapter or section cited by your tutor.

If you need to access a book or journal article which we don't have available online, click on the title of the book or journal on your reading list to see live Library availability information. This will provide you with the call number (the 'Shelf Mark', which will tell you where the text is shelved in the Library) and will also tell you if all the copies are out on loan, and when they are due back. You can then come in to the Library to access these items.

Screenshot - online Reading Lists item on loan

Accessing / printing / downloading digitisations (scanned extracts)

If your tutor has requested a scanned extract of a particular chapter or article these will be accessible via your online Reading List. Scans are accessible from the start of the term in which the module is running.

Accessing a digitised chapter on an online Reading List

When you click 'View Online' you will be asked to sign-in with your University of Reading username and password to access the scan. You will also be given the option to download or print. Please note that only students enrolled on a module are permitted to download or print from these scanned extracts.

Printing or downloading a digitised chapter from an online Reading List.

Book previews

Where these are available, Google Book previews have been provided for some items on your reading list, but not all. If a preview of the book is available you can either click on the title of the book or click on the 'Google Preview' button to access it.

Screenshot of Google Preview button in online Reading List.

These previews can sometimes help you with managing your academic reading more effectively by deciding whether you want to prioritise access to a certain book cited on your reading list. 

Often Google Book previews will provide you with the contents list as well as a selected number of pages from the book. Not everything is available in full view, however, and there is information about why this might be on the Google Books Help page.

Library print copies

When you click on the title of a book in your reading list, and there is no digitised extract, e-book, or Google Books Preview available, you will only see Library availability (Location, Call number). If you see this screen, you will need to come in to the Library to access the book.

Although the Library often has multiple copies of books, please bear in mind that books may be in demand by a number of people on your course, and it is not possible for the Library to have a copy for each student on the shelves. If you need a book you may need to plan ahead in order to borrow a copy, and photocopy or scan the section(s) that you have been asked to read.