Oxford Handbooks Online – the 2020 updates and 3 new subject collections

The ebooks team are very pleased to announce that the 2020 updates for all the Oxford Handbooks subject collections have been purchased in perpetuity for Cambridge registered users. This purchase adds to the considerable backfile of handbooks already available to the Cambridge community via Oxford Handbooks Online, and adds three more complete subjects to our owned collections;

Complete coverage for all subjects from Foundation up to and including 2020 is now complete, and all subjects are listed below;

  • Archaeology
  • Business and Management – NEW
  • Classical Studies
  • Criminology and Criminal Justice – NEW
  • Economics and Finance
  • History
  • Law
  • Linguistics
  • Literature
  • Music
  • Neuroscience (Open Access)
  • Philosophy
  • Physical Sciences (2017-2019) – NEW
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • Religion
  • Sociology

Monthly updates to the platform ensure that chapters from as yet unfinished handbook titles are available online in advance of print publication. So you receive the most current, and authoritative coverage possible. Please note that bibliographic records will not appear in iDiscover until handbook titles are published fully online.

Oxford Handbooks Online can be accessed on and off campus via Raven.

Selective titles from the new collections…

Click on the links below to access the full text of the books in the gallery above…

Oxford Handbook of Creative Industries

Oxford Handbook of Corporate Social Responsibility: Psychological and Organizational Perspectives

Oxford Handbook of Prisons and Imprisonment

Oxford Handbook of Generality in Mathematics and the Sciences

Oxford Handbook of Nanoscience and Technology : volume 2

Please contact the ebooks@cambridge team on ebooks@lib.cam.ac.uk if you have queries or feedback on this collection.

Elsevier’s ClinicalKey Student – the Bookshelf Feature

Guest post by Jo Milton, University of Cambridge Medical Library.

Bookshelf is one of the key features of ClinicalKey Student.  With this facility you are able to

  1. download books for online or offline access
  2.  highlight text
  3.  make, share and save notes
  4. create flashcards (revision cards)
  5.  add bookmarks
  6. export your notes to Microsoft OneNote and to
  7. share highlights and notes with other ClinicalKey Student users

Bookshelf is usable through a browser or can be downloaded via an app to various devices (Android, IoS, Windows 10+ and Mac Desktop / Laptop) for offline access.

NOTE:  When using Bookshelf for the first time you need to be in a book chapter before you click the ‘Launch Bookshelf’ link.  After this you can access Bookshelf from the ‘Bookshelf’ link at the top of the screen or from within a book chapter.

To use the Bookshelf facility search for a title and select a chapter and click on the Launch Bookshelf button;

Select a chapter. 

The icons on the left hand side of the column enable features such as notebook, flashcards or view images associated with each chapter.  Tooltips display when you hover over an icon.

Example of highlighted text and copying of citation.

At the bottom of the screen – options include adding bookmarks, fast highlighting and reading aloud of the text.

By clicking on the Bookshelf link from the main screen you can view all the books on Your Shelf and see your notes etc.

For more information view Launching the Bookshelf this one-minute video demonstrates the steps to launch Bookshelf for the first time and the different access points to the Bookshelf.

Bookshelf can also be used offline via an app.

There are two types of Bookshelf apps:

  • Mobile App (iOS or Android): You can download the app directly from the iOS or Android app store. To find the app, search for the name of the app ClinicalKey Student Bookshelf).
  •  (Windows 10+ Desktop App): The name appears as ClinicalKey Student Bookshelf. During the download process, you will be prompted to install the app and agree to the terms and conditions. This will create a menu icon and add a shortcut on your Windows 10 desktop.
  •  (Mac OS Desktop App): Download the Mac version and follow the steps on the screen to complete the download and install the app.

For more information on the Bookshelf app please view this page

Please let us have your feedback on this feature and ClinicalKey Student.  Trial access is until 31st August 2020.  The platform can be accessed from the following link;


You send your feedback using this feedback form.

Some books are not available as ebooks for Cambridge University Libraries to purchase. Why?

With closure of our physical libraries comes dependence on electronic resources. Despite the best efforts and intentions of the ebooks team (and faculty and departmental libraries) however, it is not always possible to purchase an ebook. We have put together the various possible reasons for this below (this information is also available on the ebooks LibGuide):

Some titles simply don’t exist as ebooks.  Generally, ebook versions are most commonly available for publications printed in the last decade or two.  Digitised books scanned by institutions are usually significantly older, to be safely out of copyright.  This means that a great deal of 20th-century books in particular are not available except in print.

Some publishers provide ebooks for individual private purchase only because that model is the most effective for them financially.  An ebook being available for you to purchase via Amazon, say, does not automatically mean that the library can buy a copy.  We will always do our best to try to find an institutional copy to buy, but sometimes there simply will not be one.

Some publishers have not licensed their ebooks for sale in the UK market. In some cases it might be possible to purchase an institutional ebook in, say, North America, but not here (and the reverse is likely to be true too).

Cambridge University Libraries use approved suppliers and platforms for ebook supply, to ensure ongoing and secure access.  Sometimes an ebook will only be available on an insecure platform, which we cannot use.

Similarly, some ebooks are not hosted on a secure platform but must be downloaded and hosted locally.  Like most universities, we do not have a local repository for bought ebooks (the Apollo repository is for Cambridge research output only), so this is not an option for us.

Sometimes an ebook is available but its price makes its purchase impractical for us.  We will always try to find a solution, negotiating with providers and sometimes bringing multiple library budgets together to afford a book, but we might have to turn a request down.  Your faculty/departmental library staff should be able to help you try to find alternatives.

On a similar note, sometimes a specific title is only available through the purchase of (or subscription to) a much bigger ebook package.  Library staff then need to work with academic staff and students to ascertain whether the larger package would be useful and provide value for money, and whether relevant budgets can support the costs.

Finally, sometimes an ebook which Cambridge has got access to might not be available to you because it is already in use (you will normally see the message “all available copies currently in use”).  Huge numbers of ebooks can be used by unlimited numbers of readers at the same time, but some are more restricted and might, for example, have a single-user access model.  You will need to wait until the ebook is “free” again before you can access it.

As usual, if you have any questions about ebook provision or access at the University, please contact the ebooks team.

Nearly 30,000 ScienceDirect ebooks : access until the 31st July 2020

University of Cambridge registered students and staff have temporary access to ebook titles included in the following collections on Elsevier’s ScienceDirect platform; “All Access”, “Freedom Collection 2020” and “Freedom Collection Backlist” ebooks, until the 31st of July 2020.

The books are available from the following link:


Please let us know what you think about these collections by sending your feedback via the online form.

Photo by Susan Yin on Unsplash

There are nearly 30,000 ebook titles available, spanning a wide range of subjects included in the following ScienceDirect “domains”;

Physical Sciences and Engineering

Life Sciences

Health Sciences

Social Sciences and Humanities

A selection of available titles are shown below.

Al Manhal eLibrary : access until 31st July 2020

University of Cambridge registered students and staff now have temporary access to the Al Manhal eLibrary until the 31st of July 2020.

Please let us know what you think about this collection by sending your feedback via the online form.

Al Manhal offers over 15,000 of ebooks from the Arab world’s leading publishers, across a diverse range of topics, with more being added every week.

Al Manhal ebook collections are available in the following subject areas: • Law • Educational Science • History, Geography & Biography • Social Sciences • Business & Economics • Language & Literature • Islamic Studies • Political Science & International Relations • Media and Communication • Art • Art and Architecture • Contemporary References • Classical Literature • Science and Technology • Heritage

Key features

• Full-text searchable publications

• Languages: Arabic, English, French

• Personal bookshelves that can be accessed offline through the App (IOS & Android)

• Highlighting, bookmarking, annotating and text-to-speech

• Copy/paste and printing with automatic citations

• ebook content matches original print 100%

Journals Collection

Al-Manhal Journals collections include an exclusive selection of over 450 peer-reviewed Journals with over 81,514 articles in English and Arabic languages published in the Arab world in the following subject collections: • Educational Science • Psychology & Philosophy • History, Geography & Biography • Social Sciences • Business & Economics • Language & Literature • Islamic Studies • Islamic Banking & Finance • Political Science & International Relations • Law • Science & Technical • Medical • Media and Communication • Art and Architecture

• Languages: Arabic, English, French, Hebrew, Malay & Urdu

Dissertations & Theses Collection

Provides over 9,000 of full-text searchable dissertations from the most prominent academic foundations across the Middle East. This collection is comprised of scholarly work from master’s and Doctoral graduates from all departments of academia and across the full spectrum of research foci.

Reports: Middle East Strategic Studies Online (MESSO)

Middle East Strategic Studies Online (MESSO) is the most comprehensive source for research, intelligence and analysis in Middle East affairs. The database includes a wide range of publications from 2007 onward that includes working papers, research reports, essays, policy briefs, newspaper articles, case studies and conference proceedings from the leading think tanks and research institutes across the Middle East. MESSO is a vital tool for any practitioner or researcher of Middle Eastern affairs. It focuses on political, economic, social and security issues across the region. The growing list of over 10,000 publications provides coverage of:
• Arab-Israeli affairs • Elections and changes of government across the region • Social issues such as education, healthcare, immigration, refugees and asylum • Wars, treatises, and diplomacy • Military, defense and security • Terrorism and issues of internal security • Legislation, budgets, economic developments and international agreements

Reading books offline using the App

Make sure you have a personal account on Al-Manhal and you are signed in.

• Add your favorite titles to your bookshelf using the side-bar tool called ‘Add to Bookshelf’.

• Download the Al Manhal App on your device from Apple Appstore or Google Play Store.

• From within the app choose ‘Sync with Platform’ option from the side navigation menu.

• Sign in using your Platform credentials, then the Sync will automatically begin!

• All books currently present on your Platform Bookshelf will be listed on the App for you to download any of them.

An online user manual is available from the following link:


Wiley Digital Archives : access until 30th June 2020


We now have access to 4 further collections in the Wiley Digital Archives:

Access is available until 30th June 2020.

Please send your feedback via the online form.

Royal Geographical Society (with the Institute of British Geographers) archive

Royal Geographical Society (with Institute of British Geographers) was founded in 1830. The learned Society promotes the advancement of geographical science in all its aspects. The Society’s archive contains vast collections of documents, maps, photographs, expedition reports, manuscript materials and books, and span 500 years of geography, travel and exploration. The RGS holds one of the largest private map collections in the world. It includes one million sheets of maps and charts, 3000 atlases, 40 globes (as gores or mounted…

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More extended access to Francophone e-resources at Cambridge: Cairn and Brepols

As part of temporary measures to help universities during the lockdown period, Cairn, an important online collection of francophone publications in social sciences and humanities, are offering free access to all their c. 10.000 ebooksand pocket encyclopaediasfrom major French, Belgian and Swiss publishers (“Ouvrages” and “Que sais-je ?/Repères” tabs in the top banner), until 31st May 2020. Access is through Raven, at this link (Connexion > Grande Bretagne > University of Cambridge (accès distant)). Cambridge University Library also subscribes annually to 156 of the Cairn journals (out of c. 500 in total), as part of a package called “French studies and humanities” on the platform “Cairn international edition” (see the A-Z Databases: Francophone Area Studies).


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ReadCube Research Pass (reblog)


Reblogged from ReadCube:

In collaboration with leading publishers, ReadCube is announcing the launch of an unprecedented new initiative to facilitate access to literature relevant to COVID-19 research.  The COVID-19 Research Pass (CRP) program provides direct access to over 26 million articles and is available to anyone studying or writing about COVID-19.

Early on in the COVID-19 pandemic, scholarly publishers were quick to open up access to COVID-19 literature to the greater research community. These initiatives have provided much needed and timely access to the latest publications specifically covering the COVID-19 virus.

The CRP program expands on these efforts to provide COVID-19 researchers with access to a broader set of content needed in the course of their research. Rather than pre-filtering access to specific articles related to COVID-19, the CRP allows researchers to access any article from participating publishers they may need while  studying COVID-19, including both open access and…

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Knovel Complete Collection : access until 30th June 2020


The Knovel complete collection is available to access until 30th June 2020.

Please send you feedback about the Knovel collection via the online form.

You will need to create an account on the Knovel platform to be able to access the site.

Knovel accelerates your discovery of answers and insights from technical reference content sourced from over 140+ providers — so you can more quickly tap into must-have resources. Instead of limiting search to narrow fields of expertise, searches in Knovel scan across the widest multidisciplinary areas, with each offering drilling down across multiple sources to deliver all relevant data, including full-text content, equations, materials and substances data, and interactive charts and graphs.

Knovel offers video tutorials and a Quick Start Guide to help to introduce you to the database.

Technical reference offerings

Adhesives, coatings, sealants & inks

From paint and ink formulations to corrosive resistant coatings and the…

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