The company that owns dawsonera, one of our longstanding ebook aggregator platforms, went into administration in June. It is very likely that the Dawsonera platform, which currently hosts about 3,500 of our ebooks, will be taken offline from the end of the evening, Thursday 30th July.
As a result, from Friday 31st July, users may come across dead links for Dawsonera ebooks in iDiscover. The loss of access will only be temporary, but at the moment, we are unable to specify a date when access to these titles will be made available.
The ebooks team is currently working with our other key ebook aggregator suppliers to make sure that the ebooks we have purchased will be made available on a different platform or platforms.
Any notes added to Dawsonera ebooks by individual users will not be transferred to the new platform, so if you want to keep notes please do export them before the end of the day on Thursday 30th July.
We do apologise for the inconvenience this potential temporary loss of access will cause, and we will be working as hard as we can to ensure any loss of access is as brief as possible. If you have any questions please do get in contact with the ebooks@cambridge team on firstname.lastname@example.org.
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
• 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%
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
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:
Project MUSE is supporting participating publishers in making scholarly content temporarily available for free on their platform. Their aim is to make it easier to access vetted research in the humanities and social sciences, from a variety of distinguished university presses, societies, and related not-for-profit publishers, to help support teaching, learning, and knowledge discovery for users worldwide. Most of the free access will last until the 30th June, but different publishers have applied different end dates, so please consult the list from the link below for the most current information.
The free content spans both books and journal titles from currently around 80 publishers. A list of these participating publishers is available from the following link:
A special collection of 35,000+ ebooks is now freely available to University of Cambridge registered students and staff until the 30th of June 2020, via your Raven logins. Works from more than 80 scholarly publishers have been opened up for full text access; a title list can be downloaded from the following link
A list of participating publishers, the number of which are expanding on a daily basis, can also be found from this link.These include the likes of African Books Collective, Central European University Press, Gerlach Press, Hong Kong University Press, Pluto Press, Princeton University Press, Rutgers University Press, Sydney University Press, University of California Press and Yale University Press.
Please search the JSTOR platform to find the temporary titles alongside our owned ebook and ejournal collections.
The University of Cambridge has temporary access to selective ejournal content (published up to the end of 2011) and both backlist and frontlist ebook titles (published up to the present day) hosted on Brepols Online, until the newly extended date of the 30th June 2020. The access is read-only, using a Raven login.
The platform can be accessed from the following link:
Brepols Publishers is an international academic publisher of works in the humanities.
The focus of its publications lies in “source-works” from Antiquity, the Middle Ages and the Early Modern period. Critical editions of original texts and documents in their original language, reference works such as encyclopaedias, handbooks and bibliographies, as well as monograph studies and cutting-edge research.
Brepols Publishers’ mission is to publish works with an outstanding academic reputation in the field of Europe’s cultural roots and sphere of influence. Such publications fall mainly within the disciplines of history and archaeology, language and literature, music, art and architectural history.
Brepols publishes journal and book titles in English and French, but also German, Spanish, Italian and Dutch (as well as old languages like Latin, Greek, Occitan etc.)
Please send any feedback you have on this collection by using the feedback form.
On April 1st the ebooks@cambridge team held our annual open meeting for Cambridge library staff in the main lecture theatre at St. John’s. The meeting was attended by some forty people from across the Cambridge libraries network, who gathered to hear from a range of speakers representing libraries, students and the Disability Resource Centre on the theme of accessible resource formats, our focus for the session.
The legal and institutional context for accessibility: The Disability Resource Centre
After some networking over coffee and an introduction from Jo Milton, Chair of the ebooks Advisory Group, the meeting began with a presentation by John Harding, Head of the Disability Resource Centre. John provided the legal and institutional context for the meeting by outlining the University’s obligations to make learning resources, including teaching materials, websites, ebooks and ejournals, accessible to people with disabilities. He explained what is happening already within the University and across the HE sector to meet our legal – as well as moral – obligations, and spelled out what actions we need to take, including the action to ensure that students have accessible versions of books, e-books and journals/literature.
The student experience
Next we heard from students. A student with multiple disabilities described some of the many challenges she faces in accessing readings for her course. The amount of time she spends in simply obtaining and converting texts into something she can work with, before even beginning the work of studying from them, was eye-opening. As a user of screen-reading software, ebooks are vital to her studies, and it was gratifying to hear that the work done by the ebooks@cambridge team to obtain accessible formats of reading list titles appears to have been a significant help. Neverthless, there is obviously much work still to be done.
Helen Snelling then read out an email testimonial from a student in the Music Faculty, and regular user of ebooks. She also described the challenges she faces, including chronic pain and reduced mobility, which make trips to the library difficult, and explained that ebooks were ‘a life-line’ to her (although she qualified this by saying that ebooks that are free of Digital Rights Management and don’t restrict downloading are more useful than ‘read online’ ebooks, which are much harder and more time-consuming to put through assistive technologies such as screen readers).
Where we are at with ebooks and accessible formats: news from the ebooks Administrator
Jayne Kelly, the ebooks Administrator, then gave her presentation on the theme of ‘Aspiring to inclusivity’. She reported on the JISC ‘ASPIRE’ project, which, using an open crowd-sourced approach, has audited and ranked ebook platforms according to the quality and availability of the guidance they publish regarding their accessibility (spoiler alert: EBSCO ebooks hit the top spot for aggregators). Jayne then went on to outline the dilemma faced by the ebooks team when selecting ebook models for purchase: best price often equals less accessibility. Buying more accessible ebooks appears to mean that fewer titles can be afforded. On the other hand, purchasing more accessible ebooks could present opportunities to save money across the University, for example on scanning costs and staff time converting print materials. Jayne finished her talk by explaining what makes an ebook more or less accessible and talking through what is involved in obtaining accessible formats from publishers and services such as RNIB Bookshare.
Futurelib update – Developing the accessibility and inclusivity of Cambridge library services – and some discussion
Finally, David Marshall talked about Futurelib’s current project to explore the needs of disabled students at Cambridge through deep, qualitative research. He shared some quotes from participants, giving us further insight into the experiences of disabled students, and outlined some of the forthcoming outputs of the study, including a prototype Accessibility and inclusivity toolkit for Cambridge libraries. The meeting then wrapped up with some stimulating group discussion around our experiences in providing accessible/alternate format resources for library users and our ideas for a perfect accessible resource provision service at Cambridge.
The meeting was well received by participants – we have received some very positive feedback. The decision to focus on such a hot topic and bring in speakers from outside the library world was welcomed.
Cambridge librarians can access the slides for these presentations on the Cambridge Libraries Intranet. Please contact email@example.com if you have any questions about the meeting, or would like further information about ebooks and accessibility.
The ebooks@cambridge team have collated the ebook collection usage statistics for the calendar year 2017. Last year over 56,000 academic ebook titles were consulted across nearly 60 platforms. Cambridge librarians can download the whole dataset from the Usage statistics section of the ebooks@cambridge intranet site, but a brief summary of the findings is also presented in this post.
4,035,929 hits were recorded on ebooks…
Lets have a look at how these hits were distributed:
Ebook usage spiked in 2017, there was over a 22% rise on 2016 figures, after a couple of years of levelling out. The graph below illustrates the growth in our ebook collection usage since 2012, during this 6 year period there has been a rise of over 284%:
October was once again the standout month where our ebooks were working the hardest (over 617,000 hits), followed closely by November. September was the sleepiest month for our ebook collections but they still attracted over 138,000 hits:
Our most popular ebook platforms are well used generally because there are large numbers of ebook titles hosted on them (including titles which appear on sometimes multiple reading lists), covering a wide range of subjects.
The 5 ebook platforms with the highest usage were:
Cambridge Core** (626,680)
Ebook Central (469,381)
*MyiLibrary is now no more, as of April 2018 all owned titles migrated to Ebook Central.
**These figures exclude Cambridge Companions, Histories, and Shakespeare Survey titles.
Some of the ebooks platforms which have seen the highest increase in usage don’t necessarily host large numbers of ebook titles or receive many thousands of hits; for example Manchester Medieval Sources Online (MMSO) is included but only offers a very small focused collection of well respected titles. The number of hits on MMSO in 2017 was 549, so relatively few, but this was a very substantial increase in hits from the 2016 usage figures, hence MMSO’s inclusion in the list below.
The 5 ebook platforms/collections with the highest rises in usage were:
Ebook Central (+3319%)
Manchester Medieval Sources Online (+2514%)
University Press Scholarship Online (+485%)
Cambridge Companions (+391%)
Some of our ebook platforms host only one or two titles, or the ebooks are of very niche interest, for example the Italian-language platform Torrossa, Kotobarabia which hosts Arabic content, or Nomos where only one title has so far been purchased. Just because these ebook platforms receive fewer hits does not mean that the titles hosted on them are less valuable; bearing this in mind the five platforms with lowest usage were:
There are a wide variety of reasons for falls in usage, course and reading list changes, maybe a previously well used title is replaced by another, and sometimes publishers change how they count usage statistics. Here are the five platforms which saw the greatest usage declines:
English Historical Documents (-59%)
IOP Science (-38%)
Oxford Textbook of Medicine (-30%)
Wiley Online (-23%)
And finally, the top 20 ebooks for 2017 embrace a wide range of subjects…
Click on the links for authenticated access, on and off-campus:
*Considered an individual title by the publisher, but is actually more like an electronic resource, giving access to various titles. We have included it though as the number of hits it received seems to stand alone and is not the sum of the hits for the titles which appear on OSAIL.
The Moore Library is pleased to announce the continued access to the popular Springer Biomedical and Life Sciences ebook collections on the SpringerLink platform. As of the 1st March, titles published so far in 2018 have been opened up for University of Cambridge users; this means that access is now available to all titles published from 2015 – 2018 inclusive.
There are currently 1,898 available titles and further titles will be added as they are published during 2018. Monograhs, contributed volumes, handbooks and selected encyclopaedias in Springer designated sub-disciplines such as Animal Models, Cell Biology, Human Genetics, Immunology, Microbiology, Neuroscience, Pharmacology, and Plant Sciences are includes in these collections.
The full text of these titles can be found and accessed from iDiscover, and are accessible for unlimited concurrent users, both on and off campus via a Raven login.
These collections will be available in full until the end of February 2019, at which point the most popular titles will be purchased in perpetuity.
A selection of recently published titles are listed below:
Are you a busy medical student studying at the University of Cambridge?
Did you know about the ebooks the library has been buying for you? Many of them are the latest editions of key titles. Check out a selection below. These and hundreds more medical titles are searchable in iDiscover.