Finding and Using Ebooks

Highlights electronic books available through the University of Arkansas Libraries

About EBSCO Ebooks


EBSCO offers a robust and authoritative collection of ebooks on the familiar EBSCOhost platform. Many publishers and topics are represented.

eBooks on Ebscohost includes:

  • individual books owned by the Libraries; these may be licensed for 1, 3, or more simultaneous users
  • subscription collections leased by the Libraries; these titles may change every year.

Learn more about using the Ebsco eBook platform from the Ebsco eBooks LibGuide

The Basics: eBooks on Ebscohost

Where can I find them?

Most are in the library catalog and in QuickSearch

How many simultaneous users?

Titles are licensed for 1, 3, or unlimited users. 

Do I need a special account?

When you connect to Ebscohost from on-campus through our OpenAthens service, or when you click the Ebscohost "Sign in" link when on-campus a My Ebscohost account is automatically created for you.  Your My Ebscohost account allows you to checkout and save items to a personal bookshelf for a limited time, to save search strategies, and more.

Are there download or print limits? 

Individual chapters may usually be downloaded in PDF format.  The typical print allowance for most titles is 40% of the book. This varies by book and is determined by the publisher.

Can I read offline? 

Most books can be "checked out" and read offline for a limited time, usually up to 48 hours.  You cannot download an entire book indefinitely. 

Is special software needed? 

For reading offline (checking out entire books for a limited period) you will need Adobe Digital Editions, a free program that is different than Adobe Reader.

How long may I check a book out to read offline?

Most books generally check out for 48 hours.

Personalization: Your My Ebscohost Account

Ebsco databases allow you go create a personal account, My Ebscohost,  to save items and search strategies from session to session. To use personal account features, you must consent to EBSCO's Personal Data Retention and Usage policy. Read more about consenting to Ebsco's data retention policy. 

When you log into Ebsco from off-campus, a personal My Ebscohost account is automatically created for you. This account is a random string of numbers; you can, if you choose, add your name, email, and other personal information. Read more about Personalization features and Ebsco on our OpenAthens guide. 

Your My Ebscohost account will allow you to "check out" and read Ebsco ebooks offline for up to 48 hours.  Offline reading requires Adobe Digital Editions software. This is different from the familiar Adobe Reader software.  Read more about offline reading and Ebsco Ebooks below. 

Pro Tip: you do not need to download Ebsco ebooks unless you must read offline.  Full book downloads will expire in 48 hours and Ebsco has a fully functional online reader. 

Read Online

The Table of Contents or PDF link will take you to book chapters and allow you to read online. 

Within the Ebsco Online Reader are commands for

  1. Saving, emailing, printing, and citing pages. 
    Note that most books allow a limited amount of printing or downloading in one session.
  2. Ability to search within the text or take notes on the text.
  3. Tools for enlarging the text or making the reader full screen.   

Read online in Ebsco ebooks showing options for printing and saving, searching within, and enlarging text and full screen


Read Offline: Checking Out Ebsco eBooks

Many, but not all, Ebsco ebooks may be checked out for up to 48 hours at one time and read offline.

For single-user books, while a book is checked out it is not available to any other users, just like a print book. 

Look for the Full Download icon to check out a book. 

Full Download button

To check out and download a full Ebsco ebook you must:

  • be logged into your "My Ebscohost" account. 
    Look at the upper right of the screen.  You will know you are signed into your My Ebscohost account if the link says "Update account." 
    Ebsco logged in message
    If the link instead says "Sign in" just click that link to log into your My Ebscohost account. 
  • download and install Adobe Digital Editions software.  This is different from the Adobe reader.  Adobe Digital Editions is free and can be downloaded from

On check out, you will be prompted to pick a Download duration (up to 48 hours) and a download format:

  • PDF works best on desktops and laptops
  • EPUB works best on mobile devices. 

At the end of your check out period, the book will be removed from your device.

For more information see the Ebsco support pages:

Ebsco eBooks as Textbooks

If a title is only available for one user at a time, course instructors may request additional copies. Consult our course reserves information for instructors for information on how to request that items be placed on reserve for your class.