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Request a Resource

Get material the library doesn’t have

Accessing resources

It can be frustrating when you're trying to access resources but can't find what you're looking for. The tips below cover the options you have to make sure you can access resources for your assignments and research.

Take a look at the Accessing Resources Flowchart at the bottom of this page if you prefer to see information visually.

Looking for a book from one of our libraries?

  1. Search the library's online collection to see if an e-book is available. Take a look at our video demonstrating how to search for e-books here.
  2. If there is no e-book available, the library may be able to purchase one. Fill in a purchase suggestion form, and we'll look into it for you. We'll get back to you within 2 working days, and can normally send you the link to the e-book within a week if it is available to buy.
  3. If you're looking for a chapter, the library may be able to get an online copy via Interlibrary Loans. Complete a chapter request form, and we'll aim to get the chapter to you in approximately a week (please note, this time may vary as a result of closures at other libraries). We'll also let you know if we can't source the chapter.
  4. If the book or journal is available on the shelves at Colchester and you cannot come to campus, you can use the library's scan and deliver service to request a scan of the chapter or journal article you need. Please note, scan and deliver requests are for personal study/research purposes and non-commercial use. The library cannot supply scans for reading lists or sharing between students.
  5. If you're looking for something similar to read while you wait, or if we can't source the material you need, search the library website for similar e-books or journal articles.

Looking for help to search for similar resources?

  • Make an appointment with your Academic Liaison Librarian via Zoom, or email them with your query to discuss your information needs in more detail. They can help with tailored advice on alternative resources and search strategies.
  • If the original reading suggestion came from your lecturer, you can ask them to suggest an alternative text. Our reading list team can help support and advise lecturers about what is available online.
  • Check out your subject guide for a whole range of subject-specific databases and other key resources, alongside guidance on search strategies.

Accessing resources flowchart