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eBooks: How To

How to search, locate, view and download eBooks from the eBook Academic Collection

Where to Search

The most direct way to find eBooks is to search using the eBook Academic Collection Link on the library website.

eBooks are also included in Fleet SEARCH

Please note:
eBook Academic Collection records do not appear in the RISD/ATH catalog *

* Titles in this collection can be found when searching Brown's catalog

4 Steps to Viewing eBooks

Q: What are the steps for registration and what software is required?

1. First you'll need to set up an account while in Ebsco (create a username and password)

2. To check out books for offline viewing, download Adobe Digital Editions - free at

3. You'll also need to install Adobe Reader to view the PDF Full Text files.

4. In order to effectively use eBook features, the minimum browser requirements are:

Internet Explorer 7.0
Firefox 8.0 see Firefox Preferences
Google Chrome 16
Safari 5.1 (for Macintosh)

About the Collection

eBook Academic Collection

A growing eBook subscription that contains a large selection of multidisciplinary titles representing a broad range of academic subject matter.

There are nearly 120,000 eBooks, including titles from leading university presses such as Oxford University, State University of New York, Cambridge University, University of California, MIT, Harvard University and others. Additional academic publishers include Elsevier, Brill Academic, Taylor & Francis, Sage Publications, and John Wiley & Sons. 

Subject coverage includes:

  • Art
  • Business & Economics
  • Education
  • Language Arts & Literary Criticism
  • Medicine
  • Performing Arts
  • Philosophy
  • Poetry
  • Political Science
  • Religion
  • Social Science
  • Technology & Engineering
  • And other academic fields

All titles are available with unlimited user access.
New titles are added monthly.

Tutorials & Help

How to Search more about Fleet SEARCHHow to Download 

Browse eBook FAQs

For additional help contact the RISD Library Reference Desk and ask to speak with a librarian

Academic eBook Q & A

Q: How long may I check out an eBook?
A: 28 days


Q: Can more than one person check out the same eBook?
A: Yes


Q: Can I renew an eBook?
A: No, but you can check it out again and again


Q: Is there a limit to the number of eBooks a person can check out (download) at one time?
A: Yes, 50 simultaneous checkouts per user; however, content is available for viewing without checkout.


Q: Can holds be placed on a title?
A: Usually no - if it’s part of the eBook Academic Collection (unlimited user access)
A: In a few cases, yes -
if it’s a title with a user limit (a single title purchase)


Q: Is there a record of the eBooks I have checked out?
A: Yes, you’ll find your record by logging in to your Ebscohost Account


Q: What's Ebscohost?
A: Ebsco or Ebscohost is the name of the eBook database vendor