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Accessing Resources

ebooks@cambridge: Access ebooks

A guide to finding and using ebooks at the University of Cambridge

Where can I access ebooks?

If you are a current member of Cambridge University (i.e. staff or student) you can access ebooks from anywhere in the world using your Raven username and password. Most ebooks can be used on mobile devices as well as PCs, although compatibility varies between platforms and suppliers.

Cambridge Alumni also have off-campus access to a growing number of eresources, including ebooks, via a dedicated access page and your email address.

Other registered users of the University Library can access most of the ebooks available to current members within the University Library building without a Raven account, either using a laptop or device connected to the UniofCam wireless network, or via a Library PC. This option is also available to Cambridge Alumni who visit the Library in person. 

Electronic Legal Deposit ebooks: an exception

screenshot of eLD record in iDiscover

On iDiscover you might come across books that are "Available on designated PCs in the UL and most Faculty and Departmental libraries”. These ebooks are supplied to the UL by publishers under Electronic Legal Deposit legislation, and may only be used on designated PCs for Electronic Legal Deposit access.

Read more about Electronic Legal Deposit.

Raven Helpdesk

Email the Raven helpdesk for queries about authentication to eresources

Please use this email for any question you might have that has not been covered in the Raven FAQs.

This helpdesk is manned during normal office hours. Monday - Friday - 5 pm.

Please note that it is not possible to give out passwords over the phone or send them via email. No member of staff at either the University Information Services or the University Library will ever ask you for your password nor should it be revealed within the text of any enquiry.

Troubleshooting ebook access

Having trouble accessing an ebook? Try the following before contacting for help:

  • Sometimes using the "Search Everything" function in iDiscover can result in a "No full text available" error. When searching for ebooks, we recommend using the "Cambridge Libraries Collections" search function, as this will restrict searches to resources where we definitely have access.
  • Try a different browser. We sometimes experience compatibility problems between certain platforms/browsers.
  • Google the exact error message. You will often find the solution online.
  • Be aware that we rarely purchase all of the ebooks on a particular platform. If it's not listed in iDiscover, we probably don't have access (but you can contact us to double check).
  • Is the ebook pdf trying to open in a browser's own pdf viewer (e.g. Chrome)? Try changing the browser settings to use Adobe Reader instead.

Raven FAQs

Please see the Raven FAQs within the Help & Support section of the Cambridge Libraries eresources website.

Contact us

Further ebooks information for Cambridge librarians can be found on the Cambridge Libraries Intranet.

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