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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Electronic materials temporarily available during COVID-19

Access to resources made available to researchers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please see individual resources for specific time periods covered, if specified.

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What's On This Guide

Several publishers and vendors of textbooks, ebooks, and journals have lifted access restrictions on some or all of their content for a limited time during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This site lists available resources with dates of access and instructions for how to access the materials.

See below for the resources to find electronic versions of books. We have been very successful using these resources to find ebooks for patrons.

See the tabs on left for more free resources for ebook and journal collections, and in the humanities and social sciences, plus science and engineering.

HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service

Temporary service - HathiTrust will monitor the situation, and emergency access will end when they decide to do so. 

The HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service makes it possible for you to obtain lawful access to specific digital materials in HathiTrust that correspond to physical books held by the UMass Amherst Libraries during the pandemic. Books can be checked out for one hour at a time, and are unavailable for download.

To access books using HathiTrust:

  1. For access through the UMass Libraries' online catalog, start at the catalog link below and search for the book.
  2. From the search results, click the title for the item you want to read to get to the record.
  3. If HathiTrust has a digitized copy of this item, you will see a link for Item record at HathiTrust. Click on that link.
  4. You will be taken to the HathiTrust page for the item, where you can click on the yellow Log In button at the top right.
  5. You will be prompted to select University of Massachusetts Amherst on a dropdown menu, then to log in with your UMass NetID and password.
  6. To read the book, click on the Temporary Access button at the bottom left of the HathiTrust record.
  7. For some books, you may see an orange bar that says "Access to this work is provided through the Emergency Temporary Access Service" and has a Checkout button. Click on the Checkout button. You will be able to access the book for an hour before it prompts you to renew your time.

Internet Archive National Emergency Library

Waitlists have been reinstated.

The Internet Archive’s Open Library is a large collection of digitized books available to borrow for free, but each item goes out for two weeks, and there are large waitlists for items. In response to the school and library closures, the Internet Archive had suspended waitlists so that you can borrow items immediately.  Due to the lawsuit, they reinstated waitlists at the end of June 2020.

To borrow an item, you will need to log-in and create a free account with your email address.

On June 1, 2020, a group of commercial publishers filed suit against the Internet Archive alleging that the Archive's loans of electronic books infringes the publishers' copyrights. The Internet Archive is collecting stories about its National Emergency Library from those who benefited from this access to books. For more information, see or contact your liaison or Laura Quilter, Copyright & Information Policy.