As we mark the start of our spring semester on campus, we wanted to create some blog posts with reminders about ZSR operations and services. Last week we covered accessing physical materials. This week we’re covering ebooks and streaming media. We hope these are helpful as we return to campus and classes get underway.


Academic ebooks function differently than ebooks you may have used from the public library or through Amazon. Academic ebook loan periods and accessibility are determined by the publisher and the platform on which they are available; both price and availability dictate what ZSR is able to provide. Fortunately, half of our 460,000+ ebooks are available to check out for 21 days – the maximum possible loan period – with unlimited simultaneous use. The other half are available for 7 days, as they have more publisher-determined restrictions. Our ebooks can be used in a browser or downloaded. Note that if you want to download an ebook, the majority of those we offer are from Ebook Central, which does require viewing downloaded books through Adobe Digital Editions (which is different from Adobe Reader). “Read Online” uses the browser and has advantages for searching and navigating within the book (demonstrated in this 3 minute video). While we cannot always get a print title as an ebook, let us know if you would like us to search a title for availability. 

Streaming Media

Film and streaming media are increasingly popular library materials used for instruction. The library’s collection currently offers over 46,000 titles. However, streaming options open to libraries aren’t as numerous as those which individuals can get at home: Netflix and other streaming platforms don’t offer institutional licenses, just personal ones. And not all holdings in our DVD collection are available for streaming. Due to copyright restrictions, simply owning the DVD does not give us the necessary legal permissions to copy and upload a streaming version, even behind password protection. If there are films and streaming media you would like to have added to the collection, let us know. We will work with you to determine availability or, if unavailable, to advise on alternate options

As always, ZSR is here to help you get what you need. Faculty with additional questions can always contact their library liaison, and students, faculty, and staff can email, or reach out to us via chat, text, or phone using the links on the ZSR Library Homepage.