Collections and Resources, Digital Library, Scholarly Communications

Oxford E-Books Come to UNC Libraries through Innovative Deal

UNC faculty and students will soon have access to nearly 8,000 scholarly e-books from Oxford University Press (OUP) and the press’s partners.

The addition is part of a groundbreaking pilot project between OUP and the Triangle Research Libraries Network (TRLN).

The pilot project will bring to UNC:

  • 750 new e-books published in 2012-13;
  • A print copy of each new e-book, to be shared by TRLN member libraries (UNC, Duke University, North Carolina State University, and North Carolina Central University), along with the option for any of the libraries to acquire additional print copies as needed at a discounted price.

In addition, the UNC Libraries negotiated a related agreement with OUP for a backfile of 7,050 e-books with titles in a wide range of disciplines, including the humanities and social sciences, physical and life sciences, medicine, and law.

Oxford University Press provides e-books for its own publications, as well as nine U.S. and foreign academic publishers, including the University of California Press and the American University in Cairo Press.

The agreement is the first of its kind to bring shared e-book access to a group of cooperating libraries. Because each TRLN member committed to a similar purchase and the single shared print copy, OUP offered deeply reduced prices to the consortium.

“This is a real benefit for researchers at UNC,” said Carol Hunter, associate University librarian for collections and services. “The Library has been able to add thousands of electronic titles plus print access within our existing budget.”

Readers can find titles in the Oxford Scholarship Online collection through a standard catalog search and then read them via most web browsers, as well as on tablet and mobile platforms. There is no limit to the number of simultaneous users that can read the online copy, making the e-books ideal for course reserves or for integration into Sakai course-management software.

“The libraries in the Triangle have a long history of sharing print books and building collections in a cooperative fashion,” said University Librarian Sarah Michalak. “This agreement allows us to build on that history in the electronic realm, which is where researchers increasingly expect to find books.”

The libraries and OUP will evaluate the pilot project at the end of the one-year trial period.

For additional information about the Oxford University Press package and library collections, contact Hunter at (919) 962-1301 or


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