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Library FAQ: Find Books and e-books

A hub for frequently asked questions regarding Academy of Art University Library resources.

How do I borrow books?

Physical materials are available for check out only when the ArtU Library is open. Please check Library Hours here for the current schedule for the semester. 

The ArtU Library’s online resources remain available 24 hours a day 7 days a week. You can find a list of what's available on our Online Resources page.

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How do I return books (during remote instruction and library closure)?

Students can return library materials to 180 New Montgomery book drop.

It is located on the 1st floor, available anytime between 9 AM – 5 PM, Monday through Friday.

All library materials are due by August 7th, 2024.

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How come I cannot access a particular book in the library catalog?

The book that you are looking at may be considered Reference. Reference materials are “Library Use Only.” These materials can only be viewed in the library. (These materials are unavailable during library closure.)

The ArtU Library’s online resources remain available, and we have expanded e-books and e-magazine access during this time. You can find a list of available online resources on our Online Resources page.

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How come I cannot access a particular movie in the library catalog?

The movies with the status of "On Shelf" indicate the DVDs that are available for check out in the library. We have some required movies for some courses available through Kanopy. Please reach out to us for further clarification.

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How do I find e-books in the library catalog?

E-Books will show up in searches in our library catalog. The Location of these materials will be Online Resource.

You can also search directly in Ebook Central and EBSCO Ebook Collection, linked on the Online Resources page. 

Check out our guided e-book tutorial for more information. (For a text and screenshot version, click here.) 

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How do I find e-books for my courses?

This answer also applies to: "How do I access the e-textbook that I just purchased for my course? (I have access codes but no download links)."

The ArtU Library is not connected to the eCampus bookstore and does not manage ebook online bookstore purchases. Please visit to purchase and manage your e-book purchases. Please contact Online Education for further assistance:

The ArtU Library has access to some e-books that are required or recommended course texts. Check the Course Reserves search for what is available. Please be mindful of the availability of concurrent users for e-book titles. (For more, see the answer to the question below.)

For questions about accessing e-books available through the library catalog, please check out this e-book tutorial.

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Why can’t I access this e-book?

There are two possible reasons:

  1. Publisher usage limitations.

After you click on the button “Access this e-book online,” you encounter a notification saying that the e-book is in use.

Publishers place usage limitations on certain titles for how many people can access an e-book at a time.

For example: “1 copy is available for 1 user at a time” means that you cannot access that title while another student is accessing it. There are other titles in our collection that have unlimited user access.

  1. The title isn’t actually an ebook.

The book in the library catalog search results does not have the button “Access this e-book online.” This means that the title that you are looking at is not available in e-book format.

There is a chance that the ArtU Library may have an e-book version of the title, so check and see if there are additional results in the library catalog with the same title. The Location in the search results list will say “Online Resource.”

The ArtU Library does its best to get e-book versions of required and recommended course texts. But sometimes these titles may not be available from the publisher in e-book form. It is at the publisher’s discretion to make their titles available in e-book format and make them available for libraries with multiuser licenses.

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How do I save e-books onto my computer to read?

Many of our e-books are not available for full download, but you will be able to read them online.

You can download specific chapters in PDF format, but the limit is set by the publisher. Students can download specific chapters at a time.

For more, please see this e-book tutorial.

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How do I make page numbers appear in an e-book?

"My instructor told me to read a specific number of pages in a book. Where are those pages in the e-book?" 

Many of our e-books are in the .epub file format, a format that does not have static (fixed) page numbers. Text placements will change depending on the device you are using to view the e-book. Though this makes the e-book easier to read, this means that there is no on-off toggle for page numbers. 

You can view chapters and their respective subheadings in the e-book's Table of Contents, as seen in the left sidebar of the screen when viewing the e-book online. Please confirm with your instructor regarding the chapters that you are assigned to read. 

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Is a particular magazine available online?

We have some magazine articles available through our EBSCO databases. We also have some digital magazines available on Flipster Magazines and Exact Editions Magazines. Please see the video below to see how to navigate in the Flipster Magazines interface. (The Exact Editions Magazines interface is similar.) 

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How do I renew books?

To renew library materials, you can call the library @ 415.618.3842 or visit and login into your library account to renew your books online.

The easiest way to renew books is by logging in to your library account:

  • Enter your Academy of Art email address and password -->Click to Renew -->Select titles you wish to renew 

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