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Using eBooks at UNC

How to locate, access, and navigate ebooks through the UNC Libraries collection


eBook Content

Oxford Academic is a digital ebook platform service providing access to ebooks, chapters, and journals that can be read on the site or downloaded to a phone, tablet, or computer as PDFs. Oxford Academic has a large collection nonfiction and scholarly monographs along with hundreds of journals.

Ebook and digital journal subjects include Arts and Humanities; Law; Medicine and Health; Science and Mathematics and Social Sciences.



Oxford Academic is available to UNC-Chapel Hill students, faculty, and staff with their ONYEN and password.

Users can access the platform for ebooks in two ways:

  • Using the Oxford Academic web interface directly at to search and browse the collection
  • Search a book title in the UNC Libraries catalog and link to Oxford Academic through the catalog record

All access points will require that you log in with your UNC ONYEN and password. Be aware, it is not possible to sign into Oxford Academic directly through their own institutional access portal at The above URL with the Library proxy must be used, and you will be required to enter your ONYEN on the UNC Libraries gateway, not at Oxford Academic before proceeding to the content.


Finding eBooks - Searching & Browsing

Oxford Academic provides a plethora of ways to browse or search for ebooks. The search bar at the top of the webpage allows keyword searches by book title, subject, author, publishing organization, collection, or content type. Select an option or run your keyword search. Directly below the search bar you can also conduct a faceted search by subject, or content type

The homepage also features an “Explore Books” tab, which when clicked directs users to blog posts, reading lists, and specially curated collections of materials for users to browse. These titles may be new, featured, or topically relevant to the news of the day.

Oxford Academic Homepage (with use case diagram)



Borrowing and Reading eBooks

In order to read ebooks available on Oxford Academic, all you need to do is select the book from the search results and download it. There is no need to borrow, or check out, the material. You can download the title as a PDF. Most ebooks on Oxford Academic can only be downloaded one chapter at a time—you can also read each chapter natively on the webpage. Most ebooks do not have a EPUB version for download.

Returning eBooks

There is no need to return ebooks to Oxford Academic, once they are downloaded you can retain the PDF copy indefinitely. However, if you are reading an ebook through a web browser you may need to re-log in occasionally. Please note, your web browser may not “save” your place in the book if you are logged out of the session.

Check out this quick video on how to download or view a PDF book from Oxford Academic in your browser!

Training & Tutorials

Oxford Academic Help Page

Navigate to Oxford Academic Search Help Page to review instructions for getting started with searching on Oxford Academic! There are also tips for troubleshooting common problems. This page also does a deeper dive on: changing the scope of your search; navigating the results; modifying and filtering your search results along with other tips to search like a pro!

You can also check out this page on Oxford Academic’s open access (OA) options for accessing and using their OA materials.