Do you have questions about how to find your textbooks?

Are you wondering about textbooks? In this blog post we show you how to find the right textbook on the shelf and give you some useful tip on other ways beside the library to get hold of the popular books.

The Library buys at least two copies of each book. One loan and one course reference book. The later is a reference copy, which can´t leave the library it can only be used in the building. You find all course reference books at the 1st floor at the library and they are sorted in alphabetical order with a yellow sticker on the back. It appears clearly in the library catalog through Summon.

Take the book you want to read in the library or copy a chapter or two, and then put it back on a trolley so the next person can get access to the book. The copy you can borrow is for loan for two weeks and you can renew the book if no one else waits for it, otherwise it must be returned. This because as many people as possible should be able to read them during the course. A textbook can also be found as an e-book and can be read both here at the university and from home, it is your computer login that you use to login with. All textbooks are included in the library catalog and have two placements, it can look like this for example:

The top copy is the course reference book that you find on the 1st floor and the lower is the lending copy that you find placed on the subject out in the library. The course reference book may not always be in place at the 1st floor because someone else might be reading it. Come back later and look for it again

But why can´t we have class sets of everything? Because we do not have the opportunity for a variety of reasons. First, we have no place for it, the library must accommodate a lot of other literature and other things than textbooks. Second, we can not afford it, the library has a media budget to follow each year and it is within its framework we purchase textbooks. We must also ensure that our book collection contains relevant books that can be used in essay writing and other school work.

If you want to buy your textbooks the Student Bookstore at Allégatan is a good choice, they have almost all of the university course books at good prices. Online bookshops as Adlibris and Bokus often have a wide range of literature. you can also often find advertisements for sale of used textbooks on the university notice boards, and on the sites and bokbörsen, you can search for used books. Sometimes the Student Union arranges a book fair or book swap at the university.

Text & picture: Lena Holmberg

Source criticism and plagiarism

You might be in the midst of searching for scientific articles for your thesis or assignment. Do not forget to think critically when you do this work!

COLOURBOX1947363Source criticism is a method to examine the information and facts contained in the sources you choose to use. You value the sources and choose carefully what you want to include. Do not forget to use source criticism on other than text. For example pictures and video that nowdays are equally important to source view given how much you can edit and process them. Remember to differentiate between a primary source and secondary source. The Academy is considered primary sources (first-hand) to be more reliable. You can use following questions, irrespective of the material:

  • Who is the author of your source?
  • For what purpose is it published?
  • Is the research still relevant?
  • Where have the research been published? Has it been reviewed? ( peer-review)
  • Can other check the results?
  • What information do you get from other sources at the same event?
  • If others have done similar studies, which results have they reached?
  • Does the timing in movies and audio clips add up?
  • Who funded the research?
  • Does the results seem trustworthy? Are there other sources that are trustworthy to say the same thing?
  • Are the conclusions reasonable based on the theory and methodology used?

Take a look at the web page Källlkritik on the Internet which is a guide that .SE stands behind and which shows how you can review content on web pages.

It can be helpful to know what obligations you as the author of your essay or thesis have regarding plagiarism. On the University web you can find a great anti-plagiarism guide where most aspects of this matter are included. It is available through Ping Pong, but also open on the web from this page (click on the link in the text far down on the page).
And please see the movie where our former librarian Eli Bytoft-Nyaas is talking about the subject and deal critically  with sources and references. The anti-plagiarism tutorial included Urkund, a plagiarism handbook that inlcudes a list to look at if you want to know what actually is plagiarism when writing.

Text: Lena Holmberg
Bild. Colourbox

Welcome to the search lab!


Did you know that the library offers an open search lab for students? It takes place in the library premises on thursdays between 15: 00-16: 30 at the computer lab, room J418 on level 4.

The Search lab focuses on searching information, selecting databases, writing references and more. Are you writing on your thesis or paper and need someone to discuss with? Welcome to the Search lab. There are drop-in at these dates:

October 29
November 5, 12, 19, 26
December 3, 10, 17


Text: Lena Holmberg
Photo: Colourbox

Good resources and where to start

Are you confused where to start with your essay?

If you want to do specific searches it is better to do your search in one of our databases that is specifically targeted on the actual field where search opportunities are more specified and adapted to the topic area´s uniqueness.

You have access to all of the libraries electronic resources from home.
All you have to do is to log in with your username and password

Do you want to look at other student essays for inspiration?
In Borås Academics Digital Data (BADA) you can find student essays and theses. If you want to look at essays from other Swedish universities search in

Google Scholar ( is a search engine focused one academic material. Here you can find books, student essays, theses, articles etc.

Appearance and design of a academic article can vary between different subject areas, but usually have a structure similar to this:

  • Abstract (there is an abstract on the first page, which usually contain a short summery of the articles purpose, method, result and discussion)
  • Introduction (why the analysation)
  • Method (how the study have been assayed)
  • Result (what the outcome was)
  • Discussion (what the conclusion was)
  • References (usually the reference list is very long and contains references from other academic studies)

For an article to be characterizes as an academic article it has to be published in a academic journal.
Helena France, lecturer at Library & information science at Borås University was recently a guest blogger for library blog and wrote about Academic texts.

One of the challenges of writing an essay is to be able to vary its formulations?? At the library, you can find books related to Academic Writing.

The Online Writing Lab (OWL) at Purdue University contains resources and introduction material for academic writing.

On the libraries webpage you can find information about Academic writingReference managementEndnote and Plagiarism.

Common documents
Are you writing your paper with someone else and you are not able to meet With each other for various reasons? Than you can use Google Drive to store your files in a common place, and also to create documents that both of you can edit at the same time while chatting. You are also able to create a versioning where you can go back to previous data if needed, store files, create simpler spreadsheets and presentations and save your document that is compatible with Microsoft Office.

Use Google help pages or go to Tutorials on Youtube.

If you have questions about information search or reference management:

  • Call the Library 033-345 40 50
  • Email
  • Come to the information point for personal help
  • You are also welcome to our Search lab every Thursday from 15:00-16:30 on 4th floor in the library room J418, where a librarian is available for answering your questions about information search

Text: Sara Hellberg, Tandis Talay

Want to read an e-book?

The library nowdays have many more e-books online than we have physical books in our library building. The suppliers of e-books are many and all work in different ways, but to download an e-book you need about the same program / account for all of them.

To download an e-book to your tablet or computer, you need an Adobe ID. This is because the company Adobe are supplying DRM for the e-book providers.

Then you need an e-book reader on your plate. We think the app Blufire reader works fine for our e-books in most cases, and therefore recommend it, but there are several different readers to choose from. Choose one you like and are used to.

Download for Android and Apple products.

If you want to read an e-book on your computer, you need Adobe Digital Editions to open the books on your computer.

Now you’re ready to borrow, and our e-book suppliers are as previously mentioned many. To search for them in our different systems you identify yourself with your usual login details. Easiest is to start in with title or author in Summon but can you see on the image below that there is an shortcut directly to our e-books:summon_ebok_eng

Once you find the book you want to read, you click through to the book usually via a link:
länkserver_e-bokHere is an example from Dawsonera, where you choose to read online or download:


If you choose to download the book, you’ll get information about your loan and the loan periods that applies. In this case Dawsonera, you choose how long you want to borrow the book for up to 21 days. We also get questions whether it is possible to download an e-book and then print it. It is not because of the DRM that the books are provided with, but most providers will allow you to print a few pages or a chapter from the book.

Want to know more? Just check out our website.

Text & Picture: Lisa Carlson


Ebrarys makeover

One of our e-book providers Ebrary has updated its interface, it has become considerably easier to navigate. On our website, we describe the site as follows: “Ebrary contains approximately 40.000 books within most subject categories, such as technology, science, the arts, health and medicine, social sciences, computers and information technology.”

You can reach the books by searching the library’s Summon on our website or on our page for E-books. You will have to log in if you are outside of the University network with your regular log in details. If you don’t know what you are looking for you can use the Ebrary site to search for titles or subjects and additionally browse subjects in areas like Computer, Education, Medicine, Technology, Economics and History just to name a few.

Once you find the book you are looking for, it looks like the image below. You choose between reading the book online (requires connection to the Internet) or download it to your computer / tablet / smartphone. To download the book, you need to create an account. Once you do, you can download the book, underline in it, take notes, choose refrerence management system as default and save the book on your bookshelf in Ebrary. To read the book, you need an Adobe ID and an e-book reader to suit the device you’ll read (Read more in this blog post about the readers / apps we recommend).



In Ebrary it’s also clear how many pages you can print off the books and how many you can copy.





Some books from Ebrary does not allow downloading. But this is very clear when you have found the title you want to read.



Ebrary_refereraYou can easily refer correctly from Ebrary. You press the button Cite Book (seen above on the first picture). Then you can select the style, in my example I chose Harvard. Then you can simply copy the reference into the documented your’e working on. Or you can choose to export to Flow / RefWorks or Endnote / Citavi. Endnote is freely available to students at the University of Borås, and are installed on all our computers, but you can also get it to your own computer. Flow is a new free reference management system for you as a student at the University of Borås by the same company, ProQuest, that supplies our search system Summon, Flow works best with ProQuests own databases and services so we recommend Endnote since it is compatible with most of our resources.

Hope you enjoy Ebrarys new interface as much as we do. Please contact us if you have questions at

Text and Picture: Lisa Carlson

“The acquisition of e-books in the libraries of the Swedish higher education institutions”

The Library’s Martin Borg has co-authored an article on the purchase of e-books in university and college libraries in Sweden. The article was published in June this year and is available here. Lead author of the article is Elena Maceviciute of The Swedish School of Library and Information Science. The article examines the advantages and disadvantages of purchasing e-books at two Swedish university libraries.

The purchase of e-books in our library has been a deliberate strategy as we see many advantages with the format. But there are problems with the models that distributors of e-books offer today, the article reports that e-books often has some form of embargo so that new books should first be sold in their print version and the e-book version is issued a couple of months later. The e-book is also provided with digital rights management (DRM), meaning that different types of techniques is used to prevent the use of the material on the basis of copyright laws. The effect of DRM is, for example restrictions on how you can transfer media from PC to tablet, how much of the material users may print, and if you can download it for offline reading. Another implication for libraries is that interlibrary loan (ILL) is not allowed for e-books, which really should be one of the e-book’s major advantages. At the same time, we believe we know that the benefits to our patrons exceed the disadvantages.

Other factors that the authors consider are aspects of the acquisition budget which is complicated by the frequent subscription packages of e-books, and it is sometimes difficult to estimate what the cost will be. Studies has proven that e-books are often more expensive than their physical version although the e-book is cheaper to produce. The article continues with a description of the various business models for e-books, which entails subscription, patron-driven acquisitions (PDA), traditional purchase of titles or collections of e-books which are problematic if the title is abandoned by it’s publisher, then the library may lose the title in it’s collection.

Our library has today more e-books than what we have printed books, the latest figures show almost 114,000 printed books while the e-books amounts to a little over 137,000. The article however presents statistics from the National Library of Sweden, which shows that the printed books in Swedish university libraries far exceeds the e-book, but that 70% of all acquisitions in 2012 were e-books. The benefits of multiple users being able to borrow an e-book at the same time (although there are limits also for this in some cases) and accessing it at any time of the day from any location are very important from a user perspective. Even if libraries have problems with marketing e-books, and to catalogue them so that they become available in a simple way this has been partly solved through more and more libraries implementing discovery solutions to search for library materials.

Very few non-fiction books in swedish are published as e-books in relation to the number of non-fiction books that are published each year, this also affect the use of e-books and the ability for some to use them. E-books in the academic genre is still very rare in swedish as english is the language most researchers publish themselves in order to get as much publicity as possible.

According to the authors, the biggest challenge is to get the e-book to work with the library’s interest, but it’s clear that none of the business models used today put the library and its users in focus but is simply a way to maximize the sales of distributors.

Text: Lisa Carlson