Find digital textbooks at out Digital Library

Thanks to a President’s Innovation Fund (PIF) grant, Skyline College Library began a pilot project in fall 2022 to digitize selected textbooks not otherwise available in digital format. This project aims to further reduce the cost burden of traditional textbooks for students and make these books more easily accessible. 

Textbook affordability can be a barrier to student success. Skyline’s Zero-Textbook-Cost (ZTC) Initiative and the library’s print textbook loan program have been alleviating some of this financial pressure, but there are still many courses that require expensive print textbooks. 

The PIF grant has enabled the Library to give students another option. The Library’s student assistants have recently finished scanning several textbooks and more are in progress. Anthropology, Ethnic Studies, Philosophy, and Physical Education are some of the subjects for which digital textbooks are now available. 

Faculty and students can find these recently digitized textbooks at our Digital Library All scanned books in the Library’s Digital Textbook Collection are freely available to students 24/7. The PDF files are fully searchable, although they cannot be downloaded for copyright reasons. 

How does it work?  Students search for a book by subject in the library catalog using the Digital Textbooks tab or by Course/Professor/Title through a Course Reserves search of the library catalog.  When they find their book, they sign in with their SMCCD/Canvas login.  They then can “check out” the book and read it online for up to two hours. After two hours, students have the option to renew the book if no other students are waiting. Otherwise, they can join the waitlist.  They receive an email message when the book becomes available.

We welcome feedback on our pilot project.  Faculty can contact Gabriela Nocito <>, Ame Maloney <>, or Lori Lisowski <> for more information or to suggest textbooks to be added to the Digital Textbook Collection.  Please note that not all textbooks can be scanned, but we are happy to consult with faculty about options.

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