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Digital Books

Digital Reserve Textbooks

Quick Info

Circulation Desk

(818) 719-6409


Reference Desk

(818) 710-2833


6201 Winnetka Ave.
Woodland Hills, CA 91371


The Basics

Controlled Digital Lending (aka Digital Books)

Pierce College now offering digital loans of certain textbooks and library materials through controlled digital lending (CDL). Basically, the Library has taken a print book that we own, made a digital (PDF) copy, and we are lending that digital copy instead of the print book.

If the class heavily relies on the textbook, we do not recommend you rely on the library's digital copy of the textbook in place of purchasing or renting the textbook. There is often only one copy of each digital textbook available and only one user can use the textbook at a time. If many sections of a class are using the same textbook, you might find it difficult to obtain access.

Digital books can be viewed through OneSearch, and you will be prompted to log in to view the book. Digital books cannot be downloaded or printed for offline viewing. 

This guide will show you how to access and use digital books.  

Digital vs. Ebook

You may be wondering what a digital book is and how it differs from an ebook? You may have used ebooks from the library before. Both digital books and ebooks will show in OneSearch with the "available online" setting. Here's a quick rundown of the differences. 

Digital BooksOnesearch available online icon

Digital books are created by your library from a physical book that we own. The library scans the book into PDF files, and makes the PDF copy available to view from OneSearch in the digital viewer. Digital books are not available for downloading or printing. Access to a digital book is usually limited to two hours at a time, but digital books may be renewed for longer if copies are available. The number of digital copies determines how many people can view a digital book at one time. 

EbooksOnesearch available online icon

Ebooks are purchased from vendors, who provide electronic access to a book.  Ebooks are usually viewed through a specific database provided by the vendor/publisher. You may browse the ebook options from the databases page or search for an ebook by title or topic through OneSearch. 

  Created by Format Number of users who may access at one time Print/Download Available
Digital Books Library PDF Based on number of designated print books No
Ebooks Vendor/Publisher PDF or HTML Based on license with ebook vendor Maybe (some publishers restrict these options).