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Academic Library Use of eBooks


This 165-page international study looks closely at how academic libraries are using eBooks. It helps librarians to answer questions such as: how fast is eBook spending growing? Which eBook purchasing models are growing fastest? Subscription models that allow unlimited access” pay per view models? Outright ownership? Other models? What percentage of eBook purchases are through consortia? What percentage direct from publishers? What percentage through aggregators? 

The report also gives detailed data on spending on various major players such as OverDrive, ebrary, EBSCO, Baker & Taylor, EBL and many others. It's particularly rich on data about eBook purchases from academic presses. The study also looks at the growth of tablet computing in academic libraries, at the use of eBooks in course reserve, at purchases of eDirectories and eTextbooks, and other issues in academic library eBook purchasing and deployment.

Just a few of the study’s many findings are that:

  • eBooks accounted for a mean of 18.44% of titles ordered from academic presses. 
  • The annual change in spending on eBooks through a model that grants unlimited patron use for a specified subscription period was 27.42%. 
  • Libraries of colleges that charge more than $20,000 in tuition annually made 20.36% of their eBook orders directly from publishers.
  • For libraries in colleges with more than 7,000 students, the mean increase in patron use of eBooks was 62.2% and the median increase of 25%. 
  • 33.33% of libraries surveyed said that eBooks were not used for course reserve at all.

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