UW-Madison Libraries continue to expand access to online content including e-books. Some e-book content is licensed and only available to UW-Madison faculty, students and staff. Other content included is freely available to everyone.
All e-books available in full text may be viewed online. Printing e-book content while viewing online is typically restricted by the e-book provider.
Note that UW-Madison users can NOT checkout e-books from other UW System libraries.
Only a small percentage of our e-books are currently available for download. Most of this content is in PDF or EPUB file format and will only work on compatible mobile devices and e-readers.
The Library Catalog contains the most complete information about UW-Madison Libraries' e-books and e-book collections.
- Search the Library Catalog by author, title or topic to retrieve both print, and when available, electronic versions.
- Refine your results by using a combination of Formats facets at the left of the screen - Books and Electronic Resources. The results will then be limited to books available online, and in some cases, downloadable.
See Catalog Help for more information on using facets.
Many e-books and e-book collections are included in the Database Library.
Reference ResourcesBiographies, book reviews, dictionaries, encyclopedias, etc. are included in the Database Library.
UW Digital Collections
The University of Wisconsin Digital Collections - a UW System resource - provides access to digital resources, including books, that support the teaching and research needs of the UW community, uniquely document the university and State of Wisconsin, and provide access to rare or fragile items of broad research value.
Resources within the collections are free and publicly accessible online. They are loosely organized into collections that span a range of subjects including art, ecology, literature, history, music, natural resources, science, social sciences, the State of Wisconsin, and the University of Wisconsin.
Google Books includes digitized versions of some UW-Madison titles as well as titles in the public domain and previews/snippets of other books.
Some titles include downloadable PDF files of entire books if they are out of copyright (or if the publisher has opted to allow it). Others include previews of select pages.
The UW-Madison Google Digitization Initiative is a partnership between UW-Madison and Google that has thus far digitized 200,000+ books, allowing for greater ease of discovery.
Google Books Mobile - http://books.google.com/m
For iPhone and Android. While these books are also available on Google Book Search, these new mobile editions are optimized to be read on a small screen.
The Hathi Trust is a partnership of major research institutions and libraries with a goal of preserving and keeping accessible our rich cultural record. The UW-Madison Libraries contribute to the shared digital repository and so it includes digitized versions of some UW-Madison titles as well as titles in the public domain.
College Library E-Reader Pilot
Madison Public Library
Madison Public Library provides access to lots of additional e-books. A Madison Public Library card or South Central Library System card is required.
- EBSCOhost eBooks (formerly NetLibrary) -- more info
- Overdrive eBooks (downloadable) -- more info | compatible devices
- Safari Books Online** -- more info
**Contact Madison Public Library for additional requirements.
UW-Madison E-Book Projects
The University of Wisconsin-Madison Libraries participate in two important e-book digitization initiatives:
- The UW-Madison Google Digitization Initiative is a partnership between UW-Madison and Google that has thus far digitized 200,000+ books, allowing for greater ease of discovery. These books can be discovered by searching Google Book Search and also via links in MadCat.
- The Hathi Trust is a shared digital repository of the nation's great research libraries. UW-Madison Libraries books that are accessible via the Hathi Trust repository are linked from their MadCat records.