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Art and Art History: Books and E-books

Books and E-books

  • The number of items you can borrow will depend on your borrower category. 
  • You can borrow most items for one week and these will be automatically renewed for you each week until someone else needs the item and requests it, or after 12 months.
  • You will only be fined if you do not bring the item back when it is recalled by another user, or if you do not return the book to the library after 12 months.
  • Further information: Borrowing from the Library 

To find out if a specific book is available in the Library, visit Primo and sign in.  In the search box enter one or two key words from the title and the surname of the author. When the search results appear you can choose to click Books in the Tweak my results menu on the left to display results for books only or filter to match your own criteria. 


If the book is available to borrow, Primo will state this information giving the floor location and classmark details. 

On loan

If the book is not available to borrow and on loan to another user, Primo will state this information.

Recalling a book 

You can recall a book that is on loan. For instructions on how to recall (request) a book that is on loan with another user, see FAQ 814.

Online access

If the item is available in electronic/online format, Primo will state this.

To search for books/e-books or journals/ejournals keep the search as Libraries (the default search). This search will look for:

  • physical items in campus libraries: books, journals, newspapers, pamphlets, DVDs,e-books, e-journals and other electronic information sources to which AU subscribes (searches for ebook/ejournal titles not individual chapters/articles within).

A module reading list is usually a list of books and other information resources compiled by the module co-ordinator to support your study of a module.

Where can I find my reading list?


You can find the reading list for a module you are studying in Blackboard.

For 2022-2023 Reading Lists (for 2023-2024, see below)

  • Visit the module in Blackboard and click the Reading List link in the module menu on the left-hand side
  • In the page that appears click on the link to the reading list, and the list will open in the Aspire Reading Lists system


For 2023-2024 Reading Lists

  • Visit the module in Blackboard and the Reading List will appear in the top six items within Course Content
  • Click on the Reading List (pile of books image) and it will open in the Aspire Reading Lists system

Find out more about your Aspire Reading Lists.


You can also view your lists directly in the Aspire system at  

Enter the module code and/or name.

Find out more by visiting the Aspire reading list webpage.

If you are choosing modules for next year, or you are a prospective student, visit the AU modules pages and on any module page...

  • click View in Aspire to see a reading list for a current module

  • click View an example list in Aspire to see an example list for a module being taught in the future

The Library Collection lockers are located on Level D of the Hugh Owen Library.  These lockers provide contactless, secure checkouts for books, equipment and other requested items. Library users will be informed by e-mail when requested items are ready to be collected from the lockers.

You will need your Abercard to access the lockers. 

Users can choose to collect items from an accessible height locker. How can I request that my books are placed in an accessible height library collection locker?

Aberystwyth University libraries subscribe to a wide range of e-books and e-book collections.

We have 1000s of e-books and our collection is regularly growing. You can access our e-books via Primo. In the search box enter one or two key words from the title and the surname of the author. When the search results appear you can choose to click Full text online in the Tweak my results menu on the left to display results for ebooks only.

If we have access to an electronic version of a book, the Primo record will state Online Access

  • All the e-books the library subscribes to can be found in the Primo Library catalogue.
  • Enter your keywords and when you see Online Access against the books you're after, select to either read online or download the entire book. 
  • Further instructions on how to access e-books from different platforms: How to access e-books 

Our extensive collections of electronic journals, databases and e-books are available to you 24/7 on and off-campus.

Before you start any searching off-campus: sign in to Primo

  • You know you have signed in successfully if your name displays at the top right hand of your screen.
  • You are now authenticated to access AU subscribed electronic resources. If you close your browser, you will need to sign into Primo again to re-authenticate.
eScholarship Editions (University of California) UC Press E-Books Collection, 1982-2004, includes almost 2,000 books from academic presses on a range of topics
Gale Reference Complete - E-Books (general collections)
Internet Text Archive The Internet Archive offers over 15,000,000 freely downloadable books and texts.
Museums and Galleries

Many major institutions, galleries and museums are now making their publications including exhibition catalogues available online.  Here are the collections of some major institutions: 

  • MetPublications : five decades of art history publications from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York available to read, search and download for free. 
  • Guggenheim Museum Publications Guggenheim Museum’s Publications Department publishes books and catalogues to document its exhibitions and collections, may of which they make available online.
  • Getty Publications Virtual Library : Free digital collection of titles from the Getty Publications Archive.
Pennsylvania Online Books (all topics) 
  • (Copy and paste URL into browser)
  • ‚ÄčListing over 3 million free books on the Web
Project Gutenberg
  • (Copy and paste URL)
  • Project Gutenberg offers 59,500 free ebooks to download
ProQuest Ebook Central Use Ebook Central to quickly and easily find relevant ebooks and chapters


Wikisource is a Free Library of source texts which are in the public domain or legally available for free redistribution

Wiley Online Library


A chapter digitisation service has been introduced to support your studies.

For details on how to request a chapter see How do I request a chapter to be scanned from a book in the library?