Answered By: Chris Clouser
Last Updated: Dec 10, 2014     Views: 80

Generally, you will not be able to access other libraries' electronic resources.

Most electronic resources, such as journal citation/full-ext databases, e-book collections, etc., are developed by commercial publishers and then licensed to the subscribing library.  The license agreements are pretty specific about who can access the information.  Since what the library pays for the license is usually based on the number of potential users, libraries will restrict access to their own current students and employees.  This is a very different philosophy than how libraries handle their physical collections.  For those items, libraries are often willing to share, particularly through Interlibrary Loan services.  Pitt will lend most of their physical books to us, but they are not allowed to share their electronic books because of the license agreements they have with the publishers.

If the library or institution itself has developed an electronic resource, those are often available to outside users.  For example, most library electronic catalogs which list the books and other materials available from that library can be accessed by anyone.  So for example, you would be able to access PITTCat to see what Pitt has, but if the individual book or journal is an electronic item from a commerical publisher you would not be able to view it.  Another example of a resouce that might be accessible is something such as a repository of electronic doctoral dissertations completed at that school.  IUP has developed such a resource and we make it available to the public. 

There are electronic resources available where IUP shares access with other institutions because we purchse them cooperatively, but those are all listed on the IUP Library website.

I hope this helps.  If you have futher questions, or you are looking for a specific resource and aren't sure if it's available through IUP, please feel free to submit another online question.


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