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E-Resources for Instruction

As the campus transitions to an online/hybrid instruction model, the Library offers many ways to integrate e-resources into your classes.
As the campus transitions to an online/hybrid instruction model, the Library offers many ways to integrate e-resources into your classes. Beyond our physical collections, the majority of the Library’s resources are online. Please be sure to access all Library resources directly from the Library’s website (as opposed to Googling the name of a database or ebook, for example). 

When using the Library’s electronic resources from off-campus via the Library’s website, you and your students will be asked to log in with your Purchase College credentials. See our FAQ on accessing library databases from off-campus.


  • Subject Guides: Please review the Library’s resources most relevant to your discipline/board of study at our Research by Subject Guides and Help Guides.

  • Linking to Databases: Please link directly to content within the Library’s subscription databases and online journals, rather than downloading a PDF of an article and uploading it to Moodle (make sure to follow TLTC instructions for ensuring such links work off campus). This is a best practice for a number of reasons:

    • Increases accessibility. Many databases offer alternative formats such as text-to-speech options and provide stable, searchable, accessible PDFs as well as full-text

    • Ensures compliance with copyright law and end-user agreements.

    • Builds research and information literacy skills by familiarizing students with various databases and interfaces.

    • Allows students to take advantage of value-added features such as citation generators, exporting to citation managers, and alternative file formats.

    • Increases database usage and justifies the cost of subscription content.

    • For more help with linking to Library resources within Moodle, please see the TLTC’s Linking & Library Resources page for directions on how to use Moodle’s URL resource to link to external content.

  • Ebooks: In lieu of requiring students to consult physical books on Reserve or in the Library’s main collection, the Library can look into acquiring ebook versions or ebook alternatives. Please be aware that ebook editions may not be available for all texts and may take time to acquire. You can learn more about the Library’s ebook resources on our ebooks guide. Please contact your subject liaison as soon as possible regarding your ebook needs.

  • Streaming video: Please take advantage of the Library’s streaming video resources. To inquire about streaming titles not yet in our collection and/or additional streaming resources, please contact your subject liaison. When requesting streaming titles, the Library asks that all instructors please be patient and flexible as streaming licenses can take time to acquire, and the Library may not be able to license a streaming version of all film titles. As streaming films can be extremely costly, when requesting specific streaming titles from the Library, please include how the film fulfills learning outcomes for your course and when possible, include a copy of any assignments that correspond with the film.

  • Scanning: To provide access to materials that cannot be found online, the Library has book scanners you can use to digitize print course materials, with digital accessibility and copyright implications in mind. Please keep scans to a minimum and only elect to scan content when an electronic version cannot be found via any other means (librarians can help you with this!). When creating scans, please consult theScanning Best Practices guide to ensure items are accessible before posting them to your Moodle spaces.


  • You don’t have to cancel your planned library sessions! Instruction librarians can adapt in-person research sessions to an online environment in several ways.

    • Librarians can use Zoom to conduct a research session synchronously (at a scheduled date and time where the class watches together) or asynchronously (librarians can record a video to share on your course’s Moodle page that students can view anytime). You do not need to request a Zoom Pro license from CTS to have a librarian conduct a Zoom session for your class.

    • Librarians can use a variety of Moodle resources such as discussion forums and assignments to instruct students on research resources and strategies.

    • Librarians can create customized research guides for individual classes such as the ones listed here:

    • Please be in contact with your subject liaison regarding your instruction needs.

Virtual Reference:

  • Please remind your students about the Library’s virtual reference and research services, which faculty and staff are welcome to use as well:

    • Chat 24/7: Students can chat with a librarian in real time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. We’re increasing the hours that Purchase College librarians will staff the chat service, which is also monitored 24 hours a day by back-up librarians from a nationwide cooperative.

    • Text a Librarian at 914-873-1711. The text service is staffed by local library staff when we are open. See text hours.

    • Email the Library at Librarians will respond as soon as possible (within 24 hours).