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Electronic Resource Services

Learn about use permissions and support for using and accessing our eResources.

Expandable List

By using electronic resources licensed by the Health Sciences Library, users agree to review and comply with all applicable terms and conditions.

Please refer to the eBooks Use Permissions for more details.

Please contact the Health Sciences Library for eJournal and database use permissions.

Use of licensed resources (e.g. eBooks, ejournals, databases) by the McMaster Health Sciences Library is governed by copyright restrictions and by contracts between the Library and the electronic resource provider. The negotiated license agreements stipulate how and by whom a given resource may be used. If license terms are violated by anyone, licensors may temporarily suspend access for the entire university community. In cases where a resolution cannot be reached, the vendor may have the right to permanently revoke access to the resource.

Individual eBooks can be purchased by the Health Sciences Library. Suggest an ebook using our recommendation form. 



Requests for multiple items may be submitted directly to our Technical Services staff: Please include your course code, the size of your class, and the following information :

  • Title
  • Author
  • Publisher
  • Edition
  • Year of publication
  • Catalogue link to the previous edition if one exists

We look at the following when deciding between purchasing access for a single user, 3 users, or unlimited access:

  • number of times a user was turned away from a title in the requested period. This is known as “turnaways”, and they would occur in the following scenarios:
    • the title was in use by another user or users (depending on the number of simultaneous users available)
    • we reached the limit for number of checkouts
  • your class size when deciding between purchase options of a single user seat, 3 user seats, or unlimited access.

We can increase the access of an eBook from a single user to 3 users fairly quickly. We encourage faculty and/or students to contact us at if they encounter access problems.

If you require students to read one chapter of the book this may be downloaded ahead of time and saved to their computer. You may wish to communicate this to students via your course outline.

Turn-around time for requests depends on the queue and the number of titles on your list. We aim to respond to individual title requests within 1-2 business days and course requests within a week. Once a title is purchased it will be accessible via the library catalogue within 1-3 business days.

You will receive an update from our technicians confirming the following:

  • status of the purchase and whether access is for a single user, 3 users, or unlimited access
  • estimated time of availability


Default Loan

Customizing Loan Period for Individual Titles

AODA Compliance

Publisher Platform

DRM Free

(e.g. Cambridge, Elsevier, Oxford, Taylor & Francis, Wiley)

Usually unlimited access

Unlimited access – loan period not needed

DRM free titles provide the best  AODA compliance


1 User Seat : 1 day


3 User Seats: 7 day

The library can reduce a 7 day loan to 1 day, or block “check-outs” entirely and set access to online-only.

ProQuest Accessibility Statement


ProQuest Accessibility Support


Accessibility Case submissions have a typical response time of 1 business day.



Loan period is 1 day

Library cannot customize loan periods for individual titles.

EBSCO Accessibility Support


Direct accessibility questions to We typically respond to questions or feedback within 24 hours/1 business day. Requests for remediated files will be fulfilled in 3-5 business days.

R2 Library

No Loans. Timeout after 5 minutes of inactivity.


R2 ebooks cannot be “checked-out”

R2 Accessibility Compliance Statement


“Rittenhouse cannot claim full ADA compliance through the R2 Library”

There are a few publishers or categories of information that publishers do not license for institutions. Many of these books are “textbooks” and are available for individual purchase via student platform, for example Vital Source (Canada).

Publisher eBooks Often Not Available for Institutional Purchase:

  • F.A. Davis
  • Pearson