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Course Affordability and Course Materials at Union College

Library, Bookstore, and Open Resources

How can the library help?

Schaffer Library is committed to helping students and faculty lower the cost of courses by making available the highest quality materials available for your use. Through a combination of licensed electronic resources like ebooks, streaming media, and articles, as well as physical books and our Course Reserves program, we can help foster better course affordability and resource availability.



Schaffer Library subscribes to millions of electronic books, most of which are listed in Primo, the library's discovery tool. Search by title to find your book, and use the "Available Online" link to connect to the ebook. We purchase unlimited-license ebooks whenever possible. Occasionally we can only find single-user or 3-user licenses. (This means that only one or only 3 users can use an item simultaneously.) Any limitations on licensing is noted in the Primo record. Please note that textbooks are difficult for libraries to acquire; many publishers do not want to sell textbooks to libraries in physical or electronic format.

Articles, Journals, Databases, and Book Chapters

Schaffer Library has access to millions of articles, book chapters, and journals that can be used in Nexus.


Streaming Media

As the demand for streaming media continues to increase, the library has expanded its collection to include more feature films, documentaries, and independent distributors.

Physical Resources & Course Reserves

Did you know the library has more than 400,000 physical books? We also have significant music, film, and government documents collections. 

  • How to find materials: use Primo, the library's discovery platform, to find books, articles, movies, and more.
  • Once you find the material you need, click the Course Reserves button next to your resource to ask for the material to be placed on reserve.
  • Didn't find the material you need? Use our Suggest a Purchase form to ask that the library purchase it.

Questions? Email Amy Hathaway,

Open Educational Resources (OER)

The library can help you find open educational resources (OERs) for your classes. These consist of high-quality and freely available materials for use in a variety of classes.

  • How to find OERs: start with our Guide to OERs.
  • Timeline: no timeline - we're happy to help throughout the year.
  • Contact: For more information, contact Kim Mitchell.

Contact the Library

For more information about library services, contact:

Kim Mitchell - Collection Development Librarian

Amy Hathaway - Head of Access Services

For general inquires about library initiatives, contact:

Joanna DiPasquale - Director of Content & Digital Library Systems