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Information Literacy Tutorial: I want to find a book

Learn what academic literature is, where to find it and how to use it correctly.


During your study you will have to get your information largely from books. In the chapter 'Types of literature' you have become familiar with various types of books. The LIT Library owns around 60,000 books and also provides access to around 200,000 eBooks. 

Most of these books are for loan, but some of them may be for library use only. That is why you have to use the library catalogue to find the books that are relevant to your research question.

A library catalogue contains the description, availability and location of books, journals and other items from a certain collection. In a traditional library catalogue you will by no means find all the literature that has been published on a subject, but only literature that is part of the library's own collection.


Students and staff of LIT  have currently access to over 200,000 eBooks through the Library. These can all be found in the Discover! Search

LIT Library provides access to thousands of eBooks in many subject areas. Our eBooks are provided by a variety of suppliers and are available on different platforms - EBSCO, Dawsonera and ScienceDirect. You can access eBooks wherever and whenever you need them.

In many cases it is possible to then download and (temporarily) read offline (parts of) the book on your computer, tablet or e-reader.

Explore this guide to learn how to find and use eBooks.

What is Discover!

Discover! is a powerful search engine provided by EBSCO that allows library researchers to discover material of all sorts through a single search box. With Discover! you can quickly find reliable books and articles to help you complete research projects and other classroom assignments.This guide will help you get started with Discover!

Tips on searching Discover!


  • The success of your search depends on the keywords that you use. Expand keywords by thinking around your topic, e.g. computing, information technology, ICT etc.
  • Use acronyms and full names. Identify your keywords in your assignment or related to your topic.

  • Identify words from different cultures, e.g. rubbish /garbage. Use a thesaurus or dictionary to find related or similar terms.

  • Don’t forget to search for people, places, and organisations related to your topic. Use the advanced search screen to be more specific in your search.

  • Continue to revise your search, e.g. use the Refine your search section in Discover! which suggests types of content, specific subject terms and publication dates.

  • Phrase searching: By putting double quotation marks “ ” around a set of words, you will search for the exact words in that order without any change. For example, to find items about study skills, enter “study skills”.

What if the Library does not have the book I need?

If the item you are searching for is unavailable at LIT Library, try our inter library loans service. We may be able to borrow the books or journal articles that you want from another library for you. Request forms are available online or at the library desk.

Full-text books on the Internet

Worldwide there are various initiatives to offer digitized books full-text on the internet. Usually this applies only to older books where copyright no longer applies. However, there are also collaborative initiatives by publishers and libraries to offer more recent, and sometimes even new books, full-text online.

The best known and largest provider is Google through its Google Books search engine.

The Library, Limerick Institute of Technology