Working Off Campus

This page will be updated as information becomes available

We will be adding more online resources gradually to many of the course guides.  These will be placed in the proper part of the guide and also in a New Resources section on the Welcome page

Professors with faculty studies in Widener can sign in at the back (Massachusetts Avenue) door of Widener and go to their studies.


Books can be returned at the back (Massachusetts Avenue) door of Widener.

New Online Books

HathiTrust: HathiTrust is temporarily providing Harvard access to all the titles for which we have a print copy, approximately 2.4 million monographs.

How it works

  • You must Log In to HathiTrust as Harvard University with your Harvard Key.
  • “Temporary Access” books can be read only online.
  • You can Check Out a book for 1 hour.
  • Your access will renew automatically at the end of that hour, unless another user requests the book after that hour is over.
  • Use the Return Early button to make it available for another user.
  • To read a book that is being used by someone else, you will need to check back periodically.

These items may be protected by copyright law but are made available through Temporary Access due to involuntary closure of the library. No further reproduction or distribution is permitted by any means without the permission of the copyright holder.

JSTOR: Approximately 30,000 JSTOR books are now available on a temporary basis. These are not in HOLLIS, so you have to go straight to JSTOR and search your title as a phrase (in "").

Internet Archive: Internet Archive has many copyrighted e-books available to borrow for 2 weeks. You can create a free account and log in to borrow the book. Starting 3/24/2020 and ending with the national emergency, multiple persons can simultaneously borrow the same bookMore information.

Scan & Deliver and Interlibrary Loan Services

Our Scan & Deliver and Interlibrary Loan services have been paused.  As the situation changes this page will be updated.  The Scan & Deliver link is still on the HOLLIS Records because about 20% of the requests are for items which are actually available in HOLLIS.  These requests will be answered.  Also some non-HOLLIS material may be obtainable digitally, but this service will be reduced.

Purchase Requests

Purchase requests will be filled by e-books where available.  Requests for print-only books will be kept until normal ordering begins.

I need an article I found online but not through HOLLIS or Harvard Library Databases.

Instructions in: How to Use Your Harvard Key to Get Online Articles for Free


Note that in HOLLIS, near the top of Refine my results on your results screen, you can choose Show only: Online.  This is no longer reliable as many books are available online via HathiTrust, JSTOR, etc. but without links on HOLLIS records.

The Online Books Page

The Online Books Page arranges electronic texts by Library of Congress call numbers and is searchable (but not full text searchable).  Includes books not in Google Books, HathiTrust, or Internet Archive. Has many other useful features.

Visit a Library near You

Your local public library may have an e-books program.

Search in: WorldCat (the OCLC Union Catalog) which includes catalog records from over 70,000 libraries worldwide but largely U.S. Includes books, periodicals, archives and manuscripts, maps, videotapes, computer readable files, etc.  Harvard's subscribed version offers the most powerful search (use Advanced search), but the public version allows you to enter your zip code and find nearby libraries holding a specified book.

You can probably visit a nearby university library although you won't be able to borrow books (unless it is a Borrow Direct library - see below).  Many university libraries have special borrower cards available for purchase.  Always check with the library on its admittance policy before visiting.

Harvard’s membership in Borrow Direct entitles you to visit and borrow from other Borrow Direct libraries.  These libraries are listed and policies explained at BorrowDirect Plus On-Site Borrowing

Your own public library may be able to get books via their own interlibrary loan department.

Visit an Archives near You

This guide gives instructions for finding archives and manuscripts outside of Harvard: Library Research Guide for Finding Manuscripts and Archival Collections.  Methods for limiting by region, where available, are given for the archive and manuscript databases.

This guide offers advice on visiting non-Harvard archives: Research Travel Checklist.

Find Digitized Resources on the Open Web

We have added a Finding Sources Online page to this guide.