On the move with e-books

E-books at Vlerick libraryWith staff and students coming from across the globe, working in a wide variety of fields and commuting left, right and centre, there’s quite a demand placed on the Vlerick library in Ghent. It already has more than 13,000 books in its collection and over 30,000 online and printed journals, but the library wanted to meet the needs of more people and provide a more comprehensive service to all students and staff – wherever they are. E-books provide the obvious answer to a logistical problem and since October 2012 the library has been working with the EBSCO Business Source Complete platform.

Although paper books still form the main bulk of the library, the e-book collection is growing steadily, with around 25 being added each month. What’s more, the EBSCO platform also offers access to the Gutenberg project, a collection of over 40,000 e-books available in a variety of formats.  

Search and consult

The main advantage of e-books is obviously their online availability. Being able to access a book regardless of time or place can make studying much easier to plan. For researchers, the integrated search function can prove particularly useful. It means you can find specific information without having to read every page, saving considerable time if you’re looking for a particular quote or formula.

Consult or borrow

Another advantage of the e-library is you can simply read the publication online and close it when you’ve finished or need to do something else. Rather like consulting a book at the library and putting it back on the shelf when you’re done – except now you’re in the comfort of your own home, on the train, at work, or in your hotel room. You can simply pick up where you left off next time you visit and it means the book is still available to others.

For additional flexibility, however, you can of course download, or borrow, an e-book, giving you three days’ unlimited access. This is ideal when you need to read or refer to a particular book but can’t be sure you’ll have internet connection.

Easy to access

You can access the books simply by creating an EBSCO account. Make sure you’ve got the Adobe Digital Edition software installed on your mobile device or computer.

Open to suggestions

The e-library covers a broad range of business and economics subjects. The librarians take into consideration book lists and requests from professors for a particular book whenever possible and are always open to suggestions. library@vlerick.com

Marc Eyckmans“A logistical advantage” Marc Eyckmans (Executive MBA)

I find it as easy to read a book on my iPad as on paper, and with just a few clicks you have a choice of books available. I was initially slightly sceptical about e-books; I liked the concept but it seemed absurd that they cost almost the same as the paper versions, so having e-books on loan is a great alternative. And there’s a logistical advantage, of course. In my MEMBA programme, we have courses every three weekends, so returning paper library books has always meant careful planning. With the e-library, the books simply expire automatically after three days. You don’t have to do a thing, so it’s one less worry.”

Wim De Coen"I couldn't live without an e-book on the plane” Wim De Coen (Executive MBA)

The e-books service was a gift from heaven for me. As a frequent traveller – I commute weekly to Finland where I work in the European Chemicals Agency – I prefer to travel light and I couldn’t live without an e-book on the plane. I like to consult a variety of books and I’ve already downloaded books related to finance, entrepreneurship and my in-company projects. Although the three-day lending period may not seem a lot at first, you easily adjust to it – and you can renew if need be.”

& Rankings

Equis Association of MBAs AACSB Financial Times Economist Intelligence Unit