Archives for Library News and Tips

Where do I find my textbooks? Where are the e-books I bought for my course?

You may be wondering where to find your textbooks or maybe you just want to know if the library has your textbooks. Did you order e-books online through the bookstore and you now need to know where to find them?

The first place to check for your textbooks is the college bookstore at They have information on how to find your books, how to order online and their contact information listed there. If you have any questions or need help ordering your books, contact the bookstore directly.

If you ordered e-books for your courses through the college bookstore, you should have received an email with the information about how to access your e-book. You can contact the bookstore if you do not have this email and they can assist you.

You are welcome to check the library e-book catalog to see if we have any of your textbooks in our online library but it is rare that we have textbooks available. You can search the e-book catalog by clicking on Books on the library homepage at If you do a search and your book is not listed, unfortunately, the online library does not have that book.

You may also have readings located in your course. Often the instructor will list how to access the reading or might include a link to the reading.

When all else fails or you still are not sure what to do, it is always best to check with your instructor.

image of college textbook stack

Ask-a-Librarian Hours for Martin Luther King Jr. Day

In honor of the Martin Luther King Jr. Day holiday, the Ask-a-librarian service will be closed on Monday, January 20, 2014.

We will be open on Sunday, January 19, 2014 from 1-9pm.

The library will re-open for normal business hours on Tuesday, January 21, 2014 at 9am.

  • Ask A Librarian – 1-518-581-2222
  • Ask A Librarian – 1-800-847-3000 ext. 2222
  • Ask A Librarian –
Technology questions? Ask the Helpdesk
Textbook questions? Ask the Bookstore
Writing questions? Go to the Writing Center
Need tutoring? Go to SmarThinking
The Student Information Center handles questions about your account, financial aid, etc. 1-800-847-3000 (no extension)

ebrary – Scheduled Downtime on Mon, Jan 20

Announcement from ebrary:

System Maintenance Notice :
ebrary will bell be unavailable beginning at the day/time listed below, while a scheduled upgrade is performed. We anticipate the upgrade to last a maximum of 3 hours, will strive to minimize this window of time, and apologize for any inconvenience.
Mon Jan 20, 2014: 5:00 PM EST / 2:00 PM PST

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Ask-a-Librarian Closing at 3pm

The Library will suspend operations at 3:00 p.m. on Thursday 1/2/13.

Operations for tomorrow, Friday 1/3/14, will be delayed until 10:00 a.m. unless otherwise announced.  

Please check MY ESC for further announcements.   The library is included in the announcements for  Empire State College, Coordinating Center
Saratoga Springs, New York.  

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Ask-a-Librarian Hours for Dec 22, 2013-Jan 1, 2014

Ask-a-Librarian Hours for Dec 22, 2013-Jan 1, 2014:

Sunday, Dec 22: 1-9pm

Monday, Dec 23: 8am – 4pm

Tuesday, Dec 24: 8am – 4pm

Wednesday, Dec 25:  Closed

Thursday, Dec 26: 9am – 5pm

Friday, Dec 27: 9am-5pm

Saturday, Dec 28: Closed

Sunday, Dec 29: 1-9pm

Monday, Dec 30: 8am-4pm

Tuesday, Dec 31: 9am-5pm

Wed, Jan 1: Closed

We will re-open for normal business hours on Thursday, January 2, 2014 at 9am. 
Regular Hours:

Monday – Thursday: 9am-9pm
Friday: 9am-5pm
Sunday: 1pm-9pm
Saturdays & Federal Holidays: Closed

Library Hours for Wed Nov 27- Sun Dec 1

Empire State College will be minimally staffed on Wednesday, Nov. 27.  The college is closed for Thanksgiving Day, Thursday, Nov. 28, and will not be open to serve the public on Friday, Nov. 29.

Questions submitted to the Ask-a-Librarian service during those days will be answered on Sunday, December 1, 2013 when the library will be open as usual from 1:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. E.T.

Creating a Login with Library Resources to Save Items for Later

Many of the library resources such as databases and e-book collection have special features that can be very convenient to use but to get them to work correctly and actually save your research, you need to create an account with that resource.  Your login to Empire State College gives you access to these resources but each one is run on its own platform by the company it comes from so to use their special features, you need to create a free online account with them.

Some examples with links to information on how to use these features are below:

EBSCOHost folders 

EBSCOHost has the folder feature that lets you select “Add to Folder” to save articles and e-books to your folder for later.  What you need to know is that this is ONLY for this current session unless you create a login account. If you create a login account in any EBSCOHost database, that login will work in all of our EBSCOHost databases.

Proquest My Research

Similar to EBSCOHost folders, Proquest lets you save items to My Research. Also similar to EBSCOHost folders, My Research only saves for later if you create an account to login later and access your saved articles.  If you create a login account with Proquest, it will work in all Proquest databases.

The ebrary Bookshelf

One of our e-book collections, the largest one, ebrary has many special features that require a login.  If you want to download an item or if you want to save it for later, you need to create a login. When you create a login, you can save items to your “bookshelf” for later.  It also allows you to download an item to read later.

Library Hours for Veterans Day Weekend

In honor of the Veteran’s Day holiday, the online library’s Ask-a-Librarian service will be closed on Monday, November 11, 2013.

We will, however, be open on Sunday, November 10 from 1-9pm.


Help citing your sources in APA or MLA

If you have been working on papers, essays or other assignments, you have likely been asked to cite your sources. Depending on the subject area that you are working in and your instructor’s preference, there are a few citation styles that you could be asked to use for this. Luckily, the Empire State College Library is here to help.

Once you know what style your instructor requires for your assignment, you should visit the library homepage at On the library homepage, you will see the link for “Cite Your Sources.” Click on that. Choose the tab for your citation style from APA, MLA, CSE or Chicago/Turabian.

Under your citation style tab, you will see citation style guides listed as Hacker and OWL. These are 2 very helpful sources that will help get you through citing your sources. If you have any questions, you can always contact the library. We are here to help. We can’t check your work but we can help you figure out how to format your citation for a particular source or help you find the citation information if you forgot to write it all down when you first found your resource.

Since APA and MLA are the more commonly used ones, I am going to review the features of those Hacker & OWL pages below. If you aren’t sure which citation style to use, ask your instructor. Many of them prefer one style over another.


image of menu from HAcker's APA citation guide


With Hacker‘s APA Citation Style Guide you will see a purple menu on the left side of the screen. To view how to do your in-text citations, click on APA in-text citations. If you need to know how to do your list of references, click on APA list of references and there will be a list of many possible types of references and how you need to cite them. If you would like to see a sample research paper using APA style, click on the link for Sample research paper: APA style.



image of menu from APA style guide by the OWL



The OWL‘s APA citation style guide also has a menu on the left side of the screen. Their menu is much more detailed. The menu includes general format information which has a sample title page. It also includes In-Text citation information. Below that, you will see a link for Footnotes and Endnotes. Then there are 7 links to help you with your Reference List. They start with Basic Rules and then are broken down by resource type. If you are using items from the online library, you probably want to start with Reference List: Electronic Sources. If you would like to see a sample paper, scroll down a bit on the meny until you see Sample APA Paper. That link will show you a sample paper.







image of menu from Hacker's MLA citation guide


With Hacker‘s Citation Style Guide for MLA, you will see a blue menu on the left side of the page. For help with your in-text citations, click on that in the menu. For MLA works cited information, click on the MLA list of works cited link on the menu and there will be a list of many possible types of references and how you need to cite them. If you would like to see a sample paper, click on Sample research paper: MLA style.




image of the OWL's menu for MLA citations


The OWL‘s MLA citation style guide has general information on how to format your paper on the first page. Next on the menu which is on the left side of the page, you will see MLA In-Text Citations: The Basics. This will help you with how to format your in-text citations. After that, the menu includes how to format Quotations as well as Endnotes and Footnotes. For your works cited page, you will see 5 different items listed in the menu based on the type of resource you are using. If you are using an item from the online library, you most likely want to start with MLA Words Cited: Electronic Resources. If you would like to view a sample paper or works cited page, scroll down until you see MLA Sample Paper or MLA Sample Works Cited on the menu.





We have many other resources to help you with your citations on our Cite Your Sources page which you can find here:

Ask-a-Librarian Hours for Columbus Day Weekend

In honor of the Columbus Day holiday, the library will be closed on Monday, October 14, 2013.

The library will be open on Sunday, October 13, from 1-9pm.