Skip to Main Content

HIST 214: Sandin, J. (Spring 2024): Finding eBooks

eBooks as sources

Now that you've gathered some basic background information on your topic, it's time to get some more in-depth material. The TCC Library has a HUGE eBook collection, which means that you can access it from anywhere, as long as you're logged into the TCC Portal. 

Take a minute to look at the search steps listed in the box below before you begin your library catalog search. Then click on the catalog link and begin your search.

Finding eBooks in the TCC Library catalog

Searching the Library Catalog

Once you've found general, background information on your topic, it's time to find more in-depth information. One way is to find books that you can check out at the TCC Library or e-books that you can read online. You can search the library catalog for books by doing a keyword search (e.g., "bilingual education" or "drug abuse") by clicking the link below.

Click the link below to search for books in the library catalog

Search tips:
  1. Type in your keywords in the search box and click the "Search" button
  2. Take note of the format of the results. You can narrow down to print books or e-books by clicking one of the boxes.
  3. Take note of the publication date range. You can narrow down results to a specific data range.
  4. Click the title of the book for more detailed info
  5. Take note of the format of the book. An e-book will have an "E" icon; a print book will have a book icon.
  6. If it's an e-book, then you can click the "Electronic access" link to read the book online.
  7. You can also text any book record to yourself.

(click on image to enlarge)

Screenshot of library catalog search for language AND identity

Why use books?

checkmarkBooks can give you the in-depth analysis of your topic

  • can get you a historical perspecitve on your topic to see how it has evolved over time
  • often are written by authors who are experts or have taken the time to do research on a particular subject
  • help you understand the complexity your topic
When you find a book...
  • you do not have to read the whole book! Instead look at the table of contents in the front to find which chapters will be most helpful to you
  • look in the back of the book.  Often there is a list of sources that the author consulted when he or she wrote the book.  You might want to use these sources for your research, too!

Possible keyword search terms

Here are some ideas for keywords to help get you started on your search. 

  1. Notice how I included quotation marks around two-word concepts. This is called a phrase search.
  2. Notice how I combined two different search concepts with an "AND" (in all capital letters). This is called a Boolean search.
  • "Washington State"
  • "Pacific Northwest"
  • Northwest
  • Oregon
  • Idaho
  • Pioneers
  • "Native Americans" (also try "Indians") AND Idaho
  • Immigrants and "Pacific Northwest"
  • Logging AND "Washington State"
  • "Civil Rights" AND "Washington State"

CC BY SA license

Except where otherwise noted, the content in these guides by Tacoma Community College Library is licensed under CC BY SA 4.0.
This openly licensed content allows others to cite, share, or modify this content, with credit to TCC Library. When reusing or adapting this content, include this statement in the new document: This content was originally created by Tacoma Community College Library and shared with a CC BY SA 4.0 license.

Tacoma Community College Library - Building 7, 6501 South 19th Street, Tacoma, WA 98466 - P. 253.566.5087

Instagram logo

Visit us on Instagram!