Support for e-Resources

How do I access Library Resources?

1. Via Library search

 If you know the name you can search for them using Library search.

2. e-Resource & Database Menu

 Access from our dedicated eResource & Database Menu page via subject or A-Z

3. Via a web search engine

If you know the name of the resource you can search for it in a web search engine such as Google.

How do I login?

Many library eResources are secure and will require you to prove you are a member of the University of Essex before you can access them.

There two main methods of authentication both require your University of Essex username and password.

4. The Library eResources login:

Most eResources are set up to authenticate via this login if you access eResources via the library search engine or eResource page.

This login requires you to enter your username only i.e. you do not need the


Screenhot of the Albert Sloman Library eResource login

5. The institutional login

If you find an eResource via a web search engine such as Google, then you will not be automatically routed via our authentication system and will need to look for the 'institutional' login link. This login is also sometimes called the 'home organisation login' or 'shibboleth login' or 'UK Access Management Federation login'. See our step by step guide for this login.


Screenshot of the Essex institutional login

6. Individual logins

A small number of our resources require individual or specific logins.

All these resources should have a 'get login' link on the full record and need to be accessed via Library search or the eResource menu.

Library search full record view:

Screenshot of 'get login' link in Encore

Classic catalogue full record view:

Screenshot of the 'get login' link in the classic catalogue


7. Are you accessing the resource via the library catalogue or database menu (see above)?

If you are you should be routed automatically via our authentication procedure. If you cannot login check the following:

  • Are you getting any error messages? If so report the issue including the text of the error message to the library helpdesk by e-mail
  • Are you trying to access a particular eJournal or eArticle? If so check that the library has a current subscription. To do this check Library search for the journal title you are trying to access and check the holdings for the correct year/volume - see point 8 below. For more information on how to check library subscription see our video on finding the full text of an article

If you are accessing an eResource via an internet search engine, such as Google, you will not be automatically routed to our authentication procedure but you may still be able to login. Look for the login link (usually located in the right-hand corner of the screen) and then look for the institutional login. If there is no institutional login look for the resource using Library search or on the eResource & Database Menu, if you cannot find it in either of these then we do not have access to it. If you would like us to investigate subscribing to the resource you are trying to access please contact libline.

8. Is there a problem with your login?

Can you login into Moodle? If you can then your login is working correctly. If you cannot login to Moodle contact the Computing Service helpdesk on 01206 872345 or email:

9. I do not know my Essex login

If you do not know what your username and password is please contact the University ISS helpdesk on 01206 872345 or

10. Is there a problem with the specific resource you are trying to access?

Can you login to other e-resources? Try another resource from the library eResource menu.  If you can access another resource it may be that there are problems with that particular resource, please try again later and if the problem persists report the issue to the library using the e-mail: libline

11. Does the Library have access to the e-Resource you require?

To check if we have access to the required eResource, search Library search or on the eResource & Database Menu, if you cannot find it in either of these then we do not have access to it. N.B. if you require access to an individual journal article make sure you check that we have access to the year or volume you require, as we may have access to a particular journal title online but we may not have access to all of the volumes or years available. To do this check the 'holdings' information on the record in Library search or the classic catalogue.

Library search holdings view:

Screenshot of journal holdings in Encore

Classic catalogue holdings field:

Screenshot of holdings in the classic catalogue

12. I am being asked for an ATHENS password.

The Library does not use ATHENS we have access to resources either via our own authentication (through Library search or the classic catalogue) or via the 'institutional login'. The institutional login link is usually located next to any ATHENS link, so use the institutional login instead.

13. Is there a problem with your personal device?

a. Try accessing via the library sites Library search or the eResource & Database Menu

b. Check that the resource does not require a specific login. See point 6. above.

c. Try another browser e.g. if you are using Internet Explorer (IE) try Firefox or Chrome, they can be downloaded for free.

d. Clear your browser history or cache:

e. Check you are not blocking pop-up windows - many electronic resources use pop-up windows where the resource generates a new browser window. Some browsers automatically block pop-up windows and this can cause problems with some resources, also some resources require plug-ins or extra software for your browser & if you block pop-ups you may miss the prompt to install particular software. Check your browser to see if you are blocking pop-ups, it should be easy to temporarily allow pop-ups when necessary or add the resource to your pop-up blocker. In IE Tools> Internet Options > Pop-Up Blocker Settings > Add the relevant website address.

14. Help with E-Books

a. General guide to accessing eBooks and using e-books

b. Installing and activating Adobe Digital Editions

c. Opening .acsm files

d. Checking out (Downloading) EBSCOhost e-books

Common error messages with the e-resources login

If you fail to login via the e-resources login, you should be returned to the e-resources login screen with an error message in red.

If this happens please ensure:

a. You have typed your password correctly

b. You have checked that your login is working correctly. (see above).

If your login is working correctly please contact Information Support Desk on Floor one (near the Student Collection), extension no. 3192 or email: libline. Please include the the text of the error message in your report as this can assist staff in their diagnosis of the issue.

For Example:

  •  'unable to identify you through your campus identification' usually means you have typed your password incorrectly.
  •  'Your code is not unique' occurs when we have a duplicate record for you on our system;
  •  'The information you have supplied is incorrect' usually means we do not have your Essex email address.
  •  'sorry cannot locate patron record' the library does not have a record for you, contact the Service Desk on the Ground Floor or email: circmail
  •  'Sorry, the information you submitted was invalid. Please try again.' this sometimes occurs if you have provided the library with a personal e-mail address. To access the Library e-resources the library must have your Essex e-mail in your library record.


If you are having problems with accessing library resources please contact the Library Helpdesk

The Library helpdesk is located on the ground floor of the Albert Sloman library (Colchester), the library at Loughton (East 15) or the Info Point in the Learning Hub, The Forum (Southend).

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'Phone us on Telephone number01206 873192

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The University of Essex
Wivenhoe Park
+44 (0) 1206 873192