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College of San Mateo Library

When You're Not On Campus

Even if you can't make it to the College of San Mateo campus and library in person, there are many resources, such as books, magazine articles, and encyclopedias, you can access online through the library website.

Below is an explanation of the resources available to you when you are away from campus. If you can make it to campus, visit this page to learn about on-site library resources.

You can chat with CSM Librarians using the chat box to the right, or IM directly using one of the IM clients and user names listed here. See our Ask a Librarian page to learn about contacting librarians via phone or email.

The CSM Library shares a library catalog with all of the public libraries in San Mateo County (PLS). You can use the PLS library catalog to search for books (both print and electronic), DVDs, CDs, and other library material. You can place items on hold and have them sent to your closest public library provided it is a San Mateo County public library. See below for how to access our full collection of electronic books.

In addition to the PLS catalog, you can use the CSM WorldCat catalog to search for books and resources worldwide. This catalog is especially useful if you are trying to locate materials near you: just enter your zip code and the WorldCat catalog will let you know where the closest copy of a book, DVD, or other resource is in relation to your location.

As a CSM student you have access to a wide variety of books that you can access and read electronically (eBooks). These books are available through several different providers and may be downloaded to your laptop, PC, iPad, iPhone, Kindle, and other personal reader devices. Take a look at the eReader devices page to see the formats supported by various eReaders.

eBooks can be downloaded and accessed for a limited period of time. After your check-out period has expired you will have to check it out again online. Many eBooks don't allow multiple user access at one time, so if there's a eBook you want and it's "checked out", check back at a later date. If you are having trouble viewing eBooks on your reading device, please refer to the manufacturer's website or manual.

CSM Library has subscriptions to many databases containing full-text magazine, newspaper and journal articles across a variety of subjects. To access databases you need an active PLS Library card. You can see a complete list of our databases, browse databases by subject, or search for accessible publication titles to locate specific articles.

Access CSM Library's variety of online encyclopedias. Requires PLS Library card.

Use our online dictionaries. Requires PLS library card.

Even if you're far away from the CSM Library, odds are there is a library in your community that may have useful resources. You can use the CSM WorldCat catalog to search for items at your local library, and you can also use CSM WorldCat to locate libraries nearest you.

CSM only guarantees library access to San Mateo County public libraries, so contact the circulation or reference desk of any other libraries you'd like to visit to find out about borrowing and access privileges.