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Biological Sciences Libraries

UPDATED 15/09/2021


Accessing electronic resources 

Working or studying from outside of campus

If you are working/studying off-campus and you need Library resources, please download the Lean Library browser extension and the plugin will recognise you/your Raven as a member of Cambridge and give you access to the resources (some publishers will not recognise LeanLibrary and you will need to log in manually).


Off-campus easy access (if LeanLibrary extension does not give you access).

  • Step 1. Choose the Shibboleth login option.
  • Step 2. Select UK Higher Education as your region or group.
  • Step 3. Select the University of Cambridge from the list.
  • You will then be prompted for your Raven login.

Most staff and students should be able to access e-resources but if you want to make sure, please go to the Test e-resources pageIf you can't access it, please contact us.


Where to find library e-resources


➤ Databases Online

You can search databases, digital archive collections and primary sources on Cambridge Databases A-Z.


➤ EBooks

Use iDiscover for ebooks OR check out ebooks at Cambridge for more information on ebooks not available on IDiscover.



Electronic journals are available on IDiscover, on the Databases and also you can use the BrowZine tool. BrowZine gives you the ability to browse journals, subscribed by the University of Cambridge, and store them on a personal bookshelf. BrowZine then updates you with new articles published in these journals and clearly displays unread articles new to your bookshelf. Visit the BrowZine platform and connect with Journals subscribed by the Cambridge University Libraries. 


➤ Electronic Legal Deposit resources

Electronic Legal Deposit resources cannot be made available beyond the physical premises of Cambridge University Libraries under the terms of current legal deposit legislation.  This can only be changed by the government through new legislation.  If you need an item, we will try to obtain it electronically with a wider license so that it is accessible off-campus via Raven; this will be on a case-by-case basis.  Please contact us OR use the form at the University library website to recommend books and journal titles.


➤ Reading list Online (RLO)

For undergraduate students, the library offers an online reading list with direct access to electronic resources recommended by the lecture in the paper guide/reading list. For resources not available online, you will find a bibliographic record with a list of the libraries where you can find the hard copy. Use the filters to list the ebooks, articles, scanned chapters and much more. Find out more about the RLO platform tools in this student guide

Visit your course reading list from the VLE (Moodle) page to access the full list with available scanned chapters OR see listed resources here.



➤ Resources not available in the University of Cambridge

Recommend a resource for our collection 

For e-books, e-journals or databases that you would like to recommend for our collection, use this form and the librarian will get back to you.


Subject Librarian Support

The Biological School library team are available via MicrosoftTeam, email or bookable  1-2-1 meeting using your preferable virtual meeting platform. 

➤ Book 1-2-1 virtual meeting 

➤ Visit the self-taught and virtual training available 

➤ Contact your specialist librarian and find out more about how we can support you