L&LR staff blog

Sharing information about our work at the University.

E-books now account for one in four UoL library “loans”


As I reported in March, a comparison of Horizon issue stats and e-book ‘sessions’ shows that use of our e-books is going up.

I now have the e-book usage data (ebrary + MyiLibrary) and print circulation stats (all 4 sites, desk and self-issue) for April 2009, and the usage of e-books shows no sign of levelling out yet.

Counting one session with an e-book as equivalent to one issue of a paper book, there’s now approximately 1 e-book session for every 3 paper loans. That is, nearly one-quarter of total usage is “e”.

Actual figure for April is 23.17%.


Graph: e-book usage as a percentage of total loans, 2008-8 to 2009-4.

The proportion of e-book sessions as a percentage of total loans appears to have been growing in a roughly linear way since we formally launched ebrary in Jan ’09. My question still stands – where will this linear increase naturally level out? And (different question) where would we like it to level out?

Addendum: if it keeps going at the same rate, we’ll reach 1:1 print:electronic by January-February 2010. Will that happen, really, or will it bottom out before then? Is that what we want to happen? Could we stop it if we wanted to? Could we speed it up? Is it Friday yet?

Written by Paul Stainthorp

May 15th, 2009 at 4:35 pm