To alleviate impacts following library closures in March, Washington State University Libraries will receive emergency temporary access to specific collections of the HathiTrust Digital Library, a nonprofit collaborative of academic and research libraries preserving more than 17 million digitized items.

Based on WSU Libraries’ most recent print holdings, faculty, staff and students will have reading access to 1.3 million in-copyright items through HathiTrust’s Emergency Temporary Access Service (ETAS). This is in addition to 6.7 million public-domain items that were already accessible to WSU Libraries. Of these, 554,590 match to print holdings. Altogether, 61.41 percent of WSU Libraries’ print collection is now accessible through the ETAS.

University patrons can learn more about accessing the ETAS through the HathiTrust website.

“We are pleased that HathiTrust has made this provision in this difficult time,” said WSU Libraries Dean Jay Starratt. “We will be able to provide over a million digital books safely and quickly.”

“This service will add online access to a tremendous collection for faculty and students during the time that the physical libraries are closed,” said Joel Cummings, WSU Libraries’ head of collection development.

Several WSU Libraries’ employees, including Blake Galbreath, Sue Shipman and Debra Spidal, collaborated to provide temporary access from SearchIt, the WSU library catalog, to approximately 480,000 digitized versions of WSU Libraries’ print books in the HathiTrust Digital Library collections. This electronic access provided immediate service for library patrons while the physical buildings were closed, Cummings said.

The ETAS permits special access for HathiTrust member libraries that suffer an unexpected or involuntary, temporary disruption to normal operations, such as closure for a public health emergency, requiring the library to be closed to its patrons or otherwise restrict print collection access services.

The service makes it possible for member library patrons to obtain lawful access to specific digital materials in HathiTrust that correspond to physical books held by their own library. The ETAS enables many HathiTrust member libraries to continue supporting the teaching, learning and research mission of their institutions during these disruptions in service.

For information about all WSU Libraries’ services during this time, visit the Libraries website.