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"The Great Courses" Now on Hoopla

May 16, 2016 | Kelli | Comments (7)

The very popular The Great Courses lecture series is now available on Hoopla!    

The Great Courses are a video series presented by award-winning experts from respected institutions who are selected for their ability to teach. Lectures are available on a wide variety of topics, including history, photography, mindfulness, physics and much more. The Great Courses take the best of university -- interesting and comprehensive lectures on fascinating topics -- but without the time-consuming homework and stressful examinations.

Here are just a few of the many lecture series available through Hoopla, including The Great Tours: Experiencing Medieval Europe by the University of Toronto's own Professor Ken Bartlett


The Great Tours Experiencing Medieval Europe Food A cultural culinary History Being Human LIfe Lessons from the Frontiers of Science Fundamentals of Photography HOw to stay fit as you age

The Great Tours: Experiencing Medieval Europe. Travel through time to the golden ages of Europe's most beautiful medieval cities and discover the sights and sounds of daily medieval life.

Food: A Cultural Culinary History. Travel the world discovering fascinating food lore and culture from many regions. An enthralling journey into the human relationship with food.  

Being Human: Life Lessons from the Frontiers of Science. Understanding our humanity is one of the deepest mysteries in science. Many fields including biology, neuroscience, anthropology, psychology and sociology are starting to reveal more about the mechanisms of human behaviour.

Fundamentals of Photography. Twelve National Geographic photographers teach two lessons each, offering rich insights into how to approach photography. 

How to Stay Fit as You Age. Certified fitness and wellness consultant Dr. Bonura helps viewers create and practice a balanced, adaptable fitness program.  

Practicing Mindfulness An Introduction to Meditation The 23 Greatest Solo Piano Works The Inexplicable Universe The Mathematics of Games and Puzzles Thinking About Cybersecurity

Practicing Mindfulness: An Introduction to Meditation. Gain a clear understanding of the essence of meditation and how best to practice it in 24 lessons filled with guided exercises, principles and techniques.

The 23 Greatest Solo Piano Works. In addition to learning about these 23 masterworks, watch as three dynamic concert pianists perform live. 

The Inexplicable Universe with Neil deGasse Tyson. A journey to the frontiers of the known (and unknown) universe and an introduction to the tantalizing questions being addressed by the world's top scientists.

The Mathematics of Games and Puzzles: From Cards to Sudoku. Using nothing more than a simple grasp of math, you can discover optimal ways to win games and solve puzzles with the speed and accuracy of professional players. 

Thinking About Cybersecurity: From Cyber Crime to Cyber Warfare. An intriguing look at the structure of the Internet, the unique dangers it breeds, and the ways we're learning how to understand, manage and reduce these dangers.


New to Hoopla?  Have a look at our Getting Started with Hoopla webpage and download the Hoopla User Guide. Hoopla videos (television and movies), music and graphic books can are available for streaming or downloading (mobile devices only). Hoopla is compatible with Apple TV and Chromecast.  


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Android, BBC Good Food, Paris Match and Many More Magazines Added to Zinio

April 19, 2016 | Kelli | Comments (2)

Our Zinio eMagazines Collection has grown again with many new magazines for you to download and enjoy. Zinio eMagazines do not need to be returned and there are never any library fines. 

If you are new to Zinio eMagazines, have a look at our Getting Started with Zinio eMagazines webpage and download our Zinio User Guide.

Here are a few of the new English-language magazines:

Android Magazine BBC Good Food BBC History Entrepreneur Magazine Skynews

We also added a number of terrific French language magazines from France including:

Geo france GQ France Paris Match Vanity fair france Vogue Paris

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'Great Courses' Lectures Now Available on OneClickdigital Audiobooks

January 26, 2016 | Kelli | Comments (2)

Do you enjoy attending lectures, but do not have the time or money to go back to school? The Great Courses are for you! The Great Courses is a lecture series by award-winning experts and professors who are from respected institutions and are selected for their ability to teach. It's the best of university - interesting and comprehensive lectures on fascinating topics, but without all the annoying homework and stressful examinations.

The Great Courses have been available in video format for over 25 years. They are now available through our OneClickdigital audiobook collection. These audiobooks can be checked out for 21 days and downloaded or streamed on a computer, smartphone or tablet. If you are new to OneClickdigital, have a look at the library's Oneclickdigital User Guide or the help section of the OneClickdigital website.

Check the library's catalogue see the wide range of courses. Here are just a few:

Great minds of the western intellectual tradition Higgs Boson and Beyond Influence Practicing Mindfulness Rise and Fall of the British Empire

Great Minds of the Western Intellectual Tradition (3rd edition) taught by multiple professors
Crucial questions about our existence have been pondered by thoughtful men and women since civilization began. This course is a comprehensive survey of the history of Western philosophy from its origins in classical Greece to the present.


The Higgs Boson and Beyond by Sean Carroll, California Institute of Technology
The search and discovery of the Higgs boson was a triumph of modern physics and was justly celebrated around the world. In this lecture series, Professor Carroll will teach you everything you need to know to fully grasp the significance of this scientific discovery.


Influence: Mastering Life's Most Powerful Skill by Kenneth G. Brown of the University of Iowa
With scientific and sociological experiments, case studies from fields including business and politics, and practical exercises to test your skills, this course will show you how to harness the power of influence at home, at work, at the store, in your social life, and anywhere else you may need it.


Practicing Mindfulness: An Introduction to Meditation by Mark M. Muesse of Rhodes College
In addition to the principles and techniques of meditation, you will learn how to use the skills of meditation to work with thoughts and emotional states and to become deeply attentive to the operation of your mind.


The Rise and Fall of the British Empire by Patrick Allitt of Emory University
Covering four centuries of British power, innovation and influence, the course will provide fresh insights into world history and provide the background of current events in countries that were once part of Britain's empire, from Ireland to China, and in Africa and the Caribbean.


The Great Courses to DVD

Of course, the Toronto Public Library still carries the  The Great Courses to DVD. These DVD sets are checked out for three weeks. As with the audiobooks, the full list of The Great Courses DVD sets are available through our catalogue.  

Here are just a few of the most recent lectures available to borrow with your Toronto Public Library card:

Fundamentals of sustainable living Living History Experiencing the Great Events of the Ancient and Medieval Worlds Mind-Bending Math Music and the Brain Robotics

Fundamentals of Sustainable Living by Lonnie Gamble from the Maharishi University of Management
Learn specific techniques to work more efficiently with the energy, water, and food you consume, so that you can live a more balanced and sustainable lifestyle.


Living History: Experiencing Great Events of the Ancient and Medieval Worlds by Robert Garland from Colgate University 
By examining two dozen historical events from ancient Egypt through to medieval Europe and Asia, this course investigates a variety of first-hand accounts and secondary sources to experience what it was like to live these events as they occurred. 


Mind-Bending Math: Riddles and Paradoxes by David T. Kung from St. Mary's College of Maryland
Explore the ageless riddles that have plagued our greatest philosophical, mathematical, and scientific minds throughout history. Learn how to break down, examine, and solve these famous quandaries.


Music and the Brain by Aniruddh D. Patel from Tufts University
This interdisciplinary course combines music and cognitive science to explore music as an integral part of humanity. 


Robotics by John Long from Vassar College
Using robot demonstrations, 3-D animations, and other amazing visual aids, Professor Long demystifies the world of robots. This comprehensive course covers both the hard science of how robots work as well as the implications of robots for society.

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Get the Latest Tech and Business Books Online

January 20, 2016 | Joanne | Comments (0)

It is 2016 and technology is everywhere. How do you keep up with the latest developments? Safari Tech & Business Books Online can help.

Safari offers current ebook and videos from major publishers. New titles are generally added on a monthly basis. The publishers determine which titles are available to public library subscribers. 

How to use Safari

  1. Make sure you have a valid Toronto Public Library card
  2. Sign in through the Safari page ( on the Toronto Public Library website.
  3. Browse the books and videos. Unlike some other library ebook services, Safari has no waiting lists and no requirement to check books out. All content is always available.
  4. Read books or view videos on the Safari site in your web browser. Note: you must be connected to the internet; books and videos can't be downloaded for offline use.

What topics are covered

A wide range of topics are covered including software development, programming languages, digital media and design, web development, mobile apps, UX, certification, entrepreneurship, marketing, customer service, personal investing, finance and more.


           Java in a nutshell 9781449371296_s     Responsive Web Design 9781449363659_s     Sams teach yourself html9780133132397_s

            Mastering iOS Game Development 9781783554355_s   CCNA Security 210-260 certification 9780134077857_s   Customer Centric Marketing 9781119092896_s

            Six Sigma 9780749469504_s      Successful project management 9780761215684_s Adobe Photoshop Elements 9780134385358_s









Bringing Ebooks and Print Closer Together on the Library Website

January 5, 2016 | Sandra | Comments (8)

Are you an ebook reader, a print book reader, or both? For those of us who borrow both physical books and ebooks from the library, going back and forth between the main library website and the OverDrive ebook service can be inconvenient.

Why do we have to borrow ebooks through a separate site?

Like other libraries, TPL provides access to digital content through third-party vendors. These vendors (OverDrive, Hoopla, and others) negotiate rights with publishers and apply technical restrictions based on the licence agreements. This model places some limits on what libraries are able to do with their digital content.

The good news is that options for website integration exist, and we have started working on ways to take advantage of them.

One-stop search for electronic and print

One of our goals is to make it easier to find both print and ebooks through our main website search. We've always had catalogue records for both types of books, and we've recently done some additional work to make the search more useful.

Ebook availability: holds and copies

The first issue we tackled (in April 2015) was adding a key piece of missing information to our ebook records: the number of copies and the length of the waiting list (number of holds) for each title.

Having the holds and copies information right there on the search results page comes in very handy - you can easily see whether you'll be able to get the ebook right away, and you can compare waiting lists between the print and ebook versions.

Search relevance: bringing ebooks closer to the top of the results list

Another improvement we made this year involved adding data about ebook copies to our search engine's index. The number of copies the library owns helps determine which records appear at the top of your search results. When the search engine didn't know how many ebook copies we had, it would place the ebook records much lower down in results - below specialized formats like large print and talking book, and sometimes not even on the first page of results.

Now that the search engine has access to the number of ebook copies, ebooks turn up much closer to the top of the results - often right after the regular print version.

Future possibilities

These improvements are only the beginning. Future projects may include:

  • A single sign-in, eliminating the extra step of signing in to OverDrive
  • An integrated account where you can see all your physical and ebook checkouts and holds in one place
  • An app that brings everything together - searching (print and electronic), managing your account (print and electronic), and downloading and reading ebooks all in one place

In the meantime, we appreciate hearing your feedback about using ebooks - it helps us set priorities for the future.

Let Us Download! Get Started with eBooks, Magazines, Music and Movies

December 23, 2015 | Kelli | Comments (2)

Toronto Public Library has a fantastic selection of eBooks, audiobooks, magazines, movies, music and television shows available which can be downloaded or streamed on smartphones, tablets and computers.  

For most items, the downloaded computer file will either disappear or just stop working after the borrowing period has ended.  The borrowed book, music or movie does not need to be returned and there are never any fines.   If you are new to these digital collections, please get started with our eBooks & Digital Content: Start Here webpage.


eBooks and Audiobooks from OverDrive

OverDrive eBook and eAudiobooks can be borrowed for 21 days.   Fiction and non-fiction books and audiobooks are available for children, teens and adults.  The maximum number of checkouts at any one time is 30.  The maximum number of holds is also 30.  OverDrive eBooks and audiobooks can not be renewed. 

Smartphones and tablets from major electronics manufacturers (Apple, Samsung, Windows etc.) are compatible with OverDrive. Kobo eReaders are also compatible.  Of the Amazon Kindles, only the Kindle Fire will work with OverDrive in Canada.  Also, there have been some compatibility problems with the new Nook Glowlight Plus.   Adobe has a full list of eReaders that are compatible with the Adobe Digital Editions desktop software needed to transfer an eBook to an eReader.

Here are a few of the many popular books available through OverDrive:

All the light we cannot see Life-changing magic of tidying up Make Me Martian Why not me

If you are new to OverDrive, please read through our Getting Started with Library eBooks webpage and have a look at the guide for your specific device.


Audiobooks from OneClickdigital

OneClickdigital is another source of audiobooks available with your Toronto Public Library card.  Like the audiobooks from OverDrive, the borrowing period is 21 days. You can checkout 10 audiobooks and have 15 on hold at any one time.  There are no renewals.

Here are a few of the popular audiobooks found through OneClickdigital:

Dear Life Orenda Outlander Steve Jobs Yes Please

OneClickdigital audiobooks require a separate account and different software from OverDrive audiobooks.  If you have not used this service before, please download our OneClickdigital User Guide (PDF), and/or have a look at the help section of the OneClickdigital website.  


Magazines from Zinio eMagazines

Zinio eMagazines offers more than 500 different magazines to checkout and enjoy.  In addition to many popular English-language magazines, there are magazines in Chinese, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish and Vietnamese.  There are also English-language magazines from India and the Philippines.  You can borrow as many magazines as you would like and you can keep them for as long as you want.  Awesome, eh? 

Here are a few of the popular magazines available through Zinio:

Canadian Living Economist National Geographic Rolling Stone Vanity Fair

 Are you new to Zinio eMagazines?  If so, please have a look at our Getting Started with Zinio eMagazines webpage. 


Movies, Music, Television and Comics from Hoopla

Hoopla has a great collection of movies, television shows, music, graphic books and comics.  They can be streamed on your computer's web browser (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome etc.) or enjoyed offline by downloading to your smartphone or tablet.

With a valid library card, customers can checkout 8 Hoopla items per calendar month.  Television shows and movies are borrowed for 3 days, music for 7 days and graphic books and comics for 21 days.  There are no holds needed in Hoopla.  The items in this collection are always available to borrow.

Here are some of the popular items available through Hoopla:


Amy Back in Time Bridget Jones' Diary Ex Machina Muppet Christmas


Eloise Inspector Lewis Jillian Michaels Beginner Shred Small Island Walking the Bible


Beauty Behind the Madness The Weeknd Christmas Frank Sinatra Reloaded Blake Shelton Star Wars Force Awakens We Love Disney

Comics and Graphic Books:

Garfield's Cheesey Holiday Special Justice League Vol 1 Origin Mecha-Nation Androidology Issue 1 Minions issue 1 Saga Vol 1

Are you new to Hoopla?  If so, please read through our Getting Started with Hoopla webpage 


Still have questions or need help using these service? Attend an eBook or Online Movies and Magazines program at one of our branches or ask at your local branch about the Book-A-Librarian service for one-on-one help.

Hoopla: Digital Comics and Graphic Novels Now Available

November 18, 2015 | Kelli | Comments (2)

In addition to all the great music, movies and television shows, we now have over 4,000 comics and graphic books available for streaming or downloading through Toronto Public Library's Hoopla digital service.  

There are comics and graphic novels available for children, teens and adults. The content is always available, it is borrowed for 21 days and there are no waiting lists. All you need to use Hoopla is an email address and a valid library card. Customers can borrow eight items from Hoopla per month, with the limit reset on the first of each month. To use Hoopla on a smartphone or tablet, simply download the free Hoopla app from the App Store or Google Play.

Find Hoopla through the Downloads & eBooks page, or simply search for the word "Hoopla" on our website.

Some popular titles for children include:

Garfield Lumberjanes Minions - kids My little pony Peanuts

Some popular titles for teens include:

Batgirl Batman Superman - teen Green arrow Supergirl Teen Titans


Some popular titles for adults include:

Doctor Who Saga - adult Sandman - adult Suicide Squad - adult Walking Dead

New to Hoopla?

Visit our Getting Started with Hoopla webpage for more information on this digital service and download our Hoopla User Guide

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Learn Online with - Now Free for TPL Cardholders

November 2, 2015 | Joanne | Comments (28)

The online learning platform is now available for free to Toronto Public Library customers. offers over 3,500 video tutorial courses led by industry experts on topics including:

  • Computer programming and web and app development, from beginner to advanced levels
  • Business software, marketing and communications, leadership and project management
  • Graphic design, illustration, typography, logos and branding
  • Multimedia, including photography, video and audio production and editing, animation, 3D modeling and game design


Creating an account

  1. Go to Toronto Public Library's page and select Access Online
  2. Sign in with your library card number* and PIN (usually the last four digits of your phone number)

    * Note: a valid Toronto Public Library card is required.

  3. Enter your first name, last name, and email address. Your personal account/profile will allow you to track your progress through your tutorials and manage your bookmarks and certificates of completion


Finding and taking courses

  • Browse the library and choose a category such as Design, IT or Business
  • Search for specific software or skills by typing term(s) in the search box
  • Further filter courses by software version, skill level or topics
  • Once you have found a course or video your're interested in watching, click on the title or thumbnail image
  • The next time you visit, sign in with your library card number and PIN and resume learning where you left off
  • If you complete an entire course, a certificate of completion will be automatically issued


Using on a mobile device

To use on your mobile phone or tablet, visit in the browser on your device and follow the steps outlined above.

The mobile apps are not available for use with the library version of the service.

Have fun learning!

New eMagazines Added to Zinio (Including Dr. Oz)

October 22, 2015 | Kelli | Comments (0)

More magazines have been added to our Zinio eMagazine collection. Magazines for adults, children and teens have been added, as well as some German language magazines.

Here are some of the new adult magazines:

Dr oz Gamestm Mojo More Velo


Some Children's and Teen magazines:

Ask Babybug Cricket DIg Cicada

To see all the magazines for kids, select the Children in the Genre list. For a full list of teen magazines, select Teen in the Genre list.


German Language titles:

AD Magazin Glamour GQ Myself Vogue


New Email Reminders: Don’t Be Caught Off Guard with an Expired Library Card!

October 6, 2015 | Sandra | Comments (5)

Library cards expire once a year and must be renewed by visiting a branch in person to show identification. We know this can be inconvenient, so we’re introducing a new way to get advance warning when your expiry date is approaching.

If you’re signed up for email notification, you will now receive a reminder message 30 days before your card expires.

Here’s how to make sure you’ll receive your reminder:

  1. Sign in to the Notification Settings section of your account.
  2. Make sure you have selected Email as your preferred notification method.
  3. Make sure your email address is correct.

Notification Settings screen showing email settings

Check our Email Notification FAQ or contact us if you need help with your settings.

For those who prefer telephone notification, we will be introducing expiry reminders by telephone before the end of this year.


About library card expiry

Toronto Public Library cards expire annually so we can:

  • Ensure that your contact information is current
  • Confirm that you are still eligible for a library card
  • Collect payment for any outstanding fines on the account

When your card has expired, you can’t borrow or renew items, place holds, or access ebooks and other digital content.


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