Using the Vitalsource Sampling Portal

Using the Vitalsource Sampling Portal

VitalSource has the ability for instructors to view Sample/Exam copies of eTextbooks.

You will need verification as an instructor to view eTextbooks, but once you've done so searching and adding Sample copies is easy. If an eTextbook you'd like isn't available as a sample, you can purchase a copy from the VitalSource Store. You will also be able to receive eTextbook recommendations from publishers.

To get started with your Sampling, please follow the steps below.




Please Note: Use your school/college/university email to set up your account to avoid delays in the verification process.

Existing Account

If you already have an existing bookshelf account here is how you can get started with sampling:

  1. Go to and sign in with your username and password
  2. If you have only used your credentials to sign into the Bookshelf Application, you will receive an option to show you are a student or an instructor when you sign in to for the first time.
  3. If you have forgotten your password, please go to Forgot Password for instructions.
  4. Once you have successfully logged into your account go to Requesting a Sample Copy below to continue.

New Account

If you are a new VitalSource user, you will need to make an account before you can start the Sampling process. Please visit the following article for information on making your account at Creating an Instructor Account.


  • Have an Account but forgot your password?

    If you try to register an account that already exists in VitalSource, you will receive a notification that your account already exists. If you can't remember your password, please request a forgot password link here: Forgot Password. You can also contact our support team, and they will be able to assist you to reset your password.  


Step 2 - How to Sample Content


  1. Requesting a Sample Copy

    Once you've signed in or created your account, start searching for your book. You can search by title, author, or ISBN. For more information on Searching the store, please go here: Searching the VitalSource Store.

    If your account is not approved, books that are available for Sampling will have an orange "Request Copy" button. Click on the "Request Copy" button to start the approval process. Please Note: You will not see "Request Copy" if you are not in the Educator Portal or if your account was created as a Learner (Student) account. You can verify you are in the Educator Portal by clicking on "Faculty Sampling" above the blue search bar.

    When you request to sample an eTextbook, you will receive an email letting you know.

    Once your status as an instructor has been approved by the publisher, you will receive another email that approves your request, which may take up to 10 business days.

    Once you receive the email, you will be able to view your book in your bookshelf.

    After verification books will be available for immediate viewing.

    Please note: there is no chapter preview available for books that have a pending sample request.

  2. Books not available on the Educator Portal will show "Not Available for Sampling" under their title and will only show the "Add to Cart" options. Please reach out directly to the publisher of these titles for solutions to Sample.


  3. Publisher recommendations

    Occasionally a publisher will send a recommendation for a book that you may find useful. Publisher recommendation is located under the publisher recommendations tab in your account. To view recommendations from the publisher, please do the following:

    While in your account on the VitalSource page, click on the Library button

    Click on Publisher Recommendations

    To accept a recommendation, click on "Add to Library." To decline a recommendation and remove it from your list, click on "Decline."


  4. Recommending books for your students

    You can also recommend books to your students. On the book information page underneath the book cover, there is a link that you copy and paste into your syllabus, lesson plan, or other documents of your choice. This section also gives you information on the cost of this textbook for your student.


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