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HathiTrust Digital Library: Getting Started

The HathiTrust Digital Library brings together the immense collections of partner institutions in digital form, preserving them securely to be accessed and used today, and in future generations.

Creating an Account

To get started, go to the HathiTrust Research Center website and click the “Sign Up” button in the upper right hand corner of the page. To access much of the functionality, you will need to create an account using your university email address and a password of your choosing. 

You can find directions and step-by-step tutorials for using the HTRC on the Research Center's documentation:

HTRC Tools and Serivces

The HTRC provides tools and services for doing text analysis with the HathiTrust collection


There are off-the-shelf algorithms built into the HTRC that you can use for basic text analysis processes, such as topic modeling or making a word cloud. Learn more on the HTRC documentation wiki:


This visualization tool lets you explore word frequency over time. You can read more information in this guide: or on the HTRC documentation wiki:

HTRC Derived Datasets

The HTRC releases datasets for text analysis, such as the Extracted Features dataset, which includes words, word counts, and page-level metadata for volumes in the HathiTrust. Learn more here:

HTRC Data Capsules

Researchers can provision their own secure virtual machine "capsule" for performing their own, advanced text analysis workflows. Results are vetted before they are released to the researcher. Documentation is available here:

HTRC Introduction Video

Want to learn more about HTRC? This video gives an overview of the research center.


Credit and Licensing


Adopted from A Guide to the HathiTrust Research Center from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign Library Scholarly Commons.


Creative Commons License

Except where otherwise indicated, original content in this guide is licensed under a  Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) 4.0 license. You are free to share, adopt, or adapt the materials. We encourage broad adoption of these materials for teaching and other professional development purposes, and invite you to customize them for your own needs.