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Instructions to Migrate Google Sheets Textbook List to CampusGuides


The purpose of this guide is to give instruction on how to migrate the information on accessing free textbooks from subject-specific Google sheets to subject-specific Campus Guides. It is helpful to remember that the ultimate goal is to connect our users with the text/s they need for their class/es.

Getting Started

Organize Your Resources

  • Open the Division Google Sheet
  • Log-in to VitalSource. Log-in to RedShelf if necessary. Other sites do not need a login to get to the textbook links.
  • Open OneSearch
  • For future use, download the "Available through" image buttons located in the Images and Links box located below (about 3/4 of the way) to a local space so you can upload them later. Image libraries are connected to people not pages, so every person's account has to have the images in their own library to use them.


            Multi-tab working option.

Create the CampusGuide

  • Login to LibGuides.
  • Create a new guide with "Copy Content." Use: TEMPLATE Google Sheets to CampusGuides | Spring 2020
  • Rename your CampusGuide to "DIVISION Free Online Textbooks | Spring 2020" where DIVISION is your spreadsheet's Division or Department name.
  • Click on the "Pages" dropdown menu next to the gears icon. Select "Page Properties" and change the Page Name.
  • In your newly-created CampusGuide, the first gray box is labeled "Sandbox for Cover Images..." It is a place to upload images if you need to get images into your image library for Cover Art or another purpose. Ignore it if you don't need it. Since it's a floating box, it should not show when you Preview your page.



Adding Titles

Adding Textbooks to the Guide

First, you will add a Division Name Box (if necessary). You will then add a box for each title. Please add titles in the order they appear on the spreadsheet. If a Division has more than one department, you'll need to add a box to head each department's titles. For example, the Social Science Division has 7 departments while other lists have only 1 department. 

Please reference Social Sciences Free Online Textbooks. if you would like an example.

Prequel - The Department Name

Access the Google Sheet you are working from. If there are multiple departments on the Google Sheet you will ultimately create a header-type box for each department. If there are not multiple departments, skip these steps. For each header needed, do the following.

  1. Add a box. 
  2. Make the Box Name the same as the department name.
  3. Do not check any boxes, so that this header box remains visible.
  4. Save. That is all that is done with this box. It will not have content.


Part 1 - The textbook.

  1. Access the Google Sheet and copy the ISBN number.
  2. Add a Box and make the Box Name the title of the textbook. This box should not be visible so click the "Floating Box" option. Save.
  3. You should now have a gray box with the Book Title. Below the Book Title is a dropdown menu where you will select "Book from the Catalog" which brings up a window for book data.
  4. Enter the ISBN copied in Step 1 into the ISBN field. Click "Get Book Info."
  5. This should bring up the necessary information. If it doesn't, see Challenges below. Most titles will work. If the only error is a lack of Cover Art, use the Cover Art dropdown menu to select a Default book cover. You can update the Cover Art later, using the instructions in the Challenges section.
  6. "Get Book Info" will populate some of the fields. Confirm the title and author fields. Truncate the date field to just the year. Delete the description. 
  7. Go back to the Google Sheet and click through to the Textbook supply source. Please make sure you get to an address that is for the actual textbook title. You may need to login to some sources to get that far. Copy the destination URL.
  8. Go back to the CampusGuide and paste the destination URL into the "Get Book Info" URL field.
  9. Change the cover art graphic to the "Medium - 140 pixels wide" option.
  10. Save



Part 2: The "Available Through" link.

Our students are accessing textbooks through numerous sources: VitalSearch, RedShelf, OpenStax, Internet Archive, and GCC's e-resources. Each title needs a link to the directions for creating an account and accessing the title from each resource. The link is a button located below the Cover Art image. Please use the following process to add these linked buttons. The images and links for each resource are located below. The VitalSource button is the example, but the process works for any image.

To add the "Available through Vital Source" button and link.

  1. From the dropdown menu located below the newly-added title book jacket image, open the Rich Text/HTML editor.
  2. In the editor, click on the image icon then "Browse Server."
    1. Use the green button labeled "Upload New Image" to upload the appropriate button image from where you previously downloaded it. (See Organize Your Resources above.) You only have to upload the image one time. 
    2. To reuse an image, after clicking "Browse Server," get the image from your library. It is not intuitive, but make sure to click on the image icon below the image rather than the image itself. This will bring it up in the Image Properties Preview window.
  3. The "Available through Vital Source" button should now appear in the Image Properties preview window.
  4. Set the Width to 150 (the proportions are locked, so the height should follow. If not, set Height to 86.)
  5. Set the HSpace to 15.
  6. Within the Image Properties box where you are, there is a second tab labeled "Link" which you can use to add a link to the image.
  7. Select the "Link" tab. Enter the VitalSource information link from below. This will link to GCC directions, not to VitalSource itself.
  8. Below the URL field is a dropdown menu labeled Target. Select the "New Window" option. Click OK.
  9. You should be back in the Rich Text editor and able to see the VitalSource button. Click shift+return to make a hard return.
  10. Add a horizontal line by clicking on the hamburger-looking icon in the same box as the image icon.
  11. Click Save & Close
  12. You should now see your title cover with the title information next to it and the "Available through" information below it. The title, book jacket and "available through" button should all be clickable.

Congratulations! You have added a title and the "available through" information. 

  • View your CampusGuide with the Preview Tool after adding the first title to see what the user will see. Make adjustments as necessary. Check the preview every few titles.
  • Sometimes when you hit the back button to return to the Editing Guide view, it's an old version of your Edited Guide. This can be alarming because it looks like your work is lost. It is not lost. Refresh the page and your work should be there.
  • Follow these same steps for RedShelf, OpenStax, or the Internet Archive. For our own OneSearch, copy the actual link used for the specific title. 
  • It is tedious, but every time you add an "Available through" image, you have to format it and create the link again.
    • ​Peggy has worked out a more elegant method. (Thank you!). If you're comfortable with basic HTML editing, please try the following
    • Since we do these same steps each time, it follows that the HTML that is created for each image/link will be the same each time.  Therefore, once we have done the steps one time we can retrieve that HTML, save it for later, and paste it in when we need it.
    • Here's how.  For each source (VitalSource, RedShelf, etc.): do the steps above, creating the image/link
      • open the image/link in edit mode
      • click on the 'source' button to the right of the dialog box.  This displays the HTML source code.
      • copy this code
      • paste it somewhere (word processor, notes app) and label it for the publisher and save it
      You only have to do the two sets of steps above one time.  Then once you have the HTML for each source, when you need to insert the image
      • click on add/reorder box
      • select image/HTML
      • click on the source button
      • paste in the appropriate HTML for VitalSource, RedShelf or whatever is appropriate
      • save
      Do this only if you feel comfortable with what you are up to.  And test it.
  • To add the next title, repeat the above steps, starting at Part 1. If you need to start a new department, repeat the above steps, starting at the Prequel.


"Get Book Info" Challenges

Most of the time the "Get Book Info" option works. Some subjects have better results than others. Below are examples of what to do when "Get Book Info" doesn't completely work or doesn't work at all. Creative problem solving is helpful here. Experimenting with ISBN options may work.

If "Get Book Info" retrieves the correct text information but not a cover image, you can provide a Cover Image using the following instructions.

  1. Complete the information as usual (confirm title/author, truncate date, delete description, add destination URL).
  2. Click through the destination URL to get to the title in VitalSource (or other resource).
  3. Save a copy of the Cover Art you find on your computer locally, just as was done with the "available through" button image files. 
  4. You will need to add the cover art to your image library before you can use it with the book title information.
  5. At the top of your CampusGuide is a gray box labeled "Sandbox for Cover Images..."  Use the Rich Text/HTML editor in this box to upload the cover art image and add it to your library. It may be helpful to create a folder labeled Cover Art so those images are not mixed in with images you use more often.
  6. The newly-uploaded image will open in the Image Properties Preview. Copy the URL in that window. It is right next to the "Browse Server" button. Click Cancel. The goal here is to get the link to the image to use the link elsewhere.
  7. Don't save the work in this box's Rich Text Editor. Just click Close.
  8. Return to the box that has the title that needs a cover image.
  9. Edit the box which will bring up the book information.
    1. In the Cover Art section on the right, click on the dropdown menu.
    2. Choose "Other" and paste the "Cover Art URL" you copied in step 5.
    3. Set the width to "Medium." Click Save.
  10. You should see the correct Cover Image and the textbook information.

If "Get Book Info" retrieves incomplete or no information at all, there are options. 

  • Try another ISBN from OneSearch, Books in Print or Amazon.
  • If nothing works, fill in the information from scratch.
  • Make sure to add a cover image as described in the steps immediately above.


Images and Links for "Available through" buttons

Resource Provider Button Images & Links to Account Directions

VitalSource account information link:

RedShelf account information link:

Internet Archive account information:

OneSearch information:

OpenStax information is title specific. 










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