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Resources for Finding and Accessing Scientific Papers

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The results of academic search engines come in the form of an abstract, which you can read to determine if the paper is relevant to your science project, as well as a full citation author, journal title, volume, page numbers, year, etc. Search engines do not necessarily contain the full text of the paper for you to read. A few, like PubMed, do provide links to free online versions of the paper, when one is available. Read on for help finding the full paper.

Once you've found the citation for a paper that is relevant to your advanced science project, the next step is actually getting a copy so that you can read it. As mentioned above, some search engines provide links to free online versions of the paper, if one exists. If the search engine doesn't, or if you got the citation somewhere else, like the bibliography of another science paper you were reading, there are several ways to find copies.

List of databases containing free, full-text scientific papers and data sets. Even with all of the above searching methods, you may not be able to find a free copy of the paper online.

This is particularly true for older science papers, which were published before online content became routine. In these cases, there are additional ways to get the paper at no or minimal cost. You can find this page online at: You may print and distribute up to copies of this document annually, at no charge, for personal and classroom educational use. When printing this document, you may NOT modify it in any way.

For any other use, please contact Science Buddies. Log In Join for Free. Support for Science Buddies provided by:. Reproduction of material from this website without written permission is strictly prohibited. In addition to using these as sources themselves, you can dig through the citations in those documents to find scholarly articles that may be relevant to your project. Find articles from international or non-governmental organizations.

Many international or non-governmental organizations, such as the United Nations, produce scholarly research as well. These reports often are available for free, or at a relatively limited cost. While many of these papers will be well-referenced and reliable, some may be slanted towards a particular viewpoint or position. Go to a university library website. Many universities have a more open approach to providing scholarly articles to the general public.

You may be able to access scholarly articles through the library's website even if you aren't a current student at that school. That way it won't be inconvenient if you end up having to go to the library to look at articles you've found online. Even universities that don't have open access to their databases may still have open access to the general public if you use a computer in the library itself.

Access the electronic databases. Different libraries will have different databases of scholarly journals and other scholarly publications. Typically these databases cover particular fields or disciplines. Even if the library allows the general public to access the databases, you may have to create a user account. Enter your search terms. When searching library databases, you'll typically get better results using advanced search options than a plain language search like you would use for a general internet search engine.

While they'll generally be the same, there may be some differences from one library system to another. Typically you'll also have the option of limiting your results. For example, you may be able to check a box if you want your search to return only peer-reviewed articles. When you submit your search, you'll get back a list of related scholarly articles.

Typically the search results will give you the name and author of the article along with publication information. In other libraries, clicking on the title may lead you only to an abstract. If you think the article would be helpful for your project based on the abstract, you typically can access the full text by going to the library.

Get information about the publication. Typically, the publisher of a scholarly journal or publication is a university or academic society. If the name isn't well known to you, additional research may be necessary. Do an online search for the name of the publication or the name of the publisher. Look for more information about their reputation in the field. Research the background of the author.

Unless the author is someone known to you to be a leader in the field, you need to find out how much authority they have. Articles written by people with extensive experience in the field are considered more reliable than those written by students.

If the author is someone who openly advocates for a particular policy or position, their scholarly work may not be objective. Look for citations of the article. Articles that are mentioned frequently in later scholarship have made a big impact on their field. Review these later mentions carefully to determine whether the article was received favorably. However, further review indicates that the article was criticized or dismissed in nearly all of those citations.

It would likely be a mistake to rely on that article given all that criticism. Talk to research library staff. After all of your research into the background of an article and its author, you may still be unsure about the quality of the article. A research librarian will be able to discuss with you how reliable the source is. Some universities allow you to ask the research librarians questions online, without ever going to the library. Don't leave online questions to the last minute, since you may have to wait for a response.

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Jan 05,  · Research papers and publications are the stepping stones of doing research and molding it into publications. The wonderful people and our wonderful emphatic fraternity of researchers know how crucial it is to have access to unabated flow of research articles at our behest.

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Look for a free online version. Try searching for the full title of the paper in a regular search engine like Google, Yahoo, or MSN. The paper may come up multiple times, and one of those might be a free, downloadable copy. So, if .

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