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How to Find Full-Text Articles

Whenever possible, the resources collected on this site are cited with a link to the full-text version of the articles. However, the full text of some articles and resources may not be readily available online. Minimally, you will likely find a link to the abstract from this site, as abstracts are widely considered to be within the pubic domain. You may find that access to an article’s abstract is sufficient for your needs.

If you need more information, try to locate the full text of the article through other means. Once you have basic citation information (author(s), title, publication and/or date) for a journal article, news report, or other published piece, you stand a good chance of being able to find the full text of the article. More and more often, articles are being posted online shortly after they’re published. To save yourself time and effort, do a quick Google search for the document. Go to www.google.com, put the article’s title in quotes in the search field, and click “Google Search.” You may find related abstracts, news stories that describe the findings, or other helpful information.

If that proves unsuccessful, follow the tips below:

Campus-based people (prevention workers, faculty, staff, students):

  • If you are associated with a campus and have library privileges, you will be able to search the library’s journal databases to find the full citation and, most likely, a full text electronic version of the article.
  • If this proves unsuccessful, your library may subscribe to the hard copy of the journal in question you need and you can photocopy the article.
  • Finally, if all else fails, the reference librarian should be able to request a copy of the article from another library at no cost.
  • If you are not sure how to access the journal databases, find articles of interest, or have other questions, call the reference department at your library.

Community-based people (Parents, public/private researchers, community initiatives, citizens):

  • For those who do not have access to an academic library system, you may have access to research databases through your hometown public library. If you are not a card-carrying member, join! This is a worthwhile step. Public libraries are free of charge, and could be valuable to you and others in your home for the resources, services and programs they provide. In searching for a research article, check with your public library reference librarian. For example, residents of many Northeast states can use their library card to gain entry to a library portal from home that gives them full-text access to many academic journals.
  • If this is not an option, ask the reference librarian to request a copy from an academic library within your system. The library may charge a minimal fee for this Interlibrary loan (ILL) request.
  • Finally, most journals offer a per-article purchase option on their website. Put the journal title in quotes to find their homepage

We wish you the best of luck in your search!


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