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Freshman Studies Resource Guide: Full Text Options

Finding an article by DOI

Obtaining Full Text

   This page begins with the assumption that you have found articles in databases and need to understand the available options for accessing full text.

Full Text Options via ProQuest or EBSCO:

Full text options in all databases display a little differently. Although the following will show the two most comprehensive databases, when you understand the terminology you should be able to apply it to any database. Once you have a results page with a list of available articles, you will be presented with the following:

Direct Access to Full Text in Current Database

indicates the full text can be retrieved in the exact format as when it appeared in a print journal. In other words, page numbers, illustrations, graphs will all be intact and it will print very nicely as well. This is the most desireable full text option. NOTE: be sure to always use the adobe toolbar located directly above the text of the article when searching, saving or printing .pdf documents.

: adobe toolbar

indicates the full text can be retrieved, but it will render as a web page. This means it might be a little more to difficult read than a pdf. and images, charts and graphs may not be present. It also might be difficult to print, as text may run off the page. Ideally if you have a choice between .pdf or html full text, always choose .pdf.

Linked Direct Access to Full Text in Another Database

(ProQuest) or

Linked Full Text EBSCO (EBSCO): Means that this database has found full text located in another database. Clicking on this link will take you out of where you are and into the database that contains the article. From there, you should be able to access the article either by .pdf or html.

NOTE: Because every database has different connections, metadata and access points, sometimes this does not work, and although it says it found full text, it may actually be unattainable.

Potential Access to Full Text in Another Database

360 icon(ProQuest) or

(EBSCO): These symbols indicate that full text may or may not have been found in one or more databases. Clicking on these links will result in one of three things:

    • If the article is found in only one resource, you will be connected directly to the full text of the article (similar to the Link to Full Text feature).

    • If the article is found in multiple databases, you will be presented with all available choices and asked to select one.

  • It will ultimately not be able to find full text in any other databases and return the following message:

ILL option

  • For your convenience, Interlibrary Loan is fully automated, but keep in mind the article could take up to two weeks to come it. Before pursuing this option, Ask a Librarian to determine if there is any other way to attain full text access and/or check for similar articles available in full text. More on InterLibrary Loan...

Which is better?

Image of the Adobe PDF logoImage of the HTML logo What's the difference between full text .pdf and full text html?


Why a .pdf is generally better

  • It is an exact reprint of how it appeared in the journal in print
  • It contains all original photos, charts/graphs mathematical formulas etc.
  • It is easier to read because it is preformatted just like the original
  • It is easier to extract the citation information from the header and/or footer

HTML full text...

  • Is a web rendered version of the article, therefore it can be tougher to read as it generally appears as one continous column
  • Will not likely contain any type of visuals, e.g. photos, tables, charts etc.
  • Has a unique feature within the EBSCO databases where you can choose to also LISTEN to the article
  • CAN be useful as a research tool, because it is much more likely to embedded hyperlinks within the content (similar to Wikipedia)


Cited References

Why would you care about this?

Illustration of a Stop Sign that stays "1 Stop Shopping"Cited references are good, because they offer related articles and if available, hyperlinks to access them. In this way, students maybe able to find a multitude of resources just by clicking into a single article result. Here's how it works:

When a user initiates a Basic or Advanced keyword search, appropriate Cited References or Times Cited in this Database links are presented with the search results. When clicked, a Cited References link will present a list of records cited in the original article. If a user selects one or more of those references, and then clicks the Related Records button, the References sub-tab will present a list of records related to the original article. These records are sorted by relevance, based on the greatest number of shared cited references.

If a user clicks the Times Cited in this Database link on a result, the Citing Articles sub-tab will present a list of records that cite the original article. Cited References and Times Cited in this Database links are also displayed on the article detail page.

Additionally, users can search by Cited References. This functionality can be found on the search screen's toolbar button labeled Cited References. On the Cited References search screen, users can enter search terms in any or all of these fields: Cited Author, Cited Title, Cited Source, Cited Year or All Citation Fields, and then conduct a search.*

*information courtesy of EBSCO publishing.