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CHEM 3432 / CHEM 4242: Analytical Chemistry

Where to find primary literature

These are the best databases for finding primary literature in chemistry.

SciFinder Scholar is our largest chemistry database. Tips:

  • You may have created a username and password for SciFinder Scholar in CHEM 2119. If you didn't, click here to register. If you need to retrieve your username or password, click here.
  • Focus on specific document types more likely to be primary sources. Under the search box, open the Advanced Search options, then select clinical trialconferencejournal, and report.
  • On the search results page, the Sort by options can be helpful. Select Publication Year to get the most recent articles at the top of the list. Select Citing References to get the most cited articles at the top of the list.
  • The Sort by options can only be used if you have fewer than 20,000 search results. If the Sort by options are grayed out, use the Refine options to focus your search until you have fewer results. Try refining by Language and Publication Year.
  • Click an article title to read the complete abstract. Look for descriptions that indicate the article is a primary source.
  • SciFinder Scholar is not a full-text database. It does not include article PDFs. Use the Other Sources links on the research results page or the Link to Other Sources button on the reference details page to help find full text. See below in another box for more information.

American Chemical Society (ACS) Journals is a smaller chemistry database. Tips:

  • Focus on publications more likely to be primary sources. On the search results page, find the Manuscript Type option on the left, then select Research Article.
  • If you have a lot of results, try the pre-defined Subject and Publication Date options on the left to focus your search.
  • Click an article title to read the complete abstract. Look for descriptions that indicate the article is a primary source.

Scopus is our largest scientific research database. Tips:

  • Scopus is not just a chemistry database. In the search results, use the Subject Area option on the left to focus results to Chemistry journals.
  • Focus on publications more likely to be primary sources. On the search results page, find the Document Type option on the left, then select Article and Conference Paper.
  • Find the articles on your topic that have been cited the most. Use the Sort By option to select Cited By (Highest).
  • Click the View Abstract link to read the complete abstract. Look for descriptions that indicate the article is a primary source.
  • Scopus is not a full-text database. It does not include article PDFs. Use the View at Publisher and LinkSource links on the research results page to find full text. See below in another box for more information.

Finding PDFs from SciFinder and Scopus

SciFinder and Scopus are not full-text databases. Neither includes article PDFs for download. They do, however, link to the library's Full Text Finder to help you find the articles.

In SciFinder, click the Other Sources link found on the search results page under each article title. In Scopus, click the LinkSource button found on the research results page under each article title.

The Full Text Finder will list options for getting the PDF of an article. The example below shows every option. Not all options will be available for every article. These are the options you want to look for:

  1. Resources Located for this Citation. These will be links to the library's subscriptions available in databases or the publisher's website. The links should go directly to the article you need.
  2. Open Access. This searches for the article in free Open Access databases. Success depends on availability.
  3. Document Delivery. These are pay-per-download options. The library will cover the download cost for you. Please use only as needed.
  4. Request via Interlibrary Loan. Even if none of the above options are available, this will be. We can always request scans of articles from other libraries.