Scientific and technical resources freely available to the public
Last Updated: Dec 14, 2015
To help you collect, organize, cite, and share the information you find, we recommend using Zotero, a free reference management tool. For more information on Zotero, see:
In some cases, you may want to obtain copies of articles that are not freely available. In these cases you typically have several options.
- Conduct an advanced search on the Internet. By entering the full title of the paper in quotes ("_") into an Internet search engine, you may be able to find a copy of the article if the authors have posted it. Also, try searching OAIster in case the paper has been deposited with a university archive.
- Request a copy through your local public or school library. This is usually referred to as "interlibrary loan" or "document delivery" and is often a free service. Talk to your librarian for details.
- Purchase and download the article. Most commercial publishers allow you to purchase and download articles individually. Cost varies by publisher, but expect to pay about $30 per article.
A significant trend in scholarly publishing over the past decade has been Open Access publication. These are freely available, often peer reviewed, high-quality scholarly journals. They are supported in part by government and by universities. It should be noted that not all open access publications make their current content available for free--many do not allow free access to articles published in the past 6 months to two years.
The following is a listing of the pricipal open access journals in science and technology.
- PLoS - Public Liibrary of Science
Online repository of open-access scientific journals
- DOAJ - the Directory of Open Access Journals
DOAJ is the most comprehensive listing of open access journals, listing more than 800,000 articles in more than 7,500 journals.
E-prints in mathematics, statistics, physics, quantitative biology, statistics, and computer science.
- PubMed Central
PubMed Central is a repository of open access articles and research papers sponsored by the U.S National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health.
- HighWire Press
Highwire Press is the publishing division of Stanford University. Not all of their content is free. This link takes you to their listing of free, open access content.
- Open Science Directory
Listing of open access titles form multiple sources.
OAIster is a free interface for searching multiple university repositories. These repositories contain publicly acessible copies of faculty research papers, graduate theses and dissertations, and other materials.
- Commercial Publishers
Most commercial publishers provide some free content, although it can sometimes be difficult to determine what's free and what isn't. See the tab on search tools for a list of publisher websites.
- Beall’s List
Beall's List is a list of possibly questionable scholarly open-access publishers, prepared by Jeffrey Beall, a librarian at Auraria Library, University of Colorado Denver. We recommend that scholars read the available opinions, reviews, assessments, and descriptions provided Mr. Beall, and then decide for themselves whether they want to read or submit articles, or serve as editors or on editorial boards of these publications.