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Sciences: Science journals and articles (LibrarySearch)

A collection of information resources and guidance for Science students

LibrarySearch quick-search boxes

Use our quick search boxes or go to your University library pages
(Greenwich | Kent CCCU) for more information. Always remember to login before you start searching to make sure you see all of the resources available to you!

Top searching tips!

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Introduction - how do I use LibrarySearch?

LibrarySearch is a little bit like the University's equivalent to Google: it lets you search through lots of pieces of content at once and shows you anything that matches the key words you put in.

You can use LibrarySearch to:

  • View and manage your library account
  • Find books held at each of your University's site libraries
  • Access available E-books
  • Access abstracts, articles, conference papers, reviews, theses and more

Check out our LibrarySearch demonstration video to get started!

LibrarySearch FAQ

  • Great question - we wish they were!
    In the library, we will always try to buy an electronic copy of a book if there is one available. However, lots of publishers choose not to make e-versions of their texts.
    Unfortunately, they tend to make more money from libraries buying lots and lots of paper copies.


  • No, unfortunately not.
    The download option is only available on some books, and gives you temporary offline access to a book. After a certain amount of time (usually 24 hours), the book will no longer open on your laptop or device, and you will need to go back to the page and download it again.
    You can, however, download some chapters of the book without infringing copyright law, so these documents won't disappear from your computer. This is a limited service, so make sure you download the most important chapters!


  • Sometimes, we have a limited number of licenses for an e-book. This might mean that only 1 person can be looking at it at any point in time.
    If this happens, wait 30 minutes and then try to access the book again. If this happens regularly, please contact your librarian and we will look into buying more licenses.

  • Yes! You'll find this on LibrarySearch.

    Greenwich staff/students: Click the 'Publication Finder' link under the search button on the LibrarySearch results page (top right hand corner), then use the subject categories or start typing the name of a journal to see if we have access to it.

    Kent staff/students: Click the 'Find e-journals' link under the search button on the LibrarySearch results page (top right hand corner), then use the subject categories, A-Z list or start typing the name of a journal to see if we have access to it.

    CCCU staff/students: On the LibrarySearch home page, click the 'Find e-journals by title' link on the left hand navigation menu, then use the subject categories, A-Z list or start typing the name of a journal to see if we have access to it.


  • We buy packages of access from the publishers, and sometimes they choose to embargo their most recent content (e.g. the last 1, 3 or 5 years).

    If you need to access an article outside of the date range available, try using the Document Delivery service.

  • Now that we have automatic renewals in place, it's really important you reserve any books you need that are out on loan. This will recall them from the person that has them and reserve them for you.

    To do this, click the 'Place Reservation' button next to the item in LibrarySearch and select the campus you want to pick it up from.


  • Yes! You can access any of the items located at your university's other site libraries. Simply find them in LibrarySearch and then click 'Place Reservation' and select the campus you want the book to be delivered to.

    Typically, this process will take 24-48 hours
    and you'll be emailed when the book is ready to collect.


  • You cannot reserve items that are available 'on the shelf' at your 'home' library. This means that Medway-based students cannot reserve books in the Drill Hall unless all the copies are out on loan.

  • Yes! Once you are logged into LibrarySearch, click the 'My account' button on the navigation bar (top right hand corner). Click the 'Checkouts' tab to see which books you currently have borrowed from the library. You can also see your 'Checkout History' here.


  • Yes - go to your 'Checkouts' list and use the check boxes on the left hand side next to each item to select the books you want to renew.

    Don't forget to click the 'renew' button at the bottom of the list before you close the page!


  • That depends which institution you are studying with.

    Greenwich staff/students: You can't currently pay your fines online. If paying by card, you can use the self-issue machines in the Drill Hall Library. Otherwise, please visit the Help Desk.

    Kent staff/students: You can pay your fines through LibrarySearch. Login to your account, click the 'Fines' tab and then click 'Pay online'. You can also use the library machines and ask at the Help Desk if it suits you better.

    CCCU staff/students: You can pay your fines through the online payment system here.

Jargon buster

An abstract is a concise summary of the content of a journal article. It provide you with enough information to help you decide whether or not to read the full text. 

Some databases are abstract only, which means that you will only be able to use them to read the abstract of articles. This is particularly relevant when you are doing a literature review, because you will get a comprehensive view of all the information published related to your topic, not just what we have full-text access to.

If you need to access the full-text of an article where we only have the abstract, use the Document Delivery service. 

An article might also be known as a paper or a study. Articles are (relatively) short pieces of scholarship on a particular topic.

Collections of articles on a particular topic or theme are published in an academic journal, such as ScienceNature or 
Nutrition Today. 

database is a collection of searchable records. In the 21st century, the majority of databases are electronic, but you might still find some 'manual' databases in specialist archives!

When you enter key words such as "cancer therapeutics" or "chemical manufacturing" into a database, you will be shown any records that contain those keywords.

In some cases, the record will contain a file giving full text access to a particular article. In other cases, you might only be able to see the abstract

An e-book is a version of a book that can be accessed and read online.

Unfortunately not all texts are made into e-books. You cannot download an e-book as a personal copy, but you can sometimes download a particular chapter, and you should always be able to access the text via LibrarySearch if you have an internet connection. 

Grey Literature is information that is unpublished, or at least, is not published by commercial publishers (book and/or journal publishing).

Typical examples of grey literature include company reports, independent reviews, policy documents, clinical trials and data and statistics.

You are more likely to find grey literature on the web (although there are dedicated databases such as OpenGrey) so make sure you evaluate the quality of the source carefully. See the 'Skills and workshops' tab for more on this. 

journal is a publication in which articles on a particular topic or theme are published.

The library subscribes to many individual journal titles to get you access to the articles they contain. However, we can't purchase everything: if you want to read an article published in a journal that we don't subscribe to, contact your librarian or fill in a Document Delivery request form. 

A monograph is a text on a specific topic. They are often highly detailed, and might be the result of a PhD or post-doctoral research project. Monographs are written by a single author and make a significant contribution to knowledge in their specific discipline. 

Monographs differ to textbooks in that they are less likely to be revised or updated - they reflect understanding of an issue at a particular point in time. You might find monographs to be useful when you come to write your dissertation, or if you go on to further postgraduate study. 

Whilst most journals and
databases charge subscription fees, open access resources make scholarly materials such as articles available for anyone to read for free.

The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) is a great example of open access content. 

When you use information in books and articles to help you write your reports or essays, you must cite and reference your sources. If you don't do this, you are plagiarising, or taking credit for ideas that you didn't come up with.

Citing research is a great way to show that you have read about and understood a topic, so make sure you always demonstrate where your knowledge came from.

Search strategies

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