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Full Text Finder: A Simple Guide: Home

What is the "Full Text Finder" option all about and how do I use it efficiently?

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A Simple Guide to Full Text Finder

What is "Full Text Finder"?

When you search for full-text articles in Encore, you may see the words "Full Text Finder" instead of the familiar and comforting PDF file icon. Basically, this means that these journals have told the Encore database "Yes, you can have access to the full text of this journal, but only if you send people directly to our website." This is quite common, for example, for open-access publications, which may need the hits on their website to help them secure stable, long term funding, and sometimes also individual publishers.

The "Full Text Finder" option often scares people. The name is misleading. Rather than initiating a completely new search that may not have a full-text outcome, the Full Text Finder indicates that this article is indeed available in full-text online, though through a different path to which this option will direct you. Have no fear! Full Text Finder is here to help you (and so are the librarians).

How to navigate "Full Text Finder" resources efficiently

There are several ways that the Full Text Finder link works. You may come across all of these during your research. Clicking on the "Full Text Finder" button will either direct you to the article via another database or publisher the Hiebert Library subscribes to (often the case for articles available through publishers Sage and SpringerLink) where you can access the full text of the article, or may (often in the case of open-source journals) divert you to the journal's own website.


When you click on the "Full Text Finder" link you'll see a page that looks like this box on the left which will point you on the path to the full text.

When you see the "Check for full text at the publisher's site" text (as you can see to the left) it will provide you with the linked text that takes you directly to the article's page on the other database/publisher website, automatically displaying either the article itself or the abstract of the article. If the latter, you'll easily find a place to download the full-text PDF by peeking around the page. This is the easiest of the paths Full Text Finder will lead you on.

This page may also point you to other places. Another typical link will point you towards Journals for Free, which is a directory of open access journals. Typically with this and other options there will be some extra clicking involved to get to your article. You may have to go to the archives on that journal's website, or use the search function on the journal's website. In this case, Full Text Finder does not mean you can't get to the full text. It just means you have to work a little harder for it.


For instance, when you click on the link for Journals for Free, it will pop open another tab, the top left of which will look something like this image on the right. Sometimes the webpage for the journal will open below; sometimes not. If not, click on the title of the journal your article is located in (typically at the top as you see in the example here). This will take you to the webpage of the journal.

From here you will need to find the article on the journal's webpage. There may be a couple of options for this. Some journal websites have a search bar through which you can search for your article within their journal website. To do this easily, copy and paste the full title of the article you want to view, in quotation marks, into that search bar. This should filter out all other search results. The other option is to go through the journal's archives. For this option you'll need the information such as publication year, volume, and issue. All of that information is in that first detailed record that you opened. It's a good idea not to close that window until you've completed your journey to the full-text of the article.


The problem with full-text finder is that sometimes the outside links alter, or access changes and it takes some time for the reality to catch up with the record in Encore. If you find an article you don't have access to, double check to see if it's available via Google Scholar (maybe from the new correct URL), and if you can't find it there, request it through ArticleReach. 

You can always feel free to email the Library and let us know about an article you couldn't access (make sure you provide all typical citation information so we can quickly locate and address the issue). It may be that we can speed up the process of getting the URL fixed with the database vendor.

Have questions?

Understanding how to navigate Full Text Finder can be difficult the first time or two. Remember that the librarians do this sort of thing all the time and are happy to help.