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Journal article access just got easier

A new Download PDF link from Library Search results gives the full text of journal articles with just one click.

Work on the new Library Search involved user research to understand how staff and students use library search tools. This uncovered some issues with finding the full text of journal articles.

Katy Sidwell, who led the research, explains:

“We learnt that the journey from finding the details of an article to getting the full text presented a number of challenges for users. Sometimes people got lost on that journey and got frustrated that the article wasn't easy to find, or even assumed that we didn't give access to it at all. We also found that people preferred to view the full PDF of an article to see if it was of interest, rather than use the title or abstract. This is such a key part of the research journey that it was important to us to find a way to improve the situation.”

A product called LibKey provided a solution. Libkey gives a shortcut from a Library Search result to the article on the publisher’s website.

Now the Library Search has a direct “Download PDF” link added to journal articles subscribed to, which gives one-click access to article PDFs from the brief results display. This also works for access from off-campus, with just one prompt to enter a university username and password.

Jane Saunders, Head of Access and Acquisitions, says:

We hope that LibKey will make finding the full-text of journal articles hassle-free for researchers. It is a lot quicker and easier to get to articles now! We’ll keep working to improve information discovery and access to research materials.