Getting Copies of Articles

Here are a few tips on how to get copies of articles you find in PubMed:

  • Access PubMed through a Harvard Library page. Otherwise you won't have access to all the resources that Harvard owns.
  • Don't limit your search to Free Full Text Available or even Full Text Available. You may miss out on items Harvard owns or reach a paywall. (Don't pay!)
  • Look for the button. Most often, the link will connect you to the full-text. If not, a new tab with a Try Harvard Library page will open. From there, you will see options to find print volumes on campus, check for open access and request via Scan and Deliver/Interlibrary Loan. Clicking through the Scan and Deliver... link, a request form will be pre-filled with the citation information.

Finally, don't ignore an article that looks good simply because it seems difficult to obtain. Librarians are here to help.

What To Do If ...

Scenario #1. There is a Free Article or Free PMC link. Click on it to access the article. 

Scenario #2. Sometimes newer articles are in PMC but instead of the final copy it's the author's final submitted manuscript. Be aware that it has not gone through the publisher's peer review process and might differ slightly from the final version. If there is a button, select that instead.

Scenario #3. It says Full Text but it is from the publisher; it may ask you for money even if Harvard subscribes. Select instead.

Scenario #4. There is no button. Use Harvard's Scan and Deliver/Interlibrary Loan service.  If you are unsure of the process or you get error messages, contact a reference librarian for assistance.