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Access to university libraries

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  1. Sep 30, 2014 #1
    I study on a university that, let's just say does not have much resources for us students. So I need to get access to some online libraries such as Springer Books, Elsevier, Knovel etc.

    I have been using a friend's credentials, he studies on a prestigious university and they have access to the aforementioned services, plus a lot more. Clearly this is something I would be most interested in. The problem is that I don't live close to any big library that I could subscribe to.

    So I'm interested to know what are my options here? Can I subscribe to say something along the lines of the MIT Libraries (without being a student). The MIT thing was just an example, but this is something what I am looking for.

    Does anyone here know of such online services?

    Basically subscribing to Spring, Elsevier and Knovel as an individual would be out of the question due to the financial issue.
     
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  3. Sep 30, 2014 #2

    Doug Huffman

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    Best wishes.

    I am a senior self-studying on an island, rural and remote in Lake Michigan. SSRN and arXive are great resources. You touch on the controversy of Open Access.
     
  4. Sep 30, 2014 #3
    Thanks for the reply. Yes I suppose this is a controversial topic, but I am not just interested on open access. Something commercial as well would be suitable as long as it is within a certain range. Kind of like a subscription on a regular library, a monthly/annual charge and then I would be granted access to online services.
     
  5. Sep 30, 2014 #4

    Vanadium 50

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    You speak of your university's commitment to students as if this were something immutable and set in stone. Why are you still there? You - or someone - is paying a ton of money for you to go there. Why not take that money and spend it somewhere that has more of what you want?
     
  6. Sep 30, 2014 #5

    ZapperZ

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    Have you gone to talk to a librarian at your school to get the books that you want? Many libraries, especially small ones, have agreement with other network of libraries to allow for interlibrary loans. So even if a book, or even a publication, is not physically at your school's library, you might still be able to get it.

    So ASK!

    Zz.
     
  7. Sep 30, 2014 #6
    Well, yes I would do that - but things get weirder. I live in a 3rd world country, and this is the only university that offers an engineering program. Studying abroad was a possibility for me about two years ago when I first enrolled, but by now it's a bit late since I would have to repeat undergrad level. I will go abroad for a Master's degree as obviously I will only waste my time in the current uni, but for now, my only option is what I described - if it is possible.
     
  8. Sep 30, 2014 #7

    ZapperZ

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    Next time, when you ask something like this, it would HELP if you clarify where you are.

    Zz.
     
  9. Sep 30, 2014 #8
    I have, and no they don't have access. I have tried pretty much everything from my end. I've even tried the National Library. No luck.
     
  10. Sep 30, 2014 #9
    I did not think that it would matter that much. It's not like I am requesting access to confidential information. Apart from that, if some library has a policy that it only serves citizens of a specific country I'm sure they would request some identification like the Social Security number or something of the kind.
     
  11. Sep 30, 2014 #10

    ZapperZ

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    It does matter. I had just given you a response that was based on how many libraries here in the US operates, which is completely irrelevant to you. If you had told us where you were, I would not have wasted my time and effort giving you my response.

    Zz.
     
  12. Sep 30, 2014 #11

    Vanadium 50

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    Gezibash, ZapperZ has a very good point. By not providing relevant information, you are wasting people's time - and getting bad answers. Nobody gains.

    If you are in a developing country, many journal publishers make their material available for free or substantially reduced costs to libraries. See ARDI. If they don't have access, they can get access.
     
  13. Sep 30, 2014 #12
    To be honest I did not think much of the problems associated with me witholding my location. The question I asked would be a valid question even if I was a US citizen since my interest was to know if it is possible to subscribe, using my own financial resources, to an online library (most likely a uni one). Obviously ZapperZ effort to answer was a waste of both of our times (mine and his) due to the generality of his answer. I don't think that libraries that offer online service would constrain themselves to one nation - take Springer for example - i can use that if I have the money. Nobody cares where you are.

    If anyone has experience with an online library that resembles the services of one that a University would provide, sharing that information with me would not be dependent on my location.

    Although I believe I owe an apology for the complications that arose from me not disclosing more information.

    Thanks for the help. Checking ARDI now.
     
  14. Sep 30, 2014 #13

    vela

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    The question might be valid regardless of where you are, but the answer certainly depends on where you are. You're not considering the complications that arise when you combine copyright and borders. Just because content is available in the U.S. doesn't mean it's automatically available to you legally if you don't reside in the U.S. I would hope this won't be an obstacle for you considering the type of material you're trying to get, but don't be surprised if it is.
     
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