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How can I pay for access to all academic journals?

  1. Feb 20, 2013 #1
    I'm dead, finished, there's no hope for me. My dreams to become a tenured professor are ruined unless I can find a way to read academic journals again. I was reading academic journals using my alum account with my university but they recently took those privileges away for unknown reasons. If I can't find a way to read academic journals than I'm finished and I will never get to become a professor. Actually, I guess it's more about doing my research then becoming a professor. I'm going to try to beg of course to get those privileges back, using even bribery but I don't think they will listen. I know how these people work. They don't like to help people.

    There's lots of open access journals out there but that's not good enough. I need access to all journals. I've tried subscribing to J-stor and Ebsco but they won't let you. They don't want to sell their services.

    I need to find some service that allows me to pay a reasonable price (200 dollars a year) to read all academic journals.
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 20, 2013 #2


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    If you want to become a tenured professor then you're going to have to get a job as a faculty member at a university. Obviously this will get you an institutional login to access journals for your research which will be necessary to become a professor.
  4. Feb 20, 2013 #3
    a postdoc or some other type of research position is necessary to even stay in the game for becoming a professor.
  5. Feb 20, 2013 #4
    I can't even get into graduate school because I got bad grades as an undergrad back in 2000. To get back into the academic game I need to publish a book that amazes everyone. I can't publish a book unless I have access to academic journals.
  6. Feb 20, 2013 #5


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    You may want to try enrolling in a continuing education class with a university that will extend library priviledges to you. This is probably the easiest way to maintain such access and likely isn't that expensive. It does require you to put forth some effort into a class though.

    I'm not sure your "publish a book that amazes everyone" theory for getting into academia is the most constructive avenue to pursue if you're really serious about it. But certainly reading the literature about your interests is.
  7. Feb 20, 2013 #6
    You will not become a tenured professor by publishing a book. You will need a doctorate; you will also need to have performed original research. How do you intend to do either of these things without going to graduate school?
  8. Feb 20, 2013 #7
    Actually I did that in 2011. I enrolled in some undergrad classes that I hoped would convince admins that I was serious about going back to grad school. It didn't. Plus the costs and the time took away from my research. It was then that I resolved was that the only avenue to get back into academia was to publish something. I'm actually in philosophy and literature but with a heavy science focus. Most of the assistant humanities professors haven't published a book or barely even an article. So if you can publish a book you're already more accomplished than about 70% of the humanities phds.

    Incidentally since this is a physics website I guess everyone has heard of Finnegans Wake given the name quarks. Well, I'm one of the top experts on that book in the world though not the top. It's quite obvious who the top expert but he can't publish a book on the Wake because he doesn't want to.
  9. Feb 20, 2013 #8
    First, publish a book, then go to grad school.
  10. Feb 20, 2013 #9
    No. Most PhD's don't publish books because publishing books is not what PhD's do.
  11. Feb 20, 2013 #10
    In the sciences, but not in philosophy. But in order to publish an academic book you have to start out with papers. No publisher will publish an academic book unless the author has a trackrecord. That's why I'm starting out with papers.
  12. Feb 20, 2013 #11
    Your idea will not work, at all. You need to figure out how to get into graduate school in physics. Looking at your posts, you need to get a formal education in physics before thinking about writing a book.
  13. Feb 20, 2013 #12
    I'm not trying to get into grad school in physics but in philosophy or poetry.

    In any case, suffice it say no one knows how I can find a way to read academic journals without paying a uni tuition.
  14. Feb 20, 2013 #13

    Vanadium 50

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    The problem is not that they are unavailable. The problem is that you don't want to pay what the publisher charges. That's not going to be an easy thing to get around.

    On the plus side, there is nothing in a physics journal that will help you get into grad school in poetry or philosophy.
  15. Feb 20, 2013 #14


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    Usually one goes to the library and reads the journals on the shelves. It's a great way to spend an evening or weekend.
  16. Feb 20, 2013 #15


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    I work at a small college whose library does not have a large collection of printed journals. In the days before Internet journal databases, when I wanted to look up journal articles, I sometimes drove to the nearest large university library, about 70 miles away.[*] Even though I wasn't a student or faculty member there, I could walk in, browse the shelves, and sit at a table and read. Maybe things are different now as far as such access is concerned.

    [*] Uphill both ways, in a raging blizzard. :wink:
  17. Feb 20, 2013 #16
    Some universities also offer guest cards and some services to the general public.
  18. Feb 20, 2013 #17
    I need to find a uni who is wishing to sell that service. Harvard by the way announced that they are considering it since they are losing money with the current system they got.
  19. Feb 20, 2013 #18
    What exactly are you planning on writing a book on anyhow?
  20. Feb 20, 2013 #19


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    Ok, I'll bite: what qualifies you to be regarded as one of the world's top experts on Finnegans Wake, and why is a person with such a qualification unable to get into grad school?
  21. Feb 21, 2013 #20
    I made a big mistake in boasting. Now I have to justify that boast. I should have kept my mouth shut. Live and learn.

    The lead expert has a website with 80,000 footnotes on the book. He's done the hard work of making all the footnotes accessible to a person in an easy format. But he has no ambitions to explain what the book means. The website is called fweet. According to him I'm the leading contributor to the site. I'm not saying I am the leading expert on the book, after all I haven't proven myself, but one of maybe 10 or 20.

    As for why I can't get into grad school I haven't yet published on the Wake. I have bigger ambitions right now. That still doesn't answer why I can't get into grad school. I got bad grades as an undergrad back in 2000, 2.3 gpa. With 200 candidates and only 10 seats it's very hard to beat the other 10 candidates with such a bad undergraduate gpa. Going back to undergrad and lifting my gpa is not economical. Even if I were to do it, it would cost roughly 20,000 dollars and take 2 years, not to mention waste about 1000 hours of time. All that time and money could be spent better elsewhere. Besides although being an independent intellectual is certainly not fun, one can adapt to that lifestyle. There's always hope.
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