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Physics 498: Scholarly Communication in Physics: The Databases

How to Choose

Academic Search Complete gives nice access to distinct types of information (magazines, newspapers, academic journals).

Summon searches all our content so you can get both books and journals. The relevance ranking algorithm is very good for finding usable articles at this level.  It gives nice access to distinct content types like books, ebooks, and journals.

Databases to Search for Articles

An automated electronic archive and distribution server for research articles. Commonly call a pre-print archive, it allows registered users to deposit their articles for rapid dissemination and secure archiving. is open access and allows authors to submit revised copies.  All submissions, including revisions are archived in perpetuity. promotes scholarly communication in the fields of physics, mathematics, computer science, and related disciplines.

Academic Search Complete

Indexes and abstracts articles from magazines, newspapers, and academic journals. This database covers all subject areas and can be used for finding information in almost any discipline.

Web of Science

Indexes the most important journals in scientific disciplines. Cited Reference searching allows the user to compile highly relevant sources going both backwards and forwards in time.


Technically not a database; it is a discovery service that searches all of the content accessible to OWU at one time.  It is excellent for putting a topic in context and helping novice searches or searches just beginning to think about a new topic to see what's available.


Scitaion is a database produced by the American Institute of Physics that indexes all of the publications by the AIP member societies.  OWU has access to most of these publications there is much direct full text access included.