SC Links & the Journal Locator

Frequently Asked Questions

Look for this button when searching Smith's online databases for article retrieval options. See frequently asked questions below.

What is SC Links?

SC Links is a tool that provides direct linking from databases to the online full text of publications (if available) and to alternate ways of obtaining the material. Specifically it:

  • Provides a direct link from a citation in a database to the full text of an article or other publication (when available electronically).
  • Shows print (paper versions) of holdings of journals owned by Smith.
  • Performs a search in the Five College Library Catalog (including all Five Colleges) for a paper version of the item. (Use this option when no online version is available - or if you prefer paper to online.)
  • Offers a link to Interlibrary Loan. (Use this when neither online nor paper is available at Smith. Note that ILL for articles is fairly quick - two to three days, often.)

How do I access SC Links?

Many databases available to Smith College Libraries' patrons are set up to work with SC Links services. When you find a citation in one of these databases, click on the SC Links button   displayed next to the citation to open a window with a menu of options to retrieve the item. Note that in some databases, the SC Links button appears in the results list and in other databases, only on the record for the specific item.

Can I use SC Links from off-campus?

Smith students, faculty, and staff can use SC Links-enabled databases when off campus. Off-campus Smith users will be prompted for their Smith Network username and password only once when they connect to a database to begin searching See Off-Campus Access to Databases for more information about off-campus access to Smith's library databases.

What services does SC Links provide?

SC Links is context specific, so retrieval options are specific to each citation you find in a database. When available, SC Links will link to one or more of the following:

  • Electronic full text from one or more sources
  • Print holdings if the journal is held in paper format at Smith
  • An automatic search of the Five College Library Catalog to see if the item is available in paper format at Smith or another Five College library
  • A link to Interlibrary Loan (Use when neither online nor paper is available at Smith. Note that ILL for articles is fairly quick - two to three days, often.)

Why don't all library databases at Smith include SC Links?

Many, but not all databases the libraries subscribe to work with SC Links. (Not all databases can support the open URL technology behind SC Links.)

How do I find my article if there's no SC Links button in the database I'm using?

If you use a database that lacks SC Links - or if you have a reference from another source - you can still take advantage of the SC Links functionality by using the Journal Locator

  • On the Libraries home page, click on Find Journals in the upper left corner, near the catalog link
  • Enter the journal title (not article title) of the item you need
  • If your journal is online, you'll see one or more online sources listed
  • Select one that includes the date of your article
  • Then drill down to the volume, issue, and article you need
  • If it's not available online, click on Check for Print Copy
  • If Smith lacks both online and print, then click on Request via Interlibrary Loan

Can I use SC Links if I have reference from a foot note, bibliography, etc.?

If you have an article reference from another source - you can still take advantage of the SC Links functionality by using the Journal Locator

  • On the Libraries home page, click on Find Journals in the upper left corner, near the catalog link
  • Enter the journal title (not article title) of the item you need
  • If your journal is online, you'll see one or more online sources listed
  • Select one that includes the date of your article
  • Then drill down to the volume, issue, and article you need
  • If it's not available online, click on Check for Print Copy
  • If Smith lacks both online and print, then click on Request via Interlibrary Loan

Why isn't the full text of the article I need always available electronically?

The most common reasons are:

  • The publisher has not made the journal available online, only in print
  • Smith does not have a subscription to the online full text for the journal
  • Smith has a subscription for the online full text, but not for the year you need
  • The publisher has decided to "embargo" (deny access) to the most recent issues

When I click on "Full Text Online" I only get to the journal's home page or current issue. Why?

You may need to do some additional searching to retrieve it. SC Links will get you as close to the full text as it can, but the journal publisher determines where SC Links can link to. Sometimes you'll go directly to the full text, sometimes you'll be linked to the journal's home page or the table of contents for the issue you need, sometimes you'll have to type in the citation on the publisher's search form to retrieve the full text.

Why doesn't the menu window open when I click on the SC Links button?

Check to see if the menu window opened in a window or tab you already had open. (Sometimes the active window will not pop to the front of your screen.) Or, you may need to temporarily disable the pop-up blocker in your browser:

  • Internet Explorer: Click on Tools > Pop-up Blocker > Turn off pop-up blocker
  • Mozilla Firefox: Click on Tools > Options > Content > Block pop-up windows

What do I do when I get a "bad URL," "Error 404," or some other "not found" message?

Publisher and journal links change constantly, so you will see errors from time to time. Please use the Report a Problem form to alert us to any errors you find. Then look for other full text options via the Journal Locator. If there aren't other full text options, look for a paper copy, or use Interlibrary Loan if needed.

What do I do when I get too many matches for the journal title I entered?

When searching for single word titles, or common journal title names, try changing the default search from "Begins with" to "Exact match" to limit the number of matching journals found.

Where can I go for help using SC Links?

The Got ?s options (reference desks' hours and phone numbers, email addresses, and online chat) are given.

How do I report a problem or make a comment about SC Links?

Use the SC Links Report a Problem Form to alert us to errors you encounter using SC Links.