School of Medicine Library

University of South Carolina


Spring 1998 Issue

Table of Contents
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Library Migration to E-Journals:

"Hold on! They're coming!"

For the past few years, libraries have had to take a wait-and-see attitude before starting major conversions from printed journals to electronic journals. There are a number of reasons for this; notably a lack of standardization of communications options, and a dearth of journals in the full electronic format.

Due to the emergence of the WWW, as well as a vast increase in publishers' commitments to electronic formats, we are on the verge of witnessing a "giant leap" which will accelerate library acquisition of electronic products. Even scientific, technical, and medical publishers, who have long been the most conservative, are now converting their information for online distribution.

Our library recently acquired access to over 100 online full-text journals for which we have current subscriptions. Because of the unproven nature of electronic journals, as well as archival questions, the selected titles mirror titles in our collection with proven usage. (We attempted to acquire the most-used titles first; but not all of our most-used titles are immediately available online.)

Through a combination of databases and agreements with publishers, we are working on providing as much electronic access for our faculty and students as possible, seeking out more titles as they become available. We realize we cannot continue to duplicat indefinitely. Costs wil increase and consume any savings realized through our recent journal cancellation project. However, we hope to increase usage and encourage library patrons to familiarize themselves with the electronic format and its capabilities.

Measuring online usage of journals is a problem, since not all systems allow us to keep track of how many times a journal title is accessed. We must rely on feedback from our faculty and students to determine the ease with which they are able to access this electronic information. Please let us know of any problems when using the various applications!

(If you would like to know if any of your favorite journal titles are available online, check our web site at, or call Karen Warren at 733-3344.)

The remainder of the articles in this newsletter will outline additional developments regarding electronic access in the School of Medicine Library.

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Core Biomedical Collection

15 Full-text Journals Linked with OVID Medline
If you have logged into OVID Medline recently, you might have noticed that under the listing of databases that appears, there is now an additional listing: "Core Biomedical Collection 1993 to January 1998." This represents the 15 full-text journals that have recently been added to the OVID file. When searching Medline and viewing citations, you will notice a new button at the bottom that is labeled "Link". When a citation reqresents an article from one of these 15 journals, the "Link" will be black instead of gray. By clicking there you will be taken directoy to the full-text of the article in the Core Collection. If the article has a formatted abstract, you can use the hot-links embedded to move around in the article, otherwise you can click on the button labeled "Outline" at the bottom of the page to move to the various sections of the article. You can also click on embedded links to view references. When a full-text article is referenced by another paper, you can click on the words "full text" and you will be taken to the full-text of the cited paper (i.e., text that appears in a blue color indicates a link). The "Graphics" button at the bottom of the page provides a list of graphics that accompany the article. Click on the list to view them individually.

You can go directly into the Core Collection by making that selection initially. Searches within the full-text are run across the entire text; MeSH maping is not available. Click on "Search" at the top of the screen for search options.

The list of the 15 journal titles appears below. We are pleased to announce that we will be adding access to additional 50 titles through OVID this spring. Watch for them.