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Requesting PDFs: For UCSF employees

How to request a pdf using library resources.

Step 1: Google Scholar

Search Google Scholar for the title of the article.

Look, there are two full-text options (pdf & html) on the right-hand side! Click those for the full text.


Step 2: set up UC elinks in Google Scholar

No full text options? You can still get the pdf via UC elinks (aka that orange box you've seen in PubMed). 

Set it up in Google Scholar like this:


Step 3: request via UC elinks

Now what? Click the UC elinks button next to an article. Does it have a link to full text at the top? Click & enjoy! 

***Don't see the UC elinks button? Click the two arrows beneath the article for more options.***


But what if there's no full text?

1. Click "Request this from the library".

2. Enter your Library Account number & campus - Hit request!

Your Library Account # is the barcode number on your UCSF ID. The pdf will be emailed to you soon (a few hours to a few days). 


Step 4: ezproxy

If you're off campus, try the UCSF ezproxy to save a few clicks. This will reload the page, you'll log in via MyAccess & get the full text. 

Set up the bookmarklet (just drag & drop) here

Step 5: alternative options

The options above will get you the PDF faster, but it doesn't hurt to try alternative options

  • Ask the author for the article via email, twitter, ResearchGate, etc.
  • Try Unpaywall or Open Access button
  • Sci-Hub is not recommended as it's illegal in some countries. Know your copyright laws!