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Alerts: Search Alerts

Tips

RSS is the best way to receive TOC Alerts.

Search Alerts from databases and publishers

Search alerts are a little trickier to create for use in RSS readers than TOC Alerts, but they are worth the trouble.

Search alerts from all of the databases listed below can be recieved via RSS. It may take a week or two before you receive new additions to a search alert. Most databases only send search alerts when the database is updated, but differ in update frequency.

If you would like help setting up an alert, please contact the Subject Specialist Librarian for your department.

Databases
CSA Databases        
Ebsco Databases
Ovid Databases
PubMed
SciFinder Web
Web of Science
Publishers
Cambridge Journals
ScienceDirect
Taylor & Francis
Wiley Journals

 Databases versus Publishers

Which is more useful -- an alert based on a database or on a publisher? That depends on your needs and field of study. A database-based alert is almost always more comprehensive. Most databases cover many more journals than does a single publisher. On the other hand, a publisher-based alert may be the most efficient way to identify the most relevant and highest quality papers. In addition, because there is a time lag between publication of an article and its inclusion in a database, a publisher-based alert is often more up-to-date than a database-based alert.
 

General Instructions for Search Alerts

Options vary in different databases and publishers, but the three steps listed below are typical.
  1. Create a free account with the database or publisher
  2. Run and save a search
  3. Request that the search be run automatically and have the results sent to you. For use in an RSS reader, look for a way to create a link for RSS feed to paste in the RSS reader.

 

Databases that Offer Search Alerts 

 CSA Databases

Aerospace & High Technology Database, ASFA: Aquatic Sciences and Fisheries Abstracts, BioOne Abstracts and Indexes, Communication Abstracts, Environmental Sciences and Pollution Management, ERIC, GeoRef, Linguistics and Language Behavior Abstracts, LISA, Materials Research Database with METADEX, Oceanic Abstracts, PILOTS Database, Social Services Abstracts, Sociological Abstracts, TOXLINE, Worldwide Political Science Abstracts, Zoological Record Plus

  1. Open a CSA database.
  2. Click on the link "Please log in to My Research" and login or create an account.
  3. Return to the CSA database and run your search(es).
  4. Go to "Search History" (top of page on the right).
  5. Click on "Save OR Alert" for the search for which you want to create an alert.
  6. On the "Save Your Search Alert" page, change Format to "Full format", Delivery Method to "RSS", and lengthen the Expiration Date a year or two. Then click on Save.
  7. Click on the RSS icon for the saved search. Copy and paste the URL into your RSS reader.
  8. When the CSA database is updated, the RSS feed will be updated. 

 Ebsco Databases

Academic Search Premier, Alt HealthWatch, America: History & Life, Art & Architecture Complete, Business Source Premier, CINAHL, Communication & Mass Media Complete, Econlit, Education Research Complete, ERIC, Health Source, Historical Abstracts, Lexi-PALS Drug Guide, LISA, Mental Measurements Yearbook, Middle Search Plus, Military & Government Collection, MLA International Bibliography, Music Index, Philosopher's Index, Professional Development Collection, PsycARTICLES, PsycINFO, Regional Business News, SPORTSDiscus, Textile Technology Index, and Vocational and Career Collection 

  1. Open an Ebsco database.
  2. Sign in to "My EBSCOhost" and login or create an account.
  3. Run the search that you want to have run as an alert.
  4. Click on the "Search History" link (top of the search results).
  5. Mark the check box next to the search and click on "Save Searches / Alerts".
  6. Name the search.
  7. Choose "Alert".
  8. Under "Save Search As" choose "Alert"
  9. Under "Alert Options choose "Detailed"
  10. Under E-mail Properties choose "No e-mail (RSS only)".
  11. Save.
  12. Click on the link for RSS.
  13. Copy and paste the URL into your RSS reader.
  14. The RSS feed will be updated when new records are added to the database which meet the search criteria.

Ovid Databases

 

Agricola, Biological Abstracts, CAB Abstracts, ERIC, International Pharmaceutical Abstracts, Medline, and Zoological Record

  1. Open an Ovid database.
  2. Click on the "My Account" link (upper right) and login or "Create a Personal Account".
  3. Return to the Advanced Search or Basic Search page" and run the search(es) that you want to have run as an alert.
  4. Go to "Search History" (the top of page on the left).
  5. Mark the check box next to the search and under "Actions" (far right) choose "more" and then choose "RSS feed".
  6. Rename the search to a more useful name.
  7. Save. This takes you and the search back to the Search History page.
  8. Click on the RSS icon that is next to " ... RSS feed URL is here" (top of Search History page). This allows you to subscribe to the RSS feed directly in Google Reader or My Yahoo! Alternatively, you can click on the link for "here" and copy and paste the URL into an RSS reader.
  9. As new content is added to the OVID database, the RSS feed will be updated.

 PubMed

  1. Sign into My NCBI or create an account with My NCBI.
  2. Click on the PubMed link at the top of the page or simply go to PubMed.
  3. Run the search that you want to have run as an Alert.
  4. Click on the RSS icon at the top of the page.
  5. Click on the "Create RSS button".
  6. Click on the XML icon.
  7. Copy and paste the URL into an RSS reader.
  8. As new records are added to PubMed that meet the search criteria, the RSS feed will be updated.

 SciFinder Web

Use Keep Me Posted to get updated results for searches you have already run in SciFinder Web. Each week you will receive an e-mail which lets you know whether new articles that match your search have been added to Chemical Abstracts. To view the new results, login to SciFinder Web and check your Keep Me Posted results. In addition to Search Alerts, SciFinder Web is one of the few databases that offers Citation Alerts.

Search Alert*

  1. Log in to SciFinder Web and run the search that you want to have run as an alert.
  2. Click on the button "Create Keep Me Posted"
  3. Name the search and click on the "Create" button
  4. Each week, SciFinder Web will send an e-mail letting you know if new results are available
  5. Log in to SciFinder Web and click on "Keep Me Posted Results"
*See SciFinder's Create a Keep Me Posted Profile for more details on how to create a Search Alert.

Citation Alert

A Citation Alert is the done the same way as a Search Alert, except that in step 1, after the desired article(s) is found, click on "Get Citing".

 Web of Science

Web of Science offers search alerts via "My Saved Searches" and Citation Alerts via "My Citation Alerts". Once per week (or month, if you prefer) the up-dated results of your search will be e-mailed to you. Web of Science is the most valuable database for Citation Alerts -- except for chemistry, which is best covered by SciFinder Web.

Search Alert

  1. Open Web of Science.
  2. Click on "Sign in" and either login or create an account.
  3. Run the search that you want to have run as an alert.
  4. Click on "Advanced Search".
  5. Click on the button "Saved History / Create Alert".
  6. On the web form, name the search.
  7. Do not put a check next to "Send Me E-mail Alerts".
  8. Click on "Save -- Save your history to the server".
  9. Click on the XML icon.
  10. Cut and paste the URL into your RSS reader.
  11. The RSS feed will be updated when new records are added to the database which meet the search criteria.

Citation Alert

  1. Open Web of Science.
  2. Click on "Sign in" and either login or create an account.
  3. Locate the article whose citedness you want to follow.
  4. Click on the title of the article.
  5. Click on the button "Create Citation Alert" (right column). Look carefully. It is at the bottom of the Cited By box.
  6. Citation alerts must be sent by e-mail, but in addition you can receive it by RSS. Click on the link for RSS and copy and paste the URL into your RSS reader.
  7. Click on "Done".
  8. The RSS feed will be updated when newly published articles cite the article for which the citation alert was created.

 

Publishers that Offer Search Alerts 

This list only includes publishers that offer Search Alerts. Almost all publishers offer TOC Alerts.

Cambridge Journals

Receive Search Alerts and Table of Contents Alerts from Cambridge Journals.  

ScienceDirect

All three types of alerts are available from ScienceDirect Alerts: Search Alerts; Table of Contents Alert; and Citation Alerts. You are notified by e-mail when new articles of interest are added.  

Taylor & Francis

My Alerts offers all three types of alerts: Search Alerts; Table of Contents Alerts; and Citation Alerts.

 Wiley Journals

Search Alerts and Table of Contents Alerts are available via Wiley's My Profile.