Finding Full Text Articles from Citations


Welcome to the George Mason University Libraries tutorial on locating sources from citations found in a bibliography or references cited page. This tutorial offers an example citation, but you are welcome to follow along with your own citation.

Finding Full Text

  1. First, determine what kind of source is represented by the citation. In this example, the publication name is the Journal of Policy History, so this is a journal article. Some journal titles will not include the word "journal," so another way you can tell that this is a journal is that the citation includes a volume and issue number. In this case 21 is the volume number, 1 is the issue number and 3-37 denotes the page numbers.

    Sample Article Citation
  2. Using the “Mason Search Tool”. Enter the title of the journal in the search box and click “submit”. 

    Library home page
  3. Select the journal from the results page, then click on the “available online” function order to gain access to the journal.

    Ejournal Search Box
  4. Identify the dates of coverage you need. In the example citation, the publication date is 2009.

    select WRLC catalog
  5. Locate the resources in the list provided to access the publication for the date when your article was published. In this case, all of the resources include coverage dates that will give you access to the 2009 article. Note that the different resources will use different interfaces. Click on the link to Cambridge University Press Journals Complete.

    Date Range
  6. Locate the specific article from the publication's record. If you are accessing the resource from off-campus, you may need to login with your Mason NetID and password to get access. Then browse the listings until you find the correct date, volume and issue. The sample citation is volume 21, issue 1.

  7. Or, use the search box provided

    Cambridge Search

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Other Related Tutorials

To learn how to request articles that are not available full text online from Mason Libraries see these tutorials about making requests from WRLC and using Interlibrary Loan.

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Additional Questions and Help

If you have trouble or questions about finding the full text of articles, ask a librarian.

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Creative Commons License


Finding Full Text Articles from Citations by The Teaching and Learning Team is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.