Wednesday, December 03, 2014

How Many Scholarly Papers are on the Web?

A professor at Penn State University posed the question “How Many Scholarly Papers are Available on the Web?” and the related question “How many are freely available?”

By "the Web," the Penn author means the "public Web" as assessed via
Google Scholar and Microsoft Academic Search. By scholarly documents, they refer to journal and conference papers, dissertations and master’s degree theses, books, technical reports and working papers. Google Scholar is a freely accessible Web search engine that indexes the full text of scholarly literature across an array of publishing formats and disciplines. Microsoft Academic Search is a free public search engine for academic papers and literature, developed by Microsoft Research for the purpose of algorithms research in object-level vertical search, data mining, entity linking and data visualization.

So what's the answer?
at least 114 million English-language scholarly documents are accessible on the Web, of which Google Scholar has nearly 100 million. They estimate that at least 27 million (24 percent) are freely available since they do not require a subscription or payment of any kind.

That's a lot. But I have great news: through OSU, you can access even more free, full-text scholarly articles through one of our countless databases. And we have multiple access points, so you can target just what you need. Know the name of a journal? Start here. Know the general topic area but don't have a journal preference? Start here.

And if there's ever something you can't find, just ask.

h/t New York Law Institute