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Alerting services: Getting Started

Use this guide to learn about Alerting services (tables of contents, search results, etc.) that are available in many of the Libraries' subscription databases.

Alerting Services Overview

Many UST databases include the ability to send users alerts to new content via email, RSS feeds, or social media.  This may take the form of:

  • Table of Contents alerts: generated and delivered every time a new issue of an individual publication is issued
  • Search alerts: saving a keyword or subject search that the database periodically re-runs and then notifies the user of new articles meeting the search criteria
  • Topic alerts: automatic periodic notifications of articles on pre-selected topics
  • Citation alerts: notices issued every time an article of interest is subsequently cited in the same database
  • Social media: many publishers and journals have accounts in Facebook, Twitter, etc. that you can follow

There are various ways to receive these alerts.  The easiest way is to set up an RSS news feed and get tables of contents sent to that one place via the A-Z list of journal titles

The other, more involved way is to set up alerts through each provider.  These current awareness services are available at no charge, but typically require users to register for a free account with the database provider

Each provider handles this differently and not all providers offer this service.  But each provider that does has a HELP link with instructions for setting up alerts.

We encourage students, faculty, and staff to use these tools to keep up to date on the literature of their field. If you have questions or need assistance, please contact your liaison librarian

Making the links work

Links to article content embedded in these alerts will work automatically if on-campus; they may not work off-campus if the Ezproxy string isn't part of the URL. Below are instructions for adding the Ezproxy string

You can always link from off-campus if one of your alerts fails, by simply proceeding to the Journals A-Z list, type in the title of the journal and search for it, then select the name of the database which sent you the alert to find the most recent issue. 

Proxy Me!!

In order for a persistent link to work for off-campus users, the link must include the prefix or the embedded code string

In some cases the code string will already be part of the persistent link, but for others you will have to add it. It is up to you to identify whether or not the code string is already there.

Example of a persistent link that already includes the code:

Example of a persistent link that needs to have the Ezproxy code added:

To add the Ezproxy code, copy and paste the PURL into this box:

Proxy Me


Keeping Up

Here's a good article from the Chronicle on keeping up with professional journal reading.

Consult the Libraries' complete list of journals to see if we have your desired titles. If you'd like some help figuring out if your desired journals have a table-of-contents or search alert as described in the article, contact your liaison librarian.