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Finding Scholarly Health Sciences Sources without University Access (Workshop)

Links to libraries, library services and freely available scholarly health sciences resources mentioned in the workshop.


U of M students in the health profession have access to a wide array of high-quality scholarly resources through the University Library. However, when students graduate, much of that access is cut off, but using quality scholarly resources and engaging in evidence-based practice is critical in health care conducted beyond the University walls. This session for alumni and graduating students will show how to continue to find high quality scholarly information despite a lack of access to university resources.

Libraries and Library Services

Neil John Maclean Health Sciences Library (NJMHSL)
NJMHSL Outreach Services (for health professionals)
Public Libraries (Google your local public library)

Access with association membership

There are many professional health sciences associations offering access to journals and databases as a benefit of membership.

UM Library Search

The University of Manitoba Libraries Library Search can be used by anyone to identify open access (freely available) materials.
  1. Type your search into the search box.
  2. When the results show look for the Availability filter on the left of the screen.  Check Open Access.
  3. Click Apply Filters.
  4. Locate the material of interest.  Click on Full-text available link.
  5. Under the View It section click on the link which includes any of the words, "open access", free or unpaywall to access the material.


These Health Sciences databases are freely available and ordered from the largest and broadest down to the most specific.


These Health Sciences collections mostly contain journal articles with one exception for books. The have very basic search features and each has to be searched separately.  However, all are included in the PubMed database listed above.
Open Education Resources (OER) most often take the form of open access textbooks.  The UM Libraries has gathered a list of materials relevant to the Rady Faculty of Health Sciences curricula which may be of interest.

Preprint servers

Because preprints may not be peer-reviewed, it is wise to be cautious about conclusions drawn in preprints. This is especially true if the topic is hot or contentious.

Note: the International Committee of Medical Journal Editors (ECMJE) recommend that authors who choose to post their work on a preprint server,  choose one that clearly identifies preprints as not peer-reviewed work and includes disclosures of authors’ relationships and activities.  Source: Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals, December 2021. (pg 9).

Multidisciplinary databases & collections


Open Access browser extensions

When you are searching and navigating around the web these extensions will identify any corresponding Open Access versions.