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Electronic libraries

BIDS is the best known bibliographic service for the academic community in the UK. BIDS also provides access to the Ingenta Journals full text service, both directly and also through links from database search results.

Its mission is to provide, on a not-for-profit basis, the highest possible level of service to allow UK Academic institutions and their members access to bibliographic data, scholarly publications and research data. Launched in 1991, BIDS is believed to have been a world first - a national service providing widespread network access to commercially supplied bibliographic databases, free at the point of delivery.

BIDS performs an important role in the information strategy of the Joint Information Systems Committee of the Higher Education Funding Councils (JISC), and is one of three data centres funded by the JISC, along with MIMAS (located at Manchester University) and EDINA (located at Edinburgh University).

BIDS is managed by Ingenta on a fully accountable and not-for-profit basis. A major benefit of the relationship with ingenta is the seamless access for BIDS users to well over 5,000 full-text electronic journals.

It contains International Bibliography of the Social Sciences (IBSS) - the essential online resource for social science and interdisciplinary research. It includes over 2 million bibliographic references to journal articles and to books, reviews and selected chapters dating back to 1951. Over 2,700 journals are regularly indexed and some 7,000 books included each year. Abstracts are provided for up to half of all current journal articles and full text availability is increasing steadily.


PsycINFO an abstract database of psychological literature from 1887-present. It contains more than 1.5 million references to journal articles, books, book chapters, technical reports, and dissertations published in over 45 countries. All abstracts in PsycINFO are written in English, but the covered literature includes material in more than 30 languages. PsycINFO covers literature that is relevant to psychology. In addition to "core" psychology topics such as personality or mental health, PsycINFO contains abstracts on behavioural topics from related disciplines. You can find references about health care, education, business, organisational behaviour, consumer behaviour, criminal justice, artificial intelligence, and much more.

The British Official Publications Current Awareness Service. Registered users can use this website to search and browse over 28,000 references to key British Official Publications from July 1995 onwards (updated every week). Access to resources is mainly through paid subscription.

Social Care Online (formerly the Electronic Library for Social Care or eLSC) is a site for anyone interested in social care issues. It is a product of the Social Care Institute for Excellence, an independent organisation launched in 2001, and dedicated to disseminating knowledge to improve social care practice. This site enables social care practitioners and managers to:

  • have access to the best available research
  • learn the skills needed to understand and critically appraise research
  • have the tools to ensure that practice is based on solid evidence about what works.

It also enables users of social services and carers to:
  • promote their knowledge and expertise
  • to provide information of use to them
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