Alerts and RSS Feeds

Ask a Librarian

What are Alerts and RSS Feeds?

Library databases and publishers offer personal accounts for saved searches, free email alert services, and RSS feeds. These tools allow you to automatically monitor newly published information.

  • See works by an author.
  • Get new research on a topic.
  • Receive current journal tables of contents.
  • Find new articles that cite an important article.

To take advantage of these new research methods, you may need to login or register yourself with the information provider.

What is an Email Alert?

Large research databases now commonly email search results to users. With an email alert, you save time by receiving a periodic email detailing specified search results from a database. Some individual publishers also offer alert services. Advantages of using library databases are:

  • Library databases include more than one publisher.
  • Library databases include the "Find It" button that may link to the full-text of the article, the location of the print copy, and the libraries' article delivery service.
  • Library databases also commonly link to RefWorks or EndNote for citation management.

What is RSS?

RSS stands for "Real Simple Syndication," an XML format for sharing syndicated information on the Web. RSS allows people to monitor web sites and databases for new information, without having to visit the site or database.

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