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Electronic resources

This page provides information on some useful electronic resources other than ejournals and ebooks, such as citation databases, scientific search engines and other databases.

Cambridge University Library's eresources@cambridge page is the best place to go to access web-based electronic resources, including citation and many other databases, ejournals and ebooks, newspapers, images, sound and CD-ROMs. It also provides a link to CrossSearch, where you can search for information on a particular topic across all of the electronic resources subscribed to by Cambridge University Library.

If you cannot find what you want, you can recommend an electronic resource for purchasing by visiting the following link:


Citation databases and search engines

Web of Knowledge

Cambridge University Library subscribes to the Web of Knowlege, which is hosted by Thomson Reuters. This resource provides access to Web of Science Core Collection (from 1900-), BIOSIS Citation Index (1969-), Medline (1950-), JCR (Journal Citation Reports) (2000-) and EndNote. Please see the host's Web of Knowledge factsheets for more information at

On-campus and off-campus access is via Raven password.


ScienceDirect contains over 25% of the world's science, technology and medicine full text and bibliographic information.

Apart from online eBooks, Reference Works, Handbooks and Book Series ScienceDirect offers a rich journal collection of over 2,500 titles.

On-campus access does not require a password. Off-campus access is via Raven password.


Scopus is the largest abstract and citation database of research literature and quality web sources. It's designed to find the information scientists need. Quick, easy and comprehensive, Scopus provides superior support of the literature research process. Updated daily, Scopus offers:

  • More than 20,000 peer-reviewed journals, including 2,800 gold open access journals
  • 6.5 million conference papers from over 17,000 worldwide events
  • Over 365 trade publications
  • Almost 50,000 books, plus more than 420 book series
  • 54 million records, with approximately 3 million new records added each year
  • Results from 545 million scientific web results
  • 24 million patent records from 5 patent offices
  • "Articles-in-Press" from over 3,750 journals
  • Seamless links to full-text articles and other library resources
  • Innovative tools that give an at-a-glance overview of search results and refine them to the most relevant hits
  • Alerts to keep you up-to-date on new articles matching your search query, or by favourite author

On-campus access does not require a password. Off-campus access is via Raven password.


PubMed is a service of the U.S. National Library of Medicine that includes over 24 million citations from MEDLINE and other life science journals for biomedical articles back to 1948. PubMed includes links to full text articles and other related resources.

Google Scholar

Google Scholar provides a simple way to broadly search for scholarly literature. From one place, you can search across many disciplines and sources: articles, theses, books, and abstracts, from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other websites. Google Scholar helps you identify the most relevant research across the world of scholarly research. You can find papers, abstracts and citations, and locate the complete paper through your library or on the web.



Dictionaries, encyclopedias and other databases

Many dictionaries, encyclopedias and other databases are subscribed to by Cambridge University Library which can be accessed via eresources@cambridge. Detailed here is a selection of the most useful ones but please browse the list on the eresources@cambridge page to find many more.

Oxford Reference Online

Oxford Reference Online brings together language and subject reference works from one of the world's biggest reference publishers into a single cross-searchable resource. There are several Biological Sciences dictionaries available, as well as the Oxford English Dictionary.

On-campus access does not require a password. Off-campus access is via Raven password.

Encyclopedia of Life Sciences (ELS)

The ELS features more than 5,000 specially commissioned and peer-reviewed articles. The articles within ELS are written by leaders in the field to provide comprehensive and authoritative coverage of each subject area and are aimed at researchers, students and teachers alike.

All articles are accompanied by colour illustrations and tables. Appendix and glossary material provide essential information for the non-specialist, including biochemical and taxonomic information, acronyms, synonyms, units and other technical data. Importantly, since all articles have been peer-reviewed a balanced representation of the literature is ensured.

On-campus access does not require a password. Off-campus access is via Raven password.

ZETOC - electronic tables of contents

Zetoc provides access to over 29,000 current journals and more than 52 million article citations and conference papers through the British Library's electronic table of contents. The database covers 1993 to date, and is updated on a daily basis. It includes an email alerting service, to enable you to keep up-to-date with relevant new articles and papers.

On-campus access does not require a password. Off-campus access is via Raven password.

Copies of all the articles and conference papers listed on the database are available from the British Library's Document Supply Centre in Yorkshire, via Inter-Library Loan (ILL), if the journal is not held anywhere within the University. The Balfour Library provides an inter-library loan service, please see the Inter-Library Loans page. 



Ornithological databases

The Balfour Library has purchased access to two ornithological databases.  

 Birds of North America Online (BNA Online)

BNA Online is a project of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology. It provides comprehensive life histories for each of the 716+ species of birds breeding in the USA (including Hawaii) and Canada.

Species accounts are updated frequently, with contributions from researchers, citizen scientists, and designated reviewers and editors. In addition, BNA Online contains image and video galleries showing plumages, behaviours, habitat, nests and eggs, and more. Most accounts now feature recordings of the songs and calls of their species, recordings selected from the extensive collection of Cornell's Macaulay Library

On-campus access does not require a password. Off-campus access is via Raven password.

Handbook of the Birds of the World Alive (HBW Alive)

HBW Alive is an online comprehensive resource for all of the birds of the world. It contains the contents of the acclaimed 17-volume Handbook of the Birds of the World (HBW) series.

HBW Alive contains detailed information, illustrations, maps and other material on all the bird species of the world. The contents are constantly updated by professional editors and moderated user participation via "wikicontributions". There are more than 50,000 videos, photographs and sounds which are linked for quick and easy access. Each species account also includes a bibliography of the references used. HBW Alive also has a geographic tree which can be used to see species lists of the birds of every country of the world.

Access is restricted to computers with a Zoology Department IP-address. A username and password is also required. Contact the for more information and a password.



How to get a Raven password

See the University Computing Service "How do I get a password for Raven?" web page.