06-Oct-17, 20:37
edited about 42 minutes later
by helebon
Avatar for helebon
posted about 9 months ago
Many university libraries hold copies of dissertations and theses. I know the general public can gain access to many university libraries without a library card to read the library books, theses and paper copies of journal articles in the library. Many will let the public in but may need to sign in on arrival. Some require visitors to fill in a form and show relevant ID to obtain a visitor pass. If there's a local university nearby check out the website it should mention library visitor access.

'Access to Reseach' is a website for independent researchers and the general public to gain access to research papers. It's free but to read the full articles you have to visit a public library. The website has lists of publishers included on the site and it has a search for articles.

Search the web for 'access to research'.
07-Oct-17, 11:33
Avatar for TreeofLife
posted about 9 months ago
Quote From bignige:

I have been struggling to access (without paying!) papers etc - but he pointed me to SSRN which seems to allow downloads of full papers without the requirement to register, or pay.

How do other people on here access papers etc?

Is there anywhere one can access PhD proposals or completed theses?


Most of us are members of a university so our university log ins give us access to any journals our university subscribes to.

For those without university access, there's websites like - this is an (illegal?) website that holds many papers. Many authors also upload work to things like and sometimes upload the whole paper, or if they don't you can message them and they will often send you a copy.

For theses, you can get them from - you can request any that are not already available but they may take up to a month to appear because they have to be scanned from the university library copy - most unis aren't quite up to speed with holding digital copies of theses yet!

There's not really anywhere for PhD proposals that I'm aware of - these are very discipline specific as well so you would need to find something from your area of research. has many tips on such things, but PhD proposals aren't very common in UK science so they are not something I'm very familiar with.
07-Oct-17, 20:10
edited about 29 seconds later
by bignige
Avatar for bignige
posted about 9 months ago
Thanks again Treeoflife.

13-Oct-17, 18:07
by bignige
Avatar for bignige
posted about 9 months ago
Although I have an interview via Skype on Monday for a place to study a PhD, I have today received an email from another University rejecting me and stating 'your application has not been successful as the project proposal was not of doctoral standard...'



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