10 Free Research and Journal Databases

Finding reliable research can be difficult, particularly in this day and age when so much of it is hidden behind paywalls. But if you know where to look, there are plenty of free materials available to you. Therefore, in order to be of assistance, we have put together a list of ten free academic search engines and databases that you should look into.

1. Google Scholar

You will be familiar with Google even if you have never used Google Scholar before. You may undoubtedly deduce from this that Google Scholar is a search engine that is geared specifically at scholarly research. Everything that is listed on Google Scholar will not necessarily be freely accessible in its entirety. However, if you are looking for a particular document, this is a wonderful location to begin your search, and many of the papers may be downloaded for free.


An open research aggregator is represented by CORE. This means that it functions as a search engine for open access research, which refers to research that has been published by organizations from all over the world and is made freely available to the public. It is also the largest open access aggregator in the world, which means that it is an extremely helpful resource for scholars!

3. Bielefeld Academic Search Engine (BASE)

BASE is yet another specialized academic search engine that provides users with access to over 140 million documents originating from over 6,000 different sources. You can limit the results to see only research that is readily available to you for no cost on the internet, and approximately sixty percent of these documents offer open access.

4. Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

The Directory of Open Access Publications (DOAJ) is a database that contains listings for around 12,000 open access journals. These journals cover all aspects of science, technology, medicine, social science, and the humanities.

5. PubMed

The NCBI, which is a component of the United States National Library of Medicine, is responsible for maintaining the search engine known as PubMed. It gives users access to more than 29 million citations of scientific research that have been taken from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online publications. The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) also manages a search engine that is analogous to PubMed for research in the chemical sciences called PubChem.

6. E-Theses Online Service (EThOS)

EThOS is a database that contains more than 500,000 doctorate theses. It is managed by the British Library. More than half of them can be accessed without cost either straight through EThOS or by following a link to a website belonging to a university.

7. Social Science Research Network (SSRN)

The Social Science Research Network (SSRN) is a database for research in the social sciences and the humanities. It has 846,589 research papers contributed by 426,107 academics working in 30 different fields. Although you may be required to join up as a member (which is also free) in order to access certain services, the majority of these can be accessed without cost.

8. WorldWideScience

WorldWideScience is a global academic search engine that gives users access to scientific databases from all around the world, including both national and international collections. It includes automated translation, which enables users to have search results translated into the language of their choice. This is an amazing function that the software possesses.

9. Semantic Scholar

The academic search engine known as Semantic Scholar can be described as `intelligent.` It does this through the use of machine learning, which helps to rank the study in order of importance, making it much simpler to locate relevant literature. Or, to put it another way, it `cuts through the clutter` by utilizing influential citations, visuals, and key phrases. These are Semantic Scholar's own words.

10. Public Library of Science (PLOS)

PLOS is a research group that publishes a number of publications and provides open access to its content. PLOS, on the other hand, does not just publish its own research but also works tirelessly to promote open-access education. If you find the search engines and databases that we have mentioned on this page useful, we encourage you to explore the rest of the PLOS website to learn more about the organization's initiative to increase access to information.