Texas State University Library Research Paper

Step 1: Finding a CITATION to an Article and/or FULL-TEXT Online

Let's say you've chosen a research topic (such as "choral music of Igor Stravinsky"), and now you need to find related journal articles. You can start by searching an online journal index. (An index contains citations to articles, providing author, title, and subject information, plus a listing of the journal's name and volume. You are also often given an abstract--a brief summary of the article.)

Three essential music index/abstract databases to which we subscribe are Music Periodicals Database, Music Index, and RILM Abstracts.

In all three of these databases, you will find that many (but not all) of the search results will lead you to direct links where you can view the full-text of the article online. (If you can't access full-text online for the article you want, please proceed to Step 2.)

  • Music Periodicals Database (formerly known as International Index to Music Periodicals Full Text) covers a comprehensive range of subject areas in both scholarly and popular music journals, from 1874 to the present.
  • Music Indexprovides comprehensive coverage from more than 400 periodicals on the music field and every aspect of the classical and popular worlds of music, covering 1970-present.
  • RILM Abstracts includes citations (with abstracts) for books, chapters in essay collections, dissertations, and other sources in addition to journal articles. Coverage is 1967-present.

Another tip: you can also search your topic in Grove Music Online. The article you select will have a bibliography section, usually citing several related journal articles for further reading.

Step 2: Finding the JOURNAL (if article isn't available full-text online)

Once you know which journal contains the article you want, you can use the Periodical List database to see whether Texas State has the journal--either in print or electronic form--and it will provide you with a call number to the print journal or a link for electronic access. (Type in the title of the journal you want, not the article title.) This comprehensive, searchable list of periodical titles includes:

  • Printed/bound and microform subscriptions (Note that print music and microform periodicals are located on the 3rd floor of the Alkek library, NOT at the Schneider.)
  • Electronic journal subscriptions
  • Full-text periodicals that are contained within databases to which the university subscribes (such as JSTOR and Project MUSE). Most of the e-journals and full-text databases can be accessed off-campus by students and employees with their TxState usernames and passwords. And anyone can access them password-free from the public-use computers at the Schneider and Alkek libraries.


Many journals do not consider self-archiving in a repository to constitute prior publication, and will accept material that has been archived in pre-print form. 

Authors should read any rights transfer agreement with the publisher carefully. If a publisher’s standard agreement seems to preclude either prior or later deposit in an online repository, the author may be able to add wording to the agreement recognizing the existing deposit or allowing a future deposit. For example, the original contract may read:

“The author transfers exclusively to the publisher copyright (including all rights hereunder) in the work for the duration of copyright and all extensions and renewals thereof, in all languages, throughout the world, and in any form or medium now known or hereafter developed.”

To secure sufficient rights to deposit the work the Texas State University Digital Collections Repository, and to reuse their own work, the author could modify the language as follows:

“Notwithstanding the above language, I reserve the right to use this work in my teaching and research, for my colleagues at the Texas State University to use this work in their teaching and research, and I also reserve the right to place an electronic copy of this work on a publicly accessible web site.”

More information about negotiating publishing agreements can be found at the following sites:

• Author’s Rights – part of the Alkek Library Copyright LibGuide

• Resources for Authors: Practical guidance when submitting journal articles (from SPARC, Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition, www.arl.org/sparc)

• Faculty Copyright Information - Encouraging Retention of Intellectual Property Rights (from Cornell University, ILR School, Digital Commons)

• Change & You (from CreateChange, www.createchange.org)




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