Library Tips: Accessing Library Resources After Graduation

Posted by Carolyn Caffrey Gardner

Congratulations graduates! This is an exciting time of year and we want to make sure that in the midst of all your celebrating you know how to access library resources after graduation.

Graduating USC students retain their full library privileges until the beginning of the next semester. For example, if you graduate this May, you will continue to have full access to the libraries until the end of August. After then, in order to obtain a USC Libraries borrowing card, alumni need to first receive a membership card from the USC Alumni Association. Once their Alumni Association card is registered at the Doheny Library Circulation Desk, alumni will be able to check out up to 40 books in person from the library. Also, while in Doheny Library, alumni can access electronic library materials from the guest computers. From off-campus, alumni who register with the USC Alumni Association can access the ProQuest Research Library and JSTOR databases on the Alumni Association website, through the Library Services link.

Alumni cannot access other electronic resources from an off-campus location or use interlibrary loan and document delivery services. To register for alumni library privileges, go to the Alumni Association site and fill out the registration form.

If you're looking for other scholarly electronic resources, here are some freely available sources we recommend:

  • DOAJ - The Directory of Open Access Journals includes freely available peer-reviewed journals on all subjects
  • DOAB - The Directory of Open Access Books provides open access to over 854 Academic peer-reviewed books from 25 publishers
  • PubMed Central - Full-text archive of biomedical and life sciences journal literature at the U.S. National Institutes of Health's National Library of Medicine (NIH/NLM). NIH grant recipients are required to deposit their final, peer-reviewed manuscripts in the PubMedCentral archive upon acceptance for publication, with this content to be made publicly accessible within 12 months of publication. (PubMed includes additional citations that aren't full text)
  • Sage Open -  Communication, Education, Psychology, and other social science journal articles published through Sage.
  • USC Digital Library - Includes photographs, images, and other digitized collections. Features over 56,000 USC published theses and dissertations.
  • ArXiv.org - Open access to nearly 800,000 e-prints in Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Quantitative Biology, Quantitative Finance and Statistics, and related fields
  • PLoS - High quality megajournal in the area of science, particularly biological sciences
  • SSRN - The Social Science Research Network has pre-print and other open access materials from across a broad range of the social sciences including business and economics such as conference papers, journal articles, and book chapters
  • ERIC - The Education Resources Information Center is an online library of education research and information, sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education featuring reports, articles, and book chapters in the fields of education and counseling

Finally, consider your local library. A Los Angeles Public Library card can provide access to online references sources you may have used at USC such as Gale Virtual Reference Center and Literature Resource Center.

Have questions? As always, feel free to ask a librarian. For more tips check out our post archives.