How to Use JSTOR

by Jeremy M. Brown — last modified 2016-02-09T15:12:09-04:00

JSTOR is an online archive and research platform containing over 1,000 academic journals, conference proceedings, monographs and other scholarly content covering all disciplines. JSTOR specializes in providing archival access, and in most cases includes the full run of journal titles, with some articles going back as far as the 1800s. In order to do so, JSTOR has made agreements with publishers that limit their access to more recent content, so articles published in the last few years are not available.

A note about JSTOR and our Discovery service: JSTOR content is included in Discovery searches. However, due to the limited amount of metadata transferred during this process, it is very easy to accidentally exclude all JSTOR content from your results in a Discovery search. For this reason, we strongly recommend searching JSTOR directly when needed.

Access JSTOR through the "Databases A-Z" link on the library homepage. You will be brought to the basic search screen, from which you can run a simple search, access the advanced search screen, or browse recent journal articles by title or publisher. Because of the large amount of content in JSTOR, we recommend starting with Advanced Search.

On this screen, enter your search terms and then select additional parameters to limit the number of results you get initially. 

jstor-adv

Once you've selected your chosen search options and entered terms, you will be brought to a results screen, from which you can access full-text articles, or go back and modify your search as needed. Please note that although you can type in additional search terms on this screen, we recommend either checking the box to "search within results" before doing so or clicking the "Modify Search" link. These two options help minimize errors in the search process.

After finding an article of interest, click the title to view additional information and read it in the online PDF reader, or click "Download PDF" to save it to your computer. Note that the first time you download a PDF during a search session, JSTOR will prompt you to agree to their terms and conditions.

You can also pull up a window displaying citations for each article, formatted in MLA, APA, and Chicago, the three most commonly used citation styles. This window also give you the option of exporting this information into a citation manager if desired.