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Energy Sources: ScienceDirect

Transactional Access

ScienceDirect Transactional Access at ISU applies to

Registration & Login Required

In order to use this new function,
you must REGISTER with ScienceDirect.

First-time users will need to register. If you already have a ScienceDirect login, you need not re-register. 

Please register with your full name and your ISU e-mail address or your account may be removed.

Registration Process

  1. Go to the ISU Library homepage at
  2. Under the image, click the Articles & Databases Tab
  3. Click Databases A-Z.
  4. Scroll down and click ScienceDirect
  5. Scroll down and select Click here to access ScienceDirect
  6. Click the Register link in the upper right-hand corner.
    The registration form is a typical online registration form. You must fill in all required fields, and of course, you will have to select a password.
  7. Upon registering, an e-mail will be sent to the e-mail address you specified confirming your registration. You will receive a Username generated by ScienceDirect in the e-mail.
  8. Once you’ve registered, you may login to search and retrieve full-text from ScienceDirect.

What is Transactional Access?

Journal titles listed as available through ScienceDirect are now retrieved from ISU in two different ways.

One is a traditional online subscription method, whereby the article is available in full-text format when you find it in ScienceDirect. The other method requires a different process, known as pay-per-view, pay-as-you-go, or, if you want the official designation, Transactional Access. Switching to this method  which will save Indiana State University several thousands of dollars annually, and expand greatly the quantity and variety of publications you will be able to retrieve WITHOUT going through Interlibrary Loan.

ACCESS is available ONLY by going through ISU’s web pages, and only to ISU-connected faculty, staff and students.  Accessing ScienceDirect from Google or some other non-ISU source will result in your being prompted to pay for your article. You MUST access ScienceDirect from the Electronic Resources Web page to use this service.

The ISU Library pays for articles that patrons download using their registered accounts in ScienceDirect. Only currently enrolled students, staff, and faculty at ISU are authorized to use this service. Relatives, friends and other associates of authorized users may not use this service.  The Library asks all authorized users to clearly identify themselves when registering accounts in ScienceDirect by using their ISU email address, first name, and last name.

ScienceDirect Tutorials

Login to ScienceDirect

  1. Go to the ISU Library homepage at
  2. Under the image, click the Articles & Databases Tab
  3. Click Databases A-Z.
  4. Scroll down and click ScienceDirect
  5. Scroll down and select Click here to access ScienceDirect
  1. If you are off campus, you will be asked to login with your ISU username and password.
  1. WIthin ScienceDirect, click the Login link in the upper right-hand corner.
  2. A box will appear for you to enter your ScienceDirect username and password.
  3. Sign in.  The login box will disappear and be replaced by a note that your username is logged in.

If you forget to login to ScienceDirect with your ScienceDirect username and password, you may search the database but you cannot access full-text with Transactional Access. You may login at any time while searching ScienceDirect.

Searching ScienceDirect

ISU has a special contract with ScienceDirect where the library buys immediate access to its articles as needed by ISU patrons. To acquire full-text, users must create an account and login to ScienceDirect. All ScienceDirect journals and e-books are not findable using the E-journals/E-newspapers Search above.

  1. Go to the ISU Library homepage at
  2. Under the image, click the Articles & Databases Tab
  3. Click Databases A-Z.
  4. Scroll down and click ScienceDirect
  5. Scroll down and select Click here to access ScienceDirect 


     1. Within ScienceDirect, login in the upper right corner. Search for your topic, as usual. Enter your term(s) and click Search.

     2. You can obtain more information about an article immediately by clicking on its title link, which will give you access to the article abstract and an outline of the article.

To learn whether the library will use transactional access to purchase the full-text, you will have to look very carefully at the color of the little page icon to the right of the article title. You will notice either a WHITE or a GREEN-STRIPED square icon.

GREEN ICON: Articles featuring a green icon    to the right of the title are included in ISU’s regular subscription. Simply click PDF, or mark one or more item numbers for email or export, as you normally do.

WHITE ICON: Articles with the white icon after the number are – for the most part – covered by our Transactional Access contract. (Journals without the Transactional Access Option can be referenced at Accessing these articles will incur additional costs to the Library, so we ask you to carefully consider whether you absolutely need a copy of the article. We have set aside a specific amount of our collection development funds for this; therefore, there is a finite number of articles that we will be able to provide in this manner each month.


     4. a. Clicking on the PDF link for an article with a GREEN ICON opens the full-text of the article immediately.
          b. For an article with a WHITE ICON , clicking on the Purchase or Purchase PDF links opens a page giving you the choice to.“continue” or “cancel” access to the full-text. You may need to click the Purchase link twice to open full-text.

                Please select "Continue" to access this article under your organization's agreement with Elsevier.

     5. Clicking on “Continue” authorizes the purchase of the full-text of the article in PDF. You may need to click the Purchase link again to open full-text. This action will cost the Library about $30.00 from a finite fund to view the full-text; therefore, please do not view the full-text article unless you really need it.

If You're Asked to Pay


If you’ve gone through the above steps and are prompted to pay for your article,

  • did you register with ScienceDirect? Follow the registration instructions above.
  • did you forget to Login to ScienceDirect? Click Login in the upper right corner of the Web page.
  • you may have accessed ScienceDirect without going through ISU's Web site. In that case, you need to go to the ISU Library homepage and enter ScienceDirect from the Databases List.



Request your article via Interlibrary Loan at

If your journal title should be available in full-text to ISU, then you need to contact a Reference/Instruction Librarian for assistance in troubleshooting the problem. You can do this via our online chat, email [Ask a Librarian], by calling the Reference/Ask Desk at 812-237-2580, or by asking in person at the Reference/Ask Desk.

Ask a Librarian

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