Whichever aspect of chemistry you are studying, the library has books, journals, and databases to suit your needs.

Welcome to our guide to resources for Chemistry courses. As the Learning and Research Librarian for Chemistry, I am here to support you in your learning and assignments.

Lawrence Dean, Learning & Research Librarian for Chemistry

You can use LibrarySearch to search for the books you need. Just type in a few words from the title plus the surname of the author(s) into the search box. If you get stuck – please ask!

You will find the majority of the chemistry book collection on the second floor at Augustine House:

  • 510-519 Mathematics
  • 540 Chemistry
  • 572 / 574 – Biochemistry

We use the Dewey Decimal System to classify the books so it’s easier to find them.

You can browse printed copies of journals on the second floor of Augustine House in the Silent Zone – they are shelved in alphabetical order of the title of the journal. These are for use in the library only. However, most journals are also available online. Online journals relevant to chemistry include:

  • Biochemical Journal
  • Biotechnology and Applied Biochemistry
  • Chemical Biology and Drug Design
  • Clinical Pharmacology in Drug Development
  • Journal of Biological Chemistry
  • Journal of Clinical Pharmacology
  • Journal of Physical Chemistry parts A, B and C
  • New Scientist
  • Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics (PCCP)

You can see which journals are available online by using LibrarySearch. Make sure you log in first! (You will need your university username and password). Try entering the title of a journal into the search box or using the “Find e-journals by title” link. You can also browse e-journals by subject, using Browzine. This software allows you to read a journal like an e-book, so you can look through the whole journal rather than just individual articles. There is an app so you can use it easily on your phone or other mobile device.

You can find individual journal articles to read online by doing a quick search in LibrarySearch. Try searching for a key word or phrase connected with your research topic, e.g. “heat transfer”. See our quick guide for more information.

Open access journals

The Directory of Open Access Journals includes journals such as International Journal of Industrial ChemistryMDPI supports open scientific exchange, providing access to journals in the sciences.  Open access journals are usually scholarly, but the difference is, the publishers of these journals believe in making their research freely accessible to anyone with an internet connection. This means that you (or your institution) don’t have to have a subscription to the journal to be able to read the articles they publish.

There are lots of databases that contain articles about chemistry, and they are all available via LibrarySearch – just click on the “Find databases” link in the left-hand menu and you will see an alphabetical list. Browse the list until you find the one you want.

The most useful databases for your subject include:

American Chemical Society Legacy Archives contains all titles, volumes, issues, and articles published by the American Chemical Society from 1879 to 1995. There are 22 journals, 11,117 issues, and 464,233 articles in the fields of chemistry and related sciences such as biological and medicinal chemistry, polymer science and materials science. Titles include some of the most highly cited journals in the field, such as Chemical Reviews, the Journal of the American Chemical Society, and the Journal of Organic Chemistry.

BIOSIS Citation Index life sciences and biomedical research covering pre-clinical and experimental research, methods and instrumentation, animal studies, and more.
Access content from journals, meetings, patents, and books from 1969 onwards.

Business Source Premier a major business research database, providing access to over 2,100 full-text journals covering the subject areas of marketing, management, finance, accounting and economics. Additional full-text, non-journal content includes market research reports, industry reports, country reports, company profiles and SWOT analyses.

Knovel:Chemistry and Chemical Engineering package includes books, technical information, analytical tools and interactive equations.

New Scientist provides access to the articles from this weekly international science magazine. Articles are grouped by broad field or topic, and you can browse by date or search for a specific subject. It also includes lists of jobs and careers advice information. [Access via LibrarySearch and then choose OpenAthens link on the New Scientist page].

ScienceDirect searches across 2,500 peer-reviewed titles – or over 9.5 million articles. This is a good source for journal articles in engineering, covering chemical engineering, chemistry, energy, and materials science.

Springer Journals contains more than 2,000 journals in various fields of science, technology and medicine.

SpringerProtocols 1980-2012 a large database of reproducible laboratory protocols (over 40,000) in biomedicine and life sciences, enabling users to find the right protocol for a lab set-up.

Web of Science (WoS) a multi-disciplinary service, where you can search for articles from over 18,000 journals in a wide range of science fields. You can access full-text journal articles, if the Library has an active subscription.

Wiley Online Library searches across a multi-disciplinary collection of journals covering industrial engineering, mechanical engineering, physics, mathematics and materials science.

You will find guides next to the database title (for most databases) on the “Find databases” pages, and you can also access these guides on the Library and Learning Resources web pages.

Kanopy is a great video-streaming service which includes a number of documentaries. Plus, we have access to Box of Broadcasts (BoB) which archives British TV and radio broadcasts. A great feature is that you can take clips of programmes and put them in your presentations or analyse the transcripts.

There are a lot of brilliant websites that may be relevant to your studies, but there are also many that are not, so it is essential to evaluate the material carefully to decide whether they are scholarly enough.

The following websites are a good starting point:

ChemSpider a free-to-access collection of compound data from across the web, provided by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC). It aggregates chemical structures and their associated information into a single searchable repository. A range of guides are available plus the RSC YouTube.

ChemSynthesis a freely accessible database of chemicals, containing substances with their synthesis references and physical properties such as melting point, boiling point and density. There are currently more than 40,000 compounds and more than 45,000 synthesis references in the database.

HSE the website of the Health and Safety Executive. Find news and guidance on topics such as machine safety.

IChemE the global professional membership organisation for those working in the chemical, process and bioprocess industries. Offers the option of student membership giving access to a range of information resources.

Intellectual Property Office this is official UK government body responsible for intellectual property rights. Find information on patents, designs, trade marks and copyright.

LearnChemistry an RSC resource for learners and teachers of chemistry at all levels, including higher education.

National Chemical Database Service brings together tools and resources for UK researchers in chemistry and related fields. All web-based services are freely accessible from any UK academic network.

NIST Chemistry WebBook created and maintained by the US National Institute of Standards and Technology, this online resource provides chemical and physical property data on over 40,000 compounds.

Royal Pharmaceutical Society the professional membership body for pharmacists and pharmacy in Great Britain and an internationally renowned publisher of medicines information.

Royal Society of Chemistry the website for the world’s leading chemical community, providing access to information and resources, including educational resources, careers information and networking opportunities.

TOXLINE a freely available bibliographic database with citations from specialized journals and other sources, from the 1840s to the current day. It covers the biochemical, pharmacological, physiological, and toxicological effects of drugs and other chemicals.

UK Research and Innovation the gateway to publicly funded research and innovation in the UK.

WolframAlpha search on the public website to see chemical names and formulas, 3D structures and basic/gas/thermodynamic/safety/toxicity properties. Select the Engineering option to explore data, details, formulae etc. on energy data, control systems, fluid mechanics and steam tables amongst other topics.

Image shows evaluating sources: the CRAAP test - check for currency, relevance, accuracy, authority and purpose of resources before you use them.
Evaluating resources: The CRAAP test
Lawrence Dean
Library and Research Librarian