How to Access Paywalled Research Articles

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Found a fascinating research article, but having trouble accessing it?

Here's a quick and easy way to access research articles when you hit a pesky paywall. Try it out, share it with teachers, and tell your students, too!

  1. Copy the title of the article you want to read

  2. Paste it into scholar.google.com

  3. Click on the PDF link on the right side of the page

Voila! This can take a little practice, but soon, you'll be a Google Scholar pro.

Here's an example from a brand new research study on interleaving:

Doug Rohrer and colleagues (authors of our Interleaving Guide) just published a new study demonstrating large benefits of interleaving on mathematics learning for nearly 800 7th grade students across Florida. Wow!

Here's the abstract from the Journal of Ed. Psychology. The article costs $12.

Here are the Google Scholar results when you search for the article title.

Click on the [PDF] link on the right and voila!

This isn't guaranteed to work, but it comes in handy most of the time. If it doesn't work, search "regular" Google for the title and you might happen upon a blog post or news article summarizing the research.

Still can’t access a research article on Google Scholar?

  1. Google the authors and find their lab website. Many scientists have their publications available for download on their website.

  2. Email the first author of the publication and ask for the research article. They’ll be thrilled to hear from you.

  3. Get in touch with your local library. They’re there to help!

Lucky for us, Andrew Watson at Learning & the Brain wrote a detailed blog post all about the new study on interleaving!

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