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7 + Free Online Databases for Your Academic Research

It is essential to find credible sources to back up your research, and as years pass it becomes harder and harder to do. It might sound surprising, as finally, the Internet is full of information of any kind, and supposedly, you just have to spend some time, and you will have a handful of treasures.

Unfortunately, when it comes to the academic texts, it is not so bright anymore. Here are some reliable databases you can use to conduct research faster and impress your professor with credible sources.

Google Scholar

Stand on the shoulder of giants. This phrase welcomes you once you decide to use a Google Scholar search. This Google service is very popular in the academic world because it protects you from the necessity to dig through the layers of different promoted websites and blogs searching for some relevant references. It is not a guide to totally free sources, but lots of them are, especially if your university has special deals with online academic databases. Use it instead of a standard Google every time you make a broad academic search.

Library of Congress

This library itself is situated in Washington DC, but it has a lucrative digital version which simply has to be in your bookmarks, as it is full of free, well-sorted materials regarding the US history, politics, culture, literary works, etc. You can also find some guidance on how to use the library the most efficiently.


It is a rather popular collection of respectful and reliable academic magazines, quoting from which might make your paper shine to your professor’s eyes. However, unfortunately, it is not fully free, and you can download all the papers you like. You have three papers within a month you can have in your virtual cabinet for free, so use this limit wisely.

Digital Internet Archive

It has archives of most of the websites ever existed and also it has a huge database of movies, documentaries, pictures, books, etc. It is a little messy when you try to find something, but with some patience, you can stumble upon the true treasures here. It might be very useful and inspiring for you Creative Thinking classes.

Smithsonian Libraries

Here you will find up to 30 000 of books, papers, magazines, videos, manuscripts, articles, you name it. It is a great pleasure to work with this database when writing a paper on History, Literature, Sociology or Psychology. They also have some sections for mathematicians and physics, but mostly humanitarians will be happy here.

Directory of Open Access Journals

It is like the JSTOR, but free. It might contain less recent reports, but that’s it. Other than that, it is an exceptional database, which will help you in conducting any kind of research. The creators collect academic articles, reports regarding the experiments, etc. They pay the utmost attention to quality control and to the validity of the information used so that you can rely on the materials you find here. However, we recommend checking the formatting of the sources names, as they sometimes are not presented so well.

U.S. National Library of Medicine and Rubicon Foundation

You have to have these links in your bookmarks if you study medicine, biology, chemistry and anything related to them. They have an enormous amount of books, articles, research reports, experimental reports, and they take care of uploading the most recent entries concerning the hottest and the most valuable issues. They are also rather user-friendly, so you won’t spend too much time looking for a needed piece of information.

Cornell University Library

It is some sort of a local Library of Congress, which you can use for free, once you need some specific and the most recent strictly academic information. The search form is not the best one on the Internet, but it is good enough if you don’t try to conduct research using your iPhone.

The National Archives

It is similar to a Google Scholar option, just a little bit messier. It has a huge collection of materials, not only the academic ones, and what is more important, the search engine is truly student-friendly.

Don’t forget to cite everything you find properly, and you will be completely out of the woods. Good luck with your research!