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The Royal College of Surgeons of England

LibGuides

Accessing online resources

Who can access Library online resources?

Online resources are available to current fellows, members, affiliates and associates of the College or of The Faculty of Dental Surgery.

Please note that student affiliates have access to RCS England Publications and to Acland's Video Atlas Of Human Anatomy only.
Associates have access to ClinicalKey, the LWW Heath Libraries, and Ovid, ScienceDirect and Wiley journals, along with the Ovid databases (Embase, MEDLINE and HMIC), TripPro and OthoEvidence.

Find out more about resources for fellows and members, for affiliates and for associates.

What do I have access to?

The Library provides online access to over 1200 e-journals, as well as over a thousand e-books, two anatomy sites and five databases, from many resource providers. Generally, we try to provide resources that complement those of the NHS, rather than duplicate them, in order to make the best use of our budget.

You can find out what we have on our online catalogue, Surgical Library. This includes full-text links to e-journals, articles and e-books.

If we do not have online access to a specific article, we may have it in print, or be able to get it from the British Library. If so, we can provide PDF versions of articles via our Document Delivery service.

Please contact us if you have any suggestions for additions to our collection.

How do I get access?

Get access by logging in at the College website, which will automatically sign you into your College OpenAthens account. If you have not already done so, you can set a password at the College website. Find out more about the login and how to set it up.

How do I log in?

You should sign in at the College website before accessing an online resource. Usually, the resource provider will need to be told you are logged-in, so you need to find the “OpenAthens” or “Institutional” login link for that provider. Every provider is different, so illustrated instructions are provided on every journal entry in Surgical Library: look for the green icon under the full text link. This is not available for individual articles, but you can find a link to these help pages in the main menu.

I am logged in, why can't I get access to this item?

There are a number of possibilities as to why you cannot get access to a specific resource, even if you are successfully logged in at the College website:

  • It may not be a title to which the Library has online access. You can see what you can access at Surgical Library. There is a Document Delivery service if we do not have the item you want.
  • The Library may have access to a journal, but not to that issue. The Library's online subscriptions are usually for the most recent years, although some titles are different, such as JBJS (American) where we only have historic access. Please check the coverage range at Surgical Library. There is a Document Delivery service if we do not have the item you want.
  • The Library may be using a different resource provider for this title. Some journals are available via more than one website, but the Library may have access via only one of them. Trying to use the wrong website is especially common when using links from Pubmed, as that database does not know which institution you are part of. If you can, follow a College-provided link to the resource (such as those in Surgical Library and specialty Updates) as this will automatically take you to the right resource. The Library subscriptions to MEDLINE, Embase and HMIC are useful; these include the PubMed data and give links to the articles at Library providers where possible (look for the green Full Text @ RCS England button).
    Full Text @ RCS England
  • You may need to let the resource provider know that you are logged-in. Usually there will be an indication that you have access via The Royal College of Surgeons of England somewhere on the page, but this is not always the case. Follow the instructions for the appropriate provider in these help pages to let them know that you are logged in (these instructions are also available on individual journal entries in Surgical Library).
  • You may already be logged in with a different OpenAthens provider. It is possible that you are already logged in with a different OpenAthens account, and this is preventing access to the one provided by the College; this is very common on NHS-provided computers, some of which may log people into their NHS OpenAthens accounts automatically. You can check this by going to My Athens and checking the organisation indicated at the top of the page. If this is not “The Royal College of Surgeons of England”, then you will need to log out of the OpenAthens account using the Sign Out link at the top of the MyAthens page, and out of the College website. If you now log in again at the College site, this should fix this problem.
    Find out more about MyAthens.
  • There may be a problem with your login or the login system. If you've successfully logged in to the College website, but are unable to access any resources, you can carry out the following test:
    1. Make sure you are logged out of the College website (this will establish a baseline for the rest of the test)
    2. Log back into the College website
    3. Click on your name (top right) to open the account page
    4. Click on MyAthens (towards the bottom of the right menu)
    5. At the MyAthens sign in screen, click on Sign in with OpenAthens (towards the bottom of the page)
    If you now get an error or see an OpenAthens login form, then there is a problem with either the login system or your account. Please get in touch with the Library for assistance.
    If you see the MyAthens page, please check the organisation indicated at the top of the page. If this is not “Royal College of Surgeons of England”, then you will need to log out of the OpenAthens account using the Sign Out link at the top of the page, and out of the College website. If you now log in again at the College site, this should fix this problem. You may also find it necessary to clear the cookies on your browser.
    Find out more about MyAthens.

How do I fix it if I am caught in a loop between the College website and the resource website?

A number of people have been caught in a loop where they have logged in at the College website, but the resource website has simply returned them to the login page. If they then login again, the loop repeats and they never gain access.

This is usually the result of files in your browser cache becoming corrupted. The cache is where the browser stores files it is likely to download more than once, such as images and the function libraries used to enable actions like logging in.

To fix this clear both the cache and the browser's cookies storage - note that these are separate things. You should be able to find these in the settings menu, probably under "history" or "privacy and security". Do not delete your passwords or browsing history!

Please note that this will log you out of any sites to which you are currently signed in.

Once this is done, you can go back to the College website and try the login process again.

If this does not work for you, please get in touch by one of the methods below. There are a couple of more complex solutions we can try and we will be able to get you up and running again!

Getting help with online resources

 

If you're having problems, we are here to help. You can get assistance through any of the following means:

  • Email: library.athens@rcseng.ac.uk - we will usually respond with one working day
  • Telephone: 020 7869 6556 - the line is open between 9 am and 5 pm, Monday to Friday, excluding UK public holidays and College closure days
  • In person: members are welcome to visit the Library in person for assistance, and appointments can be arranged for in-person enquiries - please see the Library pages on the College website for more information.

It does help us if you can provide your College membership number with your enquiry - this will be on your membership page in the College website and on any personal communications sent by the College.