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This database is freely available to the general public via the Internet.


OAIster is a union catalog that allows one-pass searching across millions of freely available Internet digital resources from open access collections from over 1,500 repositories, databases, and web sites (See data contributors). OAIster can be searched by Title, Author/Creator, Subject, Language or Entire Record. Searches can also be limited by resource type (text, image, audio, video, dataset) and sorted by title, author, date and hit frequency. One can go directly to the search query screen.

Searchable digital resources can range from an old-time advertisement of electric refrigerators (from the Library of Congress American Memory project) to Harriet Beecher Stowe memoirs (from the University of Michigan Digital Library Production Service Making of America collection) to the latest research on nanotubes. Included are items such as:

  • digitized (i.e., scanned) books and articles
  • technical reports
  • dissertations and theses
  • preprints and working documents
  • audio, video, and image files
  • datasets (e.g., downloadable statistics files)

For each document, OAIster captures the descriptive information such as title and authors using standard Internet protocols for open archives. OAIster is now built and maintained by OCLC. All OAIster records are fully accessible through For more information, see The OAIster database at a glance, FAQs, and OCLC's product description.

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A. Ben Wagner's picture
A. Ben Wagner
118 Lockwood Library
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