Staying Updated with the Latest Literature and Alerts

What Is Current Awareness

Current Awareness is a service designed to alert scholars, researchers, readers, and users to recently published literature in their field(s) of interest. The service can be personalized to fit the interest profile of individuals or groups. Most of online catalogs and bibliographic databases include a "current awareness service” option that allows the users to archive search statements and re-execute them as needed.

Why Current Awareness?

It is vital for researchers and academics to keep up-to-date with the most recently published information and developments in their fields of interest. This guide is a selection of current-awareness services with direct link to the most frequently used ones. Should you have any concern, please contact the library staff on

Table of Content (TOC) Alerts

Table of Content (TOC) Alert is free e-mail alerting service. By subscribing to this service, you will receive table of contents (TOC) alerts as new issues are published. TOC alerts are delivered directly to the e-mail address you specify. Most of scholarly journals publish a "feed" that contains the Table of Contents (TOC) for the most recent issue of the journal. TOC alerts update the feed each time a new issue of a journal is published. TOC alerts provide a convenient way to stay informed about current developments in an academic field.

  • JournalTOCs — The JournalTOCs Tables of Contents service allows you to keep up-to-date with newly published scholarly material by enabling you to browse, view, save, and search across thousands of journal tables of contents from hundreds of publishers. Free registration allow you to create a customized list of your most important and favorite journals, and includes export options such as email alerts, RSS feeds, formats for bibliographic managers, and customizable API for web pages
  • EBSCO host — EBSCO provides subscription management services, electronic journal access, online bibliographic and full-text databases, and an online book ordering service to libraries and related institutions. EBSCO is currently one of the three leading aggregators of journals available in electronic full-text
  • ProQuest — ProQuest is an information service that provides online indexing of articles published in thousands of current periodicals, including the full-text of a significant number of titles. One of the three leading aggregators of journals available in electronic format

How to Set Up a TOC Alert Service?

To set up a TOC alert in any of the databases you need to have an account for that database. Once you have created your account, follow the steps described here to set an alert.

  • Click on the "Sign in to My EBSCOhost" link. If you haven't previously registered, select the "I'm a new user" link
  • Click on the Publications button from the top toolbar
  • Enter the journal name and click "Browse"
  • Click on the journal title
  • Click on the Journal Alert link
  • The Journal Alert Screen appears
  • Complete the form, and click the Save button

To delete alerts, sign in via the "Sign in to My EBSCOhost" link and select "My folder".

Citation and Subject Alerts

A citation alert is a service provided by online databases that notifies users when new publications cite works for a particular author or in a particular subject. This service is common now among information resources publishers and providers:

  • Google Scholar Citations - Google Scholar Citations provides a simple way for authors to keep track of citations to their articles. You can check who is citing your publications, graph citations over time, and compute several citation metrics. You can also make your profile public, so that it may appear in Google Scholar results when people search for your name
  • Search Alerts in ScienceDirect - A Search Alert is a saved search that you can schedule to run daily, weekly or monthly. You will receive an e-mail with a link into ScienceDirect to access the new articles added on your search result
  • EBSCOhost Subject Alerts - A Search Alert is a saved search that you can schedule to run daily, weekly or monthly. You will receive an e-mail with a link into ScienceDirect to access the new articles added on your search result

How to Create a Citation Alert?

Setting up citation alert is usually different from database to another. Here are few:

Setting Up a Google Scholar Citation Alert - To set a Google Scholar Citation alert follow these steps:

  • First, create a regular Google account in Google Scholar Citations, or sign in to the one you already have
  • Once you've signed in to your Google account, the Citations sign up form will ask you to confirm the spelling of your name, and to enter your affiliation, interests, etc.
  • On the next page, you'll see groups of articles written by people with names similar to yours. Click "Add all articles" next to each article group that is yours, or "See all articles" to add specific articles from that group
  • If you don't see your articles in these groups, click "Search articles" to do a regular Google Scholar search, and then add your articles one at a time
  • Feel free to do as many searches as you like. Once you're done with adding articles, it will ask you what to do when the article data changes in Google Scholar
  • You can either have the updates applied to your profile automatically, or you can choose to review them beforehand. In either case, you can always go to your profile and make changes by hand
  • Finally, you will see your profile

This is a good time to make a few finishing touches - upload your professional looking photo, visit your email inbox and click on the verification link, double check the list of articles, and, once you're completely satisfied, make your profile public.

Voila - it's now eligible to appear in Google Scholar when someone searches for your name!

Setting a SicenceDirect Search Alert - You must have an account in ScienceDirect before you can set up an alert. If you don't have an account, you need to create one and then follow the steps:

  • Go to search Enter your search term and click on “Search”
  • On the search result bar, click on the link “Save as search alert”
  • Provide a name for your search
  • Provide an e-mail address if different from the initial one
  • Set the “Frequency” to Daily, Weekly or Monthly as you want
  • Click on “Save", your search will be saved and you will be alerted when new addition is done on your search result

Note: Your search alerts will be set to inactive if they are not used for an extended period of time. You can activate inactive alerts on Modify Alerts page.

More Examples of TOC Services

You have the option to explore additional recent examples of TOC services either through the website or by accessing the regularly updated feed:

Conference Alerts

Discover a comprehensive range of conference-related services, including Conference Alerts, arXiv, All Conference, World Conference Alerts, and These platforms offer researchers the convenience of staying updated on various academic and business events, accessing scholarly articles, and connecting with conferences across diverse fields and destinations.

RSS Feeds

Learn about Really Simple Syndication (RSS) and its benefits as a web feed format for frequently updated content like blogs, news headlines, audio, and video. Discover why RSS is valuable for publishers to syndicate their content and how it helps web users easily stay informed by receiving the latest updates from various sources.

Social Networking

Dive into the realm of social networking services and news. Discover what social networking services are and how they enable users to create profiles, connect with others, and share content.

Social Bookmarking

Dive into the realm of social bookmarking and reference management to enhance your research endeavors. Discover the concept of social bookmarking, a method to organize and manage online resources through bookmarking.