SFX

SFX is a button that tries to bring you to an online full text article, based on the bibliographical information you entered. If an online full text is not available, it will offer you different options, for instance where you can find a print version, or how to request it from another library via interlibrary loan.
The SFX button looks like this:

screenshot of the SFX button

Using the SFX-button

1. Online full text is available

If Ghent University has an online subscription to the journal, or if it is an open access journal, you can simply click the link after ‘Full text available via’. The example below is an open access journal:

screenshot of redirection via SFX button (full text online)

2. Print text is available (at UGent)

If an article is not available online, the SFX shows you if a Ghent University library has a print copy. This is a service free of charge.


When you click the link “Scanned article from print collections (UGent only),” it will lead you to a filled in request form. You will need to log in using your UGent account. When you click “Request,” your scan request will be sent to the library and you will receive a scan of the article in your mailbox.

screenshot of redirection via SFX button (available print)screenshot of a scan request

3. Request from another library

If an article is not available online or in print (at a Ghent University library), you can request an interlibrary loan or ILL from another library. Caution: this is a paying service! Find out more about the prices here .


When you click the link “From any library worldwide (paying service),” a filled in request form will appear. You will need to log in using your UGent account. Check the box that you "understand ILL is a paying service" and click "request". The library will process your request and you will receive the article in your mailbox. You will also receive a separate mail with a link to pay the fee online.

screenshot of redirection via SFX button (not available at Ghent University)

screenshot of interlibrary loan scan request

Background information

SFX, or Special Effects, was developed at Ghent University in 1998 by Herbert Van de Sompel and Patrick Hochstenbach. It is an answer to the Harvard Problem, where a researcher finds sources on the internet, but cannot find the sources even though their library should have access to them. Since then, SFX has become the most frequently used link resolver worldwide. It was sold to Ex Libris in 2000.

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Last modified Aug. 2, 2019, 4 p.m.