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Materials Indexed in ERIC

How do materials get indexed in ERIC?

Journal articles, reports, conference papers and other materials become indexed in ERIC through a formal review process. Materials from approved journals and other content sources under agreement are selected and indexed, and new records are added to the collection.

The infographic PDF File How Research Becomes an ERIC Record and the webinar How Records Get into ERIC: A Look Behind the Scenes walk through the steps articles take to get indexed in ERIC.

Who contributes content to ERIC?

ERIC obtains content from journal publishers, grey literature and book sources, and grantees and individuals submitting materials through ERIC's online submission system. See the infographic PDF File Who Contributes Content to ERIC which provides metrics related to ERIC’s content providers.

What is the selection policy?

The ERIC Selection Policy establishes the standard and criteria for selecting materials for the library. It is revised periodically. To view the policy, see here: and see the PDF File ERIC Selection Policy infographic to determine if your material is a good fit for ERIC. For details on the most recent update to the policy, watch the webinar ERIC Selection Policy: Proposed Updates.

How can I get my journal or non-journal materials indexed in ERIC?

Twice a year ERIC reviews new potential sources against the ERIC Selection Policy. Before nominating a source, please review the policy to see if your material satisfies the policy requirements. If so, send an email to Please include the journal title, publisher, and ISSN (if applicable), or your association or organization name, and a link to sample content, if possible. For more information on ERIC’s source selection policies and processes, see the video How ERIC Selects New Sources and the webinar ERIC Source Review and Selection Process.

How do I submit my paper, report, or article to be indexed in ERIC?

The ERIC Online Submission System can be found at

I have questions about online submission. Where can I get more information?

Please see the online submission FAQs and the video Tips for Using the ERIC Online Submission System.

I am a grantee and I am confused about what the requirements are for me.

Please see the grantee requirements FAQs and the video Tips for Using the ERIC Online Submission System

Peer-Review Policy

How does ERIC Define Peer Review?

ERIC recognizes the following types of peer review:

  • Blind, or Anonymous Peer Review — Content is reviewed by external reviewers and the author's identity is unknown to the reviewer. A double-blind peer-review process is where both the reviewer and the author remain anonymous throughout the process.
  • Expert Peer Review — Content is reviewed by internal or external reviewers, and the author's identity may or may not be known to the reviewer.

A peer-review process employing at least two reviewers with scholarly affiliation is preferred.

Internal, editorial reviews and dissertation reviews are not recognized by ERIC as an accepted type of peer review.

I thought only journal articles were peer reviewed. Why is a report in ERIC marked as peer reviewed?

ERIC assigns the peer-review indicator to records of either journal or non-journal content if they are determined to have been peer reviewed. For more information about how this determination is made, please see the ERIC Selection Policy and the video How Does ERIC Assign the Peer-Review Flag?

Do all peer-reviewed journal articles and non-journal materials in ERIC have the peer-reviewed flag?

The peer-review indicator has been assigned to peer-reviewed journal records in ERIC for several years. The policy to add this indicator to non-journal materials was adopted in January 2016. It is being applied to currently indexed content and to previously indexed materials that are specifically identified as peer reviewed by the provider.

Can I search for peer-reviewed journal articles only?

Yes. Please check the "Peer reviewed only" filter when you conduct a search, then click the "Journal Articles" publication type in the left column of the results page.

I am going to submit a paper that has been peer reviewed using ERIC's online submission system. Can this be marked as peer reviewed on the ERIC record?

Yes. Any material received through the online submission system may be marked as peer reviewed if evidence of a recognized peer-review process is provided. The document submitted must have an explanation of the peer-review process in the front matter, or the author may submit a URL to the publisher or conference website that outlines the peer-review process.

ERIC recognizes the following types of peer review: blind or anonymous, and expert peer review as defined in the ERIC Selection Policy.

I submitted a paper to ERIC's online submission system last year that was peer reviewed Can I apply for the peer-review indicator be added to the ERIC record?

No. The peer-review indicator is being added to new online submissions from individuals going forward.

Our association is under agreement with ERIC and our papers go through a peer-review process. How can the peer-review indicator be added to our ERIC records?

A representative from your organization may download and fill out this PDF File application. The peer-review designation may be assigned to ERIC records for all of your content, or for a specific series or type of publication. If your application is approved, you will receive a countersigned form. If not approved, you will receive an email response.

Our peer-review application was approved and the peer-review indicator is being added to new ERIC records. Can this indicator be added to the older ERIC records for similar material?

Yes. After a publisher's application is approved, a publisher representative may submit a list of ERIC numbers for their previously indexed work that qualifies for the peer-review indicator.

Searching ERIC

Where is the advanced search?

The search engine was designed to use smart search technology. If you type what you are looking for without quotes or advanced Boolean logic, the most relevant results will appear as the first results. Learn more about our search engine in the video Searching If you would like to use more complex search strategies, you can find more information about that at

What fields are included in ERIC?

ERIC provides a webinar and an infographic on the fields in the ERIC record. The webinar Tour of an ERIC Record presents an overview of ERIC’s fields, takes a deeper look at fields that are not self-explanatory, and answers the most frequently asked questions about the fields. The infographicPDF File Guide to the ERIC Record depicts the record structure and provides a description of each field.

How can I get additional information about IES publications?

For all publications sponsored by IES, ERIC includes a hyperlink in the IES Publication field that will re-direct you to the IES website. Here you can find additional information about the publication. The video Using ERIC Links to IES Publication and Funding Information provides information about the ERIC links and the IES publication page.

How can I find information on the IES grant that funded a publication?

For all IES grants, the ERIC record includes a hyperlink on the grant number that will re-direct you to the award information on the IES website. You will find background information on the grant, as well as additional publications funded by that grant. Learn more on finding IES grant information in ERIC in the video Using ERIC Links to IES Publication and Funding Information.

Why are certain author names a clickable link?

ERIC began including links to author identification information, when available, to ERIC records in the summer of 2016. The links are embedded in the author name and they go to third party sites that provide information about the author, including additional publications. The supported sites include SciENcv, NIH eRA Commons, NSF FastLane, and ORCID. See our video How ERIC Author Links Help Users to learn about the kinds of author information you can find using these links.

The ERIC record I was viewing has a link to a What Works Clearinghouse Study Page. What does that mean?

The What Works Clearinghouse study pages break down all of the information in the study, such as the setting, who was studied, how the study was conducted, and the findings, and puts it into a user-friendly website. See the video How Do You Use the What Works Clearinghouse Links in ERIC Records? for more information on linking from ERIC to the study pages on the What Works Clearinghouse website.


What are identifiers?

Identifiers are proper nouns assigned to ERIC records to help you find information related to geographic locations, laws, or assessments and surveys. The identifiers are extracted from the title, abstract, or text of the document as appropriate. There is no requirement that an identifier be assigned for every document. ERIC made improvements to identifiers in the summer of 2016 to streamline, standardize, and make them easier to search. There are three identifier categories where previously there was only one. The infographic PDF File What are ERIC Identifiers? shows the use of identifiers to enhance searches in ERIC.

How can identifiers help me in a search?

A search using identifiers is more specific than a keyword search – it will return only records tagged with the identifier. See ERIC's Advanced Search Tips for guidance on how to search using identifiers and learn more about identifiers in the video How to Use ERIC Identifiers.

How can I search for state-specific, or city-specific, studies?

ERIC includes location identifiers in records that are relevant to specific geographic locations. Location identifiers include country names, states, and cities. Use the format location:term where term is the name of a country, state, or city.

Is it possible to find all records related to an assessment or law without searching on multiple variants of the names?

ERIC has standardized the names of laws and assessments so that a single search will find all related records. ERIC has streamlined and standardized these fields by:

  • Updating truncations (assessment names are now spelled out in full);
  • Removing parenthetical author names; and
  • Creating a single term to cover all assessments and laws that share the same name.

Finding Full Text

How do I download full text for the article that I want?

If you see a PDF icon and "Download Full Text" in the grey box to the right of a bibliographic citation after you search, then ERIC has permission for you to download the article for free. To only see these articles, check the "Full text available on ERIC" box when you search. See our video Finding Full-Text Materials in ERIC for a description of the full-text materials in ERIC and tips for finding full text when a PDF is not available.

The article I want says "PDF pending restoration." What does that mean?

"PDF pending restoration" means that the document is temporarily unavailable because the existing copy in ERIC was of poor quality. The document was originally scanned from microfiche. Much of the text was lost in the digitization process and the resulting copy is barely legible. We are working to see if we can make a more readable copy. In the meantime, the document can still be found on microfiche and obtained through interlibrary loan. For background on our efforts to restore unreadable materials to the collection, see slides from the webinar Restoring Access to ERIC’s PDFs.

If full text is not available through ERIC, how can I see the article?

To find the full text of these articles, try the Direct Link available in many ERIC journal article records or contact your local or university library. The library may be able to help you get access through interlibrary loan or through one of their databases. For additional guidance on how to find full-text resources in ERIC, see our video on Finding Full-Text Materials in ERIC.

Microfiche Weeding

I am looking to weed my microfiche collection. Which ERIC records should I keep?

The documents which are currently available on microfiche, but not online, can be found PDF File here. This list will be updated periodically to reflect any new documents made available online through the PDF restoration process.

ERIC Thesaurus

Why should I use descriptors in my search?

All ERIC records are tagged with descriptors, which are used to indicate the subjects addressed in the article, report, or book indexed in ERIC. Descriptors can help you narrow your search to the most relevant materials matching your search criteria. See our video entitled Why Use Descriptors in Your ERIC Search to find out how these terms can enhance your search.

How do I know what descriptors to use in my search?

There are two main methods for finding descriptors for your ERIC search: 1) by searching or browsing the ERIC Thesaurus, and 2) by reviewing descriptors that appear in ERIC search limiters and on relevant records in ERIC search results. The video Finding the Right Descriptors for Your Search explains how to find descriptors that match your research topic.

How many terms are in the Thesaurus?

The ERIC Thesaurus contains a total of 11,721 terms. There are 4,520 Descriptors and 7,068 Synonyms. There are also 133 Dead terms which are no longer used as Descriptors but remain in the Thesaurus to aid in searching older records.

How is the ERIC Thesaurus maintained?

The ERIC Thesaurus goes through periodic updates to ensure that it reflects the terminology used in ERIC content. Thesaurus updates capture new terms, such as new fields of study, and modify existing terms to reflect changes in terminology. For example, in 2015 ERIC changed a descriptor from "mental retardation" to "intellectual disability" to make the term consistent with the vocabulary found in current ERIC records. Learn more in the video \The ERIC Thesaurus: A Key to Finding Resources in ERIC. Also, see the infographic that depicts ERIC’s thesaurus maintenance process: How ERIC Develops Thesaurus Terms.

What is a dead term?

A dead term is a thesaurus descriptor that used to be included in ERIC but is no longer a current term. If you are looking for historical material, you may find it helpful to check the "Include Dead Terms" box.

Help and General Information

What does the acronym ERIC stand for?

Education Resources Information Center

Who uses ERIC?

ERIC has five main user groups: academics, researchers, educators, policymakers, and the general public. See our PDF FileWho Uses ERIC infographic for more information on ERIC’s user groups.

How can I get a subscription to ERIC?

The ERIC website is offered for public use by the Institute of Education Sciences at the U.S. Department of Education. There is no membership or subscription required.

Can ERIC help me write a research paper?

ERIC is widely used by students, researchers, faculty members, and others who are responding to course requirements or developing reports for their work. The video How ERIC Can Help You Write a Research Paper gives step-by-step instructions on how to narrow your topic, use search filters, and take advantage of the ERIC Thesaurus to target specific resources.

Can I use ERIC to conduct a systematic evidence review?

ERIC has search tools available on the website to help you conduct this kind of research. The video Using ERIC for Systematic Evidence Reviews demonstrates the use of these tools for conducting a systematic review.

How do I cite an article from ERIC?

ERIC provides guidance on how to cite materials in the collection in the video Creating Citations Using Elements in the ERIC Record.

How can I get permission to use an article in my research?

ERIC does not hold copyright to the materials indexed in the collection. Contact the copyright holder for further assistance. For additional information on copyright, see the ERIC Copyright Policy and a video that provides greater detail on Copyright in ERIC.

How can I get in touch with a publisher or author in ERIC?

ERIC does not maintain a directory of authors, but you can typically find publisher contact information in the ERIC record, through the Direct Link available in many article records, and through the author links to third party sites that are now available in a growing number of ERIC records.

Where can I find additional information on ERIC?

The Multimedia page has links to a wide variety of videos, infographics, and recorded webinars on ERIC. Also see the PDF File ERIC Product Guide infographic for a quick overview of ERIC’s support products and the video Resources for College and University-Based Users.

For information on ERIC improvements and enhancements, see the infographic PDF File ERIC Year in Review 2017 and the webinar ERIC Update 2017.

Does ERIC have a widget?

Yes – you can download the ERIC widget from the footer of the ERIC website to provide quick access to ERIC resources from your LibGuide or website.

How do I stay in touch with ERIC?

For general updates, you can sign up for our emailed \Newsflash. You can also like us on \Facebook and follow us on \Twitter.

How can I get help using ERIC?

If you have a specific question, you can call the ERIC Help Desk at 1-800-LET-ERIC (538-3742) or email us at \ The ERIC help desk would be happy to provide general search assistance, tips for using the ERIC website, and to answer any questions that you may have about ERIC. However, we are unable to provide assistance outside of the scope of ERIC and are unable to provide reference services.

What is the history of ERIC?

ERIC was founded on May 15, 1964. PDF File Learn more about the history of ERIC here. For basic information about ERIC, see the video About ERIC.