Media Education Foundation digital films trial

MEFtrial2The Library has just set up trial access to the Media Education Foundation (MEF) digital films service provided via Kanopy streaming service. You can access this on the Databases trials page at

MEF produces and distributes documentary films and other educational resources to inspire critical thinking about the social, political, and cultural impact of American mass media. From films about the commercialization of childhood and the subtle, yet widespread, effects of pornography, pop-cultural misogyny and sexism, to titles that deal with the devastating effects of rapacious consumerism and the wars for oil that it drives.

The Library has access to the platform tailored for European rights which includes 138 videos. There are a small number of films currently not available on the European platform.

Access to the MEF during the trial period is available on-campus or if working off-campus you must be using the VPN to connect to the University network. Trial access is available until 24th April 2014 and we would welcome feedback on the service.

*As of September 2014 the Library now has a 1-year subscription to this online resource. See New Online Resource for SPS: Education Media Foundation digital films.*

Ukraine crisis – suggested resources for your research

The Ukraine crisis has been headline news for a few months now. If you are looking to do some research in this area or are just interested in keeping up to date with the situation then you may find some of these resources useful.

Library Resources

These are mostly resources that have been subscribed to by the Library and are only available to staff and students at University of Edinburgh. You can use these to find newspaper articles and commentaries, academic literature and background reading.

Current Digest of the Post-Soviet Press
Each week the Current Digest presents a selection of Russian-language press materials, translated into English, the translations are intended for use in teaching and research.

Factiva (off-campus access available via VPN)
Provides full-text access to a large number of UK newspapers as well as full-text access to a significant range of international newspapers and news sources.

Integrum (for access see entry in Databases A-Z list)
Offers the largest database of Russian sources: Federal and regional Russian press, TV channels, websites, libraries and databases as well as full texts of classical literature.

Lexis Library and Nexis UK (off-campus access by clicking on Login via Academic Sign In and UK federation)
Lexis Library includes full-text access to the vast majority of UK broadsheet and tabloid newspapers and a large number of local papers. Nexis UK provides full-text access to a large number of international newspapers and news sources.

Click on Russian studies, Politics or Newspapers for more recommended databases in these subject areas.

Freely available online resources 

University College London’s (UCL) School of Slavonic and East European Studies Library (UCL SSEES) have created a fantastic repository of sources, analysis and updates on the Ukraine crisis: This is updated regularly and if you follow them on Twitter you will be alerted to every update.

BBC News
Chatham House
Brookings Institution
Council for Foreign Relations (CFR)
Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University.
Voice of Russia
Ukrainian News Agency
Global Voices

These are just a few examples of resources and repositories available online that are covering this subject. The UCL SSEES website provides links to even more useful sites.

Read all about it!

Need to access online newspapers? Looking for current news or hoping to find historic newspapers?

Newspapers can be a valuable tool for researching historic events, finding current information about international, national and local events, tracing a story back and finding editorials, commentaries, expert or popular opinions.

University of Edinburgh Library subscribes to a number of databases and online news sources that allow you to search through newspaper archives, both current and historic, easily and quickly.

A full list of these resources and how to access them can be found at Newspapers databases list but here are just a few examples:

Current news sources

International business, financial and news information from 35,000 sources in 26 languages from nearly 200 countries. As well as providing full-text access to a large number of UK newspapers it also provides full-text access to a significant range of international newspapers and news sources.

Lexis Library
Primarily a major law database this also includes full-text access to the vast majority of UK broadsheet and tabloid newspapers and a large number of local papers. To search newspapers once you access the database click on the “News” link in top menu.

Nexis UK
Access to over 23,000 UK and international news and business sources, financial and market reports, biographical data and thousands of legal and regulatory services. Like Factiva this is a very good resource for getting full-text access to international newspapers and news sources.

Historical news sources

This is a cross-search facility for newspaper archives from Gale. This enables the simultaneous searching of over 400 years of primary historical sources including: 17th-18th Century Burney Collection; 19th Century British Library Newspapers; 19th Century UK Periodicals; Times Digital Archive; Times Literary Supplement Historical Archive.

UKpressonline2UK Press Online
Database includes 2 million pages of 19th and 20th century British popular newspapers, from 1835 to current. Titles include: Daily Mirror, Daily Express, Sunday Express, Daily Star, Church Times, The Watchman, Daily Worker, Morning Star.

ProQuest Historical Newspapers
Includes the Scotsman Archive (1817-1950), Guardian and Observer Archive (1791-2003), New York Times Archive (1851-2009), Washington Post Archive (1877-1994), Times of India Archive (1838-2003) and Chinese Newspaper Collections (1832-1953). In the Newspapers database list look for the newspaper title to access e.g. Guardian and Observer Archive or Chinese Newspaper Collections rather than ProQuest Historical Newspapers.

These are just a few examples of the online newspaper databases and resources that the Library has access to. You can find a full list with links to access on the Newspapers database list.

More information about searching newspaper content can be found at How to find newspaper content, including information on the paper copies and microfilm copies of newspapers that the Library holds.

Have you heard of BoB?

It’s a bit like BBC iPlayer but can offer you much, much more.


BoB (Box of Broadcasts) National is an online off-air recording and media archive service for UK higher and further education institutions. The University of Edinburgh subscribes to BoB so all staff and students at the University can get access to this fantastic service when working anywhere on the UK mainland.

BoB makes the finding and use of important TV and radio content for education simple and instant. It allows you to choose and record any broadcast programme from 60+ TV and radio channels, including over 10 foreign language channels. Recorded programmes are kept indefinitely and added to a media archive, with content shared by users across all subscribing institutions.

With BoB you can:

  • Record and catch-up on missed programmes on and off-campus.
  • Schedule recordings up to seven days in advance.
  • Edit programmes into clips.
  • Embed clips into VLEs.
  • Search the database for content that other users have recorded (over 1 million programmes currently available).
  • Request programmes from the BBC Archive dating back to June 2007.
  • Manage off-air recordings in your own playlists, which can be shared with others.
  • Access the website both on and off campus, limited to UK mainland only.

For more information on the service and how to access and use it see Box of Broadcasts (BoB).