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Theology: Free resources

Introduction to Open Access

There is a wealth of academic material available online for free, a selection is detailed below.

Open Access publications and data are freely available to anyone. If you would like to learn more about OA, take a look at this overview by Open Access Oxford.

Open Access Resources

Open Access in SOLO

There are some ‘open access’ digital resources which you can explore on SOLO. These are password free and you don’t need to sign in to use them.

To search SOLO for open access resources, first enter your search terms and click the magnifying glass.

On the results page, look at the options under "Show only" on the left and choose Open Access. You can further refine your results by selecting or excluding options under Resource type.

Open Access Articles

A large number of Open Access (OA) articles are available for you to explore. The resources below will help you to find eJournals and articles that are free to access and download.


Directory of Open Access Journals (Religion) (DOAJ)

  • DOAJ is an online directory that indexes and provides access to high quality, open access, peer-reviewed journals. To search for journals and articles:
    • Select 'Browse Subjects',
    • Choose 'Philosophy, Psychology and Religion',
    • Select the 'View Journals/Articles' button to the right of the subject search,
    • Narrow down your search results with the drop down boxes to the left of the webpage.

Google Scholar

  • Google Scholar is a resource used to search for scholarly literature including articles, theses, abstracts and books from a variety of publishers. To carry out a search;
    • Type your search terms into the 'Google Scholar' field,
    • Select the search icon,
    • A list of results will be produced and if an item is free to view, it will appear to the right of the citation.

Open Access Digital Theological Library

  • The mission of Open Access Digital Theological Library (OADTL) is to curate high-quality content in religious studies and related disciplines from publisher websites, institutional repositories, scholarly societies, archives, and stable public domain collections.
  • The link will take you to a page where the search terms have already been selected and will highlight resources related to the subject of Religion. To alter your search terms, check or uncheck boxes in the search panel to the left of the webpage.

ORA - Oxford Research Archive

  • ORA provides a single point of public access to electronic copies of peer-reviewed journal articles, conference proceedings by Oxford authors and Oxford research theses.
  • Take a look at our ORA LibGuide to find out more.

Open Access Books

Thousands of Open Access (OA) ebooks are available for you to explore. Take a look at some of the resources below to help you find ebooks that are free to access and download.


DOAB

  • The aim of Directory of Open Access Books is to increase discoverability of Open Access titles. You can carry out a simple or advance search in the search bars provided.
  • Alternatively, If you are unsure of where to start, you can browse the collection by;
    • Selecting 'Browse',
    • Choosing 'By Subject',
    • Clicking 'Philosophy and Religion',
    • Finally selecting 'Religion'.

Google Books


JSTOR

  • JSTOR holds 6,000 Open Access ebooks from prominent publishers. Click the link to find out which books are available under the 'Religion' subject heading.
  • Note - all those that are open access have a green 'Open access' badge.
  • Alternatively use their Advanced Search option here and;
    • Place a search term in the search bar,
    • Set the Access type drop down to 'Content I can access',
    • Choose your 'Item type',
    • Select 'Search'.
  • This will return items that you can view without needing to login.

Open Access Digital Theological Library

  • The mission of Open Access Digital Theological Library (OADTL) is to curate high-quality content in religious studies and related disciplines from publisher websites, institutional repositories, scholarly societies, archives, and stable public domain collections.
  • The link will take you to a page where the search terms have already been selected to take you to collections in Religion. To alter your search terms, check or uncheck boxes in the search panel to the left of the webpage.

Project Gutenberg

  • A library of over 60000 free to use eBooks available to download or read online. To search for books related to different faiths;
    • Select 'Bookshelves' from the menu to the left of the webpage,
    • Click on Religion Bookshelves,
    • Choose a faith - this will lead you to a selection of texts that are freely available.
  • This bookshelf covers a number of faiths including: Atheism, Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Latter Day Saints, Mythology and Paganism.

Open Access Databases

Oxford subscribes to a large number of Bibliographic databases and these can be found in Database A-Z . To find out how to conduct a search of databases relevant to your fild of study, take a look at the following guide:


The list below captures all of the relevant Theology and Relevant databases, however not all of these are Open Access resources. To find out which databases are OA:

  • Visit Database A-Z homepage.
  • Select 'Theology and Religion' from the subject drop down box.
  • Click the 'Go' button to load the results.
  • Scroll down the results list to find a database that has the following badge: Open access badge

Alternative Resoures

BBC - In Our Time

Covers discussions of religious movements and the theories and individuals behind them.


BBC World Service - Heart and Soul

What does faith mean to communities? Heart and Soul's Gatherings explore questions of faith shaping futures around the world.


Faculty of Theology and Religion

Podcasts created by members of the Faculty of Theology and Religion at the University of Oxford. The series cover topics such as religion and science, sacrifice and modern thought and theological and philosophical disputes about miracles, prophecy, and theism.


OnScript

This podcast series covers conversation relating to current biblical scholarship.

 

The Digitial Dead Sea Scrolls

The Israel Museum welcomes you to the Dead Sea Scrolls Digital Project, allowing users to examine and explore these most ancient manuscripts from Second Temple times at a level of detail never before possible.


The Christian Classics Ethereal Library (CCEL)

The Christian Classics Ethereal Library (CCEL) is one of the largest online collections of Christian theological and spiritual works. The library contains an immense assortment of electronic texts ranging from the earliest of Christian theologians through to 19th century authors.


Early Church Texts

The Early Church Texts site provides access to primary texts from the 1st to the 5th century of the church.


Early Jewish Writings

This site contains a collection of Jewish documents from antiquity with translations, introductions, and links.


The Parker Library on the Web

A digital exhibit designed to support use and study of the manuscripts in the historic Parker Library at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge.


The Perseus Digital Library

Collections cover primary and secondary sources of Greco-Roman classics and the English Renaissance.


Post-Reformation Digital Library

Post-Reformation Digital Library is a database of digital books relating to the development of theology and philosophy during the Reformation and Post-Reformation/Early Modern Era.


STEP (Scripture Tools for Every Person)

STEP is a free online Bible study resource with original Greek and Hebrew meanings from Tyndale House.


World Digital Library: Religion

The World Digital Library provides a digital library of primary materials from countries and cultures around the world.

Bible Odyssey

Free online Bible encyclopedia created by the Society of Biblical Literature featuring photographs, artworks, videos, essays, maps, timelines, interactive games, multiple texts of the Bible, and the HarperCollins Bible Dictionary (condensed edition).


The Jewish Encyclopedia

This website contains the complete contents of the 12-volume Jewish Encyclopedia, which was originally published between 1901-1906. The Jewish Encyclopedia, which recently became part of the public domain, contains over 15,000 articles and illustrations.


Papal Encyclicals Online

This site provides papal encyclicals and other Catholic Church documents from 1226 to the present.


Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (SEP) has nearly 1600 open access entries.


Thesaurus Literaturae Buddhicae

A multilingual presentation of Buddhist literature sentence by sentence, Chinese, Tibetan, English.

Faculty of Theology and Religion YouTube

This YouTube channel provides public lectures from the Faculty of Theology and Religion at the University of Oxford.


Ted Talks

TED is a nonprofit devoted to spreading ideas, usually in the form of short, powerful talks (18 minutes or less). Take a look at this link to discover some of the talks considering the topic of Religion.

 

ATLA

The Atla Websites on Religion LibGuide is a growing, selective, annotated collection of web resources for the study of religion.


British Library Treasures

Showcases hand-painted books and manuscripts from faiths and religions across the world.


British Library - Discovering Sacred Texts

Discovering Sacred Texts provides access to the richness and diversity of the texts from some of the world’s greatest faiths. Discover more about the sacred texts from Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism and the Baha’i Faith, Jainism and Zoroastrianism.


The Buddhist eLibrary

The Buddhist eLibrary has been setup to support the study and practice of the Buddha´s Teachings in all Buddhist traditions.


Corpus Thomisticum

The Corpus Thomisticum project aims to provide scholars with a set of instruments of research on Thomas Aquinas, freely available.


FutureLearn

FutureLearn offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. Take a look at some of their free online courses to explore topics such as:

  • The role of religion in conflicts and peace-building in present-day societies, with this free online course or get an
  • An introduction to the history of the Qur'an, and its relationship with Judaism and Christianity

Ian Ramsey Centre

The Ian Ramsey Centre for Science and Religion (IRC) conducts research into religious beliefs and theological concepts in relation to the sciences. Research into beliefs focuses on the application of scientific tools to religious phenomena, such as in the Cognitive Science of Religion (CSR).


Religion Online

Religion Online is designed to assist teachers, scholars and general "seekers" who are interested in exploring religious issues. The aim is to develop an extensive library of resources, representing many different points of view, but all written from the perspective of sound scholarship.


Vatican Archive

Part of the official wbsite of The Holy See.


Vitrual Religion Index

This site provides selected links to online Theology resources.