Introduction to Chemistry Resources: Combination Databases


SciFinder is a database of chemical bibliographic information. In SciFinder, you'll find journal articles, chemical reactions, and chemical structures searching with keywords, structures, or features of chemical reactions. 


Registration for SciFinder is currently open to current USC students, faculty, and staff. You must use your USC email address to register. No other email address will be recognized by the system.

Please use the link below to go to SciFinder-n registration.

SciFinder-n User Registration 

Reference Searching

Learn how to search by specific topic and author.  Go to the link below for tips on how to do this effectively. 

Reaction Searching 

Learn how to reach for specific chemical reaction or reaction type.  Use the link below to see how to do this effectively in SciFinder. Also, find other CAS resources that provide  information about reactions of interest, e.g. catalysts, solvents, yields, and experimental procedures.

Structure Searching

Use the Scifinder structure searching feature to search for a chemical compound, exact structure, substructure, similarity structure, or to find other information related to a structure of interest.  

Polymer Searching 

Find polymers using molecular formulas, monomers,  and/or using structural repeating units. CAS videos at the link provided show how to format a molecular formula to search for: 1. polymers made from specific monomers, 2. the structural repeating unit (SRU) of a polymerized substance, and 3. polymers with end groups.


Q: I'm having issues accessing SciFinder from off-campus and/or on the USC Wireless, what should I do?
A: Most users are able to access SciFinder via the proxy server. Log into the proxy server by following this link: SciFinder@USC. Then sign into SciFinder with your username and password.

Some users are reporting issues with using just the proxy server to access SciFinder. Please follow these steps:
1. Log into USC's VPN. Information can be found on the ITS Website.
2. Then log into SciFinder.

Q: Why can't I access SciFinder on Saturday morning?
A: Often the SciFinder database is down on weekends mornings for updating. Try again later in the day.

Q: Is there a specific web browser I should use?
A: SciFinder works well on Firefox. Internet Explorer and Google Chrome have had problems.

Q: When I try to sign up for a SciFinder account, the user registration page says I have an "Unauthorized IP Address." What do I do?
A: USC Libraries uses a proxy server for our authentication services. In the URL, you may see Some users will see First try changing the 2 to a 1. If that doesn't work, try using the USC VPN and then clicking on the registration link again. If you are still unable to access SciFinder registration, please contact the librarian listed on the main page.


Reaxys provides information about millions of chemical structures, reactions, and properties. It is an important tool for researchers who are synthesizing and characterizing chemical compounds, or searching for data on the physical, chemical, spectral, or toxicological properties of chemical substances.  Through Reaxys interface, you can search BeilsteinGmelin, and Patent Chemistry database to retrieve the following content and the references where these contents are cited.

  • Chemical Subtances
  • Measured Substance Property Data (Physical, Biochemical, Application, Spectral, data)
  • Chemical Reaction

Click here to access a comprehensive Reaxys research guide. 

Click here to learn how to perform a Quick search in Reaxys. The tutorial is divided in the following chapters which allow you to skip to the parts most interesting to you:

  • Literature Searching
  • Substance Searching
  • Reaction Searching
  • Property Searching