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Using Persistent Links

Our library's resources are designed to open automatically in most cases for users signed in on campus, but additional steps are often needed to ensure these same resources are available to authorized users off campus. Persistent links are used to make this happen. Persistent links include special information allowing users to view online articles, databases, media, or saved searches from any location. These links can be used in Blackboard, on websites, or shared via email. 

Why use persistent links?

  • Persistent links are permanent.
  • Persistent links simplify the process of linking to and opening an article.
  • Faculty may create links to their own publications.
  • Articles may be integrated directly into courses.

​​​​There are many uses for persistent links in the classroom, including:

  • Providing reading lists to students
  • Creating lists of personal publications
  • Saving links to specific searches in favorite databases
  • Providing students with links to preferred databases

The library's resources are provided by many different vendors, and as a result aren't all set up in the same way. Some products provide persistent links automatically, referring to them by names such as "permalinks," "stable URLs," "persistent e-mail jumpstarts," or the like. Some don't refer to them by name at all, and others require users to create their own links to be used off campus (see the OpenAthens link generator in the below section). It sometimes takes a little digging to find a persistent link.

  • Some examples of resources automatically providing complete persistent links along with other options for emailing, saving, etc.:
    • Many EBSCO databases such as Academic Search Ultimate and CINAHL Ultimate. Persistent links there are called "Permalinks," and are found under the "Tools" sidebar.
    • ProQuest resources, which often list an "All Options" icon with three ellipses; clicking this will provide a "document URL," or persistent link.  
    • Gale resources, such as Gale in Context: Opposing Viewpoints, will list a URL in a "Get Link" box on the upper right of the screen. 
  • JSTOR refers to persistent links as "Remote Access URLs." 
  • Streaming media resources from Alexander Street Press, Digital Campus, and Films on Demand offer options to "share" or embed persistent links or permalinks.
  • In SAGE Journals Online, use the link in the downloaded article's address bar.
  • ScienceDirect works best when the URL for the article's information page (not the downloaded article itself) is combined with the proxy URL.
  • Some databases (usually medical or scientific) also offer DOI (digital object identifier) numbers. These may be tried, but we have found they aren't always reliable.
  • Links to catalog search results (books, etc.) may be shared via a supplied permalink or via the email button in the catalog.   
  • If you're having trouble, please don't hesitate to ask for more information.

Create Persistent Link Automatically

It is recommended to check the particular resource you are using first, as many will provide persistent links automatically. However, if you do not see a persistent link provided, you may wish to use the OpenAthens link generator below to create a permanent link. This does not need to be used with persistent links from EBSCO, ProQuest, or Gale.