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Library Resources in Online/Distance Classes

Permalinks - What are they? How can they be created and used?

A permalink is a permanent link, stable URL or web address that will consistently point to a specific online information resource such as an article, book chapter, e-book, or other online resource. Depending upon the resource being used, permalinks may also be called a DOI (direct object identifier), a stable, durable, persistent, permanent or document link or URL, a bookmark or simply, link. Here is what they look like in our most commonly used databases:

Ebscohost permalink Icon JSTOR stable URL icon Springer Shareable Link Icon  


Why bother with a permalink?  Can't I just use the URL from the address bar or load a PDF directly onto my site? 

  • Database links from the address bar are temporary and will not link back to the original source. 
  • Linking directly to articles in library subscription databases ensures copyright  and license compliance.
  • Using permalinks to connect readers to articles creates usage statistics that the Library examines when deciding whether or not to continue a subscription. Reading a PDF that was loaded onto a site does not create usage statistics. 
  • Databases often offer better resolution and work better with screen readers than PDF documents for low-visibility users.

To ensure off campus access: 

Licensing restrictions require the library to ensure that only current University of Delaware students and staff can access our subscribed e-resources from off campus. To comply with this restriction, the library uses a proxy prefix and an EZproxy server to authenticate off-campus users. The library's proxy prefix must be added to a permalink in order for off-campus access to work. A proxy prefix is a string of text in front of a URL that lets the EZproxy server know that you want to log in through the Library's subscription. After clicking on a URL that includes the proxy prefix you will be asked to login using your UDelNet ID and password before accessing the resource. The library's proxy prefix looks like this and is usually at the front of a URL:  The most important thing to remember is that in order for the library’s licensed resources to work off-campus, URLs must contain the proxy prefix.

Is there any easy way to do this?? 

Yes!  Once you have identified the permalink to a UD  e-resource that you wish to include on your site, use the EZproxy URL Link Creator to create a UD authenticated permalink.  Unsure how to use it? Ask the Library for help.