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Persistent Links/Permalinks

Instructions for locating article and ebook permalinks in the Hoffman Family Library's databases.

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Cynthia Hunt
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Overview of Persistent Links

A persistent link, also known as a durable link, stable link, or permalink, is a URL that connects directly to a specific full-text article in a library database or electronic journal subscription. Persistent links can be placed within Canvas modules, syllabi and readings lists. They allow students to access articles by linking to the Library’s electronic subscriptions.

Why Should I use Persistent Links?

Why would you want to link to articles owned by the Hoffman Family Library rather than copying them directly into Canvas?


Copyright is one reason. You can link to an article in a database or e-journal and remain copyright compliant, but you cannot always copy an article and upload it to Canvas without permission.

More importantly, using persistent links helps the library keep your favorite database! Using these links provides usage statistics that justify the purchase of these databases.

How do I Create a Persistent Link?

A persistent link is created by the database vendor that allows you to send the students directly to the article. Many databases have an option for creating a persistent link. In some cases it is just a matter of copying the link and pasting it into Canvas. In other cases it requires adding the proxy information that authenticates students if they are off-campus to use our databases.

Persistent or permalinks have two parts:

  1. The proxy URL:
  2. The article link provided by the database

The persistent link looks like this:

If you add the proxy URL in front of the article URL, your off-campus student will be able to log in with their MyNavigator information.

If you just copy the URL at the top of the screen, your off-campus students may not have access because the URL does not always include the proxy information. It depends on the database. Always test your links from off-campus as well as on-campus.