What is a persistent link?

Have you ever copied a link from the library's databases only to find that the next time you used it, it didn't work. That's because when you are searching a database a temporary link is usually created. Therefore it is important when you are linking to articles in the library databases or records in the library catalogue that you use the persistent link.

What is the difference between a persistent link, stable URL or DOI?

Essentially these terms refer to the same thing. The terminology differs between databases. They can also be referred to as durable or permanent links, PURL (persistent universal resources locators) or Jumpstart. DOI or Digital Object Identifier, is a permanent address given for intellectual property, such as electronic journal articles. These are the most reliable of all persistent or permanent links as they do not change over time.

So, once I embed a persistent link or DOI, I don't have to do anything else?

Most persistent links or DOIs rarely change but you should double check your links from time to time, perhaps annually, and update as needed. It is important to ensure that you have the full citation for the article you are linking to including author, article title, journal title, publication year and page numbers, in order to find the article if need be and for copyright compliance.

How can I find the persistent link or DOI?

Every database is structured a little bit differently and some persistent links and DOIs are easier to find then others. The library has prepared a PDF document that outlines how to create a persistent link or doi;in the library catalogue and some common databases.

Where can I use persistent links?

You can embed persistent links into your Word and Powerpoint documents, Blackboard course shells, webpages and emails.

Will persistent links work off campus?

They will. Users will be asked to authenicate into the library system using their user name and password or library barcode and PIN.

What to check if Persistent Link is not working

If you are persistent linking to the library’s subscription databases, please ensure that the following prefix is in front of the link: http://prxy.lib.unbc.ca/login?url=[link]. Only material from the subscription databases needs this prefix.

Some databases enter the proxy information automatically, such as Academic Search Premier, but others especially those that use the DOI system will need this prefix added.

Persistent links for databases that use the DOI system should look like this: http://prxy.lib.unbc.ca/login?url=http://dx.doi.org/whatever_the_DOI_is

If students are reporting having trouble connecting, this is the first thing to check.

Learn how to create persistent links