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Persistent Links to Articles: Connecting Students to Articles

Learn how to create persistent links to articles in BGSU library databases that will work from on or off campus.

How Do You Get Articles to Your Students?


When you assign your students articles to read for a class, how do you make those articles available to them? Do you give them citations and tell them to find the articles on their own? Do you retrieve the articles yourself and upload copies to Canvas?

Be aware that downloading copies of articles from BGSU library databases and then uploading them to Canvas for your students may violate copyright law. Database vendors generally do not allow this sort of use in their contracts (but see the box below for exceptions). It also gives the library better statistics about the use of databases.

A better idea is to provide students with persistent links (also called permalinks) to the articles you want them to read on Canvas. Students will be able to access the articles both on and off campus.

Copyright and Canvas

For more information about copyright law as it applies to linking articles from course management systems such as Canvas, check out these links:

Off-campus links

EZProxy Prepend for BGSU:

When you save links in Canvas, they have to be both persistent and proxied in order to take you back to the same place again from on or off campus.

Not all persistent URLs are proxied URLs. Proxying a URL prompts off-campus users for a login.

For example:

Persistent URL from JSTOR
(will only work from on campus):

Proxied persistent url from JSTOR
(will work from on or off campus):

Some databases automatically format persistent urls as proxied, but if not, you can set them up yourself by adding

to the front of the URL, as in the example above. Having done this, the URL should prompt you for your BGSU login if you are off campus.

In Case of Emergency...

If a database is down or otherwise malfunctioning, it's okay to upload an article to Canvas temporarily so that your students can still access it. For this reason, it's a good idea to download copies of any articles you assign, just in case.