Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Faculty Guide to Learning Materials and Library Services

Linking to Learning Materials in Canvas

Pros:  Creating a link in Canvas is one of the most effective ways to connect students to learning materials.  By linking, you don't have to worry about copyright permissions or maintaining the content. 

Cons:  You do have to make sure you create a link that will be durable, and check periodically to ensure the link hasn't broken.  If the content you are linking to is moved or taken down, you may have to find an alternative.

Linking to Library-Licensed Content
  1. Using Reading Lists is the easiest way to link to library-licensed content, but sometimes you may want to create a link without using the Discover Reading Lists tool.  To do so, look for a durable, persistent, or "perma" link option in library databases.  For content from databases, copying the link from your browser address bar will often result in non-functional link.

    Examples of stable link or permalink options in databases:


  2. Ensure that the link is "proxied" to allow off-campus access to the linked content.  If not, add the proxy prefix to the link.  The proxy prefix is what allows an off-campus user to authenticate themselves by logging in with their SJU ID and password.  The proxy prefix is:  and is immediately followed by the stable url for the resource.

    A stable link to an article in the JSTOR database:
    A proxied stable link to an article in the JSTOR database:

  3. Add the link to Canvas following their instructions for adding an "external URL."