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Off Campus Access: OpenAthens

This guide provides information about OpenAthens and EZproxy authentication to access the library's subscribes resources from off-campus.


The NJIT Library is pleased to introduce a new Single-Sign-On (SSO) technology powered by OpenAthens for off-campus authentication. OpenAthens is an identity and access management system for libraries to manage authentication, specifically off-campus access. OpenAthens provides a more secure, reliable, and streamlined positive experience via single sign-on (SSO) technology for library patrons to access electronic resources and systems, including databases, journals, articles, ebooks, media, ILLiad (Interlibrary Loan), etc. Once fully implemented, OpenAthens will replace EZProxy software.

OpenAthens Experience

We understand that many library patrons do not come directly to the library website to search for the resources they need. Typically, they start their research on Google and Google Scholar. Therefore, a solution that does not require patrons to start their research at the library is needed. We have found a solution in OpenAthens.

OpenAthens enables library patrons to access electronic resources from anywhere: not only from the library curated routes (e.g. the library catalog or discovery layer, reading list system, etc.), but from Google Scholar, and publisher/vendor websites. It requires one set of login credentials for the users to access all online resources. This contributes to a better user experience and more secure authentication.

What will change?

There will be no change to the number of library resources we subscribe to, so you should still be able to continue with your work and research with very little disruption to your workflow. You will be able to use your NJIT credentials to authenticate to your favorite online resource platforms both on and off-site, giving you the flexibility to start your research wherever you are.

On-site IP authentication
The library will continue to provide an IP authentication service, there will be no change to the way you access online resources when on-site.

Off-site OpenAthens authentication
For off-site authentication to the publishers' platforms, you will be able to use your NJIT credentials. You will only need to authenticate once to start an 8-hour long OpenAthens session. During that time, you will not be asked to authenticate again regardless of the number of different content platforms you visit.

How to use OpenAthens


Navigate your way to your favorite online resource platforms. The experience on the different platforms can vary but on some of the most popular platforms, you will have an option to log in with OpenAthens. Select "New Jersey Institute of Technology Library" from a list and enter your NJIT credential.

Some platforms may ask you to select your federation when logging in, so please select OpenAthens Federation if needed.

Suppose you're interested in searching content from IEEE Xplore. When you visit IEEE Xplore website, it will provide you with an option, "Institutional Sign In". After clicking on that, follow the same above process, and then you'll gain access to IEEE Xplore subscriptions.



If you are off-campus and are accessing online resources through the search box on the library website or through the Primo discovery layer, once you click on the source under View Online you will get the Access through your institution button or Institutional Sign In button as mentioned above. Access to databases through the A-Z Database list will also be authenticated through OpenAthens.


What do you have to do?

If you have saved permalinks or URLs to the library resources, you will need to:

  • Update your bookmarks and links to our subscribed electronic resources
  • Update your bookmarks and links to Interlibrary Loan (ILLiad)

OpenAthens uses a different technology to manage access to resources, which will change the syntaxes of the links currently in use to allow seamless user authentication.

If you have any questions or encounter any problems, please contact the library!

Known issues

Patron bookshelf accounts in ProQuest Ebook Central
When we switch our authentication methods from EZproxy to OpenAthens, you may notice that your previously-saved items no longer appear on your bookshelf. With single sign-on authentication, you are signing in to your bookshelf when you log in to the library system for access to the site. Because of this, a new account will be created based on the userID you use on the library's authentication system, and you will have a new bookshelf.

It may be possible to merge the old and new bookshelves. Please contact the library to submit a bookshelf merge request to ProQuest. You will need to provide your current Ebook Central username and at least two of the titles on your old bookshelf. The username seen by our system may differ from the username you use when signing in. To see what Ebook Central is using as your username, sign in to Ebook Central and go to Settings > Profile. Copy what you see under the "Email/Username" field. 

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