Answered By: Digital Library Services Team
Last Updated: Feb 08, 2018     Views: 358

Embedding links

Thousands of electronic books and journals are freely available to Manchester Metropolitan staff and students via a range of commercial suppliers. The easiest and most reliable method of accessing these is via the Library website.

Whilst the Library advises against pasting an entire article directly into Moodle (as this contravenes most supplier terms and conditions), pasting a link to an article is absolutely fine. However, be aware that in most cases, the article link that appears in a database is only a temporary session URL, and likely to have changed upon a subsequent visit. Secondly, using these links may create log-in difficulties for students accessing resources off campus. There is, however, usually a method of capturing a stable URL link for an eJournal article or other eResource for embedding in Moodle.

How to embed a stable URL link for articles

  1. Find the article that is of interest to you via a database search ensuring the page contains the article or a link to the PDF of the article.
  2. Check that the URL contains the words ‘MMU’ and ‘ezproxy’. If not and there’s anything that says “stable link”, “permalink” or similar, copy that link.

 How to embed a stable URL link for an eBook

  1. Locate an eBook via the Library catalogue.
  2. Hover over the Click here to access the e-resource link.
  3. Right click to Copy link address and then paste that link into Moodle etc.

All eBook links are stable and you should only use this initial link because it links to the entire text.

(If the eBook you wish to create a link for is an Ebscohost eBook and has a web address like this: please email so we can edit the link to make it easier for users to access if off campus.)

Making URLs shorter

You may sometimes find that the URLs are too long to embed into your Moodle web forms. In this case you will need to make them shorter.

A URL shortener, such as (, allows users to shorten a long URL.

So the stable URL to the journal Management Science:


How to create a short URL using

  1. Copy the URL you wish to make shorter.
  2. Go to ( and paste in the URL into the space provided, and click Shorten URL.
  3. You will then be asked to verify that it is you that requested the shortened URL and not an automated system. Simply enter the words you see in the box, in order and separated by a space. If the readability of the words provided is difficult, select the refresh key.
  4. This will produce the shortened link.
  5. Press CTRL-C on your keyboard to copy the link.
  6. You can then paste this shorter link into the desired location.

Copyright Law and Manchester Metropolitan University Library's Digitisation Service

Current UK Copyright law dictates that only 10% of a book or journal issue (or one book chapter or journal article, whichever is the greater) can be copied. This means that whilst a complete book or journal title may be accessible electronically, individuals should not be printing or copying and pasting entire titles/issues. Database suppliers do employ monitoring software to detect excessive downloading. For reference, Manchester Metropolitan's copyright policy can be located

Manchester Metropolitan's Digitisation Licence from the Copyright Licensing Agency (CLA) allows the creation of digital copies of copyright material published in the UK (and by certain US publishers). The Library scans individual book chapters or journal articles and converts them into PDF documents. The resultant files are made available online via the Library's online reading list service (Talis Aspire) or via your Moodle area, allowing students full text e-access regardless of their location.

The Licence works in the same way as the CLA photocopying and copyright licence and it generally allows us to create a digital copy as long as:

  1. There is a printed copy in stock at Manchester Metropolitan Library (or a copyright cleared copy has been purchased from the British Library)
  2. The material is published in countries covered by the licence (includes UK and USA)
  3. Content  is not on a list of excluded categories and works or on the list of excluded US publishers (These lists are available on the CLA website excluded works page)
  4. The item is not already available electronically elsewhere within the Library (eg via an electronic journal or eBook subscription)