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OpenAthens Authentication

About OpenAthens

What is OpenAthens?
OpenAthens is an authentication service, which means it allows you to access subscription-based electronic resources both on and off campus. Previously, we used EZproxy. OpenAthens replaces that service.

Please note: OpenAthens is a “gateway” service to facilitate access to publisher content. It does not include any content of its own.


What is different?

The main difference you will see is the new login screen.  You will still use your Wheaton network credentials to login, just as you did with EZproxy.  If you are logging in directly from a resource website, you should see an OpenAthens login screen. It will ask you to identify your home institution – in our case Wheaton College. From there, you will use your Wheaton network credentials to log in and will be given access to the resource. Users should choose the “find your organization” box to search for Wheaton College.


Will the login link/screen look the same for all resources?

No, it will be resource specific. Look for sign in or login links, usually at the top of the screen. 


Do I need to login when I am on campus?


Do I need to login when on VPN?


I usually access library resources through Google or Google Scholar. Will I still be able to use OpenAthens to authenticate?
Look for the “Login through OpenAthens” prompt on the resource homepage. Select “Wheaton College” under “Find your institution.” If the Library has access to this resource, you will be redirected to the Wheaton login screen.


What happens if I change devices or use a different browser? Will OpenAthens remember me?
OpenAthens uses cookies to remember your device’s IP address. If you change web services – from Firefox to Chrome or Safari – you will be asked to login again. Additionally, if you change devices, like from a laptop to a mobile phone, you will be asked to login again.


What happens if I clear my cookies daily, weekly or monthly?
You will be asked to login again.


What happens if I never clear my cookies or change my browser? Will OpenAthens remember me forever?
It depends on your browser, but generally the OpenAthens temporary browser cookie expires every eight hours. After eight hours you will be prompted to login again. Also, please remember if you clear your browser cookies or close out your browser session, the cookies are lost and you will have to login again.


What if I have other questions about authenticating to Library resources?

Benefits of using OpenAthens

  • Single-Sign-On means you can move from resource to resource without re-entering your credentials.
  • You only have to log in once every 8 hours, unless you switch browsers, clear out your cookies, or change computers.
  • You will be logged in to the resource site as an individual, and can take advantage of personalization features such as saving search results or favorite settings.
  • You can log in directly on a resource site (for most major publishers) without having to start at the library website.