Many electronic subscription resources, including ebooks, videos, full text and bibliographic databases, and data sources, can be accessed from off-campus by Villanova students, faculty, and staff. The key to success is using the library website as your portal to these resources. 

The tool we use to authenticate Villanova users is called a proxy server. You will be asked for your Villanova username and password when you try to access your first subscription resource via the library's website, and after that you will be free to access other subscription resources for the rest of your login session.

Part of that authentication process may involve "multifactor authentication" using Duo Security. You may get a "push" notification from DUO when you access your first library resource of the login session, in conjunction with your proxy server authentication. UNIT provides information on setting up and using Duo.

We also offer browser bookmarklets which allow you to instantly access subscribed content that you come across in your internet travels. When you click the bookmarklet, your link is redirected through the library's authentication system.

Feel free to reach out to a librarian for help at any point! 

Basic TroubleShooting

Some common issues and troubleshooting tips are listed below:

  • Make sure you access subscription resources via links on the library's website, such as our Databases A-Z list or links in the library catalog. If you simply Google a resource (e.g., JSTOR, PsycINFO, or a journal article title) the resulting link will not recognize your Villanova affiliation, and you will not have full access.
  • Browser options or preferences need to be set to enable cookies to access our resources.
  • If you're having access problems, try your search or link again in a Private or Incognito browsing tab. This will set up a "clean" session without access to your history, cache, or cookies.
  • If the search in a Private or Incognito browsing tab doesn't work, you can try clearing your browser's cookies and cache (usually located in the Privacy & Security settings), and then restart your browser and try again.
  • Some databases require users to accept their terms of use upon each access. Other databases require Villanova users to register for an account on their system with their Villanova e-mail address.
  • Firewalls, typically installed in workplaces, may impede access to our subscription databases. Some IT departments are willing to adjust their ports to allow access. Firewalls need to be set to allow access to ports 80 and 443.

Advanced TroubleShooting

  • If you have checked all of the above and are still unable to access electronic resources from off campus you can connect to the University network from off-campus by using UNIT’s VPN (Virtual Private Network) Gateway. This allows a secure connection to the campus network and bypasses the need for proxy server access.
  • If off campus access is a reoccuring problem you may also wish to try our Browser Bookmarklets which re-direct the link through our authentication system.  

If issues persist, please contact us via phone (610-519-4270), web form, or chat at Ask a Librarian.