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What is a PURL?

TWU Internet Address

  • PURL -- acronym -- Persistent Uniform Resource Locator.

  • PURL -- Internet address (URL) that stays the same over time.

  • PURL -- must be configured (or created).

  • PURL -- can be created for
         -- a research article found in a library database
         -- an ebook
         -- a webpage
         -- a video, etc.

  • PURLs -- are more reliable (or durable) than regular Internet Addresses
                     found in browser address boxes.

  • PURLs -- can be copy/pasted anywhere
         -- Email messages
         -- Word documents
         -- Blackboard webpages, etc.

This guide will help you create your own PURLs without delay.

PURLs provide your students LIVE links straight to articles in databases that require a TWU login and password for user authentication and copyright compliance.

PURLs on the Internet

Let's say that you want to use Google Maps to get directions from one location to another, and then send those instructions to your students.  You go to and perform your search.

Map Directions: 
           TWU Denton campus  >  TWU Houston campus

map dallas to houston

Google Maps will locate your information and generate driving instructions, but if you copy/paste the URL shown in the Google Maps address bar to send to your students, the URL link will take them to Google Maps only ... no instructions.

To avoid this error, locate and click the Persistent Link button provided on the page.  See image below:

Creating Persistent Links in TWUniversal

 TWUniversal Search Box

STEP 1:  Search TWUniversal at

PURLs Search Step 1

STEP 2:  Click the  Details  link

PURLs Search Details

STEP 3:  Click  E-mail and send article information to yourself

PURLs Search Email link

STEP 4:  Open email.  

Right click on the bolded title to Copy Hyperlink or Copy Shortcut

PURLs Search Copy Title

Copy Hyperlink     or    Right Click Copy Shortcut

STEP 5:  Paste link into Blackboard.  

For assistance, contact us:     940-898-3701

Need Help?

Confused SVG by Nicolas Vigneron


Some databases do not offer ready-made PURL features. In those cases, custom-made PURLs must be configured. Designated Library Staff can help you with those. 

In addition, database technology evolves constantly, so PURL instructions may change as a consequence.

If you need assistanct creating PURLs, please contact the following Library Staff:

       Stephany Compton

       Sandy Cochran