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Occupational Therapy - Dallas

Occupational therapy research guide for TWU Dallas students, faculty and staff.

Digital Tools for Research

These are a few of the many tools that can help to simplify your research.


What Is a Digital Object Identifier?

DOIs are persistent and unique identification numbers allocated to articles, books and/or book chapters that will help you find them online.

How is a DOI different from a URL?

Unlike a URL, which points to one specific location online (where the content may change), DOIs point to a specific piece of work regardless of where it is located online or how many different places it is located online.

Do all articles and other online resources have assigned DOIs?

It is important to note that not all online resources will have a DOI as there is a fee involved with purchasing the DOI. Smaller publishing journals will often save money by not having a DOI assigned to their articles.

Where can I find the DOI on an article?

A DOI can usually be found on the front or last page of an article and will look like the below image.

Picture of what a DOI looks like

How can I find an article via its DOI code?

To find an article via its DOI number you can use the guest query form located in Crossref.

How do I get a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) for my material?

You must use a service offered by a DOI Registration Agency (RA). You do not need to be a member of the International DOI Foundation in order to work with an RA.

How much does it cost to get a DOI and use the DOI system?

The cost of registering new DOI names depends on the services you purchase. Contact a DOI Registration Agency to discuss your options. Each RA is different, and each is free to offer its own business model. The IDF does not determine the costs charged to end users. Existing DOI names can be resolved by users free of charge.

If I have assigned a DOI name and I make a change to my material, should I assign a new DOI?

The IDF does not have any rules on this. Individual RAs adopt appropriate rules for their community and application. As a general rule, if the change is substantial and/or it is necessary to identify both the original and the changed material, assign a new DOI name.

What Is ORCID?

Sometimes your professional body of work can be inadvertently split up because:

  • Your name changes, e.g., a maiden name to a married name.
  • Your name is listed differently, e.g., John Humphrey --> John J. Humphrey.
  • You change jobs to another institution.

In these cases, and others, databases can mistakenly attribute your work as being by two different authors. What this means for you is a potential loss of credit for your hard work and research. Your H-index (how well you are doing as a published author) is affected adversely because not all your articles are being taken into account.

ORCID provides a persistent digital identifier (an ORCID id) that you own and control, and that distinguishes you from every other researcher.

In essence, ORCID gives you a unique, digital, fingerprint that you can attach to all your work, making sure that it is always correctly assigned to you.

How Do I Register for ORCID?

  1. Fill out the information form. Click "Next."
  2. ORCID will automatically look for authors that might be you. If none of the suggested authors are you then click on "None of these are me, continue with registration."

Orchid Registration 3

  1. Create a password. Click "Next."
  2. Select your visibility settings and click on the consent boxes.

Orchid registration

  1. Fill out your personal bibliography page and click on "Next."
  2. You will see in the top left hand corner of this page that your ORCID id has been assigned. 

What Is a Persistent URL (PURL) or Permalink?

A PURL, or permalink, is a link that connects directly to an article or book within the TWU Libraries system. This is an easy way to share articles or books with classmates or professors, regardless if you are on campus, or accessing from a personal device.  

Why use PURLs or permalinks instead of copying the URL?

Copied URLs will expire after the current browser session ends, or after a period of inactivity, while a permalink or PURL is continually accessible, provided the database is still available within the TWU Libraries system. Using a permalink will ensure access to the desired article or book without having to recreate the search.

Why not just share a PDF?

PDF distribution without permission from the database or vendor is often a violation of the contractual agreements TWU Libraries has with our vendors and publishers. Permalinks ensure that only individuals with the correct logins can access the materials. It’s the same concept as piracy of other medias such as music or movies.

What is the difference between a PURL and a DOI number?

A DOI number is a unique number assigned to digital published objects, such as journal articles, with no attached affiliation. Permalinks or URLs have a university or institutional affiliation attached to them, allow students access when they use their TWU login.

How can I find PURLs or DOIs in articles I want to share?

Each database has a different layout, but look for terms such as “share article,” “persistent link,” “document link,” “get link,” etc. This will generate a permalink to share.

DOI numbers are usually found at the beginning or end of articles, along with the publishing information. This number can be copied and used to search within the database to recall the article.  

Examples of Where to Find Permalinks


Example of permalink feature in CINAHL

ProQuest eBooks

Example of permalink feature in ProQuest eBooks