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How can I login to OpenAthens at multiple institutions?

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The following AskAway libraries now use OpenAthens software to provide access to online resources:

  • British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT)
  • Douglas College (DC)
  • Emily Carr University of Art + Design (ECUAD)
  • Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC)
  • University of British Columbia (UBC)
  • University Canada West (UCW)
  • University of the Fraser Valley (UFV)

Note: If your library uses OpenAthens and is not included in the list, please contact us.

If you're using the guest logins to access resources at two or more of these libraries simultaneously or within a short time frame, that can create issues. See below for more information on what's happening and workarounds.


If you use the AskAway guest login account to access resources at one OpenAthens library, you will not be able to access resources at another OpenAthens library if you are in the same browser session.

For example, if you're in a Chrome browser and you sign-in to Academic Search Complete at ECUAD Library, if you then access Academic Search Complete at Douglas College Library, you will be redirected to ECUAD Library's instance of the database and unable to access Douglas College Library's resources. This is because OpenAthens keeps you signed in unless you quit the browser or a set amount of time has passed (usually 8 hours).


Here are two workarounds so that you can login to resources at the different institutions that use OpenAthens and continue helping students with the resources they have access to:

  1. Sign into the first institution (e.g. ECUAD Library) via a regular browser window and then open a Private / Incognito browser window to sign into the second institution (e.g. DC Library)
    • When you're finished, close the Private / Incognito window, and the logins should be cleared as well
      • Note: You may need to close all Private / Incognito windows before opening a new one and logging in via OpenAthens at a new institution
    • See these links for more information on how to open Private (Firefox) and Incognito (Chrome) windows
  2. Sign into each library's resources in a different browser (e.g. ECUAD in Chrome, Douglas College in Firefox)

Suggestions or Questions?

If you have any workarounds to suggest or any questions, we'd like to hear from you. Please contact the Admin Centre.