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Support - EBSCO Help

OpenAthens Authentication - FAQs

Q. What is OpenAthens Authentication in EBSCOadmin?

EBSCOadmin, the administrative component to EBSCOhost, offers authentication capability for OpenAthens Access Management. OpenAthens is produced by Eduserv.

OpenAthens allows users to access multiple electronic resources without needing separate usernames and passwords for each individual vendor. Instead, each user has their own unique user-name and password that allows access to multiple vendors and resources.

When an institution registers with OpenAthens for the first time, the following process occurs:

  1. OpenAthens provides the institution with an OpenAthens organization identifier and scope to use for access via the OpenAthens login.

  2. The institution provides their OpenAthens organization identifier and scope to EBSCO for authentication updates in EBSCOadmin.

The EBSCOhost search interface maintains its functionality when accessed via OpenAthens. EBSCO databases are available to licensed sites with OpenAthens Authentication using the following URL:{EBSCOCUSTOMERID}

Further details are available at:

Q. How do I set up OpenAthens authentication in EBSCOadmin?

OpenAthens authentication is available to any customer with subscriptions to electronic resources. The user is prompted with the credentials they have configured within their OpenAthens Administrative site. Without the proper credentials—which must be obtained from library staff—access is not permitted.

 To set up OpenAthens authentication:

  1. Click the Authentication Tab.

  2. Click the Shibboleth/SAML Sub-Tab.

  3. *Click the Attributes mapping link.

  4. *If you are administering a library consortium, from the Site ID drop-down list select the site name.

  5. *Map the selections to the options shown below:

    Shibboleth Attributes Mapping

  6. *Click Submit.

  7. Click the Add group mapping link.

  8. If you are administering a library consortium, from the Site ID drop-down list select the site name.

  9. From the Group Name drop-down list, select the group name.

  10. In the Federation drop-down list, select Open Athens Federation.

  11. In the Institution drop-down list, locate and select your institution.

  12. In the Scoped affiliation field, enter member@{YOUROpenAthensSCOPE}

  13. Click Submit. The list of OpenAthens sites appears with your new OpenAthens site displayed.

  14. The URL for OpenAthens authentication is{EBSCOCUSTOMERID}

*Important Note: Steps 3-6 are optional and will by default turn on automatic folder personalization. If your patrons already have folders this feature will overwrite their previous folders and sign them into a new folder. To disable personalization navigate to Site/Group Maintenance in the upper right hand corner, select the Group tab, select the group you have enabled this for and deselect Personalize using authtype=shib. Contact EBSCO’s technical support at if you need further assistance or would like to discuss automatic personalization further.

See also:

How do I set up a preferred order of authentication?

Q. Where can I find my OpenAthens Scope?

To obtain your OpenAthens Scope:

Log into your OpenAthens Administrator portal:

  1. Go to

  2. Login using your OpenAthens admin login credentials.

  3. Click on the Organisations icon in the upper right hand corner (openathens organisation icon).

  4. You will find your scope listed under Scope.

Q. How do I contact OpenAthens support?

If you purchase OpenAthens through EBSCO please contact EBSCO’s technical support for any assistance:

If you purchase through any other vendor:

  • If you are an OpenAthens administrator or a publisher in the OpenAthens Federation, Technical support for the operation of the service is available from our service desk via their support portal:

This information and more is provided on OpenAthens support site here: