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Vermont Online Library - for Library Staff

All Vermonters have access to a wealth of online resources provided by the Vermont Online Library (VOL)! This page will help your library get to know VOL, and it’ll provide tools for you to connect to the VOL resources and make them available to your library community. VOL is available to all public, school, and academic libraries in the state.

What does Vermont Online Library offer?

The Vermont Online Library (VOL) offers a wide array of electronic databases through Gale/Cengage on a variety of topics geared to a variety of age levels, for both generalists and specialists. These resources are available 24 hours-a-day anywhere Internet access is available. The information is produced by known and trusted publishers.

Screenshot of Vermont Online Library
(click to enlarge)

What Link Should We Offer Patrons?

Libraries should use a link that includes their location code (if you’re not sure of your location code, contact Joshua Muse). If you don’t use the code, patrons will probably still be able to login, but they will not be included under your statistics.

The basic format is - + vol_YourLocationCode
For example, the Department of Libraries is -

How do Users Access the Site

VOL is open to everyone within Vermont, and it uses a series of strategies to try to authenticate users:

  1. IP Location – When patrons visit, the system will use their IP address to try to determine if they are located in Vermont. Libraries should have their IP address on file, but in many cases the system can find a location for homes and businesses. If the system cannot identify the patron as being in VT, they will see the phrase Out of State in the upper left-hand corner. If so, they can click on Change Library in the upper right-hand corner to try a different way to authenticate.
    Screenshot of Geo Authentication popup
    (click to enlarge)
  2. Geo-Location – On the Change Library screen, patrons can click Use my location to use geo-authentication, which is more accurate than IP authentication. The browser will show a pop-up asking to share the user's location. If they say yes, the system can usually recognize that they are in Vermont, and allow them in.
  3. Barcode or Password – If neither of those options are successful, patrons can choose their library from the list. If your patron barcodes are on file, they can enter that; otherwise, they’ll need to use a specific VOL password (get in touch if you need one for your library).

Are There Other Options for Sharing Links?

Linking by subject area:
  • Career and Job Resources -
  • K12 Resources -
  • Newspapers & Magazines -
  • Small Business Resources -
  • Browse by user group or topic -
Linking directly to Resources:

To feature individual resources, you can use the direct URLs for each one. Visit and enter your library’s name to generate a list of all the URLs for your VOL resources. Simply copy the ones you need, and add them to your website!

  • Icons - Include icons with your direct links by logging in as above, then going to Product Support -> Icons. Then scroll to the resource of your choice and right-click to save the image.
  • Widgets – Use widgets to connect to resources by logging in as above, then going to Product Support -> Widgets. Then scroll to the resource of your choice and choose the type of coding needed for your website.
    Screenshot of direct links to resources
    (click to enlarge)
Using Gale Pages:

GalePages are a newly updated option that gives libraries an alternate template to offer resources. Libraries can also individualize their page to add, remove, or reorganize links. Gale has created slightly different starting points for public, school, and academic libraries. You need login information in order to edit your page; contact Josh who can put you in touch with Gale support.

The Gale Pages link format is -

Screenshot of Gale Pages template
(click to enlarge)

Can Patrons Read Articles from a Specific Newspaper/Magazine?

Users can read articles by issue from many popular magazines, including The New York Times, Economist, Cosmopolitan, Esquire, Highlights for Children, National Review, and Runner's World. Articles may be a day or two behind. Some other magazines are available, but have an embargo period (often 1, 6, or 12 months), or stopped availability at some point. Admittedly, it is not as tidy as reading the actual magazine, but users do get all of the information!

  1. Go to the VOL site
  2. Choose All Resources and then Popular Magazines
  3. Under Publication Search, click List All Publications, and then browser or enter the name of the magazine/newspaper you are looking for and click search.
  4. Click on the magazine/newspaper you want, and select an issue by date. You’ll see all of the articles in that issue.

How to read articles from a specific magazine
(click to enlarge)

Where can librarians get more information on the VOL resources?

Visit the support site to find a variety of tools at

In addition to the content mentioned above (under linking directly), click Training Center in the main menu to find webinars and resource-focused videos, or Marketing Materials for printable and online promo materials.

How do I Access Stats for VOL?

Go to the Usage Reports Portal –
Login with your username and password (available from Josh). On the left, click Gale Reports -> Gale Usage Summary. On the next page, where it says Date Selection, choose Date Range, and select the appropriate dates. Then give it a minute to come back with your results. When you are finished, click the silhouette icon in the upper right-hand corner, and choose Sign Out (let it finish before closing the tab).

Screenshot of VOL Stats Page
(click to enlarge)

Gale Usage Summary (Gale Reports -> Gale Usage Summary) – This is the report to use when completing the annual Public Library Survey (aka Annual Report).

  • Total Sessions – How many times was VOL accessed.
  • Total Connect Time – How long was VOL used overall.
  • Average Connect Time – Average time per use.
  • Total Fulltext – This is the stat that we want for the Public Library Survey. It only counts when retrieved a full text article from the system.
  • Total Retrievals – Similar to above.
  • Total Searches – This number tends to be high, as it counts each database separately when multiple are searched at once.

Who do I contact with Questions?

Please start by getting in touch with Josh at Please note that the current Gale contract is extended through Dec. 31, 2022.