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Digital Object Identifer (DOI) -- What's that?: DOI

What's a DOI? (7:50 min)

James Madison University Librarian defines DOI (2017).

DOI stands for Digital Object Identifier

DOI = Digital Object Identifier

  • The DOI System, developed by a group of international publishers, provides a means of persistent identification for managing information on digital networks. (see
  • The DOI is typically located on the first page of the journal article, near the copyright notice.
  • The DOI can also usually be found on the database landing page for the source.

Source: APA Style Guide to Electronic Resources (online ebook)

Expaining DOI's

Here are a couple of resources explaining what DOI is, when and why created.

DOI Flowchart from APA Assn

Flowchart showing steps to using a DOI and where to locate it.

DOI Check / Verify

Resolve your DOIs with this searchbox

If you encounter a DOI string (e.g., 10.1037/0003-066X.59.1.29) that is not hyperlinked, you can enter it in the box below:
TIP: You can turn a DOI string into a URL by appending the DOI string to

A DOI URL looks like this  -----  

A general DOI number is -- 10.1007/s10754-013-9127-4

 Note this change is backwards compatible and and will continue to work indefinitely.

Two links that help with verifying DOIs:

DOI's and APA Citations

SHORT Video Clip explaining What a DOI is.

Examples of articles with DOI numbers