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***Updates on Services in the Learning Commons during Covid-19***: OpenAthens & SSO Integration

Updates and changes to library services will be noted here.

New Changes Coming to the Learning Commons

CTS, including the Learning Commons, will be providing single sign-on (SSO) services on campus. Your CTS email and username will provide you with access to all services on campus. Previously, users of the Learning Commons had to keep track of three separate logins.

Here are some of the highlights of the new SSO integration:

  • One login for everything
  • A new uniform login screen for all CTS services
  • Reset your password or recover your username on your own without asking for help from IT
  • Once you login, your login credentials will remain valid for 8 hours. You will not need to login again during this time period to access other library services.

Details About the Changes

Guide to Accessing Resources Using OpenAthens

What Is OpenAthens?

OpenAthens is a secure identity and access management system used by libraries to enable access to subscribed online resources. The Learning Commons offers a robust collection of electronic resources such as ebooks, ejournals and subscription databases. OpenAthens is the means by which we authenticate current students, staff and faculty at CTS and grant access to this content off-campus. Alumni will have access to some but not all of our databases.

There are two ways in which OpenAthens will grant you access to electronic resources in the Learning Commons.

  1. Access to content through the Learning Commons website
  2. Access to content directly from vendor websites e.g. through a Google search

1. Access to Content Through the Learning Commons Website

Users accessing online resources directly from the Learning Commons website will be prompted to sign-in through this login screen:

CTS login screen

Please use your CTS email username and password. If your email is [email protected], then your username would be FirstName.LastName. There is no need to use the cts\ prefix anymore. 

If you forgot your username or password, please click on the Forgot Username or Forgot Password link to recover your username or reset your password. Please note that you must have first have configured recovery options under your MyCTS account.

Once you've signed-in, your login will be valid for up to eight hours. You will not need to login for additional content that you discover through the Learning Commons website.

If you have saved bookmarks or links to ebooks, ejournals or databases from the Learning Commons, you will need to update your bookmarks and links. The old links will no longer work. 

EBSCOhost Accounts

When navigating EBSCO products, you will be automatically logged into My EBSCOhost. You will no longer need to login again to access your saved searches, articles/folders, or downloaded books. If you already have a My EBSCOhost Account you can merge the contents saved in your previous account with the newly created â€‹My EBSCOhost​ account using your CTS login credentials. If you do not wish to merge accounts, you can simply click on the Switch Accounts link in the upper-right hand corner of the EBSCO screen.

Additional information on how to merge your existing My EBSCOhost account can be found in this guide.

2. Access to Content Directly From Vendor Websites

OpenAthens allows users to access the Learning Commons licensed online resources directly from content provider websites, so long as the content provider has this feature configured on their website. Keep in mind that not every content provider offers access through OpenAthens. If while searching on Google or Google Scholar you are taken to a vendor website that offers OpenAthens authentication and with whom we subscribe (e.g. Project Muse, JSTOR, Oxford University Press, etc.), then follow these steps:

  • Find the "Sign in" or "Login" button on the content provider's website
  • Select OpenAthens as the sign-in method (if this option is not available, you will not be able to sign-in)
  • In the Find your organisation search box, type Chicago Theological Seminary
  • Select the sign-in prompt for Chicago Theological Seminary 
  • You will then be directed to the new login screen pictured above

Keep in mind, that it is possible to be denied access to content on a vendor website. It may be that we have access to the journal, but not for the dates you are looking for. Starting your search from the Learning Commons website is still the most reliable way to access content. The Find a Journal tab on the Learning Commons homepage is the best way to determine whether we have access to a specific journal, and the dates for which we have coverage.

If you want to renew your books, place a hold on a book, or check your fines, you can login into your library account using your CTS email username and password.

How do I check my library account?

To login to your library account click on the CHECK MY ACCOUNT button located on the left-hand side of the navigation bar on the Learning Commons homepage. Please note that you cannot search for content by clicking on this button. If you wish to find content in our collection, then please enter your search term in the search box on the Learning Commons homepage.


If you're already searching in the CTS catalog, you can find the login to your library account in the upper-right hand corner.


Enter your email username and password. Do not include the extension, and do NOT include the cts\ prefix.


NoodleTools is a citation management platform that can help you generate footnotes and bibliographies. Starting Sept. 3rd, access to NoodleTools will be integrated with Office 365. This means that you will be able to log into NoodleTools using your CTS username and password. You will not need a separate login.

How do I access NoodleTools?

  1. Go to the Databases A-Z tab located underneath the search box on the Learning Commons homepage
  2. Click on the letter "N"
  3. Click on NoodleTools
  4. On the Sign-In screen, please select the Microsoft 365 option
  5. You will be directed to the CTS authentication page
  6. Enter your CTS email username and password


What if I already have a NoodleTools account?

If you have an old account that you previously accessed using a Personal ID and password, then you will be able to link your old account to your new login and keep your My Projects screen and your saved projects. Here's how:

  1. After clicking on Microsoft 365 button, select the "I have an existing account" tab.
  2. Enter your old Personal ID and password. 
  3. Click the button "Link Account."

NoodleTools will link your old account to your Office 365 ID (i.e. your CTS email username and password) and take you to the My Projects screen with your saved projects.