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LibGuides Manual

External Links

According to Library of Congress web policy, all links to (.gov) or (.mil) websites must include the standard "external link icon." (see: Web Presence Procedures, Resources and Guidance website).

In order to comply with this requirement and web accessibility, the following coding must be used with all external links that are or

<i aria-hidden="true" class="fa fa-external-link-alt"></i><span class="screen-readers-only">External</span>


Using the "Add Link" Tool

To add the external link code using the ADD Link tool, copy and paste the code string in the “Link Name” box directly following the link name text. Always add one space prior to pasting in the the code string as illustrated in the screenshot below:

Image showing how to apply the external link code using the link tool
Pro Tip: If you are coding a page that will be a series of external links, you might want to first put in all of the links, and then make a second pass to come back and paste in the external link code so that you only have to copy the code once, then you can paste it, one-by-one, into all of your external links.

Coding External Links in "Rich Text/HTML"

To add the external link code to narrative text in a LibGuide, you should first create the link in your Rich Text/HTML box, using the "Add Link" button as illustrated below:

Screenshot showing how to add a link to Rich Text

Note: Make sure to mark any links created in your narrative text to open in a new window.  Select the Target tab and select New Window (_blank) from the drop-down menu.

Screenshot showing how to make a link open in a new window.

After you have added the link, select the “Source” button in the Rich Text/HTML box in order to view the HTML source code.  Locate the coding for your link (coded using the <a> ... </a> anchor tag).  Place your cursor right before the closing </a> tag and press the space bar to add a space. Paste the code string one space after the text and directly prior to the closing </a> tag as illustrated in the screenshot below:

Screenshot showing how to add the external link coding in HTML code view.