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Frequently Asked Questions

Thesis/Dissertation Formatting Questions

How do I format my thesis/dissertation?

See the Formatting Guidelines page for details on how to format your thesis/dissertation.

How do I convert my Word document to PDF?

The ETD Administrator website explains how to create a PDF with embedded fonts. Encrypted files are not acceptable.

I don't have a full version of Adobe Acrobat. What do I do?

If you do not own Adobe Acrobat, you have several options. You can:

  • Visit any of the UCIT computer labs or the Langsam Library Student Technology Resources Center.
  • Make an appointment with the Graduate School Helpdesk by calling 513-556-1496.
  • Download the trial version of Adobe Acrobat X Pro from Adobe's website. This trial provides all of the necessary features for ETD preparation but expires after 30 days.
  • Use the Adobe Online PDF Maker. This service allows you to make five free trial conversions with registration and unlimited conversions for $9.99/month.

ETD Publishing Questions

How will people be able to access my ETD?

Your ETD will be indexed by Google and other search engines for download on the internet. It will also be available in the University of Cincinnati library catalog.

Where is my ETD published? (MASTER'S)

Your thesis is published on the internet through OhioLINK, the Ohio Library and Information Network. Publishing to OhioLINK does not cost any money. Your thesis will appear on this website after you complete the Graduation Checklist. You can also publish your thesis to ProQuest/UMI; for more information, see "What is ProQuest/UMI?"

Where is my ETD published? (DOCTORAL)

Your dissertation is published on the internet through OhioLINK, the Ohio Library and Information Network. Publishing to OhioLINK does not cost any money. Your dissertation is also published to PROQUEST/UMI, the University of Michigan Index. UMI does charge publication fees; see "How much does it cost to publish my document to UMI?" for applicable rates. Your dissertation will appear on these two websites after you complete the Graduation Checklist.

How much does it cost to publish my document to UMI?

Publishing to UMI is free. If you choose to have UMI get a copyright from the US Copyright Office on your behalf, you will be charged an additional $55. For information about your publishing options, see "What do I need to know about signing agreements with publishers?"

Why would I want to make my ETD freely available?

The world of scholarship depends on people making their research available to others. When this is done electronically, more people receive access at a lower cost, and more knowledge transfer occurs. This stimulates education and research. Your research is also more likely to be cited in other publications, which adds to your prestige and aids your future advancement.

Before theses and dissertations were available electronically, not many were read. Electronic access multiplies the number of times works are read by a factor of ten or more. Because you spent a great deal of time on your research, you should be encouraged that others are reading your work. Your research may guide others, and your results may save others the time of redoing your study.

What is an embargo? Should I request an embargo?

An embargo is a delay in making a work publicly available. Your title and abstract will be available to the public, but the full text of your pdf document will be hidden for a period of time. You can embargo for up to two years at a time for a total of five years. At that time, your pdf will be released to the internet.

You might choose to embargo because of a patent application or a pending publication in a journal. You should talk with your advisor about whether to embargo. You should also speak with any publisher of your thesis/dissertation work regarding the rules and restrictions of publication when a text is already publicly available. You can request to embargo your document within the ETD submission process. Your chair will approve the embargo request when you have submitted your ETD.

What are my copyright options?
  • On OhioLINK, there are three types of copyright to choose from.
    • Learn about Fair Use of copyrights here.
    • Learn about Creative Commons licenses here.
       
  • Consult your advisor about which copyright is best for you.
     
  • If you are a doctoral student or a master's student publishing to UMI, you can opt to purchase a copyright with the US Copyright Office. This is a government-backed copyright and requires an additional charge; see "How much does it cost to publish my document to UMI?"
What is ProQuest/UMI?

ProQuest maintains a microform archive of approximately 1.5 million dissertations, as well as an online service called Dissertation Abstracts. Most dissertations written in the US are submitted to ProQuest for archiving, and all work received since 1996 is available online. ProQuest also functions as an on-demand book publisher that eliminates the editorial process and provides copyright advice.

What is an ORCID?

An ORCID is a free, unique researcher identifier that allows authors to mark all of their work with a persistent digital signature. Learn more about ORCID here.

What if I want to write a book related to my thesis or dissertation?

Because publishers vary widely in their policies, you should tell your publisher that your work is available on OhioLINK. You may want to embargo your work for a year or two until your publication comes out. For embargo information, see "What is an embargo? Should I request an embargo?"

The electronic release of early versions of a book generally leads to greater sales. Indeed, showing a publisher the large number of electronic accesses to your work may help you land a book contract. We are open to discussions with publishers regarding policies or helping in the publicity process.

What if I want to have a journal article as a chapter in my thesis?

First, you can simply cite the publication in your references. Second, if the publication is online, you can link to it with permission of your publisher. Third, if your publisher gives you a signed release, you can include the publication in your thesis or dissertation as stated in the release. If your publisher restricts access in the release, possibly to your university, you may want to create two versions of your thesis or dissertation--one with and one without the chapter (e.g., published article) in question. You should discuss your options with your committee and publisher before submission.

You can avoid this issue if your thesis or dissertation talks about your research in a very different way from the published article. Because articles are typically short, your thesis or dissertation may be the only place where the details, data, tables and other aspects of your research are available.

What do I need to know about signing agreements with publishers?

When you publish research in a conference, book or journal, you usually sign an agreement with the publisher. You should read the agreement carefully before signing, making sure you understand and agree with the terms and conditions. If you don't, you may want to change the agreement, possibly with advice of legal or other counsel. The agreement should be explicit about what future rights of use you retain. For example, if you want to include the materials in a dissertation or reuse the materials for teaching, the agreement should document this.

You should obtain an agreement that allows you to include your research in a freely available electronic thesis or dissertation. You may also want to discuss matters of timing and revision. You have the right to negotiate with a publisher to reduce access to your ETD for a limited amount of time. However, most publishers consider a thesis or dissertation to be quite different from a journal article. An article is typically much shorter than a chapter or full work and has been revised through the editorial process and peer review. Therefore, many publishers have no concerns regarding fully accessible ETDs.

Where can I get a bound copy of my ETD?

The Graduate School recommends that you purchase bound copies of your ETD from UMI. If you are not publishing to UMI and would like bound copies, you can order them from GradWorks OnlineArt Guild Binders, Inc. or Heckman Bindery.

To view PDF files, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader, a free download.