October 29th, 2007

Open Access and your Dissertation

Capella Library has a great resource for finding dissertations: ProQuest’s Dissertations and Theses Full Text database. You can search for dissertations from universities all over the world (Ask a Librarian if you’d like some help doing just that).

If you are working toward your PhD, one day your dissertation will be joining the 600,000 dissertations already there. But, as you know, the Dissertations database requires a subscription. That means that your dissertation will be tucked away, basically hidden from anyone who lacks access through a library database subscription. But ProQuest is beginning to change that.

ProQuest has launched an open access project for dissertations, making entire dissertations available to anyone with an internet connection. It’s a small list right now, but it’s growing. In fact, there’s a Capella dissertation already there! You can take a look at the list here.

Open access dissertations are an exciting development in the efforts to make information available to more people. You may have used some open access journals for your research already; they are listed in Journal Locator to help you find them. If you’re interested in learning more about open access, you can take a look at this description from the Public Library of Science, a major player in the drive for more open access.

-Erin

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