FAQs eTheses

Here are some frequently asked questions about etheses. If there are questions you would like to see added please send an email to ubira@lists.bham.ac.uk

  1. Will depositing my theses electronically affect my prospects for future publication?

    A thesis is an examination document and a unit of work which must be produced in order to be awarded a degree. There is some evidence that this does not affect publication in the Sciences where the unit of publication is much shorter (focused journal articles, for example). For book publication, particularly in the Social Sciences and Humanities there is more concern. A published version of a theses is usually aimed at a different audience, peer reviewed, re-written, significantly edited and presented more attractively. Some publishers raise concerns about prior disclosure of research findings and it may be necessary to embargo access to a specific thesis, which is catered for in the depositing of theses with the University. It is something you need to take into account if you are intending to rewrite your thesis as a book or you may wish to obtain agreement with a Publisher earlier on in the process about releasing the original thesis giving some thought to the Copyright issues.

    Information on how to Get Published in the Arts, Social Sciences and the Sciences can be found at www.epigeum.com
  2. I have an older thesis which has often been requested. Will this thesis be digitised?

    The digitisation of older theses is based upon demand via the EThOS service.
  3. How will digitisation work?

    Library Services will contact authors of specific theses and ask for permission for an electronic copy if possible or permission to scan the paper copy. The thesis will be sent to EThOS for digitisation and will appear on EThOS. Users need to register and accept the terms and conditions before being able to download the full text. Copies will also be stored in the eTheses repository which forms part of UBIRA
  4. What if I want my Thesis to be embargoed due to the sensitivity of the data included?

    When you submit a thesis to the research archive the metadata (author, title, keywords, etc) will be displayed. The full text link will not be displayed if you place an embargo at the deposit stage. If you do not wish anyone to know of the existence of your thesis then it would be safer not to add the data into UBIRA.
  5. Can I include published articles in my Thesis? Can these be loaded onto UBIRA?

    You will need to obtain permission of the Copyright Holder if you wish to reproduce an article in your Thesis. If you wish to upload your Thesis into UBIRA you will need to ensure that the copyright permissions allow such treatment.
  6. Will uploading my Thesis have an impact on future publication cycles?

    So far, (anecdotally) there is no evidence of e-theses affecting publication in the sciences, where the unit of publication is a shorter, more focused article.  For book publication, which is more likely in Humanities and Social Sciences, this is a genuine concern, but discussions around the topic usually acknowledge the status of the thesis as an examination document.  A published version is usually aimed at a different audience, peer-reviewed, re-written, significantly edited, and presented more attractively.  However, in some cases, publishers may have concerns about prior disclosure of research findings, and it may be necessary to put an embargo on access to the thesis, which is catered for in the plans for e-Theses. It is something you should take into account if they are intending to rewrite your thesis as a book, and get agreement with the publisher early on about whether it is OK to make the original thesis available.
  7. Where can I get more help?

    You can ask the Digital Assets Team for help at ubira@lists.bham.ac.uk