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Athabasca University

Electronic Submission of Theses & Dissertations

Students who are in the thesis route of a Master's program or in a doctoral program are required to submit their thesis/dissertation electronically as one of the requirements toward the fulfillment of their degree. There are a number of steps that must be followed when preparing for and submitting the thesis/dissertation in order for the student to graduate.

The Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Policy and Procedures provide direction for the student and their supervisor on the discussions they need to hold prior to the final submission as well as the process for the submission. A number of steps are outlined below; however refer to the Policy and Procedures for a more detailed list of the discussions and steps that need to be considered by the student and their supervisor.

Students should ensure their thesis/dissertation has been submitted to the DTheses repository well in advance of the application for graduation deadline (4 to 6 weeks). The steps that must be taken prior to the 4 to 6 weeks include:

If the thesis does not comply with the requirements, the thesis will be returned to the student with an email to the supervisor, informing them of the required changes. The student will not be able to graduate until the format requirements and copyright compliance have been met and correctly submitted by the student.

After FGS approves the thesis, FGS will conduct the final submission into the DTheses repository. The Registrar's office will be automatically electronically notified of the submission, confirming that the student has now fulfilled all of the requirements of the degree. FGS will notify the student that the thesis has been approved and electronic submission has been completed. The student is now eligible to graduate. For information on the process the student needs to complete in order to graduate refer to http://www2.athabascau.ca/registrar/convocation.php.

After submission, the thesis will be available almost immediately for access and viewing in the AU DTheses repository. It may take up to 2 weeks before the thesis/dissertation is available to access on the LAC site.

Advantages of Electronic Thesis and Dissertation (ETD) Submission

Electronic submission to the AU DTheses repository will allow harvesting of the thesis/dissertation by Library and Archives Canada (LAC). There are a number of advantages to the repository submission:

  • LAC makes the document accessible to a large scholarly audience.
  • A digital repository such as the LAC is easier for individuals to interact with than campus Web servers.
  • The documents in the repository endure long-term accessibility (they are given a reference url that will never change).
  • Digital repositories are indexed by all the major search engines.
  • The institution-based repositories in Canada, such as the AU DTheses repository, are also indexed by a specialized 'harvester' that brings together all the content from Canadian repositories and makes it available as a single collection.
  • The wide availability of the student research can be beneficial for the student in their future educational endeavors, their application for awards/scholarships/grants, and employment opportunities.

Ownership of Copyright by the Student

Although the thesis/dissertation is available publicly, the student continues to own the copyright for the thesis. Signature of the LAC Thesis Non-Exclusive License and the AU DTheses repository copyright permission form makes the thesis available for future research only. Publication for commercial purposes remains the sole right of the author. The author reserves other publication rights, and neither the thesis nor extensive extracts from it may be printed or otherwise reproduced without the author's written permission. Refer to the Thesis Canada, Information for Students website for more information.

Agreement for LAC to collect the thesis/dissertation does not normally preclude further publication of the thesis/dissertation or any part of it in a journal or book. If the student is planning to publish their thesis/dissertation findings, it is their responsibility, in consultation with their supervisor, to identify any restrictions or conditions potential journals may have.

Updated November 09 2016 by Student & Academic Services

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