Electronic Lodgement of Final Theses with the Library

From 2013, the University Library will no longer accept bound paper copies of Higher Degree by Research theses as the required archival copy. Instead, the Library will accept as its definitive version, a digital copy submitted electronically. Faculties will be responsible for the lodgement of awarded theses to the Sydney eScholarship Repository.

Access to Higher Degree by Research theses will no longer be restricted to the Fisher Library Rare Books Collection. Instead, theses will be available to the University of Sydney community, via Unikey login. In addition, Higher Degree by Research students will have the opportunity to share their research online by choosing to make their thesis open access.

Why are we changing to electronic lodgement?

In March 2011 University of Sydney commenced the University of Sydney (Higher Degree by Research) Rule (2011). The Rule replaced the existing regulations governing the submission of Higher Degree by Research theses. As a result of the commencement of the Rule there is no longer a specified format for the archival copy of a Higher Degree by Research thesis to be lodged with the Library. The only stipulation in the new Rule is that the student must provide a copy of their thesis to the Library.

As a result of the change the Academic Board has accepted the Library’s recommendation to change the requirement from a bound paper copy to a digital copy, to enable the digital preservation of and online access to Higher Degree by Research theses.

These changes bring the University of Sydney into line with other Australian and international institutions that that already collect and provide online access to theses.

What will this mean for students?

Students will need to provide their Faculty Office with a digital copy of the final, awarded version of your thesis. Students will need to choose the appropriate level of access, and convert their thesis and any supporting files into the appropriate file format. The digital format for text is PDF (Portable Document Format). Other acceptable formats (e.g. for ancillary materials such as datasets, software, images, audio or video files) will be outlined in guidelines. Click here to download the Student guide for formatting your final thesis.

Students will need to:

  • Using the Final submission of thesis form, verify that this is your final thesis, notify us of your preferences regarding local or Open access, and request any embargos on availability.
  • Sign the copyright release attached to the form. Click here to download the final lodgement of thesis form.
  • Send the electronic copies of your thesis to your faculty.
  • Send the title/abstract file to your faculty.
    This information is used for cataloguing and to generate your AHEGS statement.

What will this mean for faculties?

The Faculty Office will receive the thesis from the student and lodge each Higher Degree by Research thesis with the University Library on behalf of the student using the online lodgement process.

The Faculty Office is responsible for the lodgement of the final thesis with the Library:

  • Verify that the thesis is the correct and final version, and includes all examiners’ emendations to the satisfaction of the Head of Department.
  • Append the copyright statement to the beginning of each PDF file. Click here to download the Copyright Statement pdf.
  • Ensure the thesis is lodged with the correct level of access (see below).
  • Ensure any necessary embargo requirements have been arranged (in special cases only).
  • Scan and send the student’s Final Lodgement of Thesis Form (including the copyright release and any other documentation) to the Library for filing

The Faculty Office will lodge the awarded, final version of the thesis with the Library on the student's behalf, once the appropriate documentation has been completed. Click here to download the Faculty Guide for e-Lodgement.

You can use the Faculty Lodgement Checklist to help make sure all the necessary tasks are complete. Click here to download the Faculty Checklist.

Open access to theses

The University encourages all students to make their theses openly accessible wherever possible. There are numerous benefits to choosing open access.

Students can:

  • Share your findings with a global audience, including researchers, research students, industry practitioners and the public.
  • Have your work indexed by Google Scholar and included in the National Library of Australia’s Trove discovery service.
  • Make it easy for other researchers to access and cite your work.
  • Gain increased exposure to your work.

Choosing the appropriate level of access

It may not always be possible to make a thesis available as open access. For example, the thesis may include commercially sensitive material, or material that is protected by a copyright agreement.

All students will have two choices as to the level of access:

  • Local Access means the thesis will be able to be accessed viewed, re-used and cited by current staff and students of the University of Sydney by means of Unikey authentication. All theses must be lodged for local access accordance with Clause 6.02 of the University of Sydney (Higher Degree by Research) Rule 2011. Note: Researchers from outside the University will still be able to access your thesis by requesting access at any University of Sydney Library.

  • Open Access means the thesis will be able to be searched for on Google Scholar, accessed, viewed, re-used and cited by anyone in the world using an internet connection. Students can choose whether to make their thesis available on Open Access.

Bound copies of your thesis

You may still make a bound copy of your thesis for yourself, family or friends. You can find a list of book binders in SUPRA’s Thesis Guide, available here. However, the University Library will only collect the digital version of the final, awarded thesis.

Frequently asked questions

Click here for a list of frequently asked questions.

Contacts and help

Students contact your Faculty Office for further guidance.

Faculties contact the for further guidance.

Contact , Sydney eScholarship Repository Coordinator, University Library for further information about the Sydney eScholarship Repository.

Faculty contacts

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