Electronic Dissemination

Access to knowledge

Ohio State has agreements with two organizations—OhioLINK and ProQuest/UMI Dissertation Publishing—to store and provide access to theses and dissertations. All theses, dissertations, and DMA documents are submitted through OhioLINK. Additionally, all PhD and DMA documents are archived through ProQuest/UMI.

OhioLINK is Ohio’s state library network and includes a consortium of Ohio colleges and universities. ProQuest/UMI Dissertation Publishing has been collecting and making dissertations available to the public for purchase since 1938. ProQuest/UMI Dissertation Publishing manages a database of 90 percent of the dissertations released in the United States, and Ohio State is in agreement with ProQuest/UMI to microfilm all approved Ohio State dissertations for archival purposes. This microfilmed archival copy is retained in the Ohio State libraries.

In order to complete degree requirements at Ohio State, students are required to submit their final, approved documents through OhioLINK as a pdf. Documents submitted to OhioLINK are made available to the public via OhioLINK several weeks after the Graduate School accepts the document as fulfilling that degree requirement. The full text of a dissertation is available through OhioLINK. There is no charge for viewing or downloading a published dissertation on OhioLINK.

Submission process

Ohio State does allow a delay in the dissemination of the electronic version to the OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertation (EDT) Center, and to ProQuest/UMI for dissertations and DMA documents. However, these policies do not prevent the university from providing access to Ohio State theses or dissertations through the libraries. Local access to the material, interlibrary loan, length of loan, and patron confidentiality are determined by the Ohio State libraries.

Delay of dissemination

In certain situations, there may be a reason to delay the electronic distribution of the dissertation. Because the university policy is to disseminate all dissertations as soon as possible, requests for delays must be reviewed and approved by the Graduate School.

Situations in which delaying may be appropriate include (but are not limited to):

  • The graduate student wishes to publish an article from the dissertation in a journal whose policy is not to publish anything that has already been disseminated electronically.
  • The graduate student is in the process of applying for a patent on research contained in the dissertation and does not wish to make its contents public until the patent application has been filed.

Graduate students can apply to the Graduate School to delay the electronic dissemination of their dissertations and theses for one to five years. Such requests will be reviewed and granted in the Graduate School. Once the initial request has been granted, additional extensions can be requested up to five years total. Graduate students bear the responsibility for requesting extensions. If the Graduate School does not receive a request for an extension, OhioLINK will release the document according to the original schedule.

Process for delaying dissemination
  1. Graduate students can request a delay when they submit their PDF file to OhioLINK by checking the second button in the Publication section of the Permissions and UMI Publication web page.

  2. In the UMI Permissions box, Master's students choose, "Do not upload to UMI." Theses are not archived through UMI. PhD and DMA students choose "Upload my paper to UMI for traditional publishing."

  3. Graduate students must complete and submit the Graduate School’s Delay of Final Document Form, available on GRADFORMS.OSU.EDU. The form will be electronically approved by the advisor, and should be completed by the deadline for submission of the final dissertation.

Graduate students are responsible for requesting a delay of electronic dissemination and for sending their completed request to the Graduate School for review.

If a graduate student checks the OhioLINK delay button but does not obtain approval from the Graduate School, the dissertation will be released for dissemination. A publication delay that is approved on OhioLink means that your document will not be sent to ProQUest/UMI until the OHioLink delay expires. If at that time a ProQuest delay is still desired moving forward, this can be requested directly through ProQuest. A separate form, the UMI Publishing Agreement, must be completed and e-mailed directly to UMI/ProQuest to request a delay of publication on the Proquest Dissertation Publishing Database.

For more information, contact Tim Watson, director of Graduation Services, (614) 292-6031.