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FAQ’s for ProQuest Electronic Dissertation Submission

How do I create an Account with ProQuest?

Follow the instructions for creating your account with ProQuest.

Do I use my WM user name and password to access ProQuest?

No.  You will create your own user name and password to use with ProQuest.

How do I submit my Dissertation?

Visit ProQuest and create an account. You can create the account anytime. You can begin the process, but cannot complete it until you are ready to upload the PDF of your dissertation. If you have problems, reference the step by step instructions

Do I have to use the ProQuest system to submit my dissertation?

Yes. All students completing their dissertations after December 2015 must use the online system.

What is ProQuest?

ProQuest provides an online database that indexes, abstracts, and provides full-text access to dissertations and theses. The database includes over 2.4 million records and covers 1637 to the present. ProQuest annually publishes more than 90% of all dissertations submitted from accredited institutions of higher learning in North America as well as from colleges and universities in Europe and Asia. Over the past 60 years, ProQuest has amassed more than 1.4 million titles beginning with the first U.S. dissertation accepted by a university (Yale) in 1861. ProQuest began digitizing dissertations in 1997 from a microform archive.

How much does it cost?

Traditional publishing is free. You only pay for bound copies, copyright, and creative commons licensing if you want them.

How do I pay?

You can pay online within your ProQuest account with your credit card.

How does the WM Swem Library get a copy of my dissertation?

When you submit your dissertation to ProQuest, it automatically goes to the William and Mary Institutional Repository.

How do I make sure my dissertation meets the physical standards, i.e. appropriate formatting?

When your dissertation is near the final stage, you should talk to your dissertation chair to obtain the names of approved reviewers. The reviewers will look at the formatting of your dissertation and make sure it meets the APA guidelines.

Do I need to print copies on acid free paper?

No. You only need to submit a PDF of your dissertation to ProQuest.

How to I obtain a bound copies of my dissertation?

You can order them online via ProQuest.There are options for different sizes and both hard and soft binding. While you can purchase bound copies through ProQuest, a less expensive option is through Lulu.  This company offers many more print options.  Students can upload their final document  to this site and choose cover art, etc for their own print copies. 

Are there any forms that I need to complete in order to submit my dissertation?

Yes. You will complete the William and Mary Institutional Repository Agreement and upload it as a supplemental form to your ProQuest account. You will also upload the signed Dissertation Defense Verification form as a supplemental document.

How will the School of Education Registrar know that I have submitted my dissertation via ProQuest?

The registrar will receive an email from ProQuest when you submit your dissertation. She will then review, accept, and submit it to ProQuest for publication.

Can I copyright my dissertation?

Yes. Copyright of student work is held exclusively by the student unless it is subject to a provision of the College Intellectual Property Policy (this could be true for a student who is doing the bulk of their dissertation work as part of a funded position at the College). The copyright registration in ProQuest is a service that will register the work with the Copyright Office; the only additional protection this affords the student is the ability to recover financial damages if they want to pursue legal action against an act of copyright infringement. If you choose to not to do this through ProQuest, you can do it through the Copyright Office.

Do I have to file for copyright with ProQuest?

No. If you choose to not to do this through ProQuest, you can do it through the Copyright Office.

Does my work have to be available in the WM Institutional Repository?


What is Creative Commons?

Creative Commons (CC) is a non-profit organization devoted to expanding the range of creative works available for others to build upon legally and to share. The organization has released several copyright-licenses known as Creative Commons licenses free of charge to the public. These licenses allow creators to communicate which rights they reserve, and which rights they waive for the benefit of recipients or other creators.  Creative Commons licenses do not replace copyright, but are based upon it. Creative Commons licensing allows the student to let users know what they can legally do with the dissertation without asking permission.

Why would I want to make my dissertation freely available?

The world of scholarship depends on people making their research available for others to use. When research is shared electronically, more people may receive access at a lower cost, and more knowledge transfer occurs. This stimulates education and research. It also ensures that many people give credit to you for your work, and that your research is cited in others' publications, which adds to your prestige and aids your future advancement.

What is an embargo? Should I request an embargo?

An embargo is a delay of publication. Your title and abstract will be available for the public but the full text of your pdf document will be hidden for a period of time. You can embargo for a maximum of two years. After the embargo period expires, the dissertation will be openly available. You might choose to embargo because of a patent application or a pending publication in a journal. You should talk with your advisor about whether or not to embargo. You should also speak with your publisher regarding rules and restrictions of publication. You can request to embargo your document within the dissertation submission process.