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EBSCO Open Dissertations
EBSCO Open Dissertations makes electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) more accessible to researchers worldwide. The free portal is designed to benefit universities and their students and make ETDs more discoverable.
Increasing Discovery & Usage of ETD Research
EBSCO Open Dissertations is a collaboration between EBSCO and BiblioLabs to increase traffic and discoverability of ETD research. You can join the movement and add your theses and dissertations to the database, making them freely available to researchers everywhere while increasing traffic to your institutional repository.
EBSCO Open Dissertations extends the work started in 2014, when EBSCO and the H.W. Wilson Foundation created American Doctoral Dissertations which contained indexing from the H.W. Wilson print publication, Doctoral Dissertations Accepted by American Universities, 1933-1955. In 2015, the H.W. Wilson Foundation agreed to support the expansion of the scope of the American Doctoral Dissertations database to include records for dissertations and theses from 1955 to the present.
How Does EBSCO Open Dissertations Work?
Your ETD metadata is harvested via OAI and integrated into EBSCO’s platform, where pointers send traffic to your IR.
EBSCO integrates this data into their current subscriber environments and makes the data available on the open web via opendissertations.org .
You might also be interested in:
Global ETD Search
Search the 6,468,909 electronic theses and dissertations contained in the NDLTD archive:
The archive supports advanced filtering and boolean search.
Theses and Dissertations
Check Cornell’s library catalog , which lists the dissertations available in our library collection.
The print thesis collection in Uris Library is currently shelved on Level 3B before the Q to QA regular-sized volumes. Check with the library staff for the thesis shelving locations in other libraries (Mann, Catherwood, Fine Arts, etc.).
ProQuest Dissertations and Theses
According to ProQuest, coverage begins with 1637. With more than 2.4 million entries, ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global is the starting point for finding citations to doctoral dissertations and master’s theses. Dissertations published from 1980 forward include 350-word abstracts written by the author. Master’s theses published from 1988 forward include 150-word abstracts. UMI also offers over 1.8 million titles for purchase in microfilm or paper formats. The full text of more than 930,000 are available in PDF format for immediate free download. Use Interlibrary Loan for the titles not available as full text online.
Foreign Dissertations at the Center for Research Libraries
To search for titles and verify holdings of dissertations at the Center for Research Libraries (CRL), use the CRL catalog . CRL seeks to provide comprehensive access to doctoral dissertations submitted to institutions outside the U. S. and Canada (currently more than 750,000 titles). One hundred European universities maintain exchange or deposit agreements with CRL. Russian dissertation abstracts in the social sciences are obtained on microfiche from INION. More detailed information about CRL’s dissertation holdings .
Please see our resource guide on dissertations and theses for additional resources and support.
How to find resources by format
Why use a dissertation or a thesis.
A dissertation is the final large research paper, based on original research, for many disciplines to be able to complete a PhD degree. The thesis is the same idea but for a masters degree.
They are often considered scholarly sources since they are closely supervised by a committee, are directed at an academic audience, are extensively researched, follow research methodology, and are cited in other scholarly work. Often the research is newer or answering questions that are more recent, and can help push scholarship in new directions.
Search for dissertations and theses
Locating dissertations and theses.
The Proquest Dissertations and Theses Global database includes doctoral dissertations and selected masters theses from major universities worldwide.
- Searchable by subject, author, advisor, title, school, date, etc.
- More information about full text access and requesting through Interlibrary Loan
NDLTD – Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations provides free online access to a over a million theses and dissertations from all over the world.
WorldCat Dissertations and Theses searches library catalogs from across the U.S. and worldwide.
Locating University of Minnesota Dissertations and Theses
Use Libraries search and search by title or author and add the word "thesis" in the search box. Write down the library and call number and find it on the shelf. They can be checked out.
Check the University Digital Conservancy for online access to dissertations and theses from 2007 to present as well as historic, scanned theses from 1887-1923.
Other Sources for Dissertations and Theses
- Center for Research Libraries
- DART-Europe E-Thesis Portal
- Theses Canada
- Ethos (Great Britain)
- Australasian Digital Theses in Trove
- DiVA (Sweden)
- E-Thesis at the University of Helsinki
- DissOnline (Germany)
- List of libraries worldwide - to search for a thesis when you know the institution and cannot find in the larger collections
University of Minnesota Dissertations and Theses FAQs
What dissertations and theses are available.
With minor exceptions, all doctoral dissertations and all "Plan A" master's theses accepted by the University of Minnesota are available in the University Libraries system. In some cases (see below) only a non-circulating copy in University Archives exists, but for doctoral dissertations from 1940 to date, and for master's theses from 1925 to date, a circulating copy should almost always be available.
"Plan B" papers, accepted in the place of a thesis in many master's degree programs, are not received by the University Libraries and are generally not available. (The only real exceptions are a number of old library school Plan B papers on publishing history, which have been separately cataloged.) In a few cases individual departments may have maintained files of such papers.
In what libraries are U of M dissertations and theses located?
Circulating copies of doctoral dissertations:.
- Use Libraries Search to look for the author or title of the work desired to determine location and call number of a specific dissertation. Circulating copies of U of M doctoral dissertations can be in one of several locations in the library system, depending upon the date and the department for which the dissertation was done. The following are the general rules:
- Dissertations prior to 1940 Circulating copies of U of M dissertations prior to 1940 do not exist (with rare exceptions): for these, only the archival copy (see below) is available. Also, most dissertations prior to 1940 are not cataloged in MNCAT and can only be identified by the departmental listings described below.
- Dissertations from 1940-1979 Circulating copies of U of M dissertations from 1940 to 1979 will in most cases be held within the Elmer L. Andersen Library, with three major classes of exceptions: dissertations accepted by biological, medical, and related departments are housed in the Health Science Library; science/engineering dissertations from 1970 to date will be located in the Science and Engineering Library (in Walter); and dissertations accepted by agricultural and related departments are available at the Magrath Library or one of the other libraries on the St. Paul campus (the Magrath Library maintains records of locations for such dissertations).
- Dissertations from 1980-date Circulating copies of U of M dissertations from 1980 to date at present may be located either in Wilson Library (see below) or in storage; consult Libraries Search for location of specific items. Again, exceptions noted above apply here also; dissertations in their respective departments will instead be in Health Science Library or in one of the St. Paul campus libraries.
Circulating copies of master's theses:
- Theses prior to 1925 Circulating copies of U of M master's theses prior to 1925 do not exist (with rare exceptions); for these, only the archival copy (see below) is available.
- Theses from 1925-1996 Circulating copies of U of M master's theses from 1925 to 1996 may be held in storage; consult Libraries search in specific instances. Once again, there are exceptions and theses in their respective departments will be housed in the Health Science Library or in one of the St. Paul campus libraries.
- Theses from 1997-date Circulating copies of U of M master's theses from 1997 to date will be located in Wilson Library (see below), except for the same exceptions for Health Science and St. Paul theses. There is also an exception to the exception: MHA (Masters in Health Administration) theses through 1998 are in the Health Science Library, but those from 1999 on are in Wilson Library.
Archival copies (non-circulating)
Archival (non-circulating) copies of virtually all U of M doctoral dissertations from 1888-1952, and of U of M master's theses from all years up to the present, are maintained by University Archives (located in the Elmer L. Andersen Library). These copies must be consulted on the premises, and it is highly recommended for the present that users make an appointment in advance to ensure that the desired works can be retrieved for them from storage. For dissertations accepted prior to 1940 and for master's theses accepted prior to 1925, University Archives is generally the only option (e.g., there usually will be no circulating copy). Archival copies of U of M doctoral dissertations from 1953 to the present are maintained by Bell and Howell Corporation (formerly University Microfilms Inc.), which produces print or filmed copies from our originals upon request. (There are a very few post-1952 U of M dissertations not available from Bell and Howell; these include such things as music manuscripts and works with color illustrations or extremely large pages that will not photocopy well; in these few cases, our archival copy is retained in University Archives.)
Where is a specific dissertation of thesis located?
To locate a specific dissertation or thesis it is necessary to have its call number. Use Libraries Search for the author or title of the item, just as you would for any other book. Depending on date of acceptance and cataloging, a typical call number for such materials should look something like one of the following:
Dissertations: Plan"A" Theses MnU-D or 378.7M66 MnU-M or 378.7M66 78-342 ODR7617 83-67 OL6156 Libraries Search will also tell the library location (MLAC, Health Science Library, Magrath or another St. Paul campus library, Science and Engineering, Business Reference, Wilson Annex or Wilson Library). Those doctoral dissertations still in Wilson Library (which in all cases should be 1980 or later and will have "MnU-D" numbers) are located in the central section of the third floor. Those master's theses in Wilson (which in all cases will be 1997 or later and will have "MnU-M" numbers) are also located in the central section of the third floor. Both dissertations and theses circulate and can be checked out, like any other books, at the Wilson Circulation desk on the first floor.
How can dissertations and theses accepted by a specific department be located?
Wilson Library contains a series of bound and loose-leaf notebooks, arranged by department and within each department by date, listing dissertations and theses. Information given for each entry includes name of author, title, and date (but not call number, which must be looked up individually). These notebooks are no longer current, but they do cover listings by department from the nineteenth century up to approximately 1992. Many pre-1940 U of M dissertations and pre-1925 U of M master's theses are not cataloged (and exist only as archival copies). Such dissertations can be identified only with these volumes. The books and notebooks are shelved in the general collection under these call numbers: Wilson Ref LD3337 .A5 and Wilson Ref quarto LD3337 .U9x. Major departments of individual degree candidates are also listed under their names in the GRADUATE SCHOOL COMMENCEMENT programs of the U of M, available in University Archives and (for recent years) also in Wilson stacks (LD3361 .U55x).
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- RIT Libraries
- Thesis and Dissertation Resources
- Databases and Websites
- Thesis Writing Guides
- Writing in Engineering and Science
Why search this literature?
It is crucial for graduate students to search the thesis and dissertation literature to make sure that an idea or hypothesis has not already been tested, explored, and published. An additional reason to search this literature is that it is rich with ideas and information not found elsewhere. If graduate students do not continue on as academics or if students that came after them in their programs did not continue their research, this literature may be the end of the line for scholarship on a topic.
ProQuest has published dissertation e-learning modules covering the usefulness of using dissertations as a research source. See link below:
- Dissertation eLearning resources from ProQuest Uncover the value of dissertations.
All graduate students should, at minimum, search the ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global database (PQDT) to see if the research they are proposing to do has already been done by a student at another institution/university. RIT dissertations and theses have been included in PQDT since approximately 2006.
- Proquest Dissertations & Theses Global This link opens in a new window Identifies Ph.D. dissertations from U.S. & Canadian universities since 1861. Abstracts from 1980. Master's theses from 1988. Many with full-text.
RIT Digital Institutional Repository
- Digital Institutional Repository The digital institutional repository for the Rochester Institute of Technology, managed by RIT Libraries.
- ProQuest - Most Accessed Dissertations/Theses
Each month ProQuest updates this list of the top 25 Most-Accessed Dissertations and Theses across all subjects, based upon total PDF downloads. Find out what is trending.
The web sites below should also be consulted as appropriate to perform a full and thorough review of the dissertation and thesis literature beyond your introductory search of ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global. Consider whether a particular country or part of the world would have an interest in your potential research topic.
Only large-scale repositories of dissertations and theses are included here. You may also need to search individual university repositories directly.
- Ebsco Open Dissertations Search thousands of open dissertations and theses from over 50 participating libraries.
- EThOS (from the British Library) EThOS offers a 'single point of access' where researchers the world over can access ALL theses produced by UK Higher Education.
- Indian Institute of Science Dissertations and theses from the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India.
- Indian Theses and Dissertations (Shodhganga) Over 130 participating Indian universities and over 8800 ETD documents.
- National ETD Portal (South Africa) South African theses and dissertations.
- Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations The Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations (NDLTD), is an international organization dedicated to promoting the adoption, creation, use, dissemination, and preservation of electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs). The NDLTD Union Catalog contains more than one million records of electronic theses and dissertations. Search the Union Catalog from here: http://thumper.vtls.com:6090/?theme=NDLTD
- OhioLINK ETD Center Electronic theses and dissertations from colleges and universities in the state of Ohio.
- Open Access Theses and Dissertations OATD aims to be the best possible resource for finding open access graduate theses and dissertations published around the world. Metadata (information about the theses) comes from over 600 colleges, universities, and research institutions. OATD currently indexes over 1.5 million theses and dissertations. RIT is included.
- Theses Canada Canadian universities voluntarily participate by submitting approved theses and dissertation to Theses Canada. Click on "Search Theses Canada" under the Introduction on the left hand side of the page to begin your search.
- TROVE From the National Library of Australia - Search Trove to explore amazing collections from Australian libraries, universities, museums, galleries and archives.
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How to search for Harvard dissertations
- DASH , Digital Access to Scholarship at Harvard, is the university's central, open-access repository for the scholarly output of faculty and the broader research community at Harvard. Most Ph.D. dissertations submitted from March 2012 forward are available online in DASH.
- Check HOLLIS, the Library Catalog, and refine your results by using the Advanced Search and limiting Resource Type to Dissertations
- Search the database ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global Don't hesitate to Ask a Librarian for assistance.
How to search for Non-Harvard dissertations
- ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Global
- Many universities provide full-text access to their dissertations via a digital repository. If you know the title of a particular dissertation or thesis, try doing a Google search.
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Dissertations and Theses
- EBSCO Open Dissertations
- Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations Provides free access to thousands of dissertation and thesis abstracts from universities around the world, and links to full text when freely available.
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- URL: https://csulb.libguides.com/freedatabases
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- International Theses
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International Theses: Search Tools
Proquest dissertations and theses.
A comprehensive collection of dissertations and theses from around the world from 1861-present. Full text since 1997. Abstracts since 1980 for doctoral dissertations and 1988 for masters' theses. Citations since 1861.
Citations are indexed in Web of Science in the ProQuest ™ Dissertations & Theses Citation Index collection.
Center for Research Libraries
CRL holds more than 800,000 doctoral dissertations outside of the U.S. and Canada. Search dissertations in the dissertations section of the CRL catalogue. Digitized dissertations can be searched in the catalogue's e-resources section.
Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations
A collection of more than 800,000 international full text theses and dissertations.
Try searching Google Scholar for theses posted on institutional digital repositories or on personal web pages.
A web search engine devoted to Science and Technology.
Search for dissertations, theses and published material based on theses catalogued in WorldCat by OCLC member libraries worldwide. In Advanced Search, you can search by author, title, subject, year, and keyword. Under Subtype Limits, select Theses/Dissertation from the Any Content menu
International Theses: By Country
The Austrian dissertation database contains the bibliographical data of dissertations approved in Austria from 1990 on, and in most cases the relevant abstracts. (This website is hosted by the National Library of Austria).
National Library of Australia’s Trove Service
Search for full text digital theses from Australian universities. On the Advanced search screen under Format, select Thesis.
DART-Europe : Access to full text theses and dissertations from many countries in Europe.
Europeana : Additional electronic dissertations from other European libraries.
Système universitaire de documentation (Sudoc): Provides access to records and some electronic theses and dissertations published at French research institutions.
Fichier central des thèses
DissOnline provides information on the subject of electronic university publications. It can be used to find out directly all about online dissertations and post-doctoral theses. Sample documents can be downloaded to provide help in the creation of electronic university publications. For more information about the portal, please go to German National Library website (DNB) .
TESIUNAM: Tesis del Sistema Bibliotecario de la Unam
(Theses from the National University of Mexico / Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México). To search for electronic theses, click on “tesis electrónicas (REDUNAM).”
The Center for Research Libraries and the British Library have made available online 400 UK doctoral theses focusing on the Middle East, Islamic studies, and related subjects. More information .
Some Dutch e-theses are available through NARCIS.
- Some electronic theses from Bolivia, Brasil, Chile and Peru can be found at Cybertesis.NET , a portal created by the University of Chile (Information Services & Library System) that provides an easily accessible tool to full text electronic theses published in different universities of the world.
For more university/national library catalogues, search for the word University/Universidad and the country (Argentina, Peru, etc.) in Google. Find the link to the library ( biblioteca ) and search the catalogue for theses ( tesis ). You may need to click on the advanced search function ( búsqueda guíada or búsqueda avanzada ) and select tesis as a format or type.
There are several portals/catalogues in Spain for theses and dissertations. Here are some examples listed on Spain’s National Library website:
Spain’s Ministry of Education thesis database (TESEO)
Biblioteca Virtual del Español (on the Biblioteca Virtual, Miguel de Cervantes website)
Universidad Complutense de Madrid’s catalogue
TDX (Tesis Doctorals en Xarxa)
This is a cooperative repository of digital theses from the University of Cataluña and other autonomous communities (such as Murcia, Cantabria, Barcelona, and Oviedo)
For print and electronic dissertations, please consult the Swiss National Library website.
- NDLTD: National Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations in Taiwan is an open full-text permanent archive of scholarly research in Taiwan.
EThOS : Access to doctoral dissertations (paper and electronic) from UK institutions of higher education.
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- Last Updated: Oct 18, 2023 3:58 PM
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How to Write a Dissertation or Thesis Proposal
Published on September 21, 2022 by Tegan George . Revised on July 18, 2023.
When starting your thesis or dissertation process, one of the first requirements is a research proposal or a prospectus. It describes what or who you want to examine, delving into why, when, where, and how you will do so, stemming from your research question and a relevant topic .
The proposal or prospectus stage is crucial for the development of your research. It helps you choose a type of research to pursue, as well as whether to pursue qualitative or quantitative methods and what your research design will look like.
You can download our templates in the format of your choice below.
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Table of contents
What should your proposal contain, dissertation question examples, what should your proposal look like, dissertation prospectus examples, other interesting articles, frequently asked questions about proposals.
Prior to jumping into the research for your thesis or dissertation, you first need to develop your research proposal and have it approved by your supervisor. It should outline all of the decisions you have taken about your project, from your dissertation topic to your hypotheses and research objectives .
Depending on your department’s requirements, there may be a defense component involved, where you present your research plan in prospectus format to your committee for their approval.
Your proposal should answer the following questions:
- Why is your research necessary?
- What is already known about your topic?
- Where and when will your research be conducted?
- Who should be studied?
- How can the research best be done?
Ultimately, your proposal should persuade your supervisor or committee that your proposed project is worth pursuing.
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Strong research kicks off with a solid research question , and dissertations are no exception to this.
Dissertation research questions should be:
- Focused on a single problem or issue
- Researchable using primary and/or secondary sources
- Feasible to answer within the timeframe and practical constraints
- Specific enough to answer thoroughly
- Complex enough to develop the answer over the space of a paper or thesis
- Relevant to your field of study and/or society more broadly
- What are the main factors enticing people under 30 in suburban areas to engage in the gig economy?
- Which techniques prove most effective for 1st-grade teachers at local elementary schools in engaging students with special needs?
- Which communication streams are the most effective for getting those aged 18-30 to the polls on Election Day?
An easy rule of thumb is that your proposal will usually resemble a (much) shorter version of your thesis or dissertation. While of course it won’t include the results section , discussion section , or conclusion , it serves as a “mini” version or roadmap for what you eventually seek to write.
Be sure to include:
- A succinct introduction to your topic and problem statement
- A brief literature review situating your topic within existing research
- A basic outline of the research methods you think will best answer your research question
- The perceived implications for future research
- A reference list in the citation style of your choice
The length of your proposal varies quite a bit depending on your discipline and type of work you’re conducting. While a thesis proposal is often only 3-7 pages long, a prospectus for your dissertation is usually much longer, with more detailed analysis. Dissertation proposals can be up to 25-30 pages in length.
Writing a proposal or prospectus can be a challenge, but we’ve compiled some examples for you to get your started.
- Example #1: “Geographic Representations of the Planet Mars, 1867-1907” by Maria Lane
- Example #2: “Individuals and the State in Late Bronze Age Greece: Messenian Perspectives on Mycenaean Society” by Dimitri Nakassis
- Example #3: “Manhood Up in the Air: A Study of Male Flight Attendants, Queerness, and Corporate Capitalism during the Cold War Era” by Phil Tiemeyer
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The research methods you use depend on the type of data you need to answer your research question .
- If you want to measure something or test a hypothesis , use quantitative methods . If you want to explore ideas, thoughts and meanings, use qualitative methods .
- If you want to analyze a large amount of readily-available data, use secondary data. If you want data specific to your purposes with control over how it is generated, collect primary data.
- If you want to establish cause-and-effect relationships between variables , use experimental methods. If you want to understand the characteristics of a research subject, use descriptive methods.
A thesis or dissertation outline is one of the most critical first steps in your writing process. It helps you to lay out and organize your ideas and can provide you with a roadmap for deciding what kind of research you’d like to undertake.
Generally, an outline contains information on the different sections included in your thesis or dissertation , such as:
- Your anticipated title
- Your abstract
- Your chapters (sometimes subdivided into further topics like literature review , research methods , avenues for future research, etc.)
A well-planned research design helps ensure that your methods match your research aims, that you collect high-quality data, and that you use the right kind of analysis to answer your questions, utilizing credible sources . This allows you to draw valid , trustworthy conclusions.
The priorities of a research design can vary depending on the field, but you usually have to specify:
- Your research questions and/or hypotheses
- Your overall approach (e.g., qualitative or quantitative )
- The type of design you’re using (e.g., a survey , experiment , or case study )
- Your sampling methods or criteria for selecting subjects
- Your data collection methods (e.g., questionnaires , observations)
- Your data collection procedures (e.g., operationalization , timing and data management)
- Your data analysis methods (e.g., statistical tests or thematic analysis )
A dissertation prospectus or proposal describes what or who you plan to research for your dissertation. It delves into why, when, where, and how you will do your research, as well as helps you choose a type of research to pursue. You should also determine whether you plan to pursue qualitative or quantitative methods and what your research design will look like.
It should outline all of the decisions you have taken about your project, from your dissertation topic to your hypotheses and research objectives , ready to be approved by your supervisor or committee.
Note that some departments require a defense component, where you present your prospectus to your committee orally.
Formulating a main research question can be a difficult task. Overall, your question should contribute to solving the problem that you have defined in your problem statement .
However, it should also fulfill criteria in three main areas:
- Feasibility and specificity
- Relevance and originality
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20 Amazing Websites and/or Resources For PhD Students
“The Web is full of essential as well as scrap websites and tools. The difficult task for students is to find the important one, without compromising their personal, professional and research information. I’m giving you a list of essential websites and resources for researchers and PhDs.”
PhDs have comprehensive knowledge on a specific topic or field. Oftentimes, when they search for lucrative websites or resources; most of the time, they land on either scrap websites or nothing important.
They want to make their PhD life easy using tools, websites or resources, but publishers trick them to see lists that are either for PhD programs , scholarship programs or something else. I personally find it difficult while doing research for this article.
The second thing is, they lack knowledge about where they can find useful resources. However, there are certain websites that make your life easier if you know about it in your early life of PhD.
You may have to search literature, find information, gain knowledge, write articles, publish papers, and prepare images, charts or interactives. For all such tasks, you have to use different websites or tools.
I have divided this article into three parts. In this part, we will discuss only websites and resources while in the upcoming two parts, we will discuss important tools and apps. So here are 20 amazing websites or resources for PhD students.
Google books , science direct, biomed central, microsoft academic, science.gov, pubmed central, digital commons network, diagrams.net.
- Wrapping up:
20 Amazing Websites and/or Resources For PhD Students
- Website link: https://scholar.google.com/
- Application: Find scholarly articles and connect with other scientists.
At the very beginning, researchers should know about Google Scholar. It’s a search engine dedicatedly prepared for research students and scientists. What can you do with it?
- You can find peer-reviewed articles
- Make your own profile
- Upload your publications
- Save and share articles
- Check your citations matrics
- Connect with other scientists
Google Scholar is Google’s product, safe to use and easy to navigate. I have already written an article on this topic, you can read: 7 Ways to Find Peer-Reviewed Articles On Google .
- Website link: https://books.google.com/
- Applications: To find peer-reviewed Books.
Yet another impressive product from Google is Google Books. It comes up with a simpler and more impressive look, type a topic name on which you want a book in Google books and you get thousands of options.
When you click the book, you get information like:
- ISBN number
- Name of the publisher
- Number of pages
- Other editions
- Name of authors
- The availability of the book on other platforms
Most importantly, we can generate citations there and use them in our thesis or paper directly. I know there are many sources available to purchase books but Google Books is the most trusted, authentic and viable option for PhDs.
- Website link: https://www.wikipedia.org/
- Application: To find resources and information.
There’s a misconception among research students that Wikipedia isn’t a trusted source to find literature. Let me tell you that, it’s partially true, how? First, it is the best place where you can get any information regarding any topic.
Wikipedia gives amazing background information regarding any topic and is too peer-reviewed. On the other hand, it’s difficult to understand basic concepts from research papers, directly. So, students have to start with Wikipedia.
Search anything on the Wikipedia search engine, read it and understand the concept. From my personal experience, Wiki makes concepts easier to understand.
- Website link: https://www.sciencedirect.com/
- Application: Find peer-reviewed resources across the web.
(We are almost going in sync).
When you type any topic into Google you will get two topmost results, one is from Wikipedia and the second is from Science Direct, mostly.
ScienceDirect is a great place to find peer-reviewed scientific literature. The best thing about this website is, when you open it, it shows results as a “compilation” of abstracts for a topic. You just have to quickly read it, click the paper you want and go there.
It makes the reading task so easy. The target audience for this website is students from various fields of science as well as scientists.
- Website link: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/
- Application: find resources, tools, data, and information for biotechnology.
The full name of NCBI is National Centre for Biotechnology Information and is run by the NIH- National Library of Medicine. Any life science student should know about the NCBI from day one of their research.
It’s a huge database for life science. It contains
- Portals to submit data.
Researchers can submit their data to NCBI and make them accessible to other scientists. Keep in mind that the data and other information present there on NCBI are sensitive. You can get information about any organism and anything associated with that organism.
NCBI is a huge portal, students have to learn to use various tools and information present there.
- Website: https://www.biomedcentral.com/
- Application: Search for scholarly literature.
Biomed central is yet another website to find scholarly literature and peer-reviewed articles. It’s a part of Springer-Nature and provides high-quality journals, resources and literature for peers and scientists.
Moreover, you can explore journals from various fields and get published there. Biomed Central is yet another resource like Science Direct.
- Website: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/research/project/academic/
- Application: Find resources related to your topic.
Microsoft Academia is a search engine from Microsoft. It not only provides peer-reviewed articles but also news, blog posts, videos and even podcasts on one page. Meaning, you can remain updated with your subject or topic.
Notedly, it’s not the platform to find scholarly articles, but you can get ‘around’ the information on your topic. So you can know what’s going on around your topic.
- Website: https://www.science.gov/
- Application: Provides various forms of information.
Before writing this article, I didn’t know about science.gov. It’s a kind of semi-search engine from the US government science information. Interestingly, it gives us information categorized into- text, multimedia, data and public access.
I don’t know how you will use it, but it’s definitely helpful to research students. I will learn it, use it and come back to you; if it would be helpful. Give it a fair try.
- Website: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/
- Application: Search full-text article.
PMC- PubMed Central is an important website for PhD students as it provides free full-text articles available on your topic. It has the largest number of article databases that students can explore. Not only that, students can download articles, generate citations and search related queries.
PMC and NCBI are two websites that every science, biology and life science student has to know.
- Website link: https://www.jstor.org/
- Application: find knowledge, resources and information.
JSTOR is a non-profitable organization that provides information in various fields. It’s also a type of search engine for scientific literature. Students can find primary resources, literature, images, journals and even books.
You can find information on your topic in one place, but the amazing feature that it has is the ‘images’. A dedicated images feature of JASTOR shows thousands of images for your topic from various resources which are sometimes not present on Google Images.
- Website: https://network.bepress.com/
- Application: Find literature and resources.
Yet another search engine to find various research is the Digital Commons Network. I didn’t find anything ‘out-of-the-box’ for this website. You can give it a try.
Now besides finding literature, there are other things students also have to do during PhD, for example, preparing diagrams, generating citations or editing Pdfs. Here is a list of some more tools that help you with this.
- Website: https://app.diagrams.net/
- Application: make diagrams, photos, flowcharts and images.
Diagrams.net is an online website that helps you in preparing diagrams, charts, flowcharts, images and other multimedia for your thesis or research. I am planning to prepare one tutorial for this. And if possible I will upload it here. So that you know how to use it.
- Website: https://www.ilovepdf.com/
- Application: edit– pdf, doc or text.
Ilovepdf is my personal favorite website. Let me tell you that we can do so many things that usually you can’t do. It’s a specialized website that can help you with your doc. You can convert your docs, for example,
- Excel to pdf
- Html to pdf
- And vice versa.
You can compress doc or pdfs, split it, merge it and edit them. You can even edit your final thesis draft in the form of a pdf. You can even add a page or delete one or edit some part of the text. Isn’t it amazing! I strongly recommend using ilovepdf.
- Website: https://www.freepik.com/
- Application: Download high-quality images for free.
Now, you need images, illustrations and gifs for your presentations and other work during your PhD. But finding copyright-free images is a hard task. Freepik is one such website, from where you can download images for free.
The images in the freepik database are high-quality and freely available. You can use it and make your presentation more impressive.
- Website: https://www.canva.com/
- Application: To prepare interactives.
Yet another great place to prepare images, figures, tables, datasheets and many other interactives for your thesis is Canva.
Canva is super easy to use and has many templates for doing so many things. You can do
And a lot more. I strongly recommend visiting Canva once.
I know these are not 20, but timely I will add more websites to this list and complete it. The reason is, I want to give a useful and beneficial list not a list with repetitive and unuseful things. One more thing I want to add, these websites are free to use.
I hope this article will help you. Do share this content in your research group and bookmark the page. Still, then you can read this article to learn more: 7 Must-Have Thesis Writing Tools .
Dr. Tushar Chauhan is a Scientist, Blogger and Scientific-writer. He has completed PhD in Genetics. Dr. Chauhan is a PhD coach and tutor.
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OU theses and dissertations
Are available via Open Research Online .
Search for OU theses in the Library Search . To see only print theses click 'In the Walton Hall library' and refine your results to resource type 'Thesis'.
OU staff and research students can borrow a consultation copy of a thesis (if available). Please contact the Library helpdesk giving the author and title of the thesis.
UK theses and dissertations from EThOS
The Electronic Theses Online System (EThOS) offers free access to the full text of UK theses.
- EThOS offers a one stop online shop providing free access to UK theses
- EThOS digitizes theses on request into PDF format, this may require payment
- EThOS is managed by the British Library in partnership with a number of UK universities
- EThOS is open to all categories of library user
What does this mean to you as a library user?
When you need to access a PhD thesis from another UK based HE institution you should check EThOS to either download a thesis which has already been digitised or to request that a UK thesis be supplied to you.
- For all UK theses EThOS will be the first point of delivery. You can use the online ordering and tracking system direct from EThOS to manage your requests for UK PhD theses, including checking the status of your requests
- As readers you will deal directly with EThOS so will not need to fill in a document delivery request
- OU staff and research students will still be entitled to access non-UK based PhD theses by filling in a document delivery request
- In some cases where EThOS is unable to supply a UK thesis OU staff and research students will be able to access it by filling in a conventional document delivery request. The thesis will be supplied through direct loan
- The EThOS system is both faster and cheaper than the previous British Theses service which was based on microfilm
- The British Library no longer arranges interlibrary loans for UK PhD theses
- Interlibrary Loan procedures for other types of request from the British Library (articles and books for example) will remain the same
If you have any queries about using EThOS contact the Document Delivery Team ( [email protected] or the Library Helpdesk ).
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Research and Research Impacts Resources for PhD Students
Research in your discipline is an important skill you will develop throughout your program. The professional development skills in research that you gain in your degree program will be unique to your discipline. You will cultivate discipline-specific research skills through completing courses, degree requirements, research roles, and through more applied experiences like internships or field rotations.
Graduate students typically take research methods classes as part of their degree program at UB and have research requirements like producing a master's thesis, project or doctoral dissertation.
But, there are multiple skills to learn, disciplinary research and research skills beyond your discipline. How can you gain research skills or build upon your current skills?
Write a fellowship.
Write a grant.
Grant writing skills are critical to completing and disseminating your research and a mark of success in academic and professional careers. To gain these important skills, students can assist faculty with grant proposals, attend a grant writing workshop hosted by the Graduate School or submit a grant on their behalf.
Graduate Professional Development offers grant writing workshops for graduate students in STEM disciplines and Social Sciences/Humanities. Workshops are offered online and live twice yearly and recorded for additional access.
Complete training in responsible conduct of research.
All students admitted to a PhD program for the fall 2009 semester or thereafter are required to document successful completion of Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) training when they submit their PhD Application to Candidacy form for their PhD degree. This training requirement may be fulfilled by either (1.) Enrolling in and passing with a grade of B (3.00) or better LAI 648 Research Ethics or RPG 504 Responsible Conduct of Research or BMS 514 Intro to Scientific Investigation and Responsible Conduct or RSC 602 Research Ethics for the Health Sciences or (2.) Completing a Collaborative Institutional Training Initiative (CITI) online Responsible Conduct of Research course with an average score of 80 percent or higher, or (3.) Successfully completing UB's Responsible Research micro-credential . Students opting to complete the CITI online course or the Responsible Research micro-credential must supply proof of completion with their PhD Application to Candidacy.
Serve as a Research Assistant (RA).
Faculty with research grants or contracts hire graduate students as research assistants (RA). The RA assignment and funding are tied to the faculty member's work. Discuss research assistantships with your faculty mentor or director of graduate studies.
Present your research.
Any time you present your research you improve your communication skills. Present in your research group, at department talks, and to groups outside of your discipline. Each type of research talk is valuable to your professional development.
Every year in April the University at Buffalo hosts a campus-wide student showcase of research as part of the Celebration of Academic Excellence . Departments nominate graduate students to present their research posters for the showcase. Attend the showcase to learn about the research happening across the university and apply to present your research.
Attend research talks in and out of your department.
Take advantage of all the public research talks in and out of your department. Even if the research is not something you're familiar with, you can learn about the wider research in your discipline and pick up communication tips. Asking questions of experts and getting to network with the speaker and attendees is also important for professional development.
Think about how your research fits into diverse career paths.
Your research does not necessarily lead you into one specific career path. Take time to explore how your research interests and skills can be applied to multiple career paths, both inside and outside of academia. Online Individual Development Plans (IDPs) and platforms, such as MyIDP for STEM disciplines and ImaginePhD for humanities and social sciences, give you a way to assess your skills and see how they match to opportunities. UB also subscribes to Beyond the Professoriate , which helps graduate students and postdoctoral fellows understand and articulate how their research skills match with career and job opportunities.
Through UB's Social Impact Fellows program , MBA and MSW students from the School of Management and School of Social Work, along with graduate students from the College of Arts and Sciences create social innovation in Western New York. Together, students collaborate, address pressing issues and make an impact.
Fellowships and scholarships are among the most valuable forms of aid you can receive during your college career and are designed to support students who have exceptional academic records and potential. Meet with the Office of Fellowships and Scholarships to discuss scholarship opportunities.
University Libraries offer an outstanding array of information resources, technologies, services and people to support the academic and creative achievements of our students.
Other Research Training Opportunities
- Research Bootcamp—Biostatistics, Epidemiology, Research Design (BERD)
- SUNY Office of Research, Innovation and Economic Development
- Build Your Research Community is a free course consisting of five modules offered by the Science Communication Lab. This course guides science trainees through identifying mentors and building and maintaining strong mentoring relationships.
- The University Libraries offer research support. They have compiled Research Guides by discipline, Research Tips on locating materials, and Workshops to assist students, including Endnote, Microsoft Excel, database searching and more.
- Google Scholar Profiles is a way to showcase your academic publications. If your profile is public, you will appear here when people search for your name.
- Research Gate is a free platform that connects science and research communities. Connect with experts in your field.
- Research Rabbit is an innovative citation-based literature mapping tool available online.
- Connected Papers is a tool to help researchers and applied scientists find and explore papers relevant to their field of work in a visual way.
The graduate brief.
Every Wednesday during the semester, the Graduate School emails the "Graduate Brief" to all graduate and professional students, which is a weekly selection of news and happenings within the Graduate School and its partnering offices. If you would like to be added to the mailing list, please contact [email protected] .
All you need to know about citations
How to cite a PhD thesis in MLA
To cite a PhD thesis in a reference entry in MLA style 9th edition include the following elements:
- Author(s) name: Give the last name and name as presented in the source (e. g. Watson, John). For two authors, reverse only the first name, followed by ‘and’ and the second name in normal order (e. g. Watson, John, and John Watson). For three or more authors, list the first name followed by et al. (e. g. Watson, John, et al.)
- Thesis title: Titles are italicized when independent. If part of a larger source add quotation marks and do not italize.
- Year of publication: Give the year of publication as presented in the source.
- University: Give the name of the institution.
- Degree: Type of degree.
Here is the basic format for a reference list entry of a PhD thesis in MLA style 9th edition:
Author(s) name . Thesis title . Year of publication . University , Degree .
Take a look at our works cited examples that demonstrate the MLA style guidelines in action:
A PhD thesis with one author
Confait, Marina Fatima . Maximising the contributions of PHD graduates to national development: the case of the Seychelles . 2018 . Edith Cowan U , PhD thesis .
Bowkett, David . Investigating the ligandability of plant homeodomains . 2015 . Oxford U , PhD thesis .
This citation style guide is based on the MLA Handbook (9 th edition).
More useful guides
- MLA 8th ed. Style Guide: Dissertations, Theses
- MLA, 8th Edition: Master's Thesis or Project
- How do I cite a dissertation in MLA style?
More great BibGuru guides
- MLA: how to cite a video game
- Chicago: how to cite a 10-k report
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English PhD Candidate Thakshala Tissera Named Finalist for Three Minute Thesis Competition
Thakshala Tissera , PhD candidate specializing in the Environmental Humanities and Human-Animal Studies, has been selected as a finalist in the Graduate School’s Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, slated to take place on Friday, March 1, from 2-3:30 p.m. in the Old Chapel.
Tissera's doctoral research on narratives of Asian elephants examines the participation of non-human animals in political and economic networks that merge the ecological and the social in the construction of colonial modernity and complicates the positionality of this species of charismatic megafauna in the backdrop of the Sixth Extinction.
The event will feature engaging three-minute presentations from UMass Amherst graduate students who advanced from the preliminary rounds. Guests can cast their votes for their favorite speaker. The winners will be announced live during a reception following the competition.
Of the 25 preliminary round participants, just 10 were selected as finalists. These finalists will compete for a $1,000 first place prize, with the runner up receiving $500. Additionally, a People’s Choice award ($500) will be selected by audience vote at the final.
In addition to Tissera, this year’s competitors are: Prerana Balasubramanian, food science; Jayashree Bhagabati, chemistry; Seanne Clemente, organismic and evolutionary biology; Maharshi Debnath, chemical engineering; Melissa Isidora Fernandes, food science; Rehab Heikal, chemistry; Jithu Krishna, chemistry; Kay Mattena, anthropology; Nidhi Thaker, molecular and cellular biology. UMass Amherst is part of a growing global network of institutions sponsoring 3MT competitions. These popular events challenge graduate students to communicate the significance of their research to a general audience, all in three minutes or less.
The event will also showcase finalists from the Images of Research competition. More information is available on the Graduate School Office of Professional Development website .
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2023-24 Three Minute Thesis winners announced
Congratulations to the winners of the UW-Madison 2023-24 Three Minute Thesis competition!
First Place and People’s Choice Award: Rudy Dieudonne
PhD student in Design Studies
Talk title: “Lighting, Noise & Behaviors”
Second Place: Katie Ryan
PhD student in Cellular and Molecular Pathology
Talk title: “Microbes vs Worms: Searching Nature for New Antiparasitic Compounds”
Third Place: Kristen Kehl-Floberg
PhD student in the School of Medicine and Public Health and the Institute for Clinical and Translational Research
Talk title: “Getting the Signal: Brain fog and disability in Long COVID”
Read more about Three Minute Thesis at UW–Madison.
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