Submitting Your Thesis or Dissertation Electronically

The University of Kansas requires that all students whose degree programs require defense of a thesis or dissertation must publish their research in order to fulfill degree requirements. The publication requirement is satisfied by submitting the Electronic Thesis or Dissertation (ETD) to UMI/ProQuest. You may review the policies governing master's theses and doctoral dissertations for more information.

Your thesis or dissertation should meet all of the formatting requirements laid out in KU's ETD Formatting Guidelines. Please note:The final document you submit electronically must contain only your thesis or dissertation and the scholarly apparatus as described in these formatting guidelines. It must not include any prior publications or other scholarly or creative works.

Before you submit your thesis or dissertation, make sure you have gathered the following:
The following materials may also be helpful as you prepare your final submission:

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...but please also continue reading!

Embargoing Your Electronic Thesis or Dissertation

Embargo is the term used to describe a delayed release or delayed availability of scholarly work. Under certain circumstances, scholars may need to embargo their work. The Embargo Policy allows for embargoes of 6 months, 1 year, or 2 years, with the approval of a faculty member in the student's department. These embargoes are renewable, when necessary, in increments of 6 months, 1 year, or 2 years. However, please note that embargo renewals must be submitted at least one month before an existing embargo expires. Embargoed materials are automatically released for discovery by search engines upon expiration of an embargo, after which time the research will remain permanently accessible online.

Considerations that may warrant an embargo include:
  • Patentable rights in the work or other issues in which disclosure may be detrimental to the rights or interests of the author
  • The need to prevent disclosure of government information about persons, institutions, technologies, etc.
  • The interest of an academic or commercial press in acquiring the rights to publish your dissertation or thesis as a book
  • Content that is likely to be or has already been submitted to a peer-reviewed journal
  • Approval for delay granted by Restricted Research Committee (see Restricted Research for more information)
Steps for Acquiring Approval to Embargo a Thesis or Dissertation:
  1. Discuss the need for an embargo with your advisor or dissertation committee chair
  2. Complete the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Release Form -- sign it and select the length of the embargo
  3. Get an approval signature from the Director of Graduate Studies in your department on the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Release Form
  4. Submit the Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Release Form to the graduate support staff in your school or College
Embargoing at KU requires 2 steps:

Once your embargo has been approved, you must take both of the following steps to ensure effective implementation of your embargo. You must ensure that you select the same embargo duration in each step (i.e., for each repository). If either of these steps is not taken or if your embargo durations do not match, your scholarly work will be made publicly available and may be searchable though internet sites such as Google.

  • KU ScholarWorks (a public KU database)
    • Sign the paper Electronic Thesis and Dissertation (ETD) Release Form and select the length of your embargo (if applicable).
    • Get the Director of Graduate Studies for your department to approve the embargo and sign the form.
  • ProQuest/UMI (a national database)
    • During the electronic submission process you will complete a section concerning Publishing Restrictions. Select "delayed release" and the appropriate length of time for your embargo.
Renewing your Embargo

Thesis and dissertation embargoes are renewable. To renew the embargo on your work, you must take two steps, like you did to establish the initial embargo. If you neglect one of these steps, your work will be made publicly available and may be searchable through internet sites such as Google.

  • KU ScholarWorks (a public KU database)
    • Complete the Embargo Renewal form on the KU Graduate Studies website.
    • Ensure that you select the time frame for which you want to extend your embargo (6 months, 1 year, or 2 years) and that you provide the title of your thesis or dissertation so we may find it in the system.
  • ProQuest/UMI (a national database)
    • Contact ProQuest/UMI directly to complete their embargo renewal process.
    • Ensure that you request the same length of an embargo renewal that you did for KU ScholarWorks.

Download the printable PDF diagram of Embargoing.

Thesis and Dissertation Binding Instructions

Personal and Departmental Copies

Departments or advisors may require submission of a printed copy of every thesis and dissertation. Often, students also desire printed copies to keep or share with loved ones. You can order bound copies of your work through UMI as part of the electronic submission process, but you do not have to order through UMI and use their binding service. Additional printing and/or binding services are offered by the firms listed below.

How It Works

Directly submit your PDF or a paper copy of your thesis or dissertation to a binding service. Be sure to read their instructions and submit information as requested. If you submit an electronic thesis or dissertation, the binder will print it on acid free paper and bind and stamp it to your specifications. Finished, bound volumes will be mailed directly to you. You may pay by credit card or arrange in advance to pay by check or money order.

Commercial Binders Offering Thesis and Dissertation Services

The KU Libraries recommend the following binders that can bind hard-cover or soft-cover copies of your thesis or dissertation and additionally offer print-from-electronic file services. These binders follow the ANSI/NISO Library Binding standard, ensuring volumes that are sturdy, durable and flexible. You can find more information about the Library Binding Standard and a list of compliant companies that may suit your bookbinding needs at the Library Binding Institute.

In addition to these binders, KU's own Jayhawk Ink can bind a soft-cover copy of your thesis or dissertation.

Note: KUMC Library binding information can be found on their website here:

There comes a time in every person’s doctoral journey when they must focus on the dissertation and get it done

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