eTheses at Lancaster: a guide to submitting an electronic thesis

Many thanks to Louise Tripp and Annette Lawrence from the Library for delivering the useful session on eThesis submission recently.

Panopto_Logo  In case you missed it, you can now view the recording.

The Library website also provides guidance:


Are outputs uploaded to Pure searchable from outside the institutional repository? Yes, Google indexes the contents of Pure/ePrints.

During the session, Louise referred to HEFCE’s future requirements for making research open access so that it would count towards the post-2014 REF. Is it necessary to upload research conducted in previous employment at other institutions?  The policy will apply from 1 April 2016 to accepted journal articles/conference proceedings with ISSN so Lancaster researchers would have to deposit and make it Open Access from that point to count towards the post-2014 REF. They wouldn’t have to make research open access retrospectively.


February’s Research Bites programme is all about Open Access


The theme in January is Open Access.

We’re bringing together presenters from the Library, Research & Contracts Support Office and IEEE, to help you to develop your understanding of topics relating to parts of Domain D of the Researcher Development Framework: Engagement, influence and impact.

Join us for an informal 20 minute session. Just turn up, no need to book.

What you need to know about Open Access
Thursday 5th February, 12.00. Bowland North SR 4
Learn why Open Access is important and how the Library can support you through it.
Louise Tripp, Subject Librarian, Library.

Tools for sharing open research materials: Figshare and Zenodo
Friday 6th February, 12.00. Bowland North SR 4
This session looks at two Open Repositories (ORs) that promise easy sharing of research outputs:
Zenodo and Figshare.
Hardy Schwamm, Research data & Repository Manager, Library

Submitting an eThesis
Tuesday 10th February, 12.00. Bowland North SR 14
Find out why you need to submit your thesis online, learn how to do it, and address your worries about plagiarism and publication.
Louise Tripp, Subject Librarian, Library.

Adding Publications and Activities to Pure
Friday 13th February, 12.00. Bowland North SR 5
Improve access to your research by learning how to add your research outputs to Pure, the University’s research information system.
Sarah Brown, Research Support Officer, Research & Contracts Support Office

Intellectual Property issues in Open Access
Thursday 19th February, 12.00. Bowland North SR 4
An overview of the Intellectual Property issues you need to consider when publishing an Open Access research output.
Lorna Pimperton, Subject Librarian and Copyright Officer, Library

Research Bites Extra: Publishing with the IEEE
Friday 27th February, 12.00-1.00pm *60 minute session*, Bowland North SR 23
An overview of publishing with the IEEE for new and early career researchers in engineering, computing, medical and technology related areas.
Julia Stockdale, Sales Agent IEEE, Content Online Ltd.

Adding publications and activities to Pure

The last Research Bites session in November was ‘Adding publications and activities to Pure’, the last in a trio of informative demonstrations of the University’s research information system, by Sarah Brown.


Q: If I add conference papers and abstracts, will these be validated by the Library? Yes, the Library will expand on the entry in any way they can, with metadata and DOIs when validating the entry.

Q: Does the validation process include checking for typing errors and formatting the text of the entry? Yes, the validation process includes checking spelling and formatting text.

‘Do you need to submit an electronic thesis?’ recording now available

Thank you to Louise Tripp for delivering the session on eTheses at Lancaster earlier in July. If you missed it, you can now view a recording of the session.

You may wish to look back at earlier posts to see answers to some of the questions raised during the session.

PDF features

A series of questions arose during the ‘Do you need to submit an electronic thesis?’ session earlier this week about the features of the PDF version of your electronic thesis, or indeed any other PDF document uploaded to PURE (Lancaster University’s Research Information System).

Does my PDF need to be machine readable? Yes! If you are creating your PDF from a word processor like Microsoft Word then it will be machine readable. This will be more useful to readers as they can search within the text of the thesis. The exception would be for older documents where the digital version is no longer available, so the PDF is generated from a print copy (i.e. is a scanned image).

Should I apply security features in my PDF? No. There are features in Adobe Acrobat to apply security or Digital Rights Management features to your PDF document. When submitting the PDF version of your thesis please don’t apply these features as it would cause problems for future readers of your work. You can trust us to apply any agreed embargo or restriction on your behalf.

Will Google index my electronic thesis? Yes. Once your electronic thesis is uploaded, Google and other search engines can index the information about your thesis (metadata) through Pure portal and ePrints (Lancaster University’s Respository). If your thesis is restricted or embargoed only the metadata will show. That way readers still know that your research exists.

Voluntary submission of your eThesis

During the ‘Do you need to submit an electronic thesis?’ session there were some questions about voluntary submission, and which part of the procedure apply. If you started your research degree after October 2011 you are required to submit an electronic copy of your thesis. The Electronic thesis guide gives you comprehensive instructions and information about the process.

If you wish to deposit your thesis voluntarily you will need to:

  • Ensure that you have made best efforts to seek permission to include any third party copyright material in the electronic version of your thesis. If you have been unable to gain all necessary permissions, decide if you want to make an edited version publicly available.
  • Complete the Thesis Deposit form (Other Users) which is available on the Deposit page of the guide, and send it to Annette Lawrence, Thesis Office, The Library, Lancaster Unversity, Bailrigg, Lancaster, LA1 4YH
  • Convert the final version of your thesis to a single PDF file
  • Ensure that your file is named according to the format yearnamedegree.pdf (e.g. 2007smithphd.pdf)
  • Contact us at for details and guidance on sending the electronic version of your thesis for upload.

First series of Research Bites have started

The first six sessions in the Research Bites programme are now being delivered throughout July.

We’ve already delivered ‘Do you need to submit an electronic thesis?’ and ‘Impact factors and all that’ and will be using this blog to provide answers to questions raised during the sessions.

These sessions are all bring held in Bowland North SR 25 at 12pm.

Coming up next:

What about Patents? Thursday 17th July 2014
Learn about the unique nature of patents and how to find them.

What you need to know about Open Access Thursday 24th July 2014
Learn why Open Access is important and how the Library can support you through it.

Social media – tools and tips for researchers Friday 25th July 2014
Get an introduction to how social media can work for you as a researcher.

Open session Q&A Thursday 31st July 2014
We’ll aim to help you get past your research barriers and answer any Library-related questions you have.