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Publishing Your Dissertation

Updated: May 13th, 2011

Your doctoral dissertation is a published work that announces the results of your research. The University of California holds to the tradition that you have an obligation to make your research available to other scholars. This obligation is met when the Graduate Division submits your dissertation to the University Library to be bound and shelved for public use.

ProQuest Dissertation Publishing Agreement Form and Copyright Information

We will also submit your dissertation to ProQuest Dissertations Publishing so that is available to interested persons. The University pays the charge for this service. ProQuest keeps a master microfilm of your dissertation, includes your dissertation in its Web-based digital library, and produces copies upon request. You must complete and sign the agreement form with ProQuest. Instructions on how to access the ProQuest forms and information online are given below.

On the agreement form specify the title and subject category of your dissertation. These subjects are used to categorize your abstract in Dissertation Abstracts International and to index and retrieve the bibliographic reference to your dissertation in ProQuest’s database.

Withholding Your Dissertation

Occasionally, there are unusual circumstances under which you may want to withhold your dissertation from publication. Such circumstances include:

  • the disclosure of patentable rights in the work before a patent can be granted
  • similar disclosures detrimental to the rights of the author
  • disclosures of facts about persons or institutions before professional ethics would permit such disclosures

To request that your dissertation be withheld for substantiated circumstances of the kind listed above, write a letter to the Dean of the Graduate Division stating the circumstances and the time frame, requesting that the dissertation be withheld from publication. Obtain a written endorsement of your request from the chair of your dissertation committee. Submit the request and endorsement to Graduate Degrees, 302 Sproul Hall, 2-3 weeks prior to the time you plan on filing your dissertation. You must have received a decision on your request prior to filing your dissertation.

Access the ProQuest Forms on the Web

Please read the note below on the fee increase before proceding. To access the ProQuest forms and information, enter the following information after accessing the ProQuest website:

Username: dissertations
Password: publish

This will take you to the forms and ProQuest information booklet and forms for you to print.

Copyright Registration

ProQuest will also apply for registration of a claim of U.S. copyright on your behalf if you want it to. If you choose this service, you must bring a certified check or money order to pay for this service. Make sure that the certified check or money order does not have an expiration date. ProQuest cannot process the check until they have your dissertation in hand. We send the dissertations to ProQuest only after the Academic Senate has made the final vote on the degree lists each year. This occurs in early September for spring degrees and March for fall degrees. Follow the directions in the ProQuest booklet for the payee and the amount.

Note: There has been an increase in copyright filing fees charged by the U.S. Library of Congress Copyright Office. The 50% increase goes into effect on July 1, 2006, and consequently, ProQuest will increase the price of their copyright registration service. Their service includes the fee paid to the U.S. Copyright Office, plus their costs for administering the process. The new charge is $65.00 to have UMI handle copyright registration, ensuring a quick turn-around and an intermediary in case of missing documents, errors, and lost applications.

Please access the ProQuest forms and information at the ProQuest website.

Relevant Policies

For more information, see applicable policies in the Guide to Graduate Policy:

See All Topics in the Category: Finishing up