- Retrieve and fill out all the forms necessary from the Grad Office.
- Make sure you have taken care of all copyright considerations related to your thesis.
- Publishers' policies vary on how they handle thesis copyright issues.
- Call or email the library if you need help with this.
- Give yourself more time if you are defending within 6 weeks of graduation.
- 1-2 days ahead is normal.
- You must fill out the UMI form whether or not you want to file for copyright and/or have bound copies printed by them.You may attach only the cover page if your thesis is to be restricted to campus or embargoed in any way. The library will upload the file with the full thesis once clearance has been received to send it to UMI.
- PLEASE NOTE: no payment is required to submit this form. Charges are only incurred if you decide to pay for copyright and/or purchase hard copies of your thesis through Proquest/UMI. Your credit card will be charged at the time you submit your UMI form for any payments to which you've agreed.
- More information is available under the UMI Form & Fees tab.
Important Links for the Submission Process
Naming your thesis files
- Your thesis file names should include your own name as well as your graduation date. Please do not use "thesis.pdf" as the file name for your uploaded thesis.
- smith_jane_2012_thesis.pdf ; SmithJane2012thesis.pdf ;
- smith_jane_2012_thesis_ch1.pdf ; SmithJane2012ThesisCh1.pdf ;
- smith_jane_thesis_bibliography.pdf ; SmithJaneThesisBibliography.pdf
Format and Presentation Guidelines
File format and presentation
- The final text of the deposited thesis must be in PDF format.
- Please use the Grad Office Ph.D. thesis regulations for format and presentation as your primary guideline in formatting your thesis.
- You may also consult UMI's guidelines in formatting and preparing your thesis documents and files. These also include information on handling supplemental material and acceptable file types.
- If one of your files requires specific software to run it that is not regularly or easily obtainable, consider uploading a copy of that software as a zipped file. Ther same applies to programs you may have written for material in your thesis.
- Data sets can be loaded as supplementary material. Add them as zipped files if they are extremely large (>100 Mb - use your judgement).
- Embedded fonts, which should be either TrueType or Type 1, are required for the PDF.
Original source files
- We highly encourage you to upload your original source files (i.e, your thesis in its pre-PDF format), and store them as archival sources in the Withheld section of your CaltechTHESIS record. This well help us as we deal with format migration and obsolesence in the future, and also preserve a copy for you should you ever need one.
Abstract presentation in CaltechTHESIS
- If your abstract has mutiple paragraphs, include HTML paragraph coding in your abstract to ensure your paragraphs display properly.
- If your abstract contains the mathematical symbols "<" or ">" AND you are using any kind of HTML coding as well, you will need to replace the ">" with ">", and the "<" with "<" to prevent display errors in the text block of the abstract.
Abstract presentation in UMI
- UMI has stricter rules for accepted text-formatting codes. Please read their Formatting Abstracts for Print help page for further details
- At this time, although they no longer have word limits for the Abstracts, UMI cannot not display Abstract paragraphs separately in their database. If this is a problem for you, you may want to consider preparing a shorter one-paragraph version for use in your UMI form.
File size restrictions
- We set no limit to the size of any of the files you submit for your thesis. However, do consider splitting large files into smaller pieces to make it easier for readers to download. NOTE: If your submission is very large (i.e., >100 megabytes), please send a message to thesis AT library.caltech.edu so that we may expect it.
Common Mistakes Made During Submission
We will return the submitted thesis to you for corrections if the following common mistakes have been made:
- You did not add a non-Caltech email address in the Author's field in the Description tab.
- The Advisor/Committee sections are incomplete.
- If the advisor is also on the committee, his/her name must appear appear in both areas.
- Individuals' roles must be designated. Use the pull-down menu options.
- Email addresses must be included.
- The Degree Date in the Thesis Details section of the Description tab should also be your graduation year. This could be a different calendar year from the current one, depending on when your thesis defense submission dates occur in relation to upcoming commencement cerremonies.
- The thesis availability in the Description tab and the file access statuses under "Upload Open" or "Upload Withheld" Files don't coordinate.
- This can be confusing. Please read the instructions carefully, or call us directly for further clarification.
- You did not upload a file including the complete thesis, although all the chapters have been uploaded as separate files.
- We need a single file with the complete thesis. If you are withholding specific chapters for patenting or publication reasons, you may also withhold this file for the same length of time.
Other types of mistakes that could affect completion and/or graduation:
- Not resubmitting the thesis after corrections have been made.
- If you don't resubmit it, the thesis will sit in your buffer, where our reviewers can't see it. We will not be able to review it and send it on to Grad Office for final approval.
- Not turning in all your paperwork to the Grad Office.
- Even if your thesis has been satisfactorily submitted and we have forwarded it to the Grad office for final approval, they will most likely withhold approval if all your forms have not been handed in to them.
- Check the list carefully, and have someone in the Grad Office double-check the paperwork you hand in to make sure nothing is missing.
- The Survey of Earned Doctorates is the form missed most often. You can fill it outl electronically, and email a copy of the certificate of completion directly to the Grad Office
Access and Restriction Options
Thesis Availability Options
Important Notes - please read these carefully:
- You should consider these options carefully. Feel free to ask Caltech Intellectual Property Office or legal counsel for advice, and to discuss this with your advisor.
- If you have any patent information included in your thesis, you may weant to consider embargoing at least portions of your thesis.
- If you intend to work with a publisher regarding journal or book publications, be sure you understand their policies and any agreements you would sign.
- The library will NOT submit a copy of your thesis to UMI as long as it is embargoed or restricted to campus, even in part.
- Restricted thesis files are automatically released when the expiry date is reached. If you wish to extend the restriction, you must contact the library.
- Withheld thesis files are NOT automatically released when the expiry date is reached. You can either contact the library to have them released early, or the library will contact you after the expiry date is reached.
- CaltechTHESIS gives you four options for affording electronic access to your thesis. The online submission form in CaltechTHESIS, allow you to indicates your choice byf file and by record. The choice made at the record level must reflect the choices made at the individual file level:
- Public: Recommended. Thesis will be freely available worldwide.
- Restricted to Caltech community only: Thesis will be freely available to the Caltech community only, but unavailabe to others. This restriction on access is only for a period of one year. To protect you, the Institute will allow the period to be extended, a year at a time, as long as necessary, and will not release your work until you and your advisor provide written authorization.
- CaltechTHESIS automatically releases restricted thesis files when the expiry date is reached.
- If you wish to extend the restriction, you must contact the library.
- The average embargo period is 1 or 2 years.
- Withheld files are NOT automatically released.
- You can either contact the library to have them released early, or the library will contact you after the expiry date is reached.
- Make sure you have turned in ALL your forms, including the now-electronic UMI one, available through the Grad Office. Delay in turning in all your forms could affect your ability to graduate on time.
- Once your thesis submission to CaltechTHESIS has been approved by the Grad Office, you will receive an automated email from CaltechTHESIS indicating your thesis has been approved.
- If you have indicated that your thesis can be released publicly or restricted to campus in any way, your thesis will then be released to the general CaltechTHESIS database.
- If you have indicated that your thesis should be completely withheld (embargoed), it will not be released until approval to do so has been received.
- You will also receive an automated email from UMI indicating that your thesis has been acccepted.
- If you have indicated that your thesis can be released publicly, your thesis will then be sent to UMI by the library.
- If you have indicated that your thesis should be restricted or withheld in any way, it will not be sent to UMI until after it has been released to public view in CaltechTHESIS.