Submitting Honors Theses to the Library


Are you a senior preparing an honors thesis?  Mount Holyoke College Faculty Legislation dictates that a copy of the final version of your thesis must be submitted to Library, Information, and Technology Services (LITS) Student Theses Collection no later than July 1st of your graduating year. LITS no longer requires a paper copy of the thesis.  Bound copies of previously submitted theses are located in Archives and Special Collections, and you can search for all theses through the Library and Five College Catalog

For any questions about the LITS thesis submission process, contact Digital Assets & Preservation Services (DAPS) and we’d be happy to help you!

Ready to submit your thesis?

Remember, you must submit the FINAL version of your thesis: no changes are permitted once you have uploaded your work to the system. Please read through these helpful steps before you start! A link to start the submission is located just below.

  1. Decide which access category (Public or Restricted) you want to submit your thesis to. You must discuss this with your thesis advisor prior to submission to LITS, since they will be able to help you determine which category is best based on the content of your work.  DAPS is always happy to help with any access and permissions questions you may have, so contact us if needed!
  2. Need help with formatting your thesis text? The formatting guidelines from Faculty Legislation can be found here. Need help with MS Word, printing, or other document formatting problems? Contact the IC Helpdesk staff.
  3. Save a copy of your thesis, and any accompanying/supporting materials, (such as images, videos, etc.) to a secondary storage device such as an external hard drive, or to your Google Drive account.
  4. Save a copy of your thesis, and any accompanying materials, to your desktop and upload them from there. Don’t try to upload your thesis or other files from an attached storage device.
  5. Prepare your thesis and any accompanying materials to fit the accepted file formats and recommended file sizes. For further help, contact DAPS, or email or call the Helpdesk at extension 2600.
  • The thesis text must be submitted as a PDF.
  • For images: keep each image to about 2MB or around 2000 pixels on the longest side.
  • For video: save a copy of your video that is between 50-60MB. If you need to, you can break your video into sections for submission.

Remember: at any time during the submission process, you can stop, save, and exit, and return to it later. You can also delete your submission and start over if you need to.

To Submit Your Thesis

Go to the Institutional Archive main page.

At the upper right corner is a "Login" link. Click the link and then click on the MHC logo on the next page.

Enter your MHC username and password.

You will go back to the main Institutional Archive page. Scroll down to the "My Account" box and click “Submissions,” and then click “Start a New Submission.”  Then choose "Student Theses Collection."

Please quit your web browser after completing your submission to fully logout of the Institutional Archive.

You must submit the final version of your thesis: no changes or edits are permitted once it has been submitted.

1. Follow the instructions and describe your work.  You can copy and paste in your abstract from a Word doc or a PDF.  Remember to add subject terms.

2. Next, you will select a thesis access category: Public or Restricted:

Public: your thesis will be available online to anyone

Restricted: your thesis will only be available to the MHC community. Only accessible to current MHC faculty, students, staff, and alumnae. Theses in this category require a valid MHC login in order to read or download. It is not dependent on IP range or even through VPN access; a login is required.

If you or your thesis advisor have any questions about permissions and access, please contact DAPS. A full description of e-thesis permission and access options can be found here.

3. Upload: Next, upload your thesis text, which must be saved as a PDF file. If you have any accompanying thesis materials, such as video or images, you can submit them along with your thesis. Please consult this page for accepted file formats and recommended file sizes.

  • Do not embed media files in the thesis PDF.
  • Add a brief description of each file during the uploading process.
  • Do not compress or group accompanying files into folders or zip them; upload each file individually.
  • For images (jpeg and tiff) we recommend each image should be no more than about 2000 pixels on the long side, or no more than 2MB in size. 
  • For video files, we recommend they be no more than about 60MB. This allows for easier and faster playback. Longer videos can be broken into sections if needed.

4. Embargo: this is an OPTIONAL step. If you do not want to apply an embargo just click “Next.” An embargo is a way to delay access to your thesis, and any supporting materials, for up to seven years. Please discuss this option with your thesis advisor before submission. If your thesis contains sensitive data or other content, this option may be useful in order to totally restrict access to it temporarily.  You can set the embargo for up to seven years from the time of submission.

Under an embargo, your thesis will continue to be searchable and findable within the Institutional Archive and the Library catalog until the embargo period passes: only the thesis file itself is inaccessible.

To set an embargo, click into the date box to open up the calendar. It will let you arrow back and forth through the set time periods. 

If you don't need to set an embargo, just click "Next."

5. Review:  Take a moment to review your submission: from here you can correct any mistakes, delete and re-upload different files, etc.

6. Creative Commons (CC) License--this is an OPTIONAL STEP: if you do not want to apply a Creative Commons License just click “Next.”

A Creative Commons License allows you to communicate to users the ways in which you want your thesis shared and your work cited.  It is a simple, standardized way to grant copyright permissions to your creative or scholarly work. More information about Creative Commons licenses can be found here and here. Please also see Understanding Permissions for Electronic Honors Theses.

Setting a CC License consists of answering two basic questions:

  • Will you allow commercial use of your work?
  • Will you allow modifications of your work?

Your answers will determine which license will be applied and archived along with your thesis.

If you want your thesis to be “All Rights Reserved,” do NOT apply a CC License.  Please make sure you understand the Creative Commons Licenses before adding one to your thesis. If you have any questions, please contact DAPS.

7. MHC License Agreement:

This is the MHC License Agreement. It covers three basic things:

  • That MHC will store, preserve, and make accessible your thesis, and any accompanying material, and, 
  • that you, the creator, acknowledge that the thesis and any accompanying material is your original work and that you have taken the necessary steps to acknowledge and identify any portion of the work that is the intellectual property of others (this is also referred to as “third party content.”) 
  • That you have discussed access restrictions with your thesis advisor and have applied the correct permissions during the submission process.

For more information about this agreement, see the Thesis Policy page.  If you are still unsure about the license agreement or need more help, contact your thesis advisor or DAPS

When you are ready, click on “I grant and certify the above.”

Submission Complete! Quit your web browser to completely logout of the Institutional Archive.

Once you have finished the submission, DAPS staff will review everything and approve the submission. You will receive an email once your thesis has been archived.  DAPS staff always review submissions as soon as possible, but on weekends and evenings it may take a bit longer. Please be assured we'll get back to you right away!