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Open Access Theses

Total downloads for all WIRE Theses

At the University of Wolverhampton theses for research degrees are deposited in WIRE on an open access basis. By releasing theses on this basis there are various benefits for the author, but also for the research community: 

  1. Evidence of your achievement. Some employers and funders ask for evidence of the award of a degree, and a record in WIRE can provide that information, as well as allowing employers and funders to see the quality of your research. 
  2. A wider audience for your thesis. Monthly thesis downloads from WIRE are often between 6,000 and 8,000 per month (see graph below), with an average 13 downloads per thesis. The most popular theses are downloaded around 250 times a month. 
  3. Potential for citations. Though theses are generally less likely to be cited than officially published research like journal articles, Google Scholar shows that a 2007 thesis in WIRE have been cited 198 times. Other theses have been cited around 20 times. 
  4. Teaching aid. Having access to theses can help researchers understand how to structure their own thesis. 
  5. Reduces duplication. If a researcher can see that research has already taken place, they are less likely to reproduce the same research, and can build on the research base that is already there. 


Theses are released under a CC BY-NC-ND licence by default, which means that other people cannot make money from your thesis, and no derivatives can be made from your thesis without your express permission. However, if you would like your thesis to be shared under a more permissive licence, the Scholarly Communications Team will be happy to explore your options. 

Restricting access to a thesis 

While it is rare that a thesis in WIRE is restricted from access by the public, short term embargoes can be requested. A relevant example may be if an author is looking to publish their thesis, and their chosen publisher requires that the thesis is not available to the public at the point of publication. Please note though that recent research shows that most publishers do not have this requirement or are willing to waive the requirement, as a thesis will usually be rewritten to better fit a broader audience. 

To request a restriction, you must submit the relevant form as soon as possible via the STaR Office, and preferably no later than the NOMEX stage of your thesis. All requests are considered by the Dean of Research. 

Preparing your thesis for deposit 

Because University of Wolverhampton theses are open access, it is important that the information they contain is legally available to share. If your thesis contains sensitive information, once it has been examined that information will need to be redacted when depositing the thesis in WIRE. More details on this is available on our webpages. In the interests of preservation, the full thesis will also be kept in WIRE, but will not be available open access. 


Stuart Bentley 

Scholarly Communications Librarian 

For more information please contact the Corporate Communications Team.

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