Supplemental Files in Electronic Theses and Dissertations: Implications for Policy and Practice [Poster Abstract]

Sarah Shreeves

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review


With electronic deposit of theses and dissertations standard practice, the inclusion of
supplemental files with these documents has also become more common.
Supplemental files might include research protocols, data sets, software, primary
sources, and other supporting material. But how well are these files documented
and described either within the thesis or dissertation or within the supplemental
file itself? What ramifications does acceptance of supplemental files have both on
institutional policy (what is accepted as a supplemental file? What is required
alongside the file?) and library curation practices (are the files documented well
enough for use and preservation?). The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
(UIUC) has required electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs)
deposit since 2010, and has seen deposit of over 3700 ETDs into IDEALS. These
are made openly available (with an option for a limited embargo). Approximately
100 of these include some form of supplemental file. Since the inception of the
ETD program, the Library has been tracking what these supplemental files are
and how well they are documented. This poster will present an overview of our
findings, both in terms of the types of files included, what disciplinary areas these
are from, and how well documented these supplemental files are. The poster will
cover some of the policy and practice issues that we see arising from this analysis.
Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Jan 2013
Externally publishedYes
EventInternational Digital Curation Conference - Amsterdam, Netherlands
Duration: Jan 14 2013Jan 17 2013
Conference number: 8th


ConferenceInternational Digital Curation Conference
Internet address


  • Research data management
  • Electronic theses and dissertations

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Library and Information Sciences


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