Electronic theses and dissertations (ETDs) are digital representations of the traditional work by a graduate student in fulfillment of requirements for a graduate degree. An ETD can be a simple textual document converted to a standard electronic format, such as Adobe Portable Document Format (PDF), or a complex combination of images and formats. VCU has been accepting ETD's on a pilot and voluntary basis since 2002. As of fall 2009, students are required to submit their theses or dissertations electronically to the Graduate School.
VCU's theses and dissertations are records of permanent, enduring value and will remain available indefinitely. The ETDs are stored on a secure server, with digital copies kept in a second location. For dissertations and theses submitted to UMI/ProQuest*, digital copies are maintained there as well. The VCU Libraries will periodically migrate all ETDs as the hardware and software environment evolves. The most reliable means to ensure that your work will be able to be used in the future is to use the recommended formats.
* Submission to UMI/ProQuest is required for VCU doctoral dissertations. Please note that submitting to ProQuest does not satisfy the University's requirement of submission. You must submit to the VCU Graduate School separately in order to fulfill this requirement for graduation.