Student and Advisor FAQ's

FAQ for Advisors and Students

  • How Should a Student Submit Their Thesis?

    Students should self-submit a copy of the thesis to the College’s Institutional Repository, Union | Digital Works. A thesis should be submitted after giving the permission form to the department administrative assistant to forward to the library. Full submission procedures are explained on the library’s website and on the online repository.

  • When Should a Student Submit Their Thesis?

    Students should submit the thesis as soon as its final form has been approved. Please check with your department as to the appropriate date.

  • What Formats Are Acceptable for the Library Copy?

    The format for the library copy of a thesis is an electronic copy in PDF. Full specifications for the electronic copy are explained on the library’s website (under Thesis Information).

  • What If the Format of a Thesis is not in an “Accepted” Electronic Form?

    Thesis work done in formats not on the library’s “accepted” list should be discussed with library staff in advance. See “EXCEPTION TO THE ELECTRONIC SUBMISSION REQUIREMENT” given on the library’s website (under Thesis Information).

  • Who Needs to Sign the Permission Form and Where Do I Get One?

    The thesis student and one advisor must sign the permission form. This form is available on the library’s website (under Thesis Information). Beginning in 2020-2021, you can submit this form via our online system. Be sure to let your advisor know you will be submitting the form in this manner.

  • What If a Student Has More Than One Thesis Advisor?

    Only one advisor needs to sign the permission form. It is up to you and your co-advisor to determine who will review the permission form with your student. However, both advisors’ names should appear at the top of the permission form.

  • How Does the Student Decide Which Internet Access Option is Best?

    Guidance on this is available (under Thesis Information).

  • Which Option is Most Commonly Applicable?

    For theses without co-authors and/or patentable, imminently publishable, or third party material, “Open Access” is the most common access option.

  • What If the Thesis Has Co-Authors?

    The student should coordinate submission of the permission form with any co-authors. If the student wishes to release the thesis for access online, permission from the other authors must be obtained and attached to the permission form. If the student has not obtained this permission, advise the student to restrict access or “Opt Out”.

  • What is Third Party Copyrighted Material?

    Third part copyrighted material includes images not created by the student and/or the reproduction of substantial portions of other works that are not in the public domain. Use of such material in a thesis is usually acceptable under federal Fair Use guidelines, but posting of this material on an Internet site normally cannot be allowed unless permission for redistribution of the copyrighted material has been obtained from the owner(s) of the copyright.

  • What If a Student’s Thesis Contains Third Party Copyrighted Material?

    If your student has obtained written permission for release/republication from the owner(s) of the copyright, copies should be attached to the permission form. If written permission for such release has not been obtained, advise your student to “Opt Out” of Internet access. If this is your student’s sole reason for opting out, and the student would otherwise have chosen to release the thesis to the Union College community, the student should check the box under OPT OUT: IMPORTANT NOTE.

  • What If the Advisor’s Own Work is Represented in the Thesis?

    If your own work is represented in the thesis and you do not want it posted at this time, advise your student to “Opt Out” of Internet access.

  • What If the Advisor Believes Patentable or Imminently Publishable Material is Included in the Thesis?

    If you believe patentable or imminently publishable material is included in the thesis and that it is not in the student’s best interest to have it posted on the Institutional Repository at this time, advise your student to select “Embargo Hold.”

  • What If a Student and an Advisor Don’t Agree About the Best Internet Access Option?

    If the student and advisor do not agree on the same level of Internet Access, you should check the “Another option is more appropriate” box in the advisor’s section of the permission form and circle option 1, 2, 3 or 4 and a, b, or c, as appropriate. Union College will adopt whichever of your two choices is the more restrictive. Please note that advisors may only override the student’s selection for one of the reasons specified on the form.

  • What If a Student Wants to Opt Out of Internet Access of My Thesis?

    The student should select Internet access option 4 (Opt Out) on the permission form. However, the self-submitted thesis and printed permission form should be submitted in the same manner as for all other selected options. The Library will maintain an archival copy of the thesis and make it available on site in the library, but will not make it available online.

  • A student submitted their permission form online. What does this mean for me as an advisor?

    If an advisee submits their permission form online, you will receive an email with the subject line, "Advisor approval (Thesis Permission Form) has been assigned to you." Click the button in the email to be taken to the online system. The options are exactly the same whether the student submits the online form or the PDF copy, so the information above applies to either option.

  • Whom Do I Ask For Help?

    Contact: Digital Projects and Systems team at or