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FAQS: How do I find Dissertations and Theses through WKU Libraries?

How can I find a master's thesis or doctoral dissertation?

  1. A good start in finding dissertations is the Dissertations and Theses Full Text database, the largest collection of dissertations available. You can log in to this database through the library Website. If you are off-campus, you will be asked to enter your WKU NetID and password before proceeding.
  2. You can also check NDLTD – Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations. This is a free online resource providing access to over a million theses and dissertations from all over the world.
  3. Go to the One-Search Library Catalog search box on the WKU Libraries home page. Type in search terms for your topic and click the Search button. When the results come up, go to the left sidebar and choose "Dissertations" under Resource Type. This will include resources from a variety of sources, including WKU-provided databases, as well as other sources on the open web.


How would I find a thesis or dissertation written by a WKU student or scholar?

To find paper copies of a dissertation or thesis written by a WKU student or scholar, use the One-Search Library Catalog, found on the Library home page. Enter the title of the work in the search box, or go to the advanced search and add both the title and the author(s) of the work.

More recent dissertations and theses can be found in electronic format on TopSCHOLAR, WKU’s institutional repository. This is where the library collects student, staff, and faculty research and creative works.  There are several ways to search for student theses and dissertations on TopSCHOLAR:

  1. From the TopSCHOLAR home page: choose “Colleges, Departments, Units” in the “Browse” menu in the left hand side bar.  Within that collection, choose the “Graduate School” community. Communities are arranged alphabetically.  Now patrons can choose to search “Dissertations or Masters Theses and Specialist Projects” by choosing one of those two series.  Within the series items are arranged chronologically.
  2. When you know the author: use the “Authors” link under the browse list in the left hand side bar of the homepage, which will take you to an alphabetical listing of all authors included in TopSCHOLAR.
  3. When you know the title: Use the search box on top of the left hand column of the home page, selecting a series of words from the title (put the words in quotation marks for best results).

To get help using TopSCHOLAR, contact the Library Reference Desk at (270) 745-6125, or Todd Seguin, Scholarly Communication Specialist, at (270) 745-6160.


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