W&M Digital Archive Contributor Instructions

Adding Material to the Digital Archive

You must be added to a list of submitters in order to make submissions to the W&M Digital Archive. Contact Swem Library Special Collections.

video tutorial available to walk you through the process of submitting material. There are two parts to submiting your work to the digital repository:

  1. Preparing your material for submission
  2. Uploading your material

Preparing Your Material for Submission 

Choosing File Formats

Only specific formats of materials can be recognized and supported by the W&M Digital Archive. Generally, file formats can be grouped into three groups: supported; known; and unsupported. For supported formats, we will do whatever possible to maintain access to these materials as technology changes over time. Known formats can be viewed currently in the W&M Digital Archive, but there is no guarantee regarding continued access to these items over time. It is suggested that materials in known formats be migrated to supported formats for long-term access. Unsupported formats cannot be viewed currently in the W&M Digital Archive. If your materials are in an unsupported format, please contact the administrators for assistance in submitting your materials to the W&M Digital Archive.
Projects completed in Word or other proprietary formats should be submitted in PDF format. The text of all theses and dissertations must be submitted in PDF format.
Further information about acceptable file formats for submissions, including lists of supported file formats, is available.

File naming

Persons submitting files should consider using a standardized format when naming files. This will assist users to easily identify files, and will especially assist users of projects containing multiple files.

Only file names without spaces will be accepted into the digital archive. The use of underscores or hyphens are acceptable to indicate spaces between words within the title.

File naming conventions:

LastNameFirstNameYear_description DoeJane2009_titlepage.pdf


Uploading Material

When your project is completed – either in final form or as a working paper – you may upload to the W&M Digital Archive.

  1. Go to the W&M Digital Archive.
  2. Select the "Login” at the upper left of your screen.
  3. Login using your William and Mary user name and password. Do NOT attempt to sign-in using your full email address, i.e., do not include "@wm.edu", "@email.wm.edu", or "@vims.edu".
  4. After successfully signing into the W&M Digital Archive, select “Submissions” at the upper left of your screen. This will take you to the "Submissions & workflow tasks" page where you will select the "start a new submission" link under "Submissions" at the top of the page.
  5. Select the collection where you will add your work & click "Next".
  6. Initial Questions: Check the appropriate box if your work has multiple titles or has previously been published (NOTE: some collections will not have this option). Click "Next".
  7. Describe Item: The fields on the two Describe Item pages describe the material to be submitted including title and author(s). Complete all applicable fields. This is also the page where you may select an embargo. Hints:
    • Enter the last and first names of the author(s) whether individuals or organizations.
    • The Author and title fields at a minimum are required.
    • An embargo prevents access to a document for a period of time while the author resolves some issue like a pending patent, security restriction, or other similar constraint on public access. If you are opting to embargo your thesis or dissertation, you must complete an embargo form.
    • Subject terms/keywords may be added at this point, if desired. You may find the list of keywords already in use in the digital archive helpful.
    • Paste the text of the abstract for the project into the field “Abstract”. Abstracts should be limited to 150 words, or 1,000 characters including spaces, when possible.
    • Note: Honors Theses contributors are asked to provide both an abstract AND select subject terms/keyword to facilitate access to their work.
    • Click “Next” as each page is completed.
  8. Upload File(s):After describing the material, you will now upload the file(s). This is an excellent time to confirm the file format and naming conventions of your file(s). For more information about file formats and naming conventions, see “Preparing your document for upload” above. The most common error is submitting a Word document instead of a PDF file.
    • Once you have selected the file, confirm the correct file name and format. When uploading multiple files, complete the File Description field for each file selected. Examples of file descriptions: Table of Contents, Article, Bibliography, Transcript, etc. Please note: If your submission consists of many files, each file will be added individually. Please complete the “File Description” field for each file to be uploaded. Repeat the steps outlined in this section until all files are uploaded with completed descriptions. Select "Next".
  9. Review Submission: This is your opportunity to review your description, make any necessary changes, add additional files, or make other changes. If all information is correct, select “Next” to proceed.
  10. License Your Work: If you wish to attach a Creative Commons license to work, select the Creative Commons license. Please note that all users of your work will be required under the Creative Commons license to properly credit you as the author. If you are unsure as to what rights to assign, consider limiting use to non-commercial use with no sharing allowed.Selecting a Creative Commons license is optional and the option to not include a Creative Commons license is available in the drop-down menu.
    • There are two questions to be answered on this screen: "Allow commercial use of your work?" and "Allow modifications of your work?" If you have questions regarding how best to answer these questions, please see the Creative Commons website. Note that there are links to the Creative Commons website and further information from this page during the submission process
    • Answer these questions to assign a Creative Commons license or select "No Creative Commons license." Click "Next".
  11. Distribution License:Review the distribution license that will allow the library and the College of William and Mary to make your work available through the W&M Digital Archive. If you agree with the terms, check the box for “I Grant the License” and select "Complete submission". Your submission will be reviewed by library staff and you will be notified by email when your project has been officially added to the W&M Digital Archive.
    • If you have questions regarding the licensing terms, please contact Daniel Weddington. If your questions regarding the licensing terms are resolved and you decide to submit your project again in accordance with the licensing agreement, you may do so from your “My Submissions” page. If you have manually removed the submission from your “My Submissions” page, you will need to re-submit your project beginning at step 1 above.

After completing the submission process, you will receive an email message alerting you when the file has been approved and is available to the public through the W&M Digital Archive. If your submission was rejected, you will receive instructions for changes to be made when resubmitting or follow-up questions. The most common errors when submitting are: choosing the wrong file format (WORD instead of a PDF), not providing the title signature page, not providing an abstract, and omitting subject terms/key words.

Restricting Access to Submissions

The latest version of the software used by the W&M Digital Archive, DSpace version 1.6, allows individuals submitting material to the W&M Digital Archive to place an embargo on material. An embargo is a temporary access restriction placed on content, commencing at the time it is added to the digital archive. It's scope or duration may vary, but the fact that it eventually expires is what distinguishes it from other content restrictions. The embargo functionally introduced in 1.6, however, includes tools to automate the imposition and removal of restrictions in managed time-frames. If you are a student submitting a thesis or dissertation and you are unsure on whether to embargo you work or for how long to embargo it, you should consult with your adviser before submitting your work and completing the embargo form.


Contact W&M Digital Archive Administrators

If you have any questions regarding the uploading and submission process, please contact Daniel Weddington.