Do I Own My Dissertation?

Do I Own My Dissertation?

Dissertations are supposed to be original and creative contributions toward industry and education. Scholars work on their research tirelessly to make it unique and the best among others. After all the hard work, everyone wants to get the ownership and credits of their work right? However, the case is complex here. Many scholars think that they own these documents and everything inside them. Yet, they might be unaware that the school and its research staff may show interest in their work.

It does not matter whether you write the dissertation on your own or use Dissertation Writing Services to complete it. If the work seems interesting, the school may interfere. Many times, even editors and publishers put their interest in scholars’ work as well. Now, you might be thinking about how a student can tackle all of these problems. Well, this article will help you know every vital detail about the ownership of a dissertation.

The School’s Claim

Every student creates a dissertation alone. The school wants every student to present a creative and unique idea in their work, and the effort must not depend on anyone. Still, the school might have some copyright of a student’s work. Why? Because the school supervised the student in their journey and provided essential resources to complete their work. It gives the school some ownership.

In some schools, policies are very tricky. For example, in some cases, the author has full control of their work. It means whatever they produce will remain theirs till the end of their doctoral program and carry on. However, they can hold control on behalf of the school, as the school may ask the students to return the dissertation data and related materials in the future.

Perhaps you are thinking about why a school would do this. Well, in some cases, the school needs to present the research materials to show to a funder or contractor for validation of scientific material. It happens rarely. However, everyone should aware of such cases.

Copyright of Your Dissertation

The author always owns the copyright of their dissertation. However, they will still need to be within limits and have certain rights. The common rights an author has of their work are:

  • Duplicating the dissertation (copying, recording, and scanning).
  • Publishing the dissertation or set it accessible to the public.
  • Uploading your work online.
  • Moral rights of your dissertation.
  • Conducting the research publicly.
  • Creating another version of your dissertation, such as an arrangement in a different language.

Sometimes, your school may ask you to sign a contract of certain rights. It means you will solely have the rights your school wants, not every right. For example, you cannot make your research available to the public if your school does not allow you. So consider this factor as well.

Restrictions on Public Availability

You have the right does not mean you can do anything. If you want to make your research open access, you may still need to check some factors. The school does not control these factors, as they are open access standards. Here are some factors to think about:

  • Make sure you have all the rights to use any copyrighted material. It also includes work donated by other people in your research.
  • If you have already published a dissertation in the prior time and your new dissertation contains data of it. You need to consult with previously published dissertation contributors before making it open access.
  • Some other reasons can interrupt in making your research open access. For example, if your school does not allow you to present your dissertation openly or the patent application is still pending. In the same way, if you have collected funds for your research, and the funding agreement does not allow you to make it open access, you cannot. Also, if your dissertation has politically or lawfully sensitive information, you may need to get clearance to make it open access from the supervisor.

Tackling Copyright Material of Other People

In case your work contains contributors and their copyright material, you might need to ask for permission to make it open access. You can also call this factor third-party copyright material. You cannot use third-party copyright material unless they allow you to use it. However, you do not need to ask for approval in some cases, such as follow:

  • If the expiration date of copyright passes by.
  • In case you have signed the contract earlier of using third-party copyrights without seeking permission later.
  • If your use is necessary and follow every legal action. You may still need to make an agreement contract later with third parties.

Moreover, remember that you need to be extra careful if your dissertation contains music, recordings, or films. Clearing rights of music and recordings can be complex.

Also, if you cannot manage to get clearance from the third parties for open access, you can proceed with a redacted version. Do not worry, the word redacted solely sounds complex, but actually, it is not. A redacted version is a copy of your research that does not contain uncleared third-party copyright material. It is an excellent way to make your work open access if you fail to get permission from third parties.


Now you know everything about the ownership, copyrights, and third-party copyright materials. Moreover, you are now aware of the school’s interference in the research work. We know that some schools are moving a bit differently than others, choosing to hold ownership over their faculties and students’ work. However, in any case, the school does not completely own your work, but some part of it. Also, many schools ask before taking such actions. For example, whether a scholar wants to share the ownership of their work with the school or not.

Besides, things are different now. Scholars can now seek help from professionals if stuck in a puzzling case during their dissertation process. Even they can now hire Dissertation Writing Services UK to help complete the long dissertation task. Yet, if your work ends up useful, regardless you seek help or not, your school might interfere with its ownership.

By | 2022-02-10T14:05:08+00:00 February 10th, 2022|Dissertation Writing, How To Write a Dissertation|0 Comments

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