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OHSU Digital Collections

Everything you need to know about submitting works to OHSU's institutional repository
The first step in preparing to submit your work to the OHSU Digital Collections is to confirm your rights to share the work and to consider the rights you want to grant others to use the work.

Do you need advisor approval to submit?

Students in the MD Program who wish to submit any outputs of their Scholarly Projects must first get approval from their mentor before they submit any materials. More information on OHSU Scholarly Projects:

Do you have permission from any co-authors to submit the work?

If you are not the sole author of the work you are submitting, you jointly own copyright with your co-authors and you all have equal right to exercise and enforce it.

You must have permission from all your co-authors before submitting your work to the OHSU Digital Collections and before licensing your work for reuse by others.

You can learn more about your rights as a copyright owner under U.S. Copyright Law in the Copyright Fundamentals section of our Copyright Guide.

Is the work considered a work-for-hire?

OHSU Employees

If you are an OHSU employee and you wish to submit a work that was created as part of your regular work duties, it is considered a work made for hire and OHSU owns the copyright. In a university setting, peer-reviewed articles and other scholarly works are typically not considered works for hire, but any other, non-scholarly works created within the normal scope of your employment would be considered OHSU intellectual property.

Permission must be obtained from OHSU Technology Transfer to both submit OHSU intellectual property to the OHSU Digital Collections and license it for reuse by others.

Please contact the Library Copyright Team if you have any questions about submitting OHSU intellectual property works to the OHSU Digital Collections.

VA Employees

If you are a VA Employee and you wish to submit a work that was created as part of your official work duties, it is considered the intellectual property of the U.S. Government and is in the public domain. Please make sure that your submission form correctly reflects this when you deposit the work.

OHSU Students who are also VA Employees

If you are a VA Employee submitting a work for completion of an OHSU academic program, copyright ownership of the work hinges on whether it would be considered a work-for-hire or scholarly work. If the creation of and contribution to the work is something that falls within the scope of the authors' official work duties, it is a work-for-hire and is therefore in the public domain as a government-produced work. If it was not part of the authors' official duties, then it is a scholarly work and copyright is retained by the author(s).

Do you have the right to share work you have previously published?

If you are submitting previously published work of your own, such as journal articles you wish to include in your dissertation or a version of an article you wish to self-archive, you need to confirm that you have the right to include that work in your submission.

Checking Publisher Agreements and Policies

Publisher contracts often transfer all copyrights to the publisher in their entirety and specify how and when authors can share their work, including self-archiving in institutional repositories such as the OHSU Digital Collections. Authors should refer to their publishing contract or publisher’s self-archiving policy to confirm their rights. Consider uploading your publisher agreement(s) as private files alongside your submission when you deposit.

The following tools can help you determine whether you have the right to submit your work:

Requesting Reuse Permissions from Copyright Holders

If you determine that your publisher's policy does not permit you to deposit your own previously published work, either in part or in whole, you should attempt to request permission from the publisher to deposit the work in an institutional repository. Publishers will sometimes grant a license to students to republish works as a part of a thesis or dissertation for no fee.

Most published journal articles have links at the journal website for requesting permissions, typically via a service provided by the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC) called RightsLink. Alternatively, you can look up previously published works at the CCC Marketplace. If you obtain permission via this route, you can upload a copy of the license(s) as private files alongside your submission when you deposit.

Conducting a Fair Use Analysis

If you are excerpting previously published work in a thesis or dissertation rather than reproducing it in whole, you may be able to claim fair use. Filling out a Fair Use Checklist can help you decide whether the law favors fair use in your situation. Fill out one checklist for each previously published work and upload the completed copies as private files alongside your submission when you deposit your work.

Entering Related Works during Submission

One last option for connecting a submission to previously published works is to enter them as Related Works in the submission form to link them to your work via a DOI and/or citation.

Does the work need to be embargoed for delayed release?

An embargo is a time period in which public access to the full text of a work is restricted. Records for embargoed works in the OHSU Digital Collections will only display the work's title, description, and authors. Embargo periods vary; they can be as short as six months and as long as five years.

Reasons authors choose to embargo their work include:

  • The author is waiting to publish the work (in whole or part) in the future
  • The work has already been published (in whole or part) and the publisher's contract restricts the public release of the work
  • The work contains data covered by a nondisclosure agreement for a specified period, such as personal information, intellectual property, and/or company secrets
  • The author is waiting for patent applications to process

The process for selecting an embargo depends on your document. For example, setting an embargo on a Faculty Article requires only that the submitter selects the embargo they wish to use while setting an embargo on a Graduate Thesis requires approval of the Graduate School.

If your work does not need to be embargoed, its full text will be made available for public access immediately.

Does the work reuse the work of others?

If the work you are submitting to the OHSU Digital Collections reuses the work of others, you will need to indicate the means by which your reuse is permitted under U.S. Copyright Law when you fill out the submission form.

  • Creative Commons: Copyright owners may apply a Creative Commons license to their work that permits others to reuse their work without contacting them to obtain permission.
  • Fair Use: Your reuse of a third-party copyrighted work might be permitted under the Fair Use exemption in copyright law. If you wish to claim fair use for any of the copyrighted works you're reusing, we recommend conducting a fair use assessment for each one. Consider completing a fair use checklist for each such work. The checklist helps demonstrate a good faith effort on your part to comply with copyright law
  • Public Domain: Works in the public domain are no longer in copyright and may be used freely by anyone without obtaining permission.
  • By Permission: If a third-party copyrighted work you're reusing has not been released under a Creative Commons license and you do not wish to claim fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.

For more information about Creative Commons, Fair Use, Public Domain, and how to obtain permission from copyright owners, see the Copyright Exemptions section of our Copyright Guide.

If you have questions about permissions to reuse the work of others, please contact the Library Copyright Team.

Do you want to license the work for reuse?

During the submission process, you will be asked to choose a license that specifies how others may use your work. This is separate from the license granted to OHSU.

  • The Library recommends choosing a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 (CC-BY) license.
  • Authors may select other standard licenses or copyright statements, including other Creative Commons licenses or an In Copyright statement.

    The Creative Commons License Chooser can help you select a license. 

    • Creative Commons has guidance on what you need to consider before you license your work listed below.
    • Public use of works submitted to OHSU Digital Collections are governed by the license terms chosen by the author. Authors will need to explicitly grant permission for any use beyond those terms.
    • Licensing your work does not change ownership of the work's copyright.

    If you have questions about licensing your work, please contact the Library Copyright Team.

    Rights Statement for Electronic Documents

    The right to download or print any of the pages of these theses (Material) is granted by the copyright owner only for personal or classroom use. The author retains all proprietary rights, including copyright ownership. Any reproduction or editing or other use of this Material by any means requires the express written permission of the copyright owner.

    Except as provided above, or any use beyond what is allowed by fair use (Title 17 Section 107 U.S.C.), you may not reproduce, republish, post, transmit or distribute any Material from this web site in any physical or digital form without the permission of the copyright owner of the Material.

    Inquiries regarding any further use of these materials should be addressed