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Guidelines & Policies




How do I contribute materials to ScholarWorks?

To submit your data or publication to ScholarWorks contact our repository manager. They will direct you through the submission process.



Who can contribute materials to ScholarWorks?

All faculty, staff and graduate students affiliated with MSU may contribute work to ScholarWorks. Materials from undergraduate students that meet the repository guidelines will be considered on a case by case basis, by the repository coordinator.

ScholarWorks will also accept materials from non-university researchers and collaborators that are produced in conjunction with MSU-related events and activities, such as conferences, lecture series, or published materials. Each author or contributor must agree to the submission of their material.



What materials can be contributed to ScholarWorks?

Any digital materials that meet the contributor and copyright guidelines (as described on this page) can be submitted to the repository. Abstracts and citations are not accepted by themselves. Most file formats will be accepted. Some formats may require preservation and migration which will be handled by the repository manager. If you notice a file type that is no longer viewable, please inform the repository manager.



Research Data

In addition to meeting the above submission guidelines, all data deposited in ScholarWorks must be a finished product, ready for public availability. ScholarWorks can provide embargoes on data, either until associated research is published, or for a period of time from 1-5 years. ScholarWorks does not accept restricted data. If you believe your data must be embargoed for more than 5 years or restricted for any other reason, please contact the repository manager to determine an appropriate repository in which to archive the restricted data.



Submission Process

Each author must accept the author agreement language. The language of the agreement is:

"I hold the copyright to this document and grant permission for posting it in the ScholarWorks institutional repository, or have the approval of the copyright holder to do so, and agree that it may be made available to the public in any format in perpetuity. I warrant that the posting of the work does not infringe any copyright, nor violate any proprietary rights, nor contain any libelous matter, nor invade the privacy of any person or third party, nor otherwise violate Repository policies. I agree that MSU may translate the submission to any medium or format for the purpose of preservation. Also, I agree that MSU may keep more than one copy of this submission for purposes of security, back-up, and preservation. MSU will not make any alteration, other than as allowed by this license, to your submission."



Preservation and Migration

The MSU Library is committed to preserving and providing access to all of the contents in ScholarWorks. However, some file formats may cease to be supported as a result of changes in technology and the private sector, beyond the control of the Libraries. These files will be migrated to new formats as necessary. In addition, the Library may determine that our current institutional repository platform no longer best meets the needs of the MSU community. Should this be the case, all content will be migrated to whatever new platform is chosen, and we will make every effort to ensure that all content will continue to be accessible.



Copyright Guidelines

The repository manager will assess materials for copyright status or answer any copyright questions. contact the repository manager with questions or to set up an appointment.

Any author publishing work in ScholarWorks must either have copyright for the work or the permission of the copyright holder to archive it in the repository. Many publishers will allow authors to archive a copy of an article (or other works) in an institutional repository as a form of self archiving. If an author is unable to determine whether they retain the right to post their material in the repository, they can contact the repository manager for assistance.

Authors can preserve basic self archiving rights when negotiating copyright issues in book and journal contracts. We encourage authors to do so or otherwise protect their rights when submitting documents to a publisher. Here is a model amendments for retaining rights:

SPARC Author Addendum to Publication Agreement from SPARC, the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition

The Copyright Basics Circular from the U.S. Copyright Office will provide authors with helpful background and information on copyright terms, questions and issues.



What is the value of adding your work?

  • Dissemination: ScholarWorks provides high visibility and increased access to your research by providing descriptive information about your submitted works to Google, Google Scholar, OAIster, and other web indexing services.
  • Increased impact and citation of your research: Materials in ScholarWorks are openly available on the web. See a bibliography of studies on the increased impact and higher citations of Open Access research and scholarship.
  • Persistence: ScholarWorks provides a permanent web address and web interface for accessing your work.
  • Long-term access: ScholarWorks commits to responsible and sustainable management of submitted works. Your materials will be preserved and migrated to new formats as needed.
  • Control: You or your assignee retain copyright in works you submit to ScholarWorks. Many publishers will allow you to submit previously published works to institutional repositories such as ScholarWorks.

For a summary document of the above points and notes about additional benefits, download our ScholarWorks talking points.


Withdrawal and Retention of Materials

The repository is intended to be a permanent scholarly record. Withdrawing content is strongly discouraged. However, legal issues, plagiarism, breaches of confidentiality, or other considerations may necessitate content withdrawal. Authors will be notified by the repository administrator before removal of any content. No files will be removed without the author being informed. Authors wishing to remove or update their content should contact the repository manager.

Updated versions of content may be posted, and can be linked to the previous version. We encourage authors to maintain these versions in the repository, as a record of the development of any posted contents.

If a contributor leaves the University, their material will remain in the repository. At their request, new contact information can be added to their files.

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