Frequently Asked Questions

About Digital Collections @ Suffolk

1. What is Digital Collections @ Suffolk?

Digital Collections @ Suffolk is a digital repository and publishing platform for the scholarly and creative output of Suffolk University faculty, students, and staff. Suffolk is using bepress’ Digital Commons software which collects, indexes, stores and publicly disseminates faculty research papers and books, data sets, selected collections of student work, audiovisual materials, images, and special collections.

Digital Collections @ Suffolk is a service of the Sawyer and Moakley Libraries. Questions? Please contact the Digital Collections Team at dct@suffolk.edufor more information.

2. What are the benefits to contributing my research in Digital Collections @ Suffolk?

Digital Collections @ Suffolk makes the scholarly publications, archives, and creative expression of Suffolk University available for the world to view in one central, open access site. This type of visibility and awareness benefits both the creator and Suffolk University as an institution.

There are several major benefits to contributing your research to Digital Collections @ Suffolk:

  • Scholar Visibility: Researchers and peers can easily find and cite your work (via searches in Google Scholar, the Digital Commons Network, and other search engines), providing a wider audience.
  • Impact Data: Easy-to-use tools to track citations, downloads, and overall impact
  • Institutional Visibility: Highlights the University’s scholarly and creative output for prospective students, faculty, and funders
  • Preservation: Static URLs which provide continuity so that your work is assured a stable online location that can be cited now and in the future.

  • Publishing Flexibility: Ability to accommodate many different types of content, not just text.
  • Grant Compliance: Ability to comply with funding mandates by making your work open access (i.e. freely available online) and providing a place for data storage and dissemination.

3. Who can contribute items to Digital Collections @ Suffolk?And what can be contributed?

Suffolk University faculty, staff, and students are eligible to submit content. Content eligible for inclusion in Digital Collections @ Suffolk should relate to the research, scholarship, creative work, pedagogy, institutional memory, and special collections of the Suffolk University community.

Examples of content appropriate for Digital Collections @ Suffolk include:

  • Faculty and staff: previously published scholarship, working papers, datasets, publications of university centers and institutes, peer-reviewed journals, materials associated with conferences, and instructional resources
  • Students: electronic theses and dissertations, student journals and publications, and select student work
  • Departments: working papers, datasets, publications of university centers and institutes, peer-reviewed journals, materials associated with events and conferences, and instructional resources

Please note that pre-prints, post-prints, and publisher’s PDFs are eligible for submission, depending on publishers’ licensing guidelines.

Please contact the Digital Collections Team at with any questions about content.

4. What is the Digital Commons Network?

All contributions to Digital Collections @ Suffolk will be accessible in the Digital Commons Network which brings together over three million free, full-text scholarly works, archives, and more from over 450 universities and colleges worldwide. Curated by university librarians and their supporting institutions, the Network includes a growing collection of peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters, dissertations, working papers, conference proceedings, and other original scholarly work from other universities using bepress’ Digital Commons software for their own repositories. It can be searched by major discipline or one of nearly 1,000 subdisciplines, and displays the most popular papers, institutions, and authors in each, to help you see how your work stacks up with those of your colleagues around the world.

About Copyright

1. How do I know if I have permission to post an article to Digital Collections @ Suffolk?

Be sure to check the agreement you signed with the publisher to determine whether you have rights to post your article in this repository. Permissions for many publishers can be found at Sherpa Romeo. If you're not sure about the status of your copyright, please contact the Digital Collections Team at .

2. Can I post a reprint from a journal?

It depends on what the journal allows, which is usually specified in their agreement with the author. If it would not violate copyright to post the reprint in a digital repository, you're welcome to do so. Permissions for many publishers can be found at Sherpa Romeo. If you're not sure about the status of your copyright, please contact the Digital Collections Team at .

3. Will I lose the copyright to work I own by depositing it into Digital Collections @ Suffolk?

No, you will not lose the copyright or any other rights to use or reuse your work. Authors grant Suffolk University a non-exclusive license in perpetuity to preserve and distribute any submissions made to the Digital Collections @ Suffolk repository.

Access and Submitting Work

1. How do I submit my work?

Currently, Suffolk University faculty, staff, and students can submit content via an email sent to the Digital Collections Team at

2. Can I restrict access to my work?

Digital Collections @ Suffolk has been established to provide free and open access to the research and creative collections that it contains. Depositors are discouraged from placing access restrictions on their items.

Nevertheless, situations can arise when depositors need to restrict access to items in the repository. For example, a publisher may allow deposit of published articles into an institutional repository but require an embargo of six months before the article may be made publicly accessible. Anyone who wishes to restrict access must contact the Digital Collections Team at for assistance in establishing these restrictions.

3. I don't have electronic versions of old working papers that I'd like to include in the repository. Is it okay to scan the printed page to a PDF file?

Yes, scanning printed pages is a great way to create PDF files for inclusion in the repository. There are two ways to scan a page: using OCR (Optical Character Recognition) or scanning the page as an image. The best solution takes advantage of both of these methods. Many software applications allow for the OCR capture of image scans. When documents are scanned this way, users see the image scan but search the full-text of the document. This is the preferred method for scanning documents for the repository.

4. Can I withdraw my work?

Digital Collections @ Suffolk has been established as a permanent archive for Suffolk University. While the University discourages the removal of content, it recognizes circumstances when withdrawal may be necessary, including copyright infringement, libelous content, or privacy issues. Requests for withdrawal must be submitted to the Digital Collections Team at and include the item’s title, URL, and reason(s) for the request.

5. When I copy and paste abstracts into the Submit form, some formatted text reverts to plain text. What's going on?

When copying abstracts from a word processing file or a PDF file, and pasting the text into the submission form, you are taking text from an environment that supports fonts and text style changes. Because the abstract is intended to be presented on the web, text styles must be specified using HTML codes.

If submitting an abstract in HTML format, please be sure to select the corresponding option on the submission form.

The following HTML tags are recognized by the system and may be used to format an abstract (use lowercase tags):

  • <p> - paragraph
  • <br> - line break
  • <strong> - strong/bold
  • <em> - italics/emphasis
  • <sub> - subscript
  • <sup> - superscript

6. How do I include accents and special characters in the abstracts and titles?

The repository software supports the worldwide character set (Unicode, utf-8). Accents, symbols, and other special characters may be copied and pasted into the abstract or title field from a word processing file or typed in directly. Windows users may also use the Character Map to insert these characters. Macintosh users may use the Character Palette (available via Edit > Special Characters in the Finder).

7. How do I revise a submission?

To revise a submission that has been posted to the repository, contact the Digital Collections Team at with the new version.

If the submission has been submitted, but not yet posted, you may revise it via your My Account page:

  1. Locate the article on your My Account page, and click the title.
  2. Click Revise Submission from the list of options in the left sidebar.
  3. Enter your changes in the Revise Submission form, and click Submit at the bottom of the page to submit your changes. (You only need to modify the portion of the form that corresponds to the changes you wish to make.)

8. How can I submit a multi-part file, such as multiple chapters for a book?

Combine all the sections together as one Microsoft Word file or PDF file and submit that.

To make one PDF file from multiple files, open the first PDF file, then choose Document>Insert Pages from Acrobat's menus to insert the second file (indicate it should go after the last page of the first file), and repeat for all documents. The result will be one compound PDF file which may then be submitted.

If you feel that the one large PDF file might be too large for some people to download, we suggest that you submit the consolidated file as the full text of the article, and then upload the separate chapters or sections of the document as Associated Files. These files will appear on the web page alongside the complete document. For more information about uploading associated files, see "Can I post related files..." below.

9. Can I post related files (sound clips, data sets, etc.) alongside the published article?

Yes. The bepress system refers to these supplementary items as Associated Files. You will be prompted to submit Associated Files when you upload your submissions. The name of the files you upload will appear on the web site along with your short description of it. Viewers must have the necessary software to open your files; that is not provided by the bepress system.

Please be sure that there are no permissions issues related to use of the associated material. Sometimes, especially with images, you must write a letter seeking permission to use the material before it can be posted.

Also note that where possible, items such as images, charts and tables that are referenced in the document (or otherwise an integral part of the document) should be included directly in the article itself and not posted just as associated files.

10. A working paper in our repository site has been published in a slightly revised form in a journal. What should I do?

Many journals do not have any restrictions on working papers that preceded an article, especially if substantial revisions were made. You should check your author agreement with the journal to confirm that there is no problem with leaving the working paper on the site. The repository would constitute noncommercial use.

Assuming the working paper does remain on posted in the repository, it is a good idea to include the citation to the published article on the cover page of the repository working paper. Please contact the Digital Collections Team at to request this change.

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