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 Library and the Moakley Law Library. Questions? Please contact the Digital Collections Team for 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 works of Suffolk University available for the world to view in one central, open access site.

The enhanced visibility and access benefits both the author and Suffolk University in the following ways:

  • Scholar Visibility: Researchers and peers can easily find and cite works (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 provide continuity so that all works have a stable online location that can be cited now and into the future
  • Publishing Flexibility: Ability to accommodate many different types of content, not just text
  • Grant Compliance: Meets funding mandates by making research data and documents 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, presentations and other materials associated with conferences, and instructional resources
  • Students: electronic theses and dissertations, student journals and publications, and select student works
  • Departments: working papers, datasets, publications of university centers and institutes, peer-reviewed journals, materials associated with events and conferences, and instructional resources

Digital Commons supports all types of media including images, video, audio and datasets. 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 for more information.

4. What is the Digital Commons Network?

All contributions to Digital Collections @ Suffolk will be added to the Digital Commons Network which brings together over three million free, full-text scholarly works from more than 450 participating universities and colleges worldwide. 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 authors understand how their work stacks up with those of colleagues around the world.

About Copyright

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

Check the signed agreement 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. Alternatively, Suffolk’s Libraries also have access to lists of published works and can verify the copyright permissions. Please contact the Digital Collections Team for more assistance.

Preparing a new work to be published? Consider asking the publisher to reserve certain rights that allow works to be posted in Suffolk's digital repository or on a personal web page. Information about why and how to do this is available at the SPARC (Scholarly Publishing & Academic Resources Coalition) website.

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 for assistance.

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 are asked to sign a Submission Agreement that grants 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?

There’s two ways to add content to DC @ Suffolk. Detailed instructions for both processes are available on the Digital Collections @ Suffolk User's Guide.

  • Direct Submission: Suffolk University faculty, staff, and students can submit content directly via the Submit Research page. This is recommended for uploading a small number of files.
  • Request Library Assistance: If there’s multiple files to upload, the Libraries are happy to upload content on an author’s behalf. In many cases, the Libraries have access to lists of published works that are eligible for inclusion.

2. Can I restrict access to my work?

The system features ways to restrict access by embargo or by audience but it is preferred that no restrictions are placed on items unless absolutely necessary. Anyone who wishes to restrict access must contact the Digital Collections Team for assistance in establishing these restrictions.

3. I don't have electronic copies of some the works 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 as an image or a file is a great way to create PDF files. Just make sure that the scanned pages are OCR (Optical Character Recognition) readable, meaning that every word in the document is searchable. Many software applications incorporate OCR capture into the scanning process.

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 .

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, please contact the Digital Collections Team to provide 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?

In many cases, journals do not place 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. Uploading to the repository would constitute noncommercial use.

For working papers posted in the repository, it's a good practice to include the citation to the published article on the cover page of the repository working paper. Please contact the Digital Collections Team to request this change.

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