From the 1st October 2016 The Open University requires the full-text of all their awarded doctoral thesis to be submitted to ORO. 

Open Research Online (ORO) accepts the deposit of theses from the following research degrees awarded by The Open University:

  • Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
  • Doctorate in Education (EdD)
  • Master of Philosophy (MPhil)
  • Master of Research (MRes)

Theses from students from The Open University's Affiliated Research Centres (ARCs) are also required to be deposited in ORO.

For Open University academics and researchers whose doctorate was awarded by other institutions the bibliographic information and/or the full-text of the thesis can be deposited in ORO.

The advantage of depositing your thesis in ORO is that digital theses (eTheses) are more easily found and can increase your visibility as a researcher. Deposited theses will also be made available to the British Library EThOS service and ProQuest Dissertations and Theses Global database.

How to deposit your eThesis

Deposit is via your ORO User Area (requires login)

Please select the ‘electronic thesis submission’ item type.

If you have an Open University doctorate and are no longer working or affiliated with The Open University and want to deposit an electronic copy of your thesis in ORO please contact the Library Research Support team.

It is the responsibility of the individual to ensure any copyrighted material owned by a third party has been cleared (i.e. permission to make available in an open access resource received) prior to depositing the thesis in ORO. More information on third-party copyrighted is provided on the page 'Copyright and your thesis'.

Wherever possible, research data or other digital materials underpinning your thesis should be made available in ORDO and the DOI assigned to your data should be added to ORO in the ​related URLs ​field when depositing your thesis. For more information, see the page 'eTheses: underlying materials and data'.

Personal information

If your thesis contains any personal information e.g. your personal identifier, personal email addresses, phone numbers, personal addresses please remove these and submit both the full version and a redacted version. Ensure the two versions' file names are clearly distinguishable. 

Depositing PhD by published work

To deposit the full-text you will need to check the copyright with each of the publishers of the publications that make up your thesis. If the publisher does not allow the full-text to be deposited in ORO replace the full-text of any publications included in the PhD with a link to the DOI of the publications.

You should deposit both the final version with the full-text of all the publications (an infinite embargo will be applied to this version) and a redacted version of the abstract, covering paper and links to the publications. Ensure the two versions' file names are clearly distinguishable.


Sometimes there may be a valid reason for your thesis being restricted or under embargo for a limited period of time (e.g. as stipulated by a commercial sponsor, or promised for publication as a monograph).

Any embargoes are usually agreed at the start of the doctorate. Embargoes have to be approved by the Chair of Research Degrees Committee. Please read the relevant sections (page 65) of the Research Degree Regulations on Embargo or restricted access to thesis (pdf; requires login) if you wish to apply for an embargo on access to the full-text of your thesis.

Guidance on issuing take down requests for thesis being sold on third party sites

The Open University policy on copyright ownership is that you (the author) retain ownership of your creation. This means that you are able to use your content as you wish. However, this also means that you are responsible to police use and enforce your copyright. So, where a breach occurs you will need to contact the third party who has breached your rights and ask them to remove your thesis from their website.  

For example, if the thesis is being sold on Amazon the take down request needs to be submitted via the ‘report infringement’ page. You will need to login using your Amazon account or create an account if you do not already have one.

Suggested text for the takedown request

The infringing material can be found here xxx and has been placed on your platform by yyy (the “seller”).

The seller has breached the creative commons licence terms under which this copyright material was published and has not been given permission to publish my thesis, nor to make it available for commercial purposes. This email is official notification under Section 512(c) of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act (”DMCA”), and I seek the removal of the aforementioned infringing material from your servers. I request that you immediately notify the infringer of this notice and inform them of their duty to remove the infringing material immediately.

As a service provider or host, I request you to remove or disable access to the infringing materials upon receiving this notice.

Contact us

Library Research Support team