Dissertations and Theses
Looking for Cal Poly Master's Theses or Senior Projects?
Doctoral dissertations and masters theses are often overlooked as information sources. While dissertation writers may go on to publish their findings as articles or books, often the dissertation is the earliest and most detailed source of information. In some fields dissertations or theses may be the only source of information on a topic.
Writers of theses also want to be sure their own topics are unique before beginning an extensive research project. Checking to see if other researchers have done thesis or dissertation research on their topic is a good idea, in addition to checking for published books and articles.
There are three major databases where most doctoral dissertations and many masters theses can be found:
- National Library of Electronic Theses and Dissertations
- A collaborative effort of the NDLTD, OCLC, VTLS, and Scirus, the NDLTD Union Catalog contains more than one million records of electronic theses and dissertations with links to the full text.
- Dissertations & Theses (ProQuest)
- With more than 2 million entries, PQD&T is the single, central, authoritative resource for information about doctoral dissertations and master's theses. Once you find a thesis or dissertation of interest, you may request a copy of a dissertation through our Interlibrary Loan service.
- WorldCat is a worldwide union catalog listing more than 74 million bibliographic records for items held in over 9000 libraries worldwide. To find a dissertation or thesis that may be held by another library:
- From the search page enter a dissertation topic (e.g., lean manufacturing).
- Scroll down to the Subtype Limits > Any Content drop box.
- Select Thesis/dissertation.
- Once you find a thesis or dissertation of interest, you may request a copy of a dissertation through our Interlibrary Loan service.
Cal Poly Masters Theses
All Cal Poly masters theses are cataloged in PolyCat and can be found by adding "Cal Poly masters thesis" to your keyword search. All masters theses submitted since 2009 are also available online through DigitalCommons@CalPoly.