Where To Download Free Thesis And Dissertations: A List Of Trustworthy Resources

The online universe has a wealth of information for anyone who is willing to dig around, but all information is not created equal. Finding a source you can trust requires more effort. Whether you are doing professional research in that field, or looking for help to produce your own paper, the key is find the highest quality work that is available online.

Universities and Colleges

Fortunately, most major universities allow Masters and PhD candidates to upload their completed theses and dissertations. It is usually required for Masters candidates but optional for PhDs. They are available to read for anyone who has internet access, so these depositories are a fantastic resource - trustworthy and also free of charge.

Depending on your field of study, you will want to search those institutions that are known as the best in that field. For example, Sociology papers at University of Iowa, Music Theory at Indiana University, Economics at University of Chicago, or Political Science at Brown University, to name a few.

Don’t limit yourself to universities in the U.S. either. Many university faculties around the globe have similar arrangements, like the London School of Economics, Warwick University in England, University of Melbourne in Australia, and Universitat Politecnica of Valencia.

Web-based services

There are also websites specifically designed to compile and search for research papers. Some are free, like OATD, but some are indexes or search engines that list what has been published, electronically or otherwise. They can be a bit clunky to use, unless you are looking for a specific paper or just a sample of one that was published.

  • OATD - Open Access Theses and Dissertations - this site provides free search and use of papers from over 1000 colleges, universities and research institutions
  • Google Scholar
  • NDLTD - Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations - their mission is to promote, promulgate and preserve electronic theses and dissertations.
  • PQDT - Proquest Theses and Dissertations - papers are available for purchase.

Professional Associations and Non-Governmental Organizations

A great source for truly top-notch papers, including those that have won national awards and recognition, is research foundations. These associations and organizations provide access to scholarly works at no cost. A short list includes, but is not limited to, the following:

  • National Science Foundation
  • American Psychological Association
  • American Musicological Society
  • US National Library of Medicine at National Institutes of Health