Western Libraries Proquest Dissertations

Most dissertations and theses produced at WMU are availabile through the libraries. Normally these are bound paper copies and can be checked out like regular books. Use LibrarySearch to find the location and the call number of the title you need. Some older dissertations and theses may be in storage. Use the storage request form to request theses or dissertations which are shelved there.

There are several different ways to access dissertations and theses produced by WMU students:

If you do an  advanced search in the LibrarySearch system, you may also find print copies of both WMU master's and doctoral dissertations that are available for checkout. 

To search for dissertations produced by a particular WMU academic department try the following search:

1st box type      [department name], i.e. sociology, history, physics, etc.
2nd box type     western michigan university
3rd box type      [thesis or dissertation]


There are many ways and places to search for theses and dissertations, depending on the topic or type of research you're looking for. Several of the databases that the USMA Library subscribes to include theses and dissertations, either at abstract or full-text levels. When using our subscription databases, perform a search for a subject using keywords as usual, but be on the lookout for ways to restrict your search to theses and dissertations. For example, when using Scout!, you can select "Dissertations and Theses" under the "Source Type" heading in the left margin of the webpage. If you do so, the ONLY results that will be returned from your search will be dissertations and theses.

While a few databases - namely, ProQuest - include dissertations and theses on a wide range of topics, it's usually best to select a database that caters to your specific subject area when searching for a thesis or dissertation. For example, if your area of interest is the social sciences, you may wish to try searching the database SocINDEX with Full Text, where you can limit your search to "Dissertations" under "Document Type." Use the Library's Subject Heading list of databases to narrow your selection to those that cover your specific area of interest.

For military topics, one database you should always search is DTIC (the Defense Technical Information Center).  DTIC includes publications, reports, theses, dissertations, white papers, and many other publications by members of the military or defense industries, especially those individuals who are completing advanced coursework in a DoD program such as the Army War College, the Naval Postgraduate School, or the Strategic Studies Institute. Papers written in pursuit of those educational programs are often the equivalent of theses and dissertations completed for non-DoD schools.

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