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Legal resources at Oxford University: Law Theses

Oxford University Law Faculty Theses in Typescript

DPhil theses
It is a requirement of successful completion of a DPhil for a copy to be deposited. DPhil theses in Law in physical format are held in the Bodleian Law Library. DPhil law theses which are born digital or have been digitized are deposited in ORA (see box to right).
The print copy of a thesis deposited to the Bodleian is immediately made freely available, unless the candidate has been granted dispensation from consultation.
Dissertations for BCL, MPhil, MStuds in Law
Deposit of these is not a requirement: but some have been donated to the Bodleian Law Library by their authors.

Staff Mediated Service

A SOLO search will show you location/shelfmark for every OU law thesis which is held in the Law Library. Once you have these details, please visit the Law Library (between 9.00 and 4.30 Monday-Friday) and ask a member of staff to fetch the work for you. This can usually be done within 10-15 minutes of your making the request.
After 7pm or in the weekend? If you are only able to come during our evening (7 - 10pm during full-term) or weekend opening hours, please email in advance so that we can make arrangements in advance so that they will be waiting for you at the Enquiry Desk.

Please note that all those who consult an Oxford thesis are required to sign a declaration recognising that the copyright of the thesis rests with the author and that no quotation from it or information derived from it may be published without the prior consent of the author. Some Oxford theses cannot be consulted without the author's permission. Permission may be in the form of a signed letter, or an email if sent from a verifiable (i.e., institutional) email address.

OU Theses Online

ORA: Oxford University Research Archive

Since 1 October 2007, successful DPhil candidates have been required to submit an electronic copy of their thesis to the Oxford Research Archive - unless an exception has been agreed and granted by the Proctors.

All new digital theses uploaded into ORA are currently subject to a default three-year embargo period unless determined otherwise by the terms of agreement with a funding body or sponsor such as Research Councils UK. The DPhil authors may also choose to make their thesis open access at any time within the three years, in consultation with their supervisor.
Digital theses in ORA become freely available once the default embargo or dispensation from consultation period expires.

Pre 2007 theses
Thanks to the generosity and vision of Dr Leonard Polonsky, the Bodleian Libraries was able to offer to digitize a number of older Oxford DPhil theses. These are also available via ORA. However, the majority of older Law Faculty theses are still in print only, and available for consultation at the Law Library.

Finding theses from other Universities

The first index, ProQuest, requires an Oxford SSO for remote access. The others are all free online tools.