Graduate Theses Digitization Update #3


Beginning in 2015, the Frances Willson Thompson Library has taken steps to preserve and make more accessible UM-Flint’s graduate theses and dissertations.

Since our last update we have continued to work on the project by adding theses to Deep Blue as students graduate and by reaching out to the remaining authors. We have now contacted all the authors for whom we were able to find contact information. In the end, we sent out over 700 letters asking for authors’ permission to allow the full text of their work to be made available to a larger audience than the three UM campuses.

We have also continued to track how many times the theses have been downloaded from Deep Blue, the University of Michigan’s institutional repository.

Deep Blue by the Numbers

  • 411 theses have been added to Deep Blue between July 2015 and June 2017; the bulk of the theses (375) were added in May 2016.
  • 239 theses (58% of the 411) have been downloaded at least once.
  • 10,901 downloads have occurred since July 2015 when the first few theses were added.
  • 184 of the 411 theses (45%) are designated as open access, meaning they are freely available to anyone on the internet through Deep Blue and search engines, like Google Scholar.
  • 179 of the 184 openly accessible theses (97%) have been downloaded at least once.
  • 60 of the 227 theses (26%) that are only accessible on UM campuses have been downloaded at least once; only 4 of these theses have been downloaded more than five times.
  • 10,772 of the 10,901 total downloads (99%) were for the openly accessible theses.
  • 129 of the 10,901 total downloads (1%) were for the theses only accessible on UM campuses.

Charting Deep Blue

A chart of the number of individual theses downloaded monthly from May 2016 to June 2017. Click to enlarge.
A chart of the total number of downloads from May 2016 to June 2017. Click to enlarge
A chart comparing the number of theses downloaded from May – December 2016 (8 months) and January – June 2017 (6 months). Click to enlarge.

Top 10 Downloaded Theses (as of June 2017)

Title Author Year Program Downloads
Comparing Public and Private Prison Systems Joseph Shannon Gregson 2000 Public Administration 2949
Faces of Feminism: The Gibson Girl and the Held Flapper in Early Twentieth Century Mass Culture Raina-Joy Jenifer Palso 2001 Liberal Studies 1119
Hemingway in Turkey:  The Influence of His Turkish Experiences on His Writing Neriman Kuyucu 2013 Liberal Studies 453
The Cult of True Womanhood: Women of the Mid-nineteenth Century and Their Assigned Roles as Reflected in Contemporary Writing Laurie Bonventre 2005 Liberal Studies 448
Shadow Warriors: Navy SEALS and the Rise in American Society Cory Butzin 2009 Liberal Studies 412
An American Indian Revolution:  The American Indian Movement and the Occupation of Wounded Knee, SD, 1973  Nicholas A. Timmerman 2012 Liberal Studies 290
Joseph McCarthy and the Loss of China:  A Study in Fear and Panic Adam Ferenz 2014 Liberal Studies 209
Ellery Queen: Forgotten Master Detective Cathy Akers-Jordan 1998 Liberal Studies 180
Capturing Detroit Through An Underground Lens: Issues of the Sixties Inside Pages of the Detroit Fifth Estate, 1965-1970 Harold Bressmer Edsall 2010 Liberal Studies 172
Effects of autumn olive (Elaeagnus umbellata Thunb.) density on the growth of mature white oak trees (Quercus alab L.) Marija R. Andrijonas 2011 Biology 168

Going Forward

In the coming months we are digitizing the remaining 270 theses with Proquest and adding them to Deep Blue.

If you have any questions about this project, please contact Liz Svoboda at