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I published a master's thesis through some online system through my university. They said they would post it online, but I'm not able to find it online.

For a few months, it was hosted on my personal page on the university domain, so it was downloadable in Google Scholar, but that's no longer the case.

How can I make my paper more accessible to people searching for the topic? Is this a common thing to do?

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    Have you considered uploading the thesis to arXiv? I did that for my B.Sc. thesis because for some reason my school repository allows downloading B.Sc. theses only by employees of the school. – juhist Nov 19 '16 at 20:04
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arXiv is the de facto way of publishing papers online. Considering that arXiv allows publishing theses as well (see Is it advisable to upload theses to the arXiv?), I would consider arXiv a good option for long-term public storage of your thesis.

However, you have to be aware of certain things.

Firstly, things posted to arXiv are public forever. This means you cannot remove your thesis from there once it is published. I would consider this to be the case for all information posted to the Internet (it is theoretically possible someone has a copy), but it may be the case that nobody is interested enough in your thesis to have a copy.

Secondly, your must be aware of your university policy. Some universities may not allow posting your thesis online. However, I wouldn't choose to attend such a university if I had a choice.

Thirdly, arXiv requires you to post the full LaTeX source code if your thesis is made in LaTeX. This means all of your university's LaTeX style files that may be copyrighted by your university need to be posted too.

Fourthly, arXiv covers only some fields. I was lucky to have my thesis in the field that arXiv covers. If your thesis isn't within arXiv's scope, you have to find a suitable repository from elsewhere.

I'm not sure if the LaTeX source requirement is valid anymore, but it was valid when I posted my thesis in 2014. I actually just was lazy and didn't check with the university if posting the university's .sty files is permitted. I don't expect to be sued because of this. With some amount of work, you could eliminate the use of your university's .sty files, but then the thesis wouldn't look like a thesis made in your university.

  • This is pretty accurate in the fields which arXiv covers. But it only covers a few specific fields. – Nate Eldredge Nov 19 '16 at 20:31
  • Answer edited to note that arXiv covers only some fields. I actually forgot that, because I uploaded my thesis over two years ago. – juhist Nov 19 '16 at 20:33
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    A friend of mine has recently posted his PhD thesis on the arxiv without providing a latex source due to the fact that it wouldn't compile with the arxiv version of tikZ (which appears to be outdated with no clear expectation of update). But that required some back-and-forth with arxiv moderators. – darij grinberg Nov 20 '16 at 0:58
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You can create a simple home page for yourself, for example at wordpress.com, and publish your thesis there. You can link to your home page from various other places. For example, if you have a google profile, you can link from that. Also, if your department or group lists former students, it may be possible to include a link. Finally, you can create a Google Scholar profile page.

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