Frequently Asked Questions


How is Clark Digital Commons Organized?

Clark Digital Commons is full text searchable, but for navigation purposes, it is organized in 4 communities:
Academic Departments, Centers & Programs; Conference Proceedings; Scholarly Collections and Academic Work; Special Collections. Each community consists of collections. All collections of materials must have at least one named “collection administrator” whom is a current university staff or faculty member, has received an orientation to the system, agrees to that the collection will abide by Clark’s copyright policies, and is familiar with the metadata needs associated with their collection in Clark Digital Commons.

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How do I contribute content to a collection or start a new collection?

Members of the Clark University community are invited to contribute content to Clark Digital Commons by using the Submit an Item link on the home page of Commons or by contacting the .

Submission of materials to Clark Digital Commons is open to groups, departments, centers, divisions, or programs composed of faculty, investigators, staff and students affiliated with Clark University. The work submitted must be in digital form. If parts of the item require different file formats, ideally all of the digital pieces will be provided as a set. (For example, a PDF document with its associated data file(s)). Neither Goddard Library nor ITS by virtue of introducing the Clark Digital Commons service imply that we provide digitizing services necessary to ready items for a collection. The readying of items is the responsibility of the submitter and/or the collection administrator and must comply with acceptable quality standards set forth by the Goddard Library and ITS.

All self-submitters of material to Clark Digital Commons must agree that:

  1. They hold copyrights for all content contributed; in cases where Creative Commons licensing is utilized for a collection that the submitter selects and agrees to a level of licensing;
  2. Except in the case of “embargoed” items (items included in the Clark Digital Commons database but not visible in search results), they grant Clark University the non-exclusive right to preserve and distribute their work over the Internet;
  3. Except in the case of “embargoed” items, that the full text of electronic files will be eligible for inclusion in search results associated with Clark Digital Commons;
  4. They have the power and authority to submit the work;
  5. The work does not infringe on any copyright, nor violate any proprietary rights, nor contain any libelous matter, nor invade the privacy of any person or third party;
  6. The work is free from liens and claims;
  7. Except for unique circumstances (such as discovering a copyright infringement), the work will not be removed from the Clark Digital Commons.
See also the Policies and Submission Guidelines page.

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What guides the establishing of a collection?

Collection administrators work with Goddard Library and ITS in determining the specifics regarding a collection including, but not limited to:

  • what types of items are appropriate to a particular collection;
  • what electronic formats are acceptable in a particular collection;
  • who may add/remove items;
  • who may view items in the collection.

There are four management strategies associated with collections in Clark Digital Commons: highly managed, selectively managed, unmanaged, and peer reviewed. Collections may be:

  • highly managed - all objects submitted for inclusion in the collection are reviewed by Goddard Library cataloging experts before the item is made available in the repository.
  • selectively managed - all objects submitted for inclusion in a collection are reviewed by a named collection administrator before the item is made available in the depository.
  • peer reviewed - objects in the collection are self-deposited and a workflow associated with a peer review process is employed before they are available in the depository.

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Are all materials in Clark Digital Commons peer reviewed scholarship?

Inclusion of materials in Clark Digital Commons does not imply scholarly or peer review, unless included in a collection designated as such.

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What file types are allowed and how are they maintained?

Clark Digital Commons allows a broad range of file type submissions to accommodate the range of artifacts and collections it is designed to accommodate. Files associated with a record in Clark Digital Commons are provided “as is” at the time of submission. With the exception of PDFs, file types are not automatically updated to most recent formats (for example, .docs are not automatically migrated to .docx). Neither the submitter, Goddard Library, ITS, nor a collection administrator is responsible for providing updated file types in the event that a media or file type becomes outdated.

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I don't have electronic versions of old working papers that I'd like to include in the repository. Is it okay to scan the printed page to a PDF file?

Yes--scanning printed pages is a great way to create PDF files for inclusion in the repository. There are two ways to scan a page: using OCR (Optical Character Recognition) or scanning the page as an image. Making OCR scans requires careful proofreading and loses the original formatting of the documents. Image scans cannot be searched. The best solution takes advantage of both of these methods. Many software applications allow for the OCR capture of image scans. When documents are scanned this way, users see the image scan but search the full-text of the document. This is the preferred method for scanning documents for the repository.

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When I copy and paste abstracts into the Submit form, some formatted text reverts to plain text. What's going on?

When copying abstracts from a word processing file or a PDF file, and pasting the text into the submission form, you are taking text from an environment that supports fonts and text style changes. Because the abstract is intended to be presented on the web, text styles must be specified using HTML codes.

If submitting an abstract in HTML format, please be sure to select the corresponding option on the submission form.

The following HTML tags are recognized by the system and may be used to format an abstract (use lowercase tags):

How to include HTML tags

HTML tags
<p> - paragraph
<p>This is the first paragraph.</p>
<p>This is the second paragraph.</p>

This is the first paragraph.

This is the second paragraph.

<br /> - line break
<p>This is a line of text with a linebreak here. <br /> This is text after</p>

This is a line of text with a linebreak here.
This is text after

<strong> - strong/bold
<strong>bold text</strong>

bold text

<em> - italics/emphasis
<em>italicized text</em>

italicized text

<sub> - subscript
Text with <sub>subscript</sub>

Text with subscript

<sup> - superscript
Text with <sup>superscript</sup>

Text with superscript

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How do I include accents and special characters in the abstracts and titles?

The repository software supports the worldwide character set (Unicode, utf-8). Accents, symbols, and other special characters may be copied and pasted into the abstract or title field from a word processing file or typed in directly. Windows users may also use the Character Map to insert these characters. Apple users may use the Character Palette (available via Edit > Special Characters in the Finder).

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How do I revise a submission?

To revise a submission that has been posted to the repository, contact the repository administrator with the new version.

If the submission has been submitted, but not yet posted, you may revise it via your My Account page:

  1. Locate the article on your My Account page, and click the title.
  2. Click Revise Submission from the list of options in the left sidebar.
  3. Enter your changes in the Revise Submission form, and click Submit at the bottom of the page to submit your changes. (You only need to modify the portion of the form that corresponds to the changes you wish to make.)

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How can I submit a multi-part file, such as multiple chapters for a book?

Combine all the sections together as one Microsoft Word file or PDF file and submit that.

To make one PDF file from multiple files, open the first PDF file, then choose Document>Insert Pages from Acrobat's menus to insert the second file (indicate it should go after the last page of the first file), and repeat for all documents. The result will be one compound PDF file which may then be submitted.

If you feel that the one large PDF file might be too large for some people to download, we suggest that you submit the consolidated file as the full text of the article, and then upload the separate chapters or sections of the document as Associated Files. These files will appear on the web page alongside the complete document. For more information about uploading associated files, see below.

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Can I post related files (sound clips, data sets, etc.) alongside the published article?

Yes. The bepress system refers to these supplementary items as Associated Files. You will be prompted to submit Associated Files when you upload your submissions. The name of the files you upload will appear on the web site along with your short description of it. Viewers must have the necessary software to open your files; that is not provided by the bepress system.

Please be sure that there are no permissions issues related to use of the associated material. Sometimes, especially with images, you must write a letter seeking permission to use the material before it can be posted.

Also note that where possible, items such as images, charts and tables that are referenced in the document (or otherwise an integral part of the document) should be included directly in the article itself and not posted just as associated files.

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Can I post a reprint from a journal?

It depends on what the journal allows, which is usually specified in their agreement with the author. If it would not violate copyright to post the reprint on your repository site, you're welcome to do so. Permissions for many publishers can be found at SHERPA RoMEO.

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A working paper in our repository site has been published in a slightly revised form in a journal. What should I do?

Many journals do not have any restrictions on working papers that preceded an article, especially if substantial revisions were made. You should check your author agreement with the journal to confirm that there is no problem with leaving the working paper on the site. The repository would constitute noncommercial use.

Assuming the working paper does remain on posted in the repository, it is a good idea to include the citation to the published article on the cover page of the repository working paper. Please contact the repository administrator to request this change.

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