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Guide to CaltechTHESIS

Theses must be submitted in electronic form as part of the graduation requirements for Caltech. This guide serves as a tool for this process.

Using CaltechDATA as a Repository for Supplemental Material

Caltech Library encourages you to share data files, software, and other supplemental material, along with the text of your thesis. CaltechDATA is a resource you can use to preserve any type of file as you write your thesis.

Important Considerations for Using CaltechDATA:

  • You will need to provide basic information about the files, such as the authors and how another researcher could use them.
  • Items in CaltechDATA are organized into records, which can contain multiple files.
  • You could have one record per chapter, one record for raw and one for processed data, or many different records.
  • Each record is assigned a Digital Object Identifier (DOI) which will always link to the files.

Flexible Options

  • You can submit files to CaltechDATA before your thesis is completed and embargo the files until your thesis is released.
  • You can adjust the embargo date (as well as other metadata) at any time until the files are made public.
  • Although you cannot change files once they have been uploaded to CaltechDATA, you may want to replace embargoed files with a new version.  Email for assistance.

GitHub and CaltechDATA

If you use GitHub to manage software, CaltechDATA has an integration to automatically preserve your software.

  • After logging into CaltechDATA, go to your profile and select GitHub.
  • Follow the instructions to link your GitHub account, and you'll get a list of your public GitHub repositories.
  • Check the repositories you are interested in preserving, and when you do a software release in GitHub a copy of the software will be saved in CaltechDATA.
  • You'll also get a DOI that you can use to refer to the specific software version.

Linking your CaltechDATA record(s) to your CaltechTHESIS record

  • To link your CaltechDATA records to your thesis, include the CaltechDATA DOIs in the Related URL section of CaltechTHESIS with type DOI. When your thesis is approved, we will automatically add your thesis DOI to all records in CaltechDATA.  Email for assistance.

For More Information

Visit the Library's CaltechDATA information website to find out more, including the frequently asked questions.  Please feel free to send us an email at

Which Record Should I Create First? CaltechTHESIS or CaltechDATA?

1. Create the CaltechTHESIS record first so that you have a a resolver URL to add to the CaltechDATA record that you'll create next.

  • Once you've got at least the basics of the CaltechTHESIS' record finished, then create the CaltechDATA record and link back to the CaltechTHESIS' record.

2. Create a record for your supplementary material in CaltechDATA and add the files.

  • Add the Resolver URL for the CaltechTHESIS record in the Related Identifiers field.
  • Library staff will change the Resolver URL to the CaltechTHESIS record to its DOI once it has been created.

3. Return to your CaltechTHESIS record and finish filling out the metadata fields.

  • Add the CaltechDATA DOI to your Related URLS field. Include a very short description of the CaltechDATA contents in the Description subfield.
  • Attach your thesis files to the record, including both the PDF and the source files (files used to create the PDF).

4. After the Library has received final approval from the Grad Office for your thesis, library staff will create the thesis DOI and attach it to the CaltechTHESIS record. The CaltechDATA record will be updated a little later.