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VTechWorks: Describe and upload your work

This is a user's guide to the Virginia Tech online repository, VTechWorks.

Connect and Contact

Connect:          Contact:

In addition to the instructions below, see the how-to videos for registering and submitting our work to VTechWorks.

If you are ready to submit your ETD, go to the VT Graduate School's ESS (linked from the ETD guide).

1. Getting Started

  1. Go to VTechWorks homepage.
  2. Select "Log in" from the column on the right under MY ACCOUNT.
    • If you don't have an account, click on the "Add our work" tab and follow the steps to register.
    • After you've registered, enter your email address--the one you used when you registered.
    • Enter the password you created for VTechWorks.
    • After you have logged in you will be returned to the VTechWorks homepage.
  3. Select "Submissions" from the column on the right under My Account.
    • You will see that it now says, “Log out.”
  4. Select "start a new submission"
  5. In the drop-down menu, find the collection you want to submit your work to, e.g., CLAHS -- Department of English -- Vaccination Research Group...
  6. Next you will be asked for the metadata, that is the information that describes the material you're submitting.
    • Have your file ready to upload. You will upload it during the description phase of the submission.


With very few exceptions, everything in VTechWorks is copyrighted.

For the most part, the author or creator of the work is the copyright holder unless they assigned it to someone else. Exceptions include "works for hire," most US federal publications, and works that are in the pubic domain due to age or assignment.

We recommend adding a Creative Commons license to your work in order to let people know whether and how they may use your work. CC-BY means that your retain your copyright while at the same time you give others permission to use your work as long as they give you credit, i.e., attribution: BY. You may add NC to the license to denote that your work may not be used for commercial purposes. Add ND and you indicate that others may not alter or make derivatives of your work. Add SA and you tell others that they may "share alike," that is re-uses must be issued under the same license.

See the library's COPYRIGHT resources.

Make your work available

VTechWorks is a publicly available repository. Each item you deposit will become immediately available unless you choose to embargo it temporarily.

When you submit an item to VTechWorks, you will have to opportunity to "hide" it until a specific date. When an item has multiple parts, each part can have a different availability date.

  • When an item is embargoed, its metadata (i.e., description) will display to the public, but the associated file the metadata describes will not be accessible.
  • You will be asked to briefly explain why it should not be publicly available for the embargo period (e.g., applying for a patent).
  • The embargo reason is not displayed to the public; it is for administration only.

Is anybody finding your work?

In the right-hand column of every item in VTechWorks, there is a link to "View Usage Statistis." Here anyone may see:

There are also download statistics below the linked file name; and sometimes an Altmetric "donut" at the bottom of that column also.


Tell people where to find your work

Every item that is uploaded to VTechWorks receives a unique identifier. In VTechworks these are called "handles." They look like this:

The "handle" is a permanent URL (web address). This means that if we moved your item to a new server, the URL would not change.

Last step

The last step in the VTechWorks submission process is to formally give Virginia Tech Libraries permission to store and provide access to your work. This is called a non-exclusive license and it doesn't change the fact that the author/creator is the copyright holder. If you have any questions about copyright, contact or

Describe (metadata) and Upload

Describe the work you're submitting to VTechWorks. There are several screens and at each one you will have the opportunity to "Save and Exit" or go to the "Next" screen and continue describing the work. You will have the opportunity to edit your description throughout the submission process. (These are the steps for a typical article submission. Steps will vary slightly if you're submitting a video or other content type."

* denotes required field, i.e., title, date, file.

  1. Item Type: select from these categories
    • Article, Audio Recording, Book, Book chapter, Dataset, Dissertation, Image, Learning Object, Map, Presentation, Report, Software, Thesis, Video recording, Other
    • To select more than one, hold down "CTRL" or "Shift" or "COMMAND" key
  2. Author/Creator: enter the name of the person(s) who wrote or made the work.  
    • If there is more than one, enter each name individually, then click "Add".
    • To use VTechWorks' name lookup function, click "Lookup" in the "Last name" box and you will be directed to an index of names already in VTechWorks.
  3. *Title: enter the name of the item you’re submitting to VTechWorks
  4. *Date: enter at least the year
  • Enter at least the year of publication or public distribution (e.g., a conference presentation).
  • If the item has not been previously published, enter today's date: year, month, day.
  1. Identifiers. These are numbers or codes unique to the item you're submitting
  • DOI: Digital Object Identifier
    • assigned by agencies such as Crossref
    • often already on a peer-reviewed article
  • Gov't Doc #: federal government document number
  • ISBN: International Standard Book Number
    • Printed books and electronic books have different ISBNs.
  • ISSN: International Standard Serial Number
    • Printed journals and electronic journals have different ISBNs.
  • ORCID: Open Researcher and Contributor IDentification Number
  • URL (web link): online address where the item originally appeared
  • Other
  1. Language
  • Select the main language of the item
  • If the item does not really have a language (i.e., dataset or image), select "N/A"
  1. Conference Title: name of formal meeting where the work was presented
  2. Publisher. If the item has not been published, enter "Virginia Tech."
  3. Series/Report Number, e.g., AREC-216
    • Name of the group that this item is part of, e.g., AREC
    • Number of the item in the group
  4. Funding. If there was more than one source of financial support, enter each funder name or grant number separately, then click "Add."
  5. Abstract: summary of the content of the item
  • About 300 words, but any length will be accepted
  • If you have more than one paragraph, double space between them.
  1. Subject Keywords
  • Enter words or phrases that describe the item's content, especially if they do not appear in the Abstract.
  • Enter each word or phrase separately, then click "Add."
  1. Journal Title: name of the periodical the article appears in
  2. Volume: number of the journal where the article appeared
  3. Issue: number of the issue of the volume
  4. Notes: any additional information that will help describe the item you are submitting.
  5. *File: all common files types will be accepted
  • Click the "Browse" button to find the file to be uploaded
  • Repeat browse and find until all the files associated with this metadata have been uploaded.
  • PDF/A is preferred so that documents can be saved for the long term
  1. Embargo this file until a specific date.
  • To keep this file private until a certain date, enter the date on which it should become public.
  • Each file you add can have a different embargo period.
  • Use the pop-up calendar to pick a date or type the date in manually (e.g., 2020-04-01 for a file that will become publicly available on April 1, 2020)
  • The metadata/description will display to the public, but the associated file will not be accessible.
  1. Embargo reason
  • Briefly explain why a file to should not be publicly available for the embargo period (.e., applying for a patent).
  • The embargo reason is not displayed to the public; it is for administration only.

After completing 17-19, you will have the opportunity to proofread the description of your item and make changes and to add more files (repeating steps 17-19).

  1. Copyright

You're done! Now your submission will be assessed by the collection's approved reviewer. You will receive emails acknowledging your submission and a link to the handle (URL) when it is approved.