Pendergrass Library: Digitized Theses Now Accessible Worldwide

The Pendergrass Agriculture and Veterinary Medicine Library has digitized its entire collection of University of Tennessee theses and dissertations, making the work of UT graduates visible to scholars around the globe.

Theses and dissertations in veterinary medicine and agriculture disciplines that were formerly housed at Pendergrass Library are now available online through TRACE, UT Knoxville’s open-access digital repository.

Library staff began work on the digitization project in fall of 2022. Over the following year, they scanned approximately 304,000 pages, uploaded documents to TRACE, and updated cataloging records. A similar project is underway for the theses and dissertations formerly housed in the John C. Hodges Library, which are currently in storage.

TRACE, the Tennessee Research and Creative Exchange, is a publicly-accessible archive of research and creative work produced by UT Knoxville scholars and researchers. In addition to theses and dissertations, TRACE preserves academic journal articles, technical reports, data sets, creative works, and administrative records.

Masters and doctoral candidates are now required to submit electronic copies of their theses and dissertations directly to TRACE. Materials deposited in TRACE are more discoverable by Internet search engines and are freely available to the public as well as to other researchers.

Despite the range of scholarly materials available in electronic format, academic libraries still struggle with a shortage of space to house physical collections or new services for library users. Pendergrass Library’s digitization project has freed up much-needed space and, by adding digitized theses and dissertations to a publicly accessible digital archive, is enhancing the research impact of UT graduates’ work.