Frequently Asked Questions


General Questions
What is JMU Scholarly Commons?

JMU Scholarly Commons is a resource for sharing the scholarship and activities of the James Madison University community. These materials include papers, presentations, data sets, images, and multimedia items.

{ top }

Where can I learn more about Institutional Repositories?

For more information on Institutional Repositories, please consult the SPARC Resource page.

{ top }

I want an item withdrawn from JMU Scholarly Commons. Who do I contact?

JMU Scholarly Commons is designed to provide long-term, persistent access to deposited items. To withdraw an item, contact JMU Digital Collections at dc_admin@jmu.edu. Please include your name; contact information, including email address; and a brief statement on the reason for withdrawal.

{ top }

I have encountered the error message “The file is damaged and could not be repaired” when I try to download a file. What do I do to resolve this?

This is a browser-based issue. This issue does not originate from the Digital Commons software. Typically this error occurs with Firefox, but can also occur with other browsers. It occurs when attempting to load a large PDF file which utilizes the Adobe Acrobat plug-in within the browser. To bypass this error, right-click on the "Download" button link for the item. Then save the item to your desktop. You will then be able to access the item from your desktop.

{ top }

Who can I contact for suggestions for software enhancements?

JMU Scholarly Commons uses Digital Commons, a hosted vendor-based solution from Berkeley Electronic Press (bepress). We recommend contacting bepress directly if you have questions about the software or wish to provide suggestions on future software enhancements. The bepress support desk is available at support@dc.bepress.com.

{ top }

Who can I contact for questions regarding JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you have questions about JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact the Digital Collections staff at dc_admin@jmu.edu.

{ top }

For JMU Faculty and Staff Members
What types of materials are eligible for contribution to JMU Scholarly Commons?

JMU Scholarly Commons accepts content that meets the following guidelines. These guidelines are subject to change.

  • The work must be produced, submitted, or sponsored by JMU faculty, researchers, or staff;
  • The work must be: scholarly, educational, or research-oriented in nature; or is considered to be official communications of James Madison University;
  • The work is intended to be a permanent part of the repository;
  • The author and/or copyright holder is willing and able to grant James Madison University the non-exclusive right to distribute and preserve the work through JMU Scholarly Commons as well as in companion and successive systems.

{ top }

What are the benefits of contributing my work to JMU Scholarly Commons?

As an institutional repository, JMU Scholarly Commons is a hub to showcase the breadth of research and scholarship at James Madison University. Contributing your work to JMU Scholarly Commons will greatly increase the discoverability and accessibility of your work. The benefits of contributing your work to JMU Scholarly Commons are:

  • Increased visibility of your work through search engine optimization, including Google Scholar and major search engines.
  • Increased accessibility of your scholarship through unique, persistent URLs that will eliminate the concern of “dead links” on other web sites.
  • A centralized location for all of your scholarship – both published and unpublished, as a compliment to existing print and electronic publications. Supplemental content can be uploaded to provide additional information and context.
  • Ability to create reports to indicate timely impact of your work, including views, downloads, and how your work was found.
  • Ease of publicizing your work through mailing lists, social media buttons, and RSS feeds.

{ top }

What about copyright?

For published works, permission to upload work to JMU Scholarly Commons is based on individual publisher guidelines and is specified in the author agreement. Many publishing agreements allow posting to the author’s institutional repository, such as JMU Scholarly Commons. If your publishing agreement allows for posting in the institutional repository, we encourage you to post the material to JMU Scholarly Commons.

For works not yet published, authors may consider using the SPARC Author Addendum in conjunction with future publishing contracts. This addendum, if agreed to by the publisher, will enable the author to publish works in their institutional repository, such as JMU Scholarly Commons.

{ top }

What file formats are accepted by JMU Scholarly Commons?

Text-based documents should be submitted as pdf files to ensure proper formatting, preservation, and enhanced discoverability through search engine optimization.

If you have any questions regarding file formats, please contact Digital Collections at: lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu.

{ top }

How do I contribute my work to JMU Scholarly Commons?

To begin contributing work to Scholarly Commons, please visit our instructions page.

{ top }

My work has been published in a journal or book. Can I still deposit my work in JMU Scholarly Commons?

It depends. Consult your publication agreement to ensure compliance with that document prior to posting to JMU Scholarly Commons. If you have any questions regarding publication agreements and publishing in institutional repositories, please contact Digital Collections at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu or your liaison librarian for assistance and they will be happy to help you with this question.

To contribute this work to JMU Scholarly Commons, follow the instructions for submitting research to JMU Scholarly Commons.

{ top }

I just had a new publication come out. How can I contribute this work to JMU Scholarly Commons?

Be sure to consult your publication agreement to ensure compliance with that document prior to posting to JMU Scholarly Commons. If you have any questions regarding publication agreements and publishing in institutional repositories, please contact Digital Collections at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu or your liaison librarian for assistance.

To contribute this work to JMU Scholarly Commons, follow the instructions for submitting research to JMU Scholarly Commons.

{ top }

I don’t have electronic versions of old working papers that I would like to include in JMU Scholarly Commons. Can I scan the printed paper to a pdf file?

Absolutely. Scan the items to a pdf file, save, and then upload the item as any other.

{ top }

Can I deposit my datasets to JMU Scholarly Commons?

Yes, you can deposit datasets to JMU Scholarly Commons. Follow the instructions for submitting research to JMU Scholarly Commons and select “Dataset” as the Document Type.

{ top }

How do I revise a submission?

If the file has not been posted to JMU Scholarly Commons, you can revise the submission by logging in to JMU Scholarly Commons. Once logged in, select the work to be revised. In the left-hand menu, select “Revise”. You will then be taken to a form with the information pre-populated from the last submission or revision. Make the revisions within the form, and / or upload a new, revised file, or additional files as needed. Once the revisions are complete, click the “Submit” box and wait for the prompt indicating the submission has been revised.

If a file has been posted to JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact the JMU Scholarly Commons administrators for assistance at dc_admin@jmu.edu.

{ top }

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

Yes, you can post related files alongside publications within Scholarly Commons. If you have any questions, please consult with your liaison librarian or digital collections Digital Collections (lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu).

{ top }

I don’t have time to locate all of my publications. Can the library deposit my work on my behalf?

Unfortunately this service is not currently available.

{ top }

Who should I contact for questions and assistance with JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you have questions about JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact the Digital Collections staff at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu.

{ top }

Publishing with JMU Scholarly Commons
What types of materials does JMU Scholarly Commons publish?

JMU Scholarly Commons publishes journals, magazines, newsletters, conference proceedings, and other publications affiliated with the JMU community.

{ top }

What is the process for publishing with JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you are interested in publishing with JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact Digital Collections at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu for more information.

{ top }

My department publishes a journal/newsletter. Can we publish it on JMU Scholarly Commons?

For more information on publishing journals and newsletters, please contact Digital Collections at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu.

{ top }

My department hosts an annual conference. Does JMU Scholarly Commons publish conference proceedings?

For more information on publishing conference proceedings and event management, please contact Digital Collections at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu.

{ top }

Selected Works
What is the difference between SelectedWorks and JMU Scholarly Commons?

JMU Scholarly Commons is an institutional repository and open access publishing platform. With JMU Scholarly Commons, the scholarly activity of the JMU Community can be viewed in one place.

SelectedWorks is a tool for individuals to highlight and promote personal scholarly activity by providing access to your scholarly output and social media and mailing list tools to distribute your work. With SelectedWorks, you can maintain your site over time, becoming a permanent page for your work and activities. If you leave JMU you will have the ability to retain full privileges to your SelectedWorks page.

{ top }

I already have a personal web site, why should I create a SelectedWorks page?

SelectedWorks, while similar to other personal web sites, is a powerful tool that allows for sharing of your scholarship using a variety of tools and effective reporting of the use of these same items. With SelectedWorks, you and your readers can take advantage of the mailing list, social media sharing, RSS feeds, and other mechanisms to share your work. Additionally, you can create customized reports on the usage of your work, including how many views and downloads, which can be useful in demonstrating the impact of your scholarship.

{ top }

I have already added content to JMU Scholarly Commons. Do I need to enter it all again to post to my SelectedWorks page?

If you have entered scholarly content into JMU Scholarly Commons, you do not need to re-enter it into SelectedWorks. During setup, click the “Collect bepress content” button and review the results to import your work from JMU Scholarly Commons and other Digital Commons sites to your SelectedWorks site.

{ top }

I would like to setup a SelectedWorks page. Who do I contact?

To setup a SelectedWorks page, contact your liaison librarian or Digital Collections (lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu).

{ top }

Who should I contact for questions and assistance with my SelectedWorks page?

For assistance with your SelectedWorks page, please contact Digital Collections (lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu).

{ top }

For JMU Undergraduate Students
Does JMU Scholarly Commons accept content from JMU undergraduate students?

Yes, JMU Scholarly Commons accepts scholarly articles, publications, posters, presentations, theses, dissertations, and other scholarly work.

{ top }

How do I submit my Honors project to JMU Scholarly Commons?

The Honors Program maintains the current, up-to-date guidelines and procedures on submitting theses and dissertations to JMU Scholarly Commons.

{ top }

I am an alum of JMU. May I submit my Honors project to JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you are a JMU alumnus/a and would like to have your work available through JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact Digital Collections at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu.

{ top }

Who should I contact for questions and assistance with JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you have questions about JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact the Digital Collections staff at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu

{ top }

For JMU Graduate Students
Does JMU Scholarly Commons accept content from JMU graduate students?

Yes, JMU Scholarly Commons accepts scholarly articles, publications, posters, presentations, theses, dissertations, and other scholarly work.

{ top }

How do I submit my Thesis or Dissertation to JMU Scholarly Commons?

The Graduate School maintains the current, up-to-date guidelines and procedures on submitting theses and dissertations to JMU Scholarly Commons.

{ top }

I previously submitted my thesis or dissertation through the library’s ETD submission form (2010-2014). Do I need to resubmit my thesis or dissertation to JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you submitted your thesis or dissertation through the library’s ETD submission form between 2010 and 2014, you do not need to resubmit your work to JMU Scholarly Commons. All materials submitted through the library’s ETD submission form will be migrated in time to JMU Scholarly Commons.

{ top }

I am an alum of JMU. May I submit my thesis or dissertation to JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you are a JMU alumnus/a and would like to have your work available through JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact Digital Collections at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu.

{ top }

Who should I contact for questions and assistance with JMU Scholarly Commons?

If you have questions about JMU Scholarly Commons, please contact the Digital Collections staff at lib-digitalcollections@jmu.edu

{ top }