Lisa Davies, April 2015
About the author
This guide was updated by Lisa Davies, Access Librarian at the IALS Library.
Click here for Lisa's full profile and contact details.
Reference Desk hours:
Tel (0)20 7862 5790
IALS and University of London PhD / MPhil law theses
IALS Library holds MPhil and PhD law theses from University of London colleges from 1945 to 2011. From 2011 onwards the IALS Library only collects theses from its own research students. Each college now keeps its own students' law theses with the expectation that they will also be available electronically through EThOS (see below). Contact the relevant college library for further information.
To search IALS Library's collection of law theses on the Library Catalogue:
1. Select the Classmark search option
2. Type in "thesis" as the search term and submit the search
3. Select the option "Limit/Sort Search" from the search results screen
4. Type in some appropriate search terms for your subject area into the "Words in Title" or "Words in Subject" fields
5. Submit the search.
Make a note of the numbers of any theses which you would like to look at. You will need to fill out a basement request form at the enquiry desk for each thesis you would like to view.
Theses are available for consultation in the library only. Loan copies (lent to libraries, not individuals) are avaiable at the University of London Library. Click here for further details.
Online resources for law theses
DART Europe is a portal to online theses provided by a partnership of research libraries and library consortia who are working together to improve global access to European research theses.
EThOS is the British Library's Electronic Theses Online System. It aims to provide open access to UK theses in many disciplines including law. You can search across over 300,000 theses for free and order full text. Please note that you can't request theses from the universities of Oxford or Cambridge through EthOS. Your institutional library may be able to assist you, or you may have to contact these universities directly.
Index to Theses is a subscription database that offers comprehensive listing of theses with abstracts accepted for higher degrees by universities in the United Kingdom and Ireland since 1716. Class code b7 is used for law. IALS Library has a subscription to this service.
NDLTD (Networked Digital Library of Theses and Dissertations) is an international organisation dedicated to promoting the creation of electronic theses. The website provides a list of online repositories of theses from many countries around the word.
ProQuest Dissertations and Theses is a subscription database that provides access to theses and dissertations from the UK and overseas. Many university libraries will provide access to this database. Check with your institutional librarian if you are unsure.
Many universities maintain their own e-repositories, which provide online access to PhD theses.
Current legal research in the UK
Current Legal Rearch Topics (CLRT) is an open access database detailing the legal subjects of research in progress by MPhil or PhD students of law in the UK. It can be used to identification of topical gaps, collaborative opportunities and expertise in supervision. Please note that the research listed is currently underway, and has not yet been completed. Therefore these dissertations are not yet available through libraries or other channels.