Since January of this year, graduate students at Virginia Tech have faced an experience unlike any encountered by their peers in other universities. They must submit their master's degree theses or doctoral dissertations in formats capable of being posted on the World Wide Web.

"What we're doing is putting theses and dissertations in our library in an electronic format so that they can be found in a search," explains John Eaton, associate vice provost for graduate studies at Virginia Tech. "We're trying to give our students access to tools that will show other scholars what they've found, and to find a way for scholars to access that information. In addition, we want our graduates to be information-literate so that they'll have better opportunities in the job market."

So far, Virginia Tech, based in Blacksburg and more formally known as Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, is the only academic institution...

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