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Information Systems Library Guide: Books and Theses

A guide to information for Information Systems students from UCT Libraries

How to find books in PRIMO

This presentation will show you on how to use the Primo to find books, print journals, CDs, videos and DVDs available in UCT Libraries. Primo will tell you what books we have in your subject area, and the shelf-numbers where you will find those books.



A  thesis is a detailed report documenting the research work completed by a student for completion of a higher degree.  UCT Libraries keep a copy of all UCT doctoral and master's theses on OPEN UCT . UCT honours theses are not held by the Libraries. Honours theses are kept by the academic departments to which they were submitted.

Theses can be a valuable source of information, especially for postgraduate students, who need to know what previous research has been done in their field of study, and who want to see models of thesis documents to help them prepare their own theses.  

UCT theses:
To search for UCT theses on PRIMO, you can use either the author's name or the title of the thesis.  To search for theses on a particular topic, type in the keyword(s) for the topic followed by the word "thesis".

    e.g.    stratigraphy thesis

South African theses:
To search for theses from other South African universities, use the Union Catalogue of Theses and Dissertations (UCTD).  This database records theses and dissertations submitted to universities in South Africa since 1918.  Our Interlibrary Loans Department can obtain South African theses for you to borrow, usually in hard copy but sometimes in microfiche format. You can also access South African theses via the SABINET Reference Database under "Theses and Dissertations".

International theses:

You may wish to consult ProQuest Dissertations and Theses. This is an authoritative resource for information about doctoral dissertations and master’s theses. Dissertations published from 1980 forward include 350- word abstracts written by the author. Master’s theses published from 1988 forward include 150-word abstracts. Titles available as native or image PDF formats include free twenty-four page previews. UMI offers over 1.8 million titles for purchase in microform, paper or electronic formats.

You may therefore prefer to purchase theses from ProQuest Dissertation Express.  Alternatively, you can consult the web site of the university to which the thesis was submitted to see if their theses can be purchased directly.

Many institutions make their theses available on the web as ETDs (Electronic Theses & Dissertations) ... so before purchasing a thesis, check our Theses & Dissertations page--the thesis you want may be available on the web, free of charge. 

Manage your library account

This video will show you how you can renew the items you have on loan, update your requests and view fines or messages in My Library Card.