If you haven’t searched for theses on a topic of interest for your family history you haven’t done an exhaustive search.
Theses Canada, launched in 1965 at the request of the deans of Canadian graduate schools, is a collaborative program between Library and Archives Canada (LAC) and Canadian universities. It strives to:
- acquire and preserve theses and dissertations from participating universities
- provide free access to Canadian digital theses and dissertations in the collection
- facilitate access to non-digital theses and dissertations in the collection.
The number of theses in the collection grew steadily from 2005 to 2012. Subsequently, it has fallen precipitously. What happened?
I doubt universities are producing theses at one-tenth the rate they did at the peak. Could it be the universities are less interested in making them available? Is LAC no longer interested and diverting resources needed to keep the system going? Whatever the reason, Theses Canada has declined in value as a research tool in recent years.