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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign


This guide has information on how to deposit and access IDEALS materials for individuals and collection administrators.

Access Restriction Policy

Permanent link to current and past versions of the IDEALS Access Restriction Policy

By default, items in IDEALS have no access restrictions, that is, they are openly and freely available via the World Wide Web. Open access to deposited items encourages a primary mission of IDEALS: the distribution, dissemination, promotion, and use of research and scholarship produced at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). The University Library and Technology Services strongly encourage depositors not to place access restrictions on deposited items.

However, there may be some situations when depositors need to restrict access to items in IDEALS. For example, a publisher may allow deposit of published articles into an institutional repository, but require an embargo of six months before the article may be made publicly accessible. Such a postprint might be deposited into IDEALS, but no access would be allowed for a period of six months.

Access restrictions for dissertations and theses deposited after 2010 are covered under a different policy. See Policies governing dissertations and theses.

IDEALS allows depositors to impose access restrictions at the item or individual file level. The individual depositor or the IDEALS unit or collection administrator is responsible for the decision to impose access restrictions.

Access restrictions on an item or file may be set to one of the following levels:

  • Level 1: UIUC Only. Restricted to University of Illinois unit members with a NetID and password only. Theses and dissertations with this restriction may be requested by outside users via interlibrary loan only; this is not true for other material restricted to the University of Illinois. This restriction may last indefinitely or may be for a limited amount of time.

  • Level 2: Closed Access. Files are embargoed and inaccessible to anyone but they are still visible. This restriction may last indefinitely or may be for a limited amount of time.

An entire item (but not individual files) can also be completely embargoed:

  • Level 3: Hidden items. (i.e. accessible to no one via the web) for a specific period of time. These are not visible except to an IDEALS administrator or a unit or collection administrator.

Access restrictions may be set to never expire or may be set to expire after a specified period of time. If access restrictions are necessary, we urge depositors to only put in place the minimum level of restriction necessary.

If a depositor wishes to set access restrictions on an item, they may do so during the deposit process. Restricting access to the University of Illinois unit (Level 1) or establishing an embargo period (Level 3) will require no further action on the part of the depositor.


An IDEALS unit who wishes to restrict access to all material in a specific collection must contact IDEALS staff who will assist them in establishing these restrictions.

If a depositor wishes to restrict access, change the level or time period of restrictions, or lift restrictions to an item after it has been deposited, they must contact the IDEALS staff in order to make these changes. IDEALS unit and Collection administrators may also change the level or time period of a restriction.