CUNY Academic Works: Not Just for Dissertations and Theses

CUNY Academic Works logoMost GC students and faculty are familiar with CUNY Academic Works, CUNY’s public access repository, but possibly only as the destination for graduating students’ dissertations, theses, and capstone projects. Indeed, since 2014 all GC dissertations, theses, and capstone projects have been posted to Academic Works. In addition, many alumni from earlier years have opted to share their dissertations with the public. (The earliest dissertation that has been “set free” is from 1966 — among the first GC dissertations ever! Are you an alum? Learn how to make your dissertation public.)

But the Academic Works cornucopia doesn’t end there. As of writing, it holds 23,043 items, 5,900 of which are from the GC. Not sure what else you might find in — or add to — Academic Works? Here’s a sampling of possibilities:

CUNY Academic Works readership map

Screenshot of the Academic Works live download map

You might be thinking, “OK, OK, I get it — there’s a lot of stuff in Academic Works. But how often is it actually discovered and downloaded?” The answer is: a lot, mostly via Google and Google Scholar. In the past year, there have been more than 1.4 million downloads by people all over the world. And, according to the live download map, 44 downloads since I started writing this paragraph.

Have you ever spent a few minutes watching the live download map? It’s mesmerizing to watch the pins steadily drop and thrilling to know that each one represents the impact of CUNY researchers and the relevance and necessity of their work.

Want to increase (and observe, through your author dashboard) the impact of your scholarly, creative, or pedagogical works? Add them to CUNY Academic Works. If you need any help or have any questions, consult our guide or email

About the Author

Jill Cirasella is the Scholarly Communication Librarian and University Liaison at the CUNY Graduate Center.