The submission agreement is needed because it allows Texas A&M University and the Texas Digital Library (TDL) to procide access to, preserve, and otherwise steward the item over its lifecycle. The submission agreement agreement does not take away the copyright from the submitter! All Texas A&M faculty, researchers, and students own copyright in their scholarly or educational work at Texas A&M University according to the Texas A&M University System Policy for Intellectual Property Management and Commercialization.
Submitters may also elect to license their work via Creative Commons. This option enables copyright holders to reserve some rights but waive others in order to facilitate scholarly sharing. See the tab "What is the Creative Commons License" on this guide.