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What is Open Access?

What is Open Access?

Why Open Access?

How Does Open Access Work?

Why Should You Care About Open Access?

Where can I learn more about Open Access?

Open Access Myths and Misunderstandings

There are a number of common misunderstandings about Open Access. The following are some of the more common. Hopefully this guide will clear them up and make things easier.

"There is one definition of Open Access"

"All Open Access is Gold Open Access."

"Open Access is not peer reviewed."

"Green Open Access is about bypassing peer review."

"Open Access journals are of low quality"

"Open Access journals are "free""

"All Open Access journals charge publication fees"

"Authors always pay article processing charges"

"Publication fees at Open Access journals are just subscriptions in disguise."

"Open Access publishing deprives authors of royalties."

"Self-archiving takes too much time."

"Open Access helps readers but not authors."

"Open Access Journals have lower impact factors."

"Open Access is about providing access to lay readers."

"Open Access makes sense for second-rate work, but not for first-rate work."

"Open Access is more expensive than subscription (because subscription journals are free)"

"Open Access prohibits commercial uses"

"Why Open Access, since the articles are already available in all academic libraries?"

"Open Access equals no copyright"

Frequently Asked Questions

We realise that Open Access raises many questions. This is always the case when one starts challenging something established. If you have questions which are not addressed in this guide, please feel free to contact us and we will do our best to help you.

What does the term Open Access mean?

Why do researchers support open access?

How do we achieve Open Access to scholarly literature?

How can I make my work more openly available?

What are the benefits of publishing Open Access?

Does Open Access have reliable peer review?

Is Open Access low quality?

The manuscript has been submitted to a subscription-only paywalled journal. Help?

Is the only way to provide open access to peer-reviewed journal articles publishing in open access journals?

What is an APC?

Do all or most open access journals charge publication fees?

I want to publish a paper in an Open Access Journal, where can I find the relevant journ?

Do I as a researcher have to pay the article processing charge?

What can I do to promote Open Access?

Does Publishing in a conventional journal closes the door on making the same work open access

How do I find out which version of my paper can be used in a institutional repo?

How do I submit a research output to the institutional repository?

If my institution doesn't have an institutional repository, where can I deposit my research papers?

What is the difference between Open Access and Open Source?

Who owns the copyright of my research?

Where can I find out if the journal I want to publish with provides gold OA?

How do the economics of Open Access work?

Must users ask the author (or copyright holder) for consent every time they wish to make or distribute a copy?

What are Creative Commons Licences?

Are there other FAQs about Open Access?

How to Open Yourself

If we have gotten you excited about doing something, great! But now what? How can you make your research more open? Read on, and see.


Publish in an Open Access Journal

Predatory Open Access Journals

Self Archive in a Repository

General Advice

What if you've already submitted/previously submitted to a subscription journal?

How to Advocate for Open Access

Convincing colleagues to publish Open Access is one of the most difficult challenges for open access advocates, both new and more experienced. Here are some actions and tips to get you started, check out the Open Access Button Action page to join the change coming to the publishing system and let us know how we can help at [email protected].

If you have 1 minute...

If you have 10 minutes...

If you have 30 minutes...

If you have an hour...

Further Reading

Even after reading this tome we have compiled, you may still have questions. Fortunately, there are numerous resources available elswhere. Try these resources if you need more information. Alternatively, get in touch and we will try to help. Obviously, this list is far from exhaustive. If you have ideas for resources that you feel should be here, let us know.


Find Open Access Resources: