Open access is the practice of providing free, unlimited online access to scholarly works and research outputs in a digital format, with limited restrictions on re-use.
The benefits of open access (OA) include:
There are two ways of making your publications open access: Green open access (self-archiving) or gold open access.
Authors publish their work in a journal then deposit a version of the article for free public use in their institutional repository (e.g. Pure) or a central subject-based repository (e.g. Arxiv or PubMed Central). This is known as self-archiving and is often referred to as the "green" route to open access. Depending on what the journal publisher will allow, the version archived is often an author's final version rather than the published version.
Authors publish in an open access journal, or choose an open access option in a hybrid journal, to make the paper open access immediately on publication. There is often a fee (article processing charge - APC) associated with this option which the author or their institution will pay.
For more information regarding the different types of open access please see our definitions document below.
The University's preference is to primarily achieve open access through the green route, by making appropriate versions of research outputs available in the institutional repository in line with publisher's policies. There is no internal central fund for gold open access. However, the University is in receipt of a small block grant from RCUK to support gold open access for papers resulting from RCUK funded projects. This grant is finite and is available to researchers on a first come, first served basis for publications that meet the requirements of the RCUK Open Access Policy. For further information please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Eligible UKRI Research Councils are:
The Library has an agreement with Sage for a discounted APC rate of £200 when publishing a gold open access article in a hybrid journal which is part of the subscription package. For further details please email email@example.com.
Gold open access publications can also be added to the institutional repository.
The University has approved an Open Access policy with regard to scholarly publication, which came into force on the 1st August 2015.
This will enable us to comply with the Open Access guidelines for REF which came into effect from 1st April 2016 (see Research England policy tab for details). It will also ensure that research outputs from the University are disseminated as widely as possible, helping to raise the profile of the authors and University.
When an item has been accepted for publication, authors must record the bibliographic details of the output in the institutional repository, Pure, within three months of the date of acceptance.
Authors must also deposit full text copies of the research outputs, i.e. final accepted peer-reviewed journal articles and conference papers (and where appropriate monographs) in Pure no later than three months after the date of acceptance for publication.
Authors may also deposit all other types of research output where copyright allows, and subject to any contracts with third parties, commercial sensitivities and discipline-specific conventions.
Coventry University favours open access by means of the Green Route (no fee). This enables the author to publish for free in any journal and to self-archive a version of the article for free public use i.e. in Pure, subject to publisher policies. As well as ensuring your research reaches a wider audience, adding your research outputs to Pure will help researchers comply with funder policies and the requirements for future REFs. This guide to self-deposit explains how you can deposit your research outputs in Pure.
The University recognises that there are additional benefits of the Gold (or fee-paid) open access route. Where specific funding is available, and where funders require it, this will be used to fund Article Processing Charges (APC) charges incurred to ensure outputs are open access immediately upon publication.
The policy applies in principle to all forms of research output. However, it is recognised that in some instances (e.g. monographs or book chapters) it may not be possible to make the full text or output available openly. Where this is the case, authors are encouraged to upload the output to Pure for preservation purposes with an indefinite embargo period applied if required.
We would encourage authors to negotiate publishing contracts where possible and appropriate, to permit their work to be made available via the institutional repository. An embargo period can be applied as required. This is already a requirement for some research funders and authors should check the terms of their funding agreements before signing contracts with publishers.
For further help and advise, please contact the Library Research & Scholarly Publications Team by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or on ext: 657568
Most staff will already be aware of the Research Excellence Framework (REF), which is a system for assessing the quality of research outputs in UK Universities which affects future research funding.
To be eligible for the next REF, staff will have to meet open access requirements. These must be met at the time papers are accepted for publication - making your papers open access retrospectively during the REF selection process, will not meet the open access requirements. These requirements will apply to all universities in the UK.
The REF Guidance on Submissions document sets out the guidelines, which are summarised below.
The accepted manuscript needs to be deposited to Pure, acting as our institutional repository system, within three months of acceptance.
The accepted manuscript should be the version which has undergone peer review and reflects changes resulting from peer review, and which has received final confirmation that it has been accepted for publication. Please note that 'provisionally accepted' manuscripts where changes have been required don't satisfy this criteria. Please see the Version Types document for help in visualising where the accepted manuscript sits within the publication cycle.
The deposited version can be replaced with an updated manuscript if there are late editorial changes not related to peer review or the academic content of the work. The final Version of Record can also be later added if the publisher permits this to be shared.
The output must be publicly visible and discoverable. To comply with this requirement we advise the visibility of a Pure record being set to 'public' from the point a publication has been accepted. This means the output's metadata (title, publication venue, list of authors etc.) being made publicly visible through the Pure Portal.
The default setting on Pure is for visibility of records to be set to ‘public’. The overall visibility of the record operates independently to the access to a document which has been uploaded.
Where outputs have no embargo (a restriction on sharing the paper during a time limit imposed by the publisher) they must be made open access within one month of deposit.
For outputs with an embargo period, those periods should not exceed 12 months for REF main panels A and B, or 24 months for REF main panels C and D. Unit of assessment and Panel information for the 2021 REF is now available. In cases where a longer embargo period is required by a publisher, or a journal's policy is otherwise not compatible with the REF Open Access policy, an exception may be applied provided the publication can be evidenced as being the most appropriate venue for the publication. Please note that in this circumstance the output would still need to meet the Deposit and Discovery criteria outlined above.
Once any embargo period has lapsed, deposited material should be 'presented in a form that allows anyone with internet access to search electronically within the text, read it and download it without charge'.
The 'Open Access Frequently Asked Questions' tab may help answer questions connected to this area. If you have any questions not covered in the FAQ section please get in touch with us.
Please note - A university may be given extra credit in the research environment component of the post-2014 REF where it can demonstrate that it has taken steps towards enabling open access for outputs outside the scope of this policy. In practical terms this would mean also having accepted manuscripts for book chapters and pre-April 2016 publications uploaded to Pure wherever possible.
Any output submitted to the REF which does not meet the requirements of this policy and does not meet with any of the allowed exceptions is liable to be given an unclassified score and will not be assessed.
This workflow document may be useful in understanding the issues and decisions around OA publishing for compliance with the REF Open Access policy.
The Research and Scholarly Publications team monitor newly created records in Pure and where further action or information is required to ensure an output's compliance with the Open Access policy they will contact the author(s).
The team hold regular drop in sessions around campus (please see our twitter account for details) and are based on the third floor of the Lanchester Library. Our contact details are in the Contact Us box to the right hand side.
First launched in September 2018, Plan S is a new open access framework which has been signed up to by several major research funders who comprise Coalition-S. The terms of Plan S are due to come into effect from 1st January 2021.
The overarching goals of Plan S are to:
* End embargo periods which delay research publications being made available open access by requiring immediate open access upon publication. This can take place via the Gold or Green routes to open access. The version released open access should be published under an open license, ideally a Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) license.
* Have publishers of subscription journals commit to transformative agreements which would see their business model 'flipping' from subscription access to open access over a period of time up to the end of 2024.
* End practice of authors signing over copyright to their publisher, instead requiring copyright to be vested in the author or their institutional employer.
* Signatory funders commit to assess research based on the intrinsic merit of the work and not based on the publication channel, its impact factor (or other journal metrics), or the publisher.
The 10 Principles of Plan S are available to read online.
The following major funders of research conducted in the UK are signatories:
* UKRI (acting on behalf of the UK Research Councils) - anticipate implementing Plan S core principles from 1st January 2022
* Wellcome Trust
* European Commission
* Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
* World Health Organization
In addition there are numerous national research funders. The situation is dynamic, with new funders invited to sign up. For a complete list please check the Coalition-S website.
If you are a researcher funded by a Coalition-S signatory funder, there are three broad ways to comply with the Plan S open access requirements:
i) Publish in a fully Open Access journal under a CC BY license (may necessitate payment of an Article Processing Charge)
ii) Publish in a journal subject to an approved transformative agreement under a CC BY license (may necessitate payment of an Article Processing Charge and would need to check whether journal was signed up to a Plan S compliant Transformative Agreement)
iii) Comply via the Green route by archiving the accepted manuscript to Pure, or other nominated repository, under a CC BY license with no embargo (requires publisher policies which permit this)
Please note that each Coalition-S member will develop their own local open access policy which connect to the overarching goals of Plan S. It is anticipated that each funder will publish their open access policy for post-2021 in the early part of 2020.
Throughout the first half of 2020 the implementation framework for Plan S should become clearer as each signatory funder publishes their own policy linked to Plan S principles. Linked to this negotiations will be taking place between Universities and national consortia and academic publishers in relation to transformative agreements.
So far the Wellcome Trust and UKRI have published their response to Plan S in the form of new Open Access policies which are due to come into effect in 2021 in the case of the Wellcome Trust, and 2022 in the case of UKRI. The UKRI policy is out for review until 17th April 2020. For more on this please see the Weelcome and UKRI tabs within this libguide.
Information sessions are being offered to all Research Centres concerning the changes which Plan S may bring about. If you would like to know more please contact our team or your Centre's Operations Manager to arrange a session.
If you should have any questions related to this, please get in touch with us at: email@example.com.
The Open Access Policy UK Research Councils, overseen since April 2018 by the newly formed UK Research and Innovation body, requires all papers submitted after April 2013 whose work was funding wholly or in part by any of the research councils to be made open access. Though the policy only applies to journal or conference papers, RCUK encourage authors to make other types of output open access where possible.
|Green Open Access||Gold Open access|
(Publish in a subscription or hybrid journal that allows you to deposit in an institutional or subject repository)
(Immediate open access on publishers website)
Versions to be made available
(an explanation on version types can be found here)
The version made available in the repository should be the version "accepted for publication" i.e. the version which includes the changes made in the peer-review process, but prior to publisher formatting.
|Delay before the article is freely available||Where no gold route is available, an embargo of up to 12 months is permitted for research funded by the AHRC and ESRC, and 6 months for all other Councils.
Where there is a gold route, but APC funding is not available, an embargo of up to 24 months is permitted for AHRC and ESRC, and 12 months for all other Councils.
|Must be made immediately available on publication|
|Required licence terms||RCUK do not specify a particular licence for green OA. However, they do require that papers are made available without restrictions on non-commercial re-use.||Must be assigned a Creative Commons attribution licence (CC BY)|
|Cost||There is not usually a charge for this route.||There is often an Article Processing Charge associated with this route|
The University is in receipt of a small block grant to support publication via the Gold Open Access route for authors in receipt of RCUK funding. Research funded by the UK Research Councils (AHRC, BBSRC, ESRC, EPSRC, MRC, NERC and STFC) are eligible. In the case of Innovate UK and the UK Space Agency, as they are not part of RCUK, research funded by these bodies are not eligible to have open access charges paid for via the Block Grant, unless an RCUK body is also involved.
To check if there are funds available to support publishing through this route, authors are encouraged to contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org with details of where they are seeking to publish. In order to formalise allocation of funds we would also ask that a 'Block Grant Funding Application Form', available at the bottom of this page, be completed and emailed to us.
All journal and conference papers must:
Some funders such as MRC require deposit in specific repositories e.g. PubMed Central. Depositing in these repositories does not prevent authors from also depositing in the Pure University Institutional repository.
The RCUK is now reporting on their funded research in the RCUK Gateway to Research. It contains information on RCUK projects which became active after April 2006, and includes outcomes information submitted in ROS and Researchfish.
UKRI are presently consulting on changes to their open access policy from February 2020 until 17th April 2020. The consultation document published on 13th February 2020 proposes the following changes to their policy:
* Articles accepted for publication on or after 1st January 2022 will no longer be permitted an embargo period, and instead will need to be available open access upon publication. This can involve either the publisher making the final Version of Record available on open access terms, or through the accepted manuscript being made available on an institutional or subject repository.
* The version made available open access, which can be either the final publication or accepted manuscript, must be subject to a CC-BY license.
* From 1st January 2024 monographs and book chapters would be included within the UKRI Open Access policy, with the policy advocating the accepted manuscript be made available either through the publisher platform, or an institutional or subject repository. Embargoes of up to 12 months would be permitted, though immediate open access is preferred, and either a CC-BY or CC-BY-ND license provided.
Please note that UKRI are signatories to Plan S.
Researchfish is a Research Outcomes System designed to enable researchers to report once across multiple funders, and re-use their data. It has a simple one-click environment for adding research outcomes to be stored and/or attributed to an award. A researcher, or one of their delegates, can add, edit and delete entries, and attribute entries to awards they hold or to one of their CV’s held in the Researchfish portal.
Researchfish is currently used by many public and charitable research funding agencies (including the UK Research Councils, the BHF, Arthritis Research UK, Cancer Research UK, and NIHR).
RCUK have used Researchfish as the Research Councils’ harmonised research outcomes collection system since September 2014. Information concerning the reporting obligations for Principal Investigators is available through the UKRI website.
For further information on Researchfish and account details contact the Business Development Group.
The Wellcome Trust support open access via the Green and Gold routes to open access.
Gold Route - If an Article Processing Charge (APC) has been paid to support open access then the article should be made available open access under a CC-BY license immediately at point of publication. Please note that we do not receive open access funds through the Charities Open Access Fund (COAF) which Wellcome administers.
Green Open Access - A maximum embargo period of 6 months is permitted where the accepted manuscript is archived for open access purposes.
PubMed - Wellcome requires that articles be made open access through PubMed, after a maximum period of 6 months from publication if via the Green route. The author manuscript submission system Europe PMC plus can be used to self-archive papers if the journal does not offer this service directly.
The Sherpa/Fact tool is useful for gauging the compliance of prospective journals.
The Wellcome Trust published it's new open access policy based on the Plan S guidelines in February 2020.
This policy policy contains several changes to the open access policy in effect to the end of 2020. These concern:
* No longer permitting a six month embargo period for articles made available via the green open access route. Instead content must be available open access at time of publication, whether via the Gold or Green route.
* All articles must be made available under a CC-BY license via either the Gold or Green route. Previously this license was only required for content which had open access paid for via the Gold route.
* Authors or their institutions must retain copyright.
* Open Access publishing costs will not be paid to hybrid (subscription access) journals, unless they are engaged in a transformative agreement toward Open Access.
* Requiring release of pre-prints (articles prior to formal peer review) which relate to tackling disease epidemics under a CC-BY license.
* Requiring organisations in receipt of Wellcome Trust funding to commit to the principles of the Declaration on Research Assessment (DORA).
The Wellcome Trust expanded their open access policy to include monographs and book chapters from 2014. This aspect of the open access policy contains the following elements:
* The policy applies to all original scholarly monographs and book chapters authored or co-authored by Wellcome grantholders as part of their grant-funded research. The policy does not apply to textbooks, ‘trade’ books, general reference works or works of fiction, or to collections edited, but not authored, by Wellcome grantholders.
* Grantholders are required to make these research outputs available through PMC Bookshelf(opens in a new tab) and Europe PMC(opens in a new tab) as soon as possible, with a maximum embargo of six months.
* Where a publishing fee is levied, such works must be available without embargo, and be licensed in ways which support their re-use. Ideally this would mean a CC-BY license being used, although more restrictive forms of Creative Commons license are also acceptable.
A list of publishers whose policies Wellcome considers compliant with its policy is available online.
You may find the following information useful, though please note that this page can only provide guidelines and should not be relied on for legal advice.
Copyright law grants exclusive rights to creators of original works of authorship. National laws usually extend protections to such works automatically once fixed in a tangible medium, prohibiting the making of copies without the rights holder’s permission, among other things. On the internet, even the most basic activities involve making copies of copyrighted content. As content is increasingly uploaded, downloaded, and shared online, copyright law is becoming more relevant to more people.
The Act was amended in 2014 to update the framework of exceptions to copyright and rights in performances, expanding the freedoms in copyright law that allows third parties to use copyright works.
The new legislation includes:
For further information on the changes click here
Creative Commons offer a suite of licenses which permit varying degrees of reuse.
|CC license||Commercial re-use permitted?||
Adaptation / Remixing
of content permitted?
|CC Zero (CC 0)||Yes||Yes||Works published under this license are in the public domain, with authors waiving copyright and associated IP rights.|
|Attribution (CC BY)||Yes - subject to attribution||Yes - subject to attribution||The most accommodating CC license which still enables authors to maintain copyright. This is the license which RCUK and Wellcome Trust require to be provided on articles they fund via the Gold Open Access route.|
|Attribution Share Alike (CC BY SA)||Yes - subject to terms||Yes - subject to terms||Same as the CC BY license, with the additional rule that works derived from the original work must also be subject to a CC BY SA license.|
|Attribution No Derivatives (CC BY ND)||Yes - subject to attribution||No||The work cannot be adapted, however re-use of the original work for any other purpose, including commercial, is permitted subject to attribution.|
|Attribution Non Commercial (CC BY NC)||No||Yes - subject to terms||
Re-use must be non-commercial, but adaptation of original work is permitted subject to the license terms.
Derivative works do not have to be licensed on same terms.
|Attribution Non Commercial – Share Alike (CC BY NC SA)||No||Yes - subject to terms||
Re-use must be non-commercial, but adaptation of original work is permitted subject to the license terms.
Derivative works must be licensed on same terms as the original work.
|Attribution Non Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY NC ND)||No||No||The most restrictive of the Creative Commons licenses. Content can be copied and redistributed, subject to the terms of the license.|
Major research funders such as Research Councils UK and Wellcome Trust require that articles published via the Gold Open Access route which have been funded through them be made subject to a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license.
Further information on Creative Commons licenses is available on the Creative Commons website.
Knowing where to start with sifting through all the openly available content online can be a challenge, particularly when you are seeking academic content. This section of the libguide provides guidance on the main resources to explore and tools to utilise if you are seeking legitimately available open access content online.
A useful first port of call when searching for Open Access Journals is the DOAJ. Journals added to the DOAJ are vetted to ensure that they are fully Open Access publications and meet various other standards and criteria. This helps to exclude publishers and journals deemed to be 'predatory', for more on what constitutes a 'predatory' publisher please see the 'further information' tab of this libguide.
Journals can be filtered based on subject discipline and many of the publications indexed also support article level searches within DOAJ. Please note that the DOAJ is not exhaustive in documenting every Open Access journal in operation, but it provides the most comprehensive listing which presently exists.
Open Access Books (also known as Open Access Monographs) have taken longer to get off the ground than open access to journal articles. However, there are increasing factors driving open access to full length academic publications.
The DOAB indexes open access books produced by a variety of different publishers which meet relevant academic and peer review standards.
Please note Open Access Books are typically free to read and download in electronic form, with the option of paying for a print version.
In some academic disciplines it is commonplace for 'pre print' versions, typically manuscripts which have not yet been subject to formal peer review which may or may not have been submitted to a journal for consideration, to be hosted on subject repositories.
ArXiv is one of the biggest and most long standing of these platforms, hosting pre-prints from Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science and associated disciplines.
BioRxiv hosts pre-prints from the Biosciences, and several other subject repositories are hosted via the Open Science Foundation, among them PsyArXiv which hosts Psychology pre-prints and PaleorXiv for Paleontology.
Do be mindful that content found on repositories such as these won't generally have been through a formal peer review process, and that some pre-print systems apply more stringent criteria as to the content they host than others.
A service operated by the British Library, EThOS is the go to place to check for Doctoral level theses produced within UK Universities. Many theses are electronically available to download from EThOS (a free to set up EThOS account will be required), older theses can have a digitisation request made on them through the EThOS system. Please note that some Universities cover the costs associated with having a digitisation produced, others pass on the cost to the individual making the request.
Many Universities will also host electronic theses on their own repository systems. Content not indexed by EThOS, such as Masters Research theses, may be available here. A useful place to search for institutional repository systems is the ROAR registry.
For theses completed at other European Universities, DART is a useful resource to check to see if electronic access is available.
Unpaywall is a browser extension which indicates whether there is an open access version of a publication available. When you visit an article on a publisher's platform, the Unpaywall icon which will display on the right hand side of your browser will turn green if it detects access is covered by a subscription or if there is an open access version available on a repository system. Clicking the green Unpaywall icon will then link through to the available version it has found.
If Unpaywall cannot detect that the article is covered by a subscription and cannot locate an openly available version then it will display a grey lock symbol.
To check whether the contents of a particular journal are available through our University subscriptions it is always advisable to check the library catalogue, Locate.
Open Access Button works by the title, weblink or citation of an article being entered into its search function. It will then scour online repository systems to see if there is an open access version available somewhere and link you through to it. If an article is not available open access a request can be initiated of the author through the website.
Open Access Button also offers a browser extension option.
ORCiD is a free service providing a persistent identifier allowing authors to bring together all of their research outputs and avoiding the confusion which can arise around authors with similar names being considered one and the same person, and the opposite problem of outputs by the same person being split among different name variants.
Having an ORCiD ID can also help with Scopus and Pure interoperability and will assist with research funding applications, as an increasing number of research funders require an ORCiD ID as part of their application criteria.
Registering for an ORCiD account is free and straight forward to do. When setting up an ORCiD ID you have the option of whether the information connected with your ORCiD ID displays publicly or not. The ID itself will then consist of a randomly generated 16 digit number which is unique to your account.
Once set up you will be able to link your ORCiD ID to your Scopus ID and LinkedIn profile. Linking to your Scopus ID is particularly beneficial as it will help address any author mismatching on the Scopus system.
There are four main ways to update an ORCiD record with the details of past publications (or 'works' as they are known in ORCiD).
1) To directly import records from other systems, including Scopus and Pure
2) Add works using an identifier such as a DOI (Digital Object Identifier)
3) Using a Bibtex file
For forthcoming and future publications, many publishers support the automatic import of publication information from their system to ORCiD provided the author's ORCiD ID is provided when submitting for publication.
To link up your ORCiD ID to Pure, first login to the Pure system. Once logged click on your name / login ID which will display toward the top left of screen, then click 'edit person profile'. Once you have done this you will see an option inviting you to 'create or connect' to your ORCiD ID. Once the link is set up subsequent records created in Pure will migrate over to your ORCiD profile provided they relate to published content, have been validated and are set to 'public visibility'. The exporting of this data typically happens overnight. Your ORCiD ID will also display on your public facing Pure Portal person profile.
For past publications, ORCiD can be used as an import source. To utilise this select 'Import from online source', where ORCiD is offered as an option. The publications linked to the ORCiD ID will then display and you can import individual records to the Pure system from here. Most of the mandatory information fields should already be populated using the ORCiD data. Once the link is established you will be prompted for any new publications to import when you log into Pure which are detected via your ORCiD, unless this function is turned off. (Please note however that as we are encouraging records to get added to Pure at the point of acceptance that we would typically expect to see a record on Pure before it appears on ORCiD following publication.)
Records in Scopus can be migrated to ORCiD, however records in ORCiD cannot be migrated to Scopus. This is because Scopus have restrictions around what they index on their system, so not all publications will be eligible for inclusion in Scopus.
To sync up ORCiD and Scopus first log into Scopus, using your Coventry University credentials via Open Athens or through Locate where it's recorded as a database.
Once you have found your author Scopus profile, you will see the option 'connect to ORCID'. By selecting this you will by invited to login to your ORCiD account. Once you have associated your ORCiD ID with your Scopus account you will then be able to import records from Scopus into ORCiD if any publications are missing.
Scopus author IDs get automatically created when Scopus indexes a publication. While Scopus does attempt to identify where the same author appears on different publications and matches them to the same author, mismatches between publications and author are still fairly common however. Mismatches often can occur if an author publishes under variations of their name (e.g. John Smith, J Smith, J.W. Smith etc.), if they move institution or change their name.
Preventing future mismatches can be achieved by signing up for an ORCiD ID and linking it to Scopus (see above). To deal with existing duplicate Scopus IDs the simplest way to do this is by using the author feedback wizard which sits below your author profile in Scopus.
From here you will then be able to suggest that author profiles be merged if your publications are spread out over multiple author profiles in Scopus. Corrections can take a few days to a few weeks to take effect depending on the change required and degree of manual intervention needed from Scopus. If you have any difficulties please contact us at: email@example.com as we can act on your behalf if we know what the issues are.
For more information please see the advice given by Scopus on updating an author profile.
Provided a record is set to status ‘for validation’ (this shows at the bottom of the record) this will enter the work queue of the Research and Scholarly Publications team. Our team will check that the information in the record appears accurate and where applicable will check the record against the REF Open Access policy. If any further information is required, a member of our team will get in touch. This includes cases where an accepted manuscript is required to make the record compliant with the REF Open Access policy.
Please note that where the status of a record has been changed to ‘entry in progress’ that it is assumed the record creator is intending to return to the record to make changes. ‘Entry in progress’ are not checked as a matter of course by our team.
A useful source of reference is the website Sherpa / Romeo which documents the policies of many academic journals. If the publication does not appear on Sherpa / Romeo it would be worth checking with the journal editor and examining the detail of any copyright transfer agreement (CTA) which you may have been asked to sign.
Elsevier have a separate journal by journal list of embargo periods for UK authors.
Sherpa/Romeo also operates a sister site, Sherpa/Juliet which details whether a journal complies with particular funder policies. If you are publishing in a journal which either requires an embargo which exceeds the maximum permitted for REF (over 12 months for REF Panels A and B, over 24 months for REF Panels C and D), or in a journal which doesn’t permit dissemination of the accepted manuscript, you will still need to upload the accepted manuscript to Pure within 90 days of its acceptance. There is provision in the REF policy for an exception applying if the publication can be shown to be the most appropriate publication venue for the research.
The REF Open Access policy advises that they be set from date of first publication. This is often classified as the ‘e-pub ahead of print’ date where electronic release of the article comes before the print publication.
The RSP team in the library will implement a provisional embargo on the day they check and validate the record, and have a system for periodically checking back on records to see when publication occurs..
However, if authors can remember to update Pure records following publication to add such details as publication date and DOI / weblinks to the final publication this is helpful as it will lead to the record getting checked sooner and the final embargo date being correctly set.
We suggest the default visibility setting of a Pure record should be set to ‘public’. There may be grounds however to restrict the visibility of the record where one of the following scenarios apply:
A press embargo has been requested by the publication
A publication is at the stage of being submitted for publication or is being prepared for publication
The record details a confidential report or similar whose details are not to be publicly disclosed
The output meets the REF's definition of posing a security risk to the author(s) - please note in such circumstances it would be expected that the author(s) would not disclose their organisational affiliation(s) on the publication
Please note that the visibility of the record operates separately to the visibility of any documents attached to the record. It is possible for the overall Pure record to be set to ‘public’ even where the attached document is under an embargo.
In cases where the restricted visibility of a newly created record may impact upon its compliance with the REF Open Access policy, a member of our team will get in touch to query this.
Records will display on the Pure Portal once they have been validated, provided the visibility of the record is set to ‘public’ (which is the default setting). Records are validated by the Research and Scholarly Publications team in the library.
Please note that when changes are made to a record which has been validated this will trigger the record going into ‘re-validation’ for a member of the Research and Scholarly Publications team to check the information which has been added is accurate. During this period the record will for a brief time not display on the Portal.
Before uploading any version of a publication to an academic social network site such as Research Gate, we would advise authors to check any Copyright Transfer Agreement which may have been signed with the publisher. While the posting of publications on academic social networking sites remains fairly widespread, authors do risk infringing publisher copyright if they do so in violation of the terms of a Copyright Transfer Agreement and there have been cases of publishers issuing copyright takedown notices to authors as a consequence.
Please note as well that academic social networking sites such as Research Gate are not repositories which meet the Open Access requirements for REF 2021. In order to comply with this policy, please archive the accepted manuscript of any journal and conference proceeding publications to the Pure system within three months of their acceptance for publication.
If you have a question which is not covered here, please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whilst the development of the internet has greatly increased the ways that information can be disseminated and allowed for the development of new academic publishing models, it has also given rise to some publishers regarded as ‘predatory’ and disreputable. Publishing in these venues can result in good research being devalued and reputational harm.
On a related note, some academic conferences may similarly misrepresent themselves and prioritise receipt of delegate registration fees above their content quality, which has led to them being branded 'predatory conferences'. Conferences of this nature often market themselves via unsolicited emails.
The website Think Check Attend helps prospective participants ask the right questions to help avoid falling foul of any dubious practices in this area.
Some publishers enable articles to be published online as soon as they have been fully copy-edited and proof-checked, ahead of the final, ‘printed’ version. This version of the article is in exactly the same format as they appear in the final issue except for page numbering. Any embargo periods pertaining to Open Access start from this release date. Also known as Early or First online publication.
Fee which may be payable to the publisher to publish via the gold open access route. When an article is published in a traditional subscription journal, the author pays an APC to make their individual article freely available from the journal website, without restriction or charge to the reader.
The bibliographic description of a digital publication. Search engines crawl the internet to find documents and, depending on the quality of the metadata, they list the 'hits'. The high-quality metadata for items deposited in repositories enables the documents to be easily discoverable. Also known as Publication record or Metadata.
This term applies to cases where an article is made publicly available on a publisher's website but where it is not subject to a re-use licence, such as those offered by Creative Commons. The publication may be available on a short-term promotional basis and therefore does not meet conventional definitions of open access.
This is the most liberal of the CC licences. As long as the original author(s) receives attribution, this allows anyone to copy, distribute or transmit the research, adapt the research and make commercial use of the research. RCUK requires this licence is used if the gold open access route is selected.
Comprised of six medical research charities - Arthritis Research UK, Breast Cancer Campaign, the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research, and the Wellcome Trust. Research funded by any of these charities must meet their Open Access requirements. See COAF (Wellcome Trust).
Many publishers will ask authors to sign one of these upon accepting a work for publication. Terms of CTAs vary, but traditionally involve the copyright being transferred from the author to the publisher. CTAs will often outline which rights the author maintains concerning re-using and re-distributing the publication. For authors wishing to negotiate or amend the terms of a CTA, the SPARC Author Addendum can provide an alternative framework.
The author responsible for manuscript correction, correspondence during submission, handling of revisions and re-submission of the revised manuscript. On acceptance of the manuscript, the corresponding author is responsible for co-ordinating any application for payment of a Gold Open Access Article Processing Charge (APC).
Creative Commons licences can be used in open access publishing to help authors retain copyright while allowing others to copy, distribute, and make use of their work. There are several different Creative Commons licences, which allow different types of re-use. See the Creative Commons website.
Functions like Gold Open Access in that the final publication is made available immediately without the barrier of a paywall. However, unlike conventional Gold Open Access, these publications do not require the payment of an Article Processing Charge and are therefore free to author and reader alike.
A unique identifier for an online document, used by most online journal publishers. As the DOI is unique to the publication, linking to an online document by its DOI provides more stable linking than simply referring to it by its URL.
An embargo in academic publishing is a period during which access to a research publication self-archived in an open access repository (Green open access) is restricted. The purpose of this is usually to protect the revenue of publishers who rely on subscription payments to cover the costs of publication.
A life sciences and biomedical research subject repository. The Wellcome Trust, the Medical Research Council (MRC) and most other UK biomedical funders require copies of funded articles to be deposited in Europe PMC within 6 months of publication. The USA-based PubMed Central is the repository containing global content.
The full text of the article is instantly available to anyone without a subscription or viewing fee from the publisher's website. The author may need to pay an "article processing charge" (APC) to the publisher.
Author publishes in a traditional, subscription based journal and a copy of the research (usually the author’s final, peer-reviewed manuscript – sometimes referred to as a post-print) is deposited in either an institutional or subject repository, usually at the point of publication. No APC is paid to the publisher. Following any embargo period set by the publisher the manuscript is then made free to access. The published final version of the journal sits behind a subscription pay wall on the journal website, while the "post-print" copy is available to anyone from the repository.
Open access is the practice of providing free, unlimited online access to scholarly works and research outputs in a digital format, with limited restrictions on re-use. A key driver behind OA has been to make publicly-funded research accessible to tax-payers.
A new Open Access policy due to come into effect from 1st January 2021. The terms of Plan S will apply to authors in receipt of funding from a Plan S affiliate, who include major UK research funders RCUK and Wellcome Trust. Please see the RCUK Policy tab for further information.
(please see entry for Diamond Open Access)
Refers to the final draft author manuscript, as accepted for publication, including modifications based on referees' suggestions but before it has undergone copy-editing and proof correction. It is often referred to as the author's accepted manuscript. The post-print version is the one that should ideally be deposited in Pure in order to meet REF and funder requirements.
This is usually defined as the author's final draft of a paper before peer-review. It is also often referred to as the author's submitted manuscript. Many publishers allow authors to place the pre-print in a repository. However, pre-print versions do not normally meet funder requirements.
This is a contested term, but publishers accused of predatory practices typically charge Article Processing Charges (APCs) and in return fail to provide the necessary quality checks expected of reputable publishers. Such publishers may misrepresent who sits on their editorial board, the journal impact factor and lack a rigorous peer review process. To avoid inadvertently submitting to a predatory journal we would advocate following the principles outlined by Think Check Submit to help identify if a journal is reputable.
The formatted PDF file that appears in the journal. This version will be the publisher's copy-edited PDF with final page numbers, typesetting and journal branding included. Many publishers will not allow you to self-archive the published version unless you have paid an APC to make the paper openly available immediately (gold route).
When you publish your paper you will probably sign a 'publisher agreement’. This document states your rights as an author, so it is always worthwhile keeping a copy. On the publisher agreement it should state whether you can make your article available on our institutional repository.
This is the version generated by a publisher after a publication's acceptance, but before the Final Version of Record has been produced. It may exist in a 'Corrected' or 'Uncorrected' form. Typically the Proof version cannot be hosted through Pure due to publisher copyright considerations. The version required for Open Access policy compliance is the post-print / accepted manuscript version which exists prior to the Proof.
The Research Excellence Framework is the system for assessing the quality of research in UK higher education institutions (HEIs). The next REF is in 2021, with the submission being made in November 2020. To be eligible for the next REF, staff will have to meet open access requirements (please see Research England policy tab). These must be met at the time papers are accepted for publication. The latest guidance in relation to the REF submission was provided in January 2019.
Prominent subject repositories include PubMed (for Medical and Biosciences), RePEc (for Economics) and Arxiv (used by researchers in various fields such as Physics, Computer Science and Mathematics). Some subject repositories contain predominantly pre-print material (such as Arxiv), others contain accepted manuscripts or final publications. To ensure REF Open Access compliance we advise always recording publications on our Institutional repository (Pure) even if it is also recorded in a subject repository.
UKRI Policy is that all research funded by them should be subject to open access requirements which are more onerous than those under the REF Open Access policy. The RCUK preference is for gold OA, but they do support a mixed approach; the decision on which OA route to follow is taken by the individual author/institution. Please see the UKRI Policy and Open Access Overview tabs for more information.
Wellcome Trust supports unrestricted access to publications wholly or partly funded by them. The outputs must be made available in PubMed Central or Europe PubMed Central within 6 months of final publications. They will provide grant-holders (via their institution) with additional funding to cover OA charges where appropriate.
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