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Open access: Publishing

Open Access Models

There are two main models of open access:

Green open access

The UniSA Open Access Policy supports green open access.

With green open access:

  • publishers allow open access versions of non-OA material to be archived, ie the accepted manuscript or pre-print)
  • a version of the output is accessible from institutional repositories (e.g. UniSA Research Outputs Repository) or subject/discipline repositories (e.g. PubMed)
  • this can be the cheapest form of academic publishing (it is free for both author and user)

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Gold open access

With gold open access:

  • material is 'born OA'
  • free access is from the moment of publication
  • typically authors retain copyright
  • content often available under a Creative Commons or similar licence
  • often requires a fee per article to publish

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Variations on the green and gold open access models are usually determined by the publisher or based on the fee paid for publishing in an OA journal. Examples include:

Hybrid open access

  • authors decide how their articles are published in journals that offer traditional subscription as well as open access content
  • is based on a payment for publishing as open access from the moment of publication
  • authors generally retain copyright if paying for open access, and can usually archive the published version in institutional or subject repositories straightaway

Bronze open access

Bronze open access refers to publications that are available on websites hosted by their publisher, either immediately or following an embargo, but are not formally licensed for reuse.

Article Processing Charges (APCs)

There are some small discounts available with some publishers for journals which are published under the gold open access model. The publishers and discounts are:

  • MDPI institutional membership, which  provides 10% discount on article processing charges. MDPI publish in the sciences, health, business, and social sciences, see their list of journals.
  • BioMed Central and Springer Open - 15% discount applied for UniSA staff. Please submit using your UniSA email address and be in the IP network.
  • Elsevier - For 2022, publish an unlimited number of open access articles in the Elsevier owned and Elsevier published core hybrid journals at a discount of 12.5% on the APCs based on current price
  • Institution of Civil Engineers (ICE) - 15% discount on APCs for both hybrid and gold OA journals. The discount is applied automatically upon acceptance when the corresponding author uses their UniSA email address
  • Royal Society of Chemistry - 15% discount.

A new initiative is Read & Publish Agreements, which are being negotiated by CAUL, the Council of Australian University Librarians. The UniSA Library also independently negotiates with publishers. See the Read & Publish Agreements  tab for full details of the participating publishers, journals, and conditions.

Publisher's Open Access policies

To help choose a journal to publish in, it is worth reviewing the publisher’s policies regarding author rights for archiving in an institutional or subject repository. Some publishers, not all, allow open access versions of non-OA material to be archived but place lengthy embargos on when the accepted manuscript can be made freely available. Although most publishers will permit an accepted manuscript be made publicly available after a 12 month embargo, some journals may apply an embargo that lasts for 4 years.

Examples of embargo periods applied by publishers include:

  • Gender in Management (Emerald) - no embargo period
  • Journal of Materials Science (Springer) - 12 months
  • The Leadership Quarterly (Elsevier) - 36 months

SHERPA/ROMEO provides a searchable database of journals and publishers' policies on OA and self-archiving and can help find more information.

Where to publish

Some things to do when deciding the credibility of a publisher include:

  • Checking with your colleagues/supervisors if they know the reputation of that publisher
  • Look at the website - is it well-designed, functional and informative website?
  • Do they publish peer reviewed journals?
  • Check to see that the journals they publish are indexed in the major subject databases
  • Look for impact factor or journal rank information
  • Review some articles for quality – is the research current?
  • Are the journals published regularly? If not, avoid them.
  • Check the editorial boards – can you contact the various editors or check their staff home pages to verify their role?
  • Do they send out mass emails? If they do, avoid them

For further information see the Publishing Guide

The Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) website lists and provides access to many peer reviewed, quality controlled and scholarly full text journals in a wide range of disciplines. You are able to search for a specific title, or browse by subject.

Before you submit your publication, take a look at:Think check submit

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