Open Access Support

We offer individual consultations and group support with publishing open access. Open access (OA) publishing refers to the free availability and unrestricted use of research. We can help you understand:

  • What is OA?
  • Navigating the different types of OA
  • Learning about the benefits of OA
  • Learning the various publishing options available to you, including the University of Guelph Atrium
  • Negotiating publishing contracts

The evolving research landscape is encouraging more researchers to make their work available in an open access format. Making research open access gives you greater control over your work, increases your impact, raises your profile, and satisfies requirements from the Tri-Council and other funding agencies.

The Library provides support for OA publishing in the following ways:

  • Providing access, training, and support to the Atrium, the University of Guelph's institutional repository
  • Maintaining memberships/contributions to OA initiatives such as PLoS (Public Library of Science),, DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals), Open Library of Humanities, DuraSpace (most common software to support OA publication), SCOAP3 project, and the Public Knowledge Project (PKP) that help to offset the cost of publishing on these platforms

The Library has provided financial support for OA publishing in the past through:

  • $159,000 inclusive of Biomed Central Author fee subsidies (APCs)
  • $27,400 exclusive of BMC Author fee subsidies

We're also currently reviewing our criteria for supporting OA publishing initiatives.

Funding bodies are embracing policies that require grant holders to make resulting research publications available in OA. Canada's Tri-Agency Open Access Policy on Publications came into effect in 2016.

Funder and journal publisher policies differ. University of Guelph authors who accept a grant from a funder with an OA policy can learn how to comply by:

  • Informing themselves about the OA requirement of the grant they accept by using JULIET to review funder policies
  • Learning about different options available to make their publications OA
  • Learning about publisher policies before submitting manuscripts for review by using RoMEO to review publisher policies

Where to Publish Open Access Materials

There are two main places to publish OA research articles: OA repositories and OA journals.

OA Repositories

OA repositories, also called Green OA, house, preserve, and make content freely available to anyone with access to the internet. They do not perform peer-review. Some repositories are institutionally-affiliated, such as the University of Guelph's Atrium. Others are discipline-specific, such as PubMed Central for biomedical and life sciences, arXiv for physics, and SSRN for economics.

Publisher's author agreements stipulate how authors can make their articles OA:

  • Article preprints (pre-review) may be deposited by an author without seeking additional permission
  • Some publishers permit authors to archive post-prints (post-review)
  • Very few publishers allow authors to deposit the actual publisher PDF version of an article

Check RoMEO to see which version of your publication can be added to the Atrium OA repository

OA Journals

OA journals, referred to as Gold OA, perform peer-review of a manuscript and then make the reviewed content freely available to anyone who has access to the internet. OA journals tend to use Creative Commons licensing which allows re-distribution and re-use of a work on the condition the author is appropriately credited. 

Some OA journals pay their bills (from expenses incurred from peer-review, manuscript preparation, and/or server space) by charging an article processing fee (APC) on accepted articles. These are paid by the author often through an institutional Author Fund, or as a line item on a grant from funding agencies with an OA policy. See the PLOS list of institutions and funders who have OA funds or policies to allow researchers to expense publication fees directly from their grants.

Find OA Journals in your field by searching the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).

Contact us if you would like to discuss and review your OA publishing options. We would be delighted to present the issues to your students and/or your research team.