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LIBRARY GUIDE TO Open Access Information

Open Access (OA)
"Open-access (OA) literature is digital, online, free of charge, and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions.” (Peter Suber) 
*OA removes price barriers (subscriptions, licensing fees, pay-per-view fees) and permission barriers (most copyright and licensing restrictions).
History of OA: 
The Budapest Open Access Initiative in 2002 was the first global Open Access initiative. Attending scientists were asked to sign an agreement to preferentially publish their findings in open access journals. This agreement can still be signed online today.  In 2003, the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities was published after a Conference with that name. "   by Tom Olijhoek  

Read more. about OA development


Open Access video from SPARC
The problem
Faculty researchers and authors are paid by the university to create the scholarship and research that they give away FOR FREE to scholarly publishers.

University libraries are then forced to pay exorbitant prices to purchase access to the intellectual property that their own faculty created. **This purchased access is often times not permanent or consistent.

The cost of scholarly publications is (and has been) rising at rates that are several times higher than inflation.

Significant price increases in journals every year decrease the purchasing power of libraries overall which negatively impact the overall (very limited) acquisition budget.

Data from the Association for Research Libraries show that from 1986 to 2005:
  • The average cost of serials rose 167%.
  • The average cost of a monograph rose 81%.
  • The consumer price index for this time period rose 78%.
  • Bottom line: prices are going up, and libraries can't keep up.

ljx120501webPeriodTbl3 Coping with the Terrible Twins | Periodicals Price Survey 2012
*Read 2012 Peridocial Price Survey
OA Bibliography

OA Overview:
Suber, P. (2010). Open Access Overview: Focusing on open access to peer-reviewed research articles and their preprints.

Suber, P. (2012). Open Access. The MIT Press: Cambridge, Massachusetts. Available online as ebook.

Willinsky, J. (2006). The Access Principle: The Case for Open Access to Research and Scholarship  The MIT Press: Cambridge, Massachusetts. Available online as ebook.

Citation Count Research:

Enabling Open Scholarship blog - Advantages and benefits of open access

Hitchcock, S. (2011) The effect of open access and downloads ('hits') on citation impact: a bibliography of studies. The Open Citation Project - Reference Linking and Citation Analysis for Open Archives.

Swan, A. (2010) The Open Access citation advantage: Studies and results to date. Technical Report , School of Electronics & Computer Science, University of Southampton.
Related Guides and presentation
Copyright license alternatives
Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization working to increase the amount of creativity (cultural, educational, and scientific content) in “the commons” — the body of work that is available to the public for free and legal sharing, use, repurposing, and remixing.

View CC descriptive video "Get Creative" about the concept of "creative commons."
Evaluating OA journals
There is no single criterion that indicates whether or not a publication is reputable. Rather, look for a cumulative effect of more positives or more negatives. View the Open Access Journal Quality Indicators list (Grand Valley State U. Libraries)

Some quick steps

View publisher website. Confirm that they are they part of OASPA? (A membership is a signal that the publisher is committed to standards set by membership with follows COPE standards of conduct.)
Can journal be found in DOAJ (Directory of Open Access Journals) or other legimate indexing site? -  Use the Ulrich's database to find out where it's indexed. 

What is their profit model? Are they funded completely by article processing fees (APFs)? if so do they state upfront what those APF's are?

Investigate the journal's editor and board. 

Did they solicit your article or chapter? 

Consult a Librarian.

Other guides:  
Selection of OA research databases:
arXiv - Open access to 876,925 e-prints in Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Quantitative Biology, Quantitative Finance and Statistics (Cornell University) 

DOAJ - Open Access Journals - This service covers free, full text, quality controlled scientific and scholarly journals with the aim to cover all subjects and languages. There are now 5718 journals in the directory. 

Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) 
The Digital Public Library of America brings together the riches of America’s libraries, archives, and museums, and makes them freely available to the world. It strives to contain the full breadth of human expression, from the written word, to works of art and culture, to records of America’s heritage, to the efforts and data of science.

Free Medical Journals - Unrestricted full-text access to medical journals

INASP - International Network for the Ability of Scientific Publications, site allows for cross-searching of collections of Institutional Repositories.

- A curated academic search-engine, indexing 3,670 free open access ejournals in the arts & humanities.

PLoS- Public library of science - a nonprofit organization of scientists and physicians committed to making the world's scientific and medical literature a freely available public resource.

Social Science Research Network (SRRN)  - consists of two parts: an Abstract Database containing abstracts on over 508,000 scholarly working papers and forthcoming papers and an Electronic Paper Collection currently containing over 415,100 downloadable full text documents in Adobe Acrobat pdf format.

*Many publishers now how catalogs of open access journals. This content is index in the same database as traditional journals. 

Library Contact
Picture: Julia Rodriguez

Julia Rodriguez
Associate Professor / Health Sciences & Scholarly Communications Librarian

Schedule a research consultation (Fall & Winter only) - Currently all consultaions are conducted via GoogleMeet. 

If none of the time slots work for you or if there are none available, email me directly and suggest a date & time and I will do my best to accommodate you.


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