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Open Access: FAQ

FAQ for Faculty

I support open access, but I don't want to limit my publication options to OA journals.

Publish where you want, then upload your final accepted manuscript to Open Works, Wooster's institutional repository. Your work will be open access and discoverable through Google. The vast majority of traditional publishers allow this sort of deposit. You can check SHERPA/RoMEO to find out your publisher's policy.

 

I am publishing in a journal that doesn't permit depositing manuscripts into an open access repository. What can I do?

For the small percentage of publishers that do not automatically permit depositing final drafts into an institutional repository, you can submit an open access addendum before signing the publisher’s copyright transfer or license agreement. The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resource Coalition (SPARC) provides a model addendum and instructions for using it.

 

I’m concerned about the differences in pagination and content between the final draft and the final published work. 

Open Works will always provide a link to the final published article on both the repository website, and directly on the final draft PDF as a cover sheet. Even though pagination and layout will differ on the final draft, the majority of changes happening in copyediting are grammatical or typographical, which should not affect the intellectual content of your work.  In addition, making your research available in the College’s repository will increase its visibility especially to outside researchers who lack subscriptions to certain journals. With the ability to preview your article’s full text, researchers will be more likely to order a copy through their library and potentially cite your work.

 

Does depositing my paper in Open Works conflict with the copyright agreement I signed with the publisher?

The vast majority of traditional publishers have clauses in their author's agreements that allow for deposit of the author's accepted manuscript in an open access repository. You can check SHERPA/RoMEO to find out your publisher's policy. For the small percentage of publishers that do not automatically permit depositing final drafts into an institutional repository, you can submit an open access addendum before signing the publisher’s copyright transfer or license agreement. The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resource Coalition (SPARC) provides a model addendum and instructions for using it.

 

How does the open access resolution relate to the College’s Intellectual Property policy?

This policy complements, rather than conflicts, with the College’s IP policy, which states in part that “The College shall assert ownership of Copyrightable Works […] but not Scholarly Works.” It defines “Scholarly Works” as “articles written for publication in academic journals, textbooks, works of art, musical compositions, and literary works,” but not theses and dissertations. This open access resolution only applies to scholarly peer-reviewed journal articles. In keeping with the College IP Policy, no assertion over the copyright of scholarly peer-reviewed journal articles (“scholarly works”) will be made through the implementation of the open access resolution.

 

How does the open access resolution relate to open access mandates from the NIH and others?

Many organizations including the NIH, Howard Hudges Medical Institute, and the Wellcome Trust, mandate the open access deposit of articles as a condition of funding. Congress is considering legislation, currently with bipartisan support, to require all federally funded research from agencies with budgets exceeding $100 million to be made available open access within 12 months. On Feb. 22, 2013, President Obama signed an executive order directing federal agencies with budgets exceeding $100 million to develop open access mandates, with the aim of making the results of all taxpayer-funded research available to the public within 12 months of publication.

 

Will depositing my paper in a repository harm society publishers?

Most publishers already have policies permitting authors to deposit their final accepted manuscript into an open access repository. You can check SHERPA/RoMEO to find out your publisher's policy.

 

I have found/been approached by an open access publisher.  How can I tell if they are legitimate?

Check to see if the publisher is listed in the DOAJ or is a member of OASPA. You may also wish to consult a checklist of quality indicators.

 

What about sites like ResearchGate and Academia.edu?

These "academic social networks" are superficially similar to open access repositories, but they lack key features, such as long-term preservation and interoperability, that make repositories ideally suited for the preservation of scholarship. As useful as they may be, they are commercial entities with no obligation to their uses should they decide to completely change their business model or shut down entirely.

 

I still have questions.  Who can I contact?

Contact Catie Newton for questions about: copyright; Open Works; student work.

Contact Zach Sharrow for questions about: finding an OA journal; evaluating journal quality; publisher and funder policies.