Open Access Publications:
A Guide for Faculty and Students

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Statements of the Problem: Scholarly Journal Costs

Most Expensive Journals at VCU Libraries  (October, 2011)

Internet Ruffles Pricey Scholarly Journals (Sept, 2011)
"the scholarly publishing industry now finds itself in the throes of a revolt led
by the most unlikely campus revolutionaries: the librarians."

U. of California Tries Just Saying No to Rising Journal Costs  (June, 2010)
Nature Publishing Group proposes 400% site license journal price increase-
California Digital Library urges UCal faculty boycott.
    U. of California and Nature Publishing Group Mend Fences  (August 2010)

Open Access Medical Journals: Will The Publishers Perish?
2004 Grand Rounds presentation by Dr. Michael Edmond
VCU/MCV  Associate Professor of Internal Medicine
(an excellent overview, including specific (2004) VCU information)

The Cost of Knowledge   (Elsevier Boycott)
8,898 faculty worlwide have signed as of March 30, 2012
Academics have protested against Elsevier's business practices for years with little effect. These are some of their objections:
--They charge exorbitantly high prices for subscriptions to individual journals.
--In the light of these high prices, the only realistic option for many libraries is to agree to buy very large "bundles",
     which will include many journals that those libraries do not actually want. Elsevier thus makes huge profits by
     exploiting the fact that some of their journals are essential.
--They support measures such as SOPA, PIPA and the Research Works Act, that aim to restrict the
      free exchange of information.

What is Open Access?

Open Access Overview   (by Peter Suber)

Open Access 101...and more (videos)

Scientist Meets Publisher  (video)

Authors and Open Access
An FAQ from the SHERPA Partnership in Great Britain

SPARC: The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition

Open Access Week  (October 22-28, 2012)
A global event, now in its 5th year, promoting Open Access as a new norm in scholarship and research. LEARN MORE:

Legislation Regarding Open Access Publishing

NIH Public Access Policy
"The NIH Public Access Policy ensures that the public has access to the published results of NIH funded research.
It requires scientists to submit final peer-reviewed journal manuscripts that arise from NIH funds to the digital
archive PubMed Central upon acceptance for publication.  To help advance science and improve human health,
the Policy requires that these papers are accessible to the public on PubMed Central no later than 12 months
after publication."

VCU Libraries Research Guide to NIH Public Access Policy
Prepared by Lynne Turman at Tompkins-McCaw Library at the MCV campus.

Federal Research Public Access Act (proposed)
   H.R.4004 -- Federal Research Public Access Act of 2012
"FRPAA would require that 11 U.S. government agencies with annual extramural research expenditures
over $100 million make manuscripts of journal articles stemming from research funded by that agency
publicly available via the Internet. "

Finding Open Access Publishing Opportunities and
Searching Open Access Publications

DOAJ: Directory of Open Access Journals
There are now 7,607  journals in the directory.
"Quality: For a journal to be included it should exercise quality control on submitted papers through an
editor, editorial board and/or a peer-review system. "
For authors-search open access and hybrid journals here
NOVEMBER, 2011 UPDATE-- the DOAJ has removed the hybrid journal search function, but until restored
it can be accessed via the Internet Archive here but will eventually be out-of-date
Currently 3,723  journals are searchable at article level.
As of today (March, 2012) 782,879   articles are searchable in the DOAJ service.

BioMed Central
Publisher of 234 peer-reviewed open access journals
Thanks to VCU Libraries membership, VCU faculty get a 15% discount
to author fees for publishing their work here.
    Work published with BioMed Central in the last 12 months by
       Researchers at Virginia Commonwealth University

Hindawi Publishing Corporation
Hindawi is a rapidly growing academic publisher with more than 300 Open Access journals covering a wide range
of academic disciplines. Thanks to VCU Libraries membership, VCU faculty get a complete waiver of author fees
for publishing their work here.
      Journals by subject
    Recent articles published by VCU authors in Hindawi open access journals
Open access to 745,684 e-prints in Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science, Quantitative Biology,
Quantitative Finance and Statistics
       ArXiv Business Model Planning Update (July, 2011)

OAIster is a union catalog of digital resources.
OAIster offers more than 25 million records representing digital resources from more than 1,100 contributorsors.
   OAISTER search is here

Public Library of Science (PLOS )
7 online peer-reviewed scientific and medical journals

Open J-Gate
Indexes articles from 8926 Open Access Journals (6029 Peer-Reviewed)  .

Portal to free access journals on the Internet - 4,650 titles

OpenDOAR: Directory of Open Access Repositories
Typically OpenDOAR lists publication repositories, as this is the basis for most repositories.
However, OpenDOAR also lists other types, for example of images or data-sets, particularly
where these have metadata or documentation sufficient to make the material re-usable.
Approximately 2,000 repositories are included.

Commercial Publishers Experimenting with Open Access

Selected titles from these publishers charge authors a fee to permit open access.
NIH and other grant providers often allow grant funds to pay for publication fees.
Here are a few of the publishers with current initiatives:

American Chemical Society AuthorChoice
American Physical Society Free to Read
Wiley-Blackwell’s Online Open
BMJ Unlocked
Cambridge Open Option
Karger Author’s Choice
Oxford Open
Springer Open Choice
Taylor & Francis iOpenAccess
Wiley Online Open

ROMEO: Publisher Copyright Policies
Look up your prospective publishing journal and see what they allow

Beall's List of Predatory, Open-Access Publishers
by Jeffrey Beall 2012 Edition
Predatory, open-access publishers are those that unprofessionally exploit the author-pays model
of open-access publishing (Gold OA) for their own profit. Typically, these publishers spam
professional email lists, broadly soliciting article submissions for the clear purpose of gaining
additional income. Operating essentially as vanity presses, these publishers typically have a low
article acceptance threshold, with a false-front or non-existent peer review process.

Journal Impact Factors from  Journal Citation Reports

Journal Citation Reports- Science Edition  (VCU eID needed for off-campus access)
Coverage: (2003-)
Provides citation data on 5,700+ journals including highest impact journals, most frequently used journals.

Journal Citation Reports - Social Sciences Edition
Coverage: (2003-)
Provides citation data on 1,700+ journals including highest impact journals, most frequently used journals.

JCR Tutorial

Articles about journal impact factors   (from 11 databases)

Further Reading on Open Access Publishing

Institutional Open Access Funds: Now Is the Time  (May, 2010)

Open Access to Scholarly Publications at Princeton  (Sept, 2011)
The faculty at Princeton University unanimously supported (Sept 19, 2011) that
when professors publish their academic work in the form of articles in journals or conferences,
they should not sign a publication contract that prevents the authors from also putting a copy
of their paper on their own web page or in their university's public-access repository.

Create Change
"This website will help you understand the changing landscape and how it affects you
and your research. It also offers practical ways to look out for your own interests as a researcher."

Open Access Directory wiki

Unanimous Faculty Votes for for University OA policies
Lists the institution, the date of the vote, a link to the policy, the type of faculty body voting
(e.g. full faculty, faculty senate, faculty within a division or department), and the type of policy
(e.g. OA mandate, encouragement, etc.).

University OA Policies
comprehensive worldwide list of university OA policies (not limited to policies adopted by unanimous faculty votes)

Creative Commons and Copyright

Creative Commons   (an alternative to traditional copyright)

VCU Libraries Recommended Sources on  Copyright & Author Rights

Publishing Your Own Open Access Journal

Open Journal Systems: Public Knowledge Project
Publish your own Open Access Journal
"OJS is open source software made freely available to journals worldwide
for the purpose of making open access publishing a viable option for more
journals, as open access can increase a journal's readership as well as its
contribution to the public good on a global scale"

eLife: Can a Top-Tier Journal Run Without Professional Help?

Prepared by Dan Ream , VCU Libraries
March, 2012