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Research support

What is Open Access?

Open Access (OA) means making research publications freely available to read and reuse by anyone with internet access

Why publish your journal article OA?

  • OA makes your research available to many more people than if your article was published in a subscription journal
  • More exposure of your work means higher citation rates
  • Making your research OA is now required by many research funders
  • Publicly funded research is made available to the public (tax payer)
  • It is University policy for researchers to make their research OA by depositing it into the University’s Institutional Repository - TeesRep

Routes to Open Access

Route A: Repository Open Access (Green OA)

  • Your journal article is published in a subscription journal 
  • Your Author Accepted Manuscript (AAM) is deposited into the Insitutional Repository (TeesRep)
  • The AAM is made OA after an embargo period set by the publisher
  • No costs are associated with this type of pubishing
  • University policy is for Repository Open Access publishing.

Route B: Publisher Open Access (after payment of a fee) (Gold OA)

  • Your journal article is made freely available immediately on publication usually with a Creative Commons Licence.
  • There is an upfront cost to make the article OA - this cost is called the Article Processing Charge (APC)
  • The APC may be paid by the author or subsidised by a third party such as a funding council
  • Please note: Teesside University does not have a central fund to pay APCs.  The preferred route is via Repository OA or through a journal included in one of our Transformative Agreements.

Route C: Publisher Open Access via a Transformative Agreement (Gold OA)

  • These agreements have been negotiated by Jisc and are a way for publishers to transition away from subscription journals to open access journals
  • The cost of open access is part of an overall Teesside University payment covering both subscriptions (Read) and open access publishing (Publish)
  • Some journals included in a Transformative Agreement are fully open access, and others contain a mix of open access and subscription articles - these journals are known as hybrid journals
  • They enable TU authors to publish open access without the need to pay APCs in journals that are part of the agreement.

Rights Retention for Green Open Access

Rights Retention for Open Access in subscription journals

Funders such as UKRI, Wellcome or NIHR require that you apply a Rights Retention statement and a CC BY (Creative Commons Attribution)  licence to your submitted manuscript.  This ensures that your Author Accepted Manuscript can be made freely available, without embargo in an Institutional Repository irrespective of embargo periods by publishers.

The exact wording differs depending on your funder so make sure you check your own funder's Open Access Policy before you submit your manuscript for publication.

Open Access via PrePrints

What is a preprint?

An early version of a scholarly article that is published online (usually in a preprint server but can be on any social media) before it has been submitted to a journal.  The preprint is not usually peer reviewed.


Preprints are a way of getting your journal articles in the public domain before they are published.  They are usually uploaded to a preprint server before or at the same time as being submitted for publication. Some funding bodies are now advocating the use of preprints.

Benefits of publishing a preprint

  • Research papers are made freely available (open access) and can be accessed by anyone - which can increase readership and citations of your work.
  • Preprints servers are usually free.
  • Preprints can be open to comments and feedback which can help to improve your manuscript and can help further collaboration.
  • Depositing your preprint in a preprint server establishes the originality of your work and helps prevent scooping.
  • By depositing in a preprint server you can retain copyright of your work.

What is a preprint server?

  • A preprint server enables authors to upload, describe, and distribute preprints.
  • The majority of preprint servers make their works publicly open access (OA) with no restrictions.
  • The servers usually don't charge authors or readers anything to use their service, however a few of them are owned by commercial companies and may charge.
  • Some preprint servers assign DOIs - enabling your work to be easily cited.
  • List of preprint servers can be found at: Directory of Open Access Preprint Repositories

What you need to take into account before sharing preprints?

  • Most journals will accept a manuscript if it has been disseminated in a preprint server.  However, it is always best to check a journal's terms and conditions as some view a preprint as being already published.  You can check journal details by using Sherpa Romeo
  • Certain academic journals enforce the anonymisation of submitted manuscripts to ensure a fair and unbiased double-blind peer review process. However, if a pre-print version of the same work is accessible, reviewers might uncover the identity of the author(s). So while preprints allow for open commenting, it may contradict a journal's policy regarding double-blind peer review.
  • It may be of concern that preprints can be read and cited more than the final published version, which may lead to inaccurate or misleading information being in the public domain.
  • Certain fields, such as certain branches of medical sciences, are cautious about the dissemination of research findings before they undergo the rigorous process of peer review. This precaution arises from concerns about the potential consequences for individuals who may struggle to distinguish between reviewed and non-reviewed material, especially readers who lack specialised knowledge or members of the press.
  • If an article is retracted, then the preprint should also be retracted.

JISC Sherpa Services

  • SHERPA /FACT - a tool to help researchers check if the journals in which they wish to publish their results comply with their funder's requirements for open access to research.
  • SHERPA/JULIET - This contains detailed information about research funders' open access policies
  • SHERPA/ROMEO - This contains detailed information about publisher copyright policies & self-archiving
  • SHERPA/Open Access Books- This contains detailed information about publisher's book policies to help authors with open access publishing and meeting funders' requirements.