Paying for open access

You may wish to publish with open access on the publisher website, immediately upon online publication. This often (but not always) requires payment to the publisher of an open access Article Processing Charge (APC) or Book Processing Charge (BPC) and is sometimes referred to as “gold” open access. Your work will be freely available to be read and downloaded on the publisher website, with a licence guiding reuse such as one of the Creative Commons licences, of which the most liberal is CC BY

If you do not pay for open access, most publishers allow you to make your accepted manuscript open access in the institutional repository ORE (self-archiving). The publisher may impose an "embargo" on access and place restrictions on how much can be deposited e.g. this is often limited to one chapter of a monograph.

Funder requirements for paid open access

If you acknowledge external funding, your funder may require to you make your work open access. You may be able to meet your funder open access requirements by uploading your accepted manuscript via Symplectic to ORE and/or funder repository e.g. PubMed Central or PubMed Central Bookshelf, if applicable. If the publisher-imposed embargo exceeds the maximum embargo allowed by your funder, you may need to pay for open access in order to comply.

Who pays for open access?

Your funder may pay for open access, either through your research grant, or via central funds provided to the institution. The University of Exeter has central open access funds, administered by the Open Research team:

  1. UK Research Councils open access block grant - for research funded by the UK Research Councils.
  2. Charity Open Access Fund (COAF) - for research funded by COAF partner charities.
  3. Institutional open access fund - for outputs that have no other funding to pay for open access.

To apply to one of these funds, submit an open access funding request upon acceptance.

In addition to charging journal subscriptions and open access APCs, some publishers also charge other publication charges including publication fees (not open access), page, colour or figure charges.

Check the terms and conditions of your research grant to discover whether these are eligible costs.

Other publication charges have not been permitted to be included in UK Research Council grant applications since 01 April 2013. These charges may be paid from the UK Research Councils open access block grant administered by the Open Research team, although the primary purpose of this fund is paying for open access. Submit a publication charges funding request to apply.

If you have no funding to pay publication charges, you may wish to request a waiver from the publisher. Many publishers only charge for printing in colour and offer colour "online only" free of charge. It is important to determine how you will pay publication charges, should your work be accepted, before submitting to a journal that charges these.