Skip to main content

Open Access Publishing: Overview

This resource will guide you in the use of UTA Libraries' OA Publishing Fund.

Publishing services we provide

How can we help you?

At UTA Libraries, we provide a variety of services to faculty and students who are publishing and sharing their scholarly and creative work. Click on the links to get started.

Contact Jody Bailey today with your questions.

Are you already publishing a journal with UTA Libraries and looking for technical assistance with Open Journals Systems? Please see this guide

 

What is scholarly communication?

Scholarly communication is defined as “the system through which research and other scholarly writings are created, evaluated for quality, disseminated to the scholarly community, and preserved for future use." (Association of Research Libraries). At UTA, this includes scholarly output in all formats and in all subject fields.

The UTA Libraries is interested in both traditional and new models of scholarly communication. We have several new programs that support new kinds of scholarly communication, including open-access publishing. Please peruse this guide for more information.

Types of Open Access

Green Open Access
Access through a digital repository is known as green open access. Digital repositories function as storehouses of publications organized around an institution or discipline. For example, the UTA ResearchCommons hosts scholarly and creative works, research, publications, and reports contributed by faculty, students, staff, and administrative units, while arXiv.org hosts papers mainly in the physical sciences. Content in repositories often includes peer-reviewed content (publisher's version aka post-print) as well as pre-prints, the version of an article before it undergoes peer review.

Gold Open Access
Access through a journal/publisher is known as gold open access. Gold open access can be confusing because there are many variations, such as libre or gratis. Libre means that the article is "digital, online, free of charge, and free of unnecessary copyright and licensing restrictions;" however, gratis means that the article is free to read but retains permissions barriers to reuse. Most gold open access is only gratis. Some journals offer to make an article open access but only with an additional charge. These journals are known as hybrid journals because they offer both closed and open content.

Gray Open Access
Gray open access is often described as self-archiving. Authors make their work accessible on personal, group, or departmental websites, or send print copies or email PDFs to colleagues. While gray open access may seem like the easiest and least complicated way to share research it has some major shortcomings:

  • Personal websites are often short lived, poorly maintained, and hard to locate.
  • There is no easy way to track who is viewing or downloading your work.
  • There is no promise of long-term access.
  • When you change institutions your old department or lab often takes down your old website.

What is intellectual property?

Intellectual Property
Intellectual property (IP) refers to creations of the mind, such as inventions; literary and artistic works; designs; and symbols, names and images used in commerce. IP is protected in law by, for example, patents, copyright, and trademarks, which enable people to earn recognition or financial benefit from what they invent or create.

Copyright
Copyright is a bundle of rights. When you sign a contract for publication, you may be okay with transferring some rights to the publisher, but you may want to keep others. It is possible to modify a contract to reflect your needs. You may want to create a derivative work in the future (by offering a translation or including an article in future publication) so you would write that into your contract. You can also modify your contract by adding an addendum. Here are some helpful resources; see also this guide on Copyright for Authors:

  • Creative Commons: This nonprofit organization provides a set of copyright licenses free for public use that define a middle way between copyright and the public domain – or between all rights reserved and no rights reserved.
  • SPARC Addendum - if you have a copyright transfer agreement from a publisher and you don't want to transfer your copyright or want to retain some rights, then you can fill out and attach an Author's Addendum to the contract. By retaining some or all of your rights, you can ensure that you can use the material in your classroom, deposit in an institutional repository, self-archive, and use for future projects.

Trademarks
A trademark differs from both patents and copyright. It is a word, name, or symbol adopted or used by an individual, corporation, or other entity to distinguish its goods or services from others' goods or services. When a mark is registered, the trademark owner obtains certain rights and benefits. Rights to a trademark are established by adoption and actual use, not by authorship as in copyright or by inventorship as in patents. 
For more information on trademarks, see the resources provided by UTA's Office of Technology Management.

Patents
A patent is a property right which gives the holder the exclusive right to exclude others from the manufacture, use, and sale of the invention for a period of time. As property, it may be sold or assigned, pledged, mortgaged, licensed, willed, or donated, and it may be the subject of contracts and other agreements. When inventors secure a patent, they have the opportunity to profit by the manufacture, sale, or use of the invention in a protected market or by charging others for making or using it. Foreign patents are often important for commercial development. 
For more information on patents, see the resources provided by UTA's Office of Technology Management.

Credit

Many thanks to Jeff Bond, Scholarly Communication Librarian and Science Research Liaison at Texas Christian University, who gave me permission to use his guide, Scholarly Communications @TCU, as the basis for this guide.