What is Open Access?

Open Access (OA) is the provision of unrestricted access to journal articles and other scholarly information published via the web.  There is no fee for accessing, printing or downloading material; copyright and licensing restrictions for OA focus on providing appropriate credit for the work rather than control and fees. (For a quick primer go to Open Access 101, from SPARC from Karen Rustad on Vimeo).

Open Access Policy for Carleton Researchers

The Carleton University Open Access Policy outlines the principle of open access and provides guidelines for voluntary support of this principle by members of the Carleton academic community. Carleton's OA policy exists in the larger context of Open Access policies and guidelines from scholarly communities and funding agencies such as the Tri-Council (CIHR, NSERC, SSHRC) .

Tri-Agency Open Access Policy

The Tri-Agency Open Access Policy on Publications applies to all NSERC,  SSHRC and CIHR funded grants awarded May 1, 2015 and onwards. Only publications resulting from grants awarded after this date are affected by the new policy. CIHR’s existing Open Access Policy mandates open access compliance for research funded in whole or in part by CIHR after January 1, 2008.

The harmonized Tri-Agency policy requires that all peer-reviewed journal publications resulting from funding by the Tri-Agency (CIHR, NSERC, SSHRC) must be freely available online within 12 months of publication.

Support for Open Access at MacOdrum Library and Carleton University

MacOdrum Library supports Open Access  and Scholarly Communication through a number of projects and initiatives intended to provide the widest possible access to the work of Carleton researchers and scholars. See our Open Access Support page for information on our services.


Key Definitions

Open Access
Publications that are free to read on the Internet. Readers can download, copy, and distribute an Open Access publication, as long as credit is given to the authors.

Open Access Gold
Journals in which readers do not require a subscription or any other form of payment, either personally or through their university or library, to access the content. e.g. PLoS Biology

Open Access Green
Refers to self-archiving (typically, of articles published in conventional subscription-based journals) in a subject or institutional repository.

Research/Institutional Repository
An online collection of the scholarship of an institution’s researchers. Institutional repositories both preserve the intellectual output, and allow for wide distribution. Carleton’s institutional repository is CURVE. Institutional repositories are also called research repositories.

Subject Repository
An online collection of publications in a particular subject area. The repository collects, preserves and provides open access to the publications. Examples include arXiv, RePEc, and PubMed Central. Subject repositories are also called disciplinary repositories.

Post-print, Version of Record, Author Accepted Manuscript (AAM), Post Peer Reviewed Manuscript
Terms used to describe the accepted version of an article after peer-review, with revisions having been made.

Article Processing Charge (APC)
A fee levied by an open access publisher to cover costs associated with publication. Fees can range from $200 to $5000 or more per article.

Author Addendum
A legal instrument that modifies the publisher’s copyright transfer agreement and allows you to keep rights to your article(s). E.g. SPARC Canadian Author Addendum.

Hybrid Journal
A journal in which only selected articles are openly available to readers without a journal subscription. Hybrid journals require that authors pay an ‘unlocking’ fee, referred to as an article processing charge (APC).

Open Access Fund (OA Fund)
Carleton lead authors can apply to Carleton’s CURIE OA fund to cover article processing charges (APCs) of entirely Open Access publications in cases where their funding agency does not cover these charges.