Publishing your article open access in a scientific journal
There are two variants of OA publishing in a scientific journal: publishing in an OA journal and publishing in a hybrid journal. The first is called full-OA publishing, because all articles in such a journal are published OA. The second is called hybrid, because the journal is subscription based, but authors are given the option to make their individual article in that journal OA at additional costs.
Quality and impact of open-access publishing
Before submitting your article to a journal, whether to a toll-access, a hybrid or an OA journal, it is wise to evaluate the journal and publisher of your choice. Ryerson University Library and Archives offers guidelines for evaluating OA journals.
As a rule of thumb, publishers belonging to the Open Access Scholarly Publishers’ Association (OASPA) and journals listed in the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ) tend to be more reputable. DOAJ is an online directory that indexes and provides access to high-quality, peer-reviewed OA journals. At the other end of the spectrum, Beall’s list provides an overview of problematic publishers, or, in their words, “potential, possible, or probable predatory scholarly open-access publishers”. Finally, QOAM presents journals and their quality scores based on academics’ experiences with the journal in question.
Another quality measure is a journal’s impact. OA journals tend to have more impact than toll-access journals, simply because more people have access to them, so their visibility and use are higher. On the other hand, toll-access journals tend to have higher impact scores (the average number of citations to recent articles published in that journal), simply because these journals have been around longer.
The above-mentioned quality measures are not meant as a harsh cut-off point, but as a starting point. You should always decide for yourself if the journal is suitable for your article, whether you want to publish in a toll-access, hybrid, or OA journal.
Costs of open-access publishing
Publishers usually charge author-side fees for both full-OA and hybrid publishing. These fees are called Article Processing Charges (APCs) and cover peer review, manuscript preparation, and server space. Luckily, more and more opportunities are arising that let you publish OA for free. Concerning full-OA publishing, several incentive funds are available, such as NWO’s incentive fund (if NWO funded your research) and the University of Twente’s Open Science Fund. Both funds are specifically aimed at stimulating full-OA publishing, and therefore only cover publishing in a peer-reviewed OA journal. Concerning hybrid journals, more and more publishers are signing deals with universities that let you publish OA at no additional cost in selected journals.
Whether you choose to publish in a toll-access, hybrid, or OA journal, always deposit your publication in the University of Twente repository UTPublications as well. If you belong to the faculty EEMCS, deposit your publication in EPrints. This faculty repository is linked to UTPublications. If you belong to the faculty ITC, deposit your publication here. This faculty repository will be linked to UTPublications in the future. As a general rule, always deposit the author version of your publication (the version without the layout of the publisher) in the university repository. The University Library will perform a copyright check.
If you have any questions about publishing OA in a scientific journal, please contact your information specialist.