Open Access

Open Access (OA) makes available scholarly research and publications by removing the cost barriers associated with traditional publishing models. As a result, faculty and researchers are able to share their work with a much wider audience, with limited restrictions. Materials can be downloaded and shared, expanding their reach and potential to be cited.

At Penn State, the University Faculty Senate passed an Open Access Resolution in April 2015 to encourage faculty to share their work openly. Likewise, the  Library Faculty Organization passed an Open Access Policy, committing librarians to share their research through open access channels, whenever possible.

The University Libraries promotes open access through:

Author Rights

With Open Access policy, authors share copyright with the University through a nonexclusive license. This means that authors’ works can be distributed electronically via a repository like ScholarSphere. The author maintains all copyright ownership and is free to transfer partial or full rights to another publisher.

It is important for you to know your rights as an author. Unless your transfer rights, you are the exclusive copyright holder for your work.  As such, an author addendum provides you with a way to confirm the rights you retain after submitting an article to a publisher that is for publication. Many contracts offered by publishers today can strictly limit distribution rights beyond the publisher’s venue.  The BTAA, in support of author rights over the sharing of their research, provides an Authors Addendum for use when assigning rights to a prospective publisher.

For guidance and additional information about author rights visit the Copyright Information Office website.

Publishers' Archiving Policies

Publishers' policies and agreements can vary and can change over time. The SHERPA/RoMEO database provides a comprehensive listing of publsher open access polices and provices summaries of self-archiving permissions and conditions of rights given to authors on a journal-by-journal basis. For guidance and assistance with interpreting publisher policies, contact the Copyright Information Office.

Publishing Agreements and Addenda

Similar to publishing policies, publishing agreements and addenda vary and change overtime. For guidance and assistance with interpreting publisher agreements contact the Copyright Information Office.

Funder Requirements

Funders of grants often have specific requirements for the grants they fund to support open access publishing. As a result, applicant eligibility varies depending on the funding source. For guidance and assistance with understanding funder requirements, contact the Copyright Information Office.