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Open Access

A guide to open access; understanding what it is, why it's important, and what you can do.

Understanding Green Open Access

Green open access involves making work, often a version of a published article, openly available through a repository. A variety of platforms are available, including disciplinary repositories (e.g.ArXiv, PubMed Central) and institutional repositories hosted by a university or organization. The benefit of green open access for researchers is the avoidance of costs that may otherwise accompany the gold open access model. Challenges associated with green open access involve the ability of the author to retain the necessary copyright permissions to share their work, publisher restrictions regarding the version of the article (pre-print or post-print) that can be shared, and the perpetuation of traditional publishing models. Here are some options for identifying online repositories:

Retaining Your Rights

For authors to archive their work in a repository they must retain the appropriate copyright permissions. Authors publishing in traditional journals often relinquish their rights to control the dissemination of and access to their work. Many publishers already have established policies permitting authors to archive their work as a part of their standard publishing agreement. Authors may consult SHERPA/RoMEO to determine a publisher's standard policy for self-archiving. 

For more information regarding author's rights, see Copyright for Authors.

Image describing different versions of an article


Disciplinary Repositories

Discipline or subject repositories are online archives designed to preserve, organize, and disseminate research either centered on a single discipline (e.g biology or physics) or multi-disciplinary (e.g. life sciences or humanities). Material is deposited by researchers throughout the world to be freely accessible with limited restrictions.

Institutional Repositories

Institutional repositories are digital collections managed by a university or research organization. Institutional repositories serve a variety of valuable roles, including supporting open access through collecting and sharing an institution's scholarly output. ASU's Digital Repository supports open access and the university's scholars, allowing for the discovery of the creative and scholarly output of ASU.

The ASU Library acknowledges the twenty-three Native Nations that have inhabited this land for centuries. Arizona State University's four campuses are located in the Salt River Valley on ancestral territories of Indigenous peoples, including the Akimel O’odham (Pima) and Pee Posh (Maricopa) Indian Communities, whose care and keeping of these lands allows us to be here today. ASU Library acknowledges the sovereignty of these nations and seeks to foster an environment of success and possibility for Native American students and patrons. We are advocates for the incorporation of Indigenous knowledge systems and research methodologies within contemporary library practice. ASU Library welcomes members of the Akimel O’odham and Pee Posh, and all Native nations to the Library.