FAQ: Open Access

Here are some common questions related to open access (OA) publishing. If you have additional questions, contact the Scholarly Communication Team.

What is open access?

OA content, which can include books, articles, videos, or any products of scholarly research, is freely accessed on the Internet, typically without restrictions on reuse. Read more about open access.

Why publish open access?

Broadening and diversifying readership and collaboration, as well as improving equity in research are just some of the reasons to adopt OA practices. See the Hirsh Health Sciences Library’s Top 10 Reasons to Publish Open Access for more.

Does Tufts support open access?

Tufts supports OA in several ways, including paying membership fees for OA journals, maintaining the Tufts Digital Library as a place to house OA content, and providing funds to cover some OA publishing charges. Read more about open access support at Tufts.

How do I make my work open access?

Publish in open access journals or negotiate your publisher agreement so that a version of the manuscript can be available in an open access repository, such as the Tufts Digital Library.

Is open access compatible with peer review and other common quality controls?

Yes! Scholarly journals typically do not pay authors, reviewers or editors in any scenario. OA does not compromise or affect these services. Check out the Directory of Open Access Journals for a vetted list of journals.

Are there free, quality textbooks I can use?

Yes, open textbooks and other open education resources cover many subject areas and follow the same rigor of peer review and editing as traditional texts. In addition, they can be readily adapted to suit specific course needs. Read more about open educational resources.

Is open source the same thing as open access?

No, open source refers specifically to software and the ability to freely see, modify, and distribute the source code used to make it.