Open Access (OA) is a model for access to research and scholarship. It is defined by the Budapest Open Access Initiative, as content whose "free availability on the public internet, permit[s] any users to read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles..." The Budapest definition also includes the ability to data-mine and remix works; other organizations have a narrower definition, focusing only on freely available access to read/view. The PLoS How Open Is It Open Access Spectrum guide illustrates the full spectrum of open access options.
Open Access refers to the method of access and is not a reflection on quality. Some journals (particularly in the sciences) may ask their authors to pay an Article Processing Charge (APC) to offset the cost of making their article open access. APCs are not an indicator of a low-quality publication and may be written into some grant applications.
Consider publishing open access so that more researchers and the public will have greater access to your work.
For more information on Open Access please consult the resources linked below:
Some open access materials can be found indexed in library-subscribed databases. The following resources are OA in their entirety.
Open Journal Systems (OJS) is a journal management platform to create open, online, peer-reviewed publications. The CSU Office of the Chancellor provides hosting and technical support for OJS journals produced by CSU faculty and students.
Some content on this guide is from Spreading Your Impact Research Guide at USC and licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License. It has been adapted and added to by Dana Ospina and Carolyn Caffrey Gardner.