How to publish Open Access

How is Open Access published?

The main difference between OA journals and OA repositories is that OA journals conduct peer review and OA repositories do not. Journals that are completely OA are referred to as 'gold' and OA delivered by archives or repositories as 'green'. The gold/green distinction is simply about venues, not user rights or degrees of openness.

Gold Open Access:

Green Open Access:

  • Articles are published in an OA journal and the content is made freely available via the publishers website.
  • Peer Review is performed by journal/ publisher as part of normal editorial process.
  • Peer Review is performed by journal/ publisher as part of normal editorial process before article is submitted to repository.
  • Authors are more likely to be offered the option of retaining their own copyright.
  • Can contain pre-prints (a version prior to peer review and publication), post-prints (the peer reviewed version approved by a journal) or both.
  • Publishers often charge an Article Processing Charge or APC.  
  • N.B. The form to apply for our UKRI Gold Open Access APC funds can be accessed at: APC Application Form


For further information go to ROMEO for help with publishers' copyright and archiving policies and OpenDOAR for a list of academic Open Access respositories.

How to make your work Open Access in Aberystwyth University

A significant number of research funders, including UK Research & Innovation (UKRI), European Funding FP7/Horizon 2020 and the European Research Council, now require that research outputs, specifically journal articles, generated by the research they fund are available through Open Access (OA). In addition, HEFCE/ HEFCW have stated that journal contributions and conference proceedings should be made available OA before they can be considered for REF2020 assessment. There has been on-going debate over the issue of OA, but the situation now is that we, as a University, have to adopt a policy on this issue, both to meet the requirements of funding bodies, and to prepare ourselves for a successful REF2020.  AU Open Access and PURE submission policy

Aberystwyth University Research Committee and Executive have agreed that where possible, all new Journal contributions, including Conference Proceedings published in a journal edition, should be made available through the Green OA route by depositing the details of your paper in PURE together with an attached postprint document at the point of acceptance.

Please note that the deposit of papers on social media sites such as ResearchGate, Mendeley and will not meet with the HEFC or UKRI Open Access requirements, either in terms of metadata content or capacity for the records to be aggregated and harvested.  Please always submit your papers to PURE as your primary Open Access deposit route.

Please contact with any urgent questions.

In order to comply with the AU Open Access and PURE submission policy and to avoid putting future research funding at risk, it is strongly recommended that the OA policy of the targeted journal(s) are reviewed prior to manuscript submission. Please see SHERPA RoMEO to determine individual publisher’s permissions and licencing conditions. Please note, these are subject to change. If the targeted journal is not listed within this service, please contact and the Open Access Group will investigate the journal’s policy on an individual’s behalf.

An outline of the procedures for applying the AU OA Policy, including workflows, is explained on the "Where can you publish Open Access?" page. These will be reviewed periodically and we will update you as these progress.