Introducing Open Access
You know first hand that students are expected to cite articles from scholarly journals when they write research papers.
You’ve probably used journal articles in your coursework. You’ve probably also encountered journal articles that you wanted to read — potentially important articles — but couldn’t get access to.
It doesn’t have to be this way.
OPEN ACCESS — the principle that research should be accessible online, for free, immediately after publication — is improving the way scholarly information is shared.
You’re not able to access some of the articles you want to read online because many scholarly journals are available only to subscribers. Journal subscriptions — especially in science, technology, and medicine — can cost thousands of dollars each year, and some cost more than $20,000.(1) Your library pays for many of these subscriptions (with support in part from your tuition) and some universities actually spend millions of dollars annually on journals — but they still can’t afford access to everything their students and faculty need.
There’s an alternative to the closed, subscription access model: Open Access. Open Access is free, unrestricted access on the Internet to the same type of high-quality, peer-reviewed scholarship that is available by subscription. Authors can make their articles openly accessible by publishing in an open-access journal or posting copies of their articles on an open Web site or repository after they’ve been published in a traditional journal.
With Open Access, the costs of publishing an article are covered by other sources — with sponsorships, publication fees, advertising, or a wide variety of possible combinations — so that everyone in the world can read the latest research online without paying an access fee. That’s why so many researchers, libraries, and universities support Open Access, and why more authors and journals continue to make the switch. (See “Open Access in Operation,” below).
Students — who read, rely on, and write for scholarly publications — have the power to change the way research is exchanged.
Get behind Open Access to improve access to research — and make your life and work as a student easier.
1 The 2008 annual subscription price for the journal Brain Research is $21,744.
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