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Scholarly Communications

The scholarly communications and publishing ecosystem, including formats of academic literature (journals, monographs, edited collections), research impact, grants, copyright, Open Access, Open Educational Resources, and non-academic publishing.

Why Journal-Based OA?

There are more opportunities than ever to publish in Open Access journals. It is an easy way to make your work open, though there are potential drawbacks, especially in terms of potential costs. 

Benefits of Publishing in OA Journals

  • Publishing with an OA journal ensures the version of record of the article is immediately made open upon publication. 
  • No work is required of you to make your article OA other than submitting it to the journal. 

Potential Downsides of Publishing in OA Journals

  • OA journals might not be the most impactful in your field of study. 
  • Some OA journals require APCs to publish, which can get expensive.

PLOS Open Access logo is decided into the public domain using a CC0 dedication

Identifying OA Journals

  • More and more journals are publishing OA every year.
  • As seen by the number of journal-OA models, there is a lot to consider when choosing an OA journal. 
  • There are also predatory journals that pose as legitimate OA journals but lack any real quality control. 
  • The Directory of Open Access Journals can help you sort through all of these issues and identify where to submit your research. 

Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

  • The DOAJ lets you search over 16,500 peer-reviewed global OA journals covering all academic disciplines.
  • The DOAJ will include any journal that meets its inclusion guidelines, which include that the publication is a research journal, that it is peer reviewed, that it is Open Access, and that it is actively publishing.
  • It will also certify journals that meet its standards for best practices in OA publishing with the DOAJ Seal. These standards include preservation of the journal's contents, data quality, use and display of open licenses, preservation of author's rights, and permissions to self-archive.

Search the DOAJ

  1. Start by keyword searching for a journal. The search will look at a journal's title, ISSN, subject, or publisher, and you can limit your result to any one of these.
    DOAJ search bar with "plos" in field "search by keywords." Input menu "fields" set to option "in all fields" and displaying options "Title," "ISSN," "Subject," and "Publisher"
  2. The results page will display a list of journals with condensed information about each result. You can limit to journals with the DOAJ seal or those without APCs as well as by subject, language, license, publisher, publisher's country, type of peer review, and year added to the DOAJ.
    Results for search "plos" with top result "PLoS ONE" displayed. Result included publisher name Public Library of Science (PLoS) in United States, that it accepts work in English, the subjects "medicine" and "science," the DOAJ seal, last updated date of 19 Jul 2021, link to its website, APC cost of 1749 USD, and that it uses the CC BY license
  3. Clicking a result title will take you to its record page. This includes its ISSN; links to its website; information on publishing with the journal such as estimated APCs, links to the journal's scope and editorial policies, and estimated publication timeframe; best practices such as open licenses, author rights, digital preservation, and self-archiving policies; and journal data such as publisher, language of publication, and subjects covered.
    DOAJ record for PLoS One, showing its ISSN; website link; ISSN portal link; and headings for "Publishing with This Journal," "Best Practice," and "Journal Metadata"