Article Processing Charges (APCs) are the dominant funding model for Open Access (OA) publishing, especially amongst commercial publishers. In this model the author (or their surrogate) pays the publisher a fee to get their article published OA. APCs vary in amount, from a few hundred pounds to several thousand, and the most prestigious journals will frequently be the most expensive. Hybrid journals tend to have more expensive APCs than pure OA journals, and some pure OA journals do not charge an APC, rather they will be funded by individual institutions or membership models.
The only dedicated funds for APCs at The Open University are in the form of the UKRI/RCUK block grant, there is no central provision for APCs other than for articles from UKRI/RCUK funding. For how to access the UKRI/RCUK block grant please go to the UKRI/RCUK block grant page.
Due to various institutional subscriptions we have with academic publishers, several transitional agreements are available to OU researchers who wish to publish Gold OA (where the final journal article is immediately freely available to read and download on the publisher website). Offsetting deals are paid for from Library budgets and allow OU affiliated authors to publish Open Access at no cost to them or at a reduced cost (see individual deals for details). These agreements can change at short notice so please check this page for updates.
The following deals are open to all current OU-affiliated research staff and postgraduate research students (excluding visiting researchers), though individual deals may specify that you must be the corresponding author in order to be eligible (please see eligibility details for individual deals). In most cases, affiliation with The OU will be verified by your institutional email address (open.ac.uk). Please note that the OU has a preference for outputs to be published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY) license (typically the default license applied by the publisher). Publishing under this license has many benefits in terms of increasing the impact of your work and maximising possibilities for re-use. The following short video explains more:
The following agreements allow OU affiliated authors to publish Open Access at no cost. You must be the corresponding author to benefit from these deals (unless specifically stated otherwise). To benefit from these deals, submit your research using your institutional affiliation and email address. Please note the majority of these deals do not cover additional charges for optional extras such as accelerated publication or colour printing (where these apply), so please check before submission if such charges apply, as the author will be responsible for funding these extra costs.
We strongly recommend that you contact us to check eligibility before choosing an Open Access license, as you may be liable for the fee if it is not eligible under this agreement.
This deal applies to hybrid and fully OA journals within ACS Web Editions. It is highly recommened for ease of identification and administrative matters that corresponding authors utilise a current OU email address extension.
More details on this deal are available through ACS directly:
Applies to hybrid OA journals and research article types only. Gold titles not included. You must use your institutional address and OU email address for submission.
Further details available on submission instructions at:
Applicable to research article types only, in any of Brill's journals (including Gold titles). For questions on Open Access publishing at Brill please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Applicable within any Gold or hybrid journals within Cambridge University Press Complete Journals Collections. Eligible articles: Research, Review Articles and Rapid Communications (RRR), Plus Brief Report and Case Report article types, which are often linked to research articles. For further details on how to publish under this deal, linked below:
All hybrid and fully OA journals included, and all article types eligible. To benefit from this deal you must submit your article using the online submission system for your chosen journal title, and follow the steps in the Guide for Authors linked to below:
This agreement covers:
Fully OA titles included? No but there is also the option to include them with a 15% discount on APCs.
This deal is available for both corresponding and contributing authors publishing in any hybrid or fully Gold titles, for any article type. To benefit from this deal you must list your OU affiliation in the online submission system and complete an Open Access form (see author guidance linked to below).
This agreement applies to any article type in six Geological Society hybrid journals and three hybrid book series. The six hybrid journal titles included are: Journal of the Geological Society, Quarterly Journal of Engineering Geology and Hydrogeology, Petroleum Geoscience, Geochemistry: Exploration, Environment, Analysis, Scottish Journal of Geology, and Proceedings of the Yorkshire Geological Society.
This agreement applies to any IOP Publishing's hybrid journal titles and selected Gold journals. This deal applies to all primary research article types as well as reviews: Letters, Papers, Reviews and Special Issue articles.
This deal covers subscribe to open and fully OA titles and is open to all article types. You must ensure your institutional affiliation and institutional e-mail address is correctly entered in the publisher’s submission system.
JMIR are piloting a Flat Fee OA Publishing agreement whereby OU corresponding authors can publish fully OA in any article type. The cap is unlimited for 1 year.
Authors are required to use an OU email address, include an OU affiliation on the article and mention in the cover letter that they are requesting an APC waiver via the Open-JMIR unlimited OA publishing deal.
Research and Review articles in fully OA and hybrid journals are eligible. This deal applies to all OUP titles in the OUP Full Collection. Eligible authors will be identified by OUP during the article submission process, but you must use your institutional email address during the submission process to be identified.
Any PLOS journal titles included. For PLOS Biology, Medicine and Sustainability & Transform this deal applies to all corresponding and contributing authors, and for the remaining six titles (which are covered under a different Flat Fee agreement: PLOS Computational Biology, Pathogens, Genetics, Neglected Tropical Diseases, Digital Health and PLOS One) this is restricted to corressponding authors only. This deal applies to all article types.
All seven Portland Press journals included: Biochemical Journal; Clinical Science; Neuronal Signalling; Bioscience Reports; Biochemical Society Transactions; Essays in Biochemistry; and Emerging Topics in Life Sciences. Applicable to all article types.
All article types in RUP's three hybrid journals are eligible: Journal of Cell Biology (JCB), Journal of Experimental Medicine (JEM), and Journal of General Physiology (JGP).
Hybrid and fully Open Access (Gold) journal titles included. Articles are published under a CC BY license. Corresponding authors must use their institutional email address in order to be identified as eligible.
Applicable to hybrid articles. Must be the corresponding author as designated upon article submission, and the OU must be stated as your affiliation in the author submission workflow. Fully OA (gold) titles are not included however, there is a 15% APC discount for all articles accepted in RSC Gold OA journals.
Authors can publish Gold in SAGE Choice (hybrid OA) journals. Eligible authors will be contacted directly to ask if they would like to benefit from this deal, so you do not need to take any action.
They also offer a 20% discount off list price to publish in licensed SAGE wholly Gold OA journals. The 20% discount can be obtained by quoting code JISC2020 in the RightsLink portal. For Open Access Journals where RightsLink portal is not used, the corresponding author must contact email@example.com to request the discount. If the corresponding author does not request the discount via the code, they may request an amended invoice by contacting SAGE's Open Access customer service team prior to payment being made (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Springer Hybrid OA journals only. You must be publishing either an original paper, review paper, brief communication or continuing education (Springer terminology).
Taylor & Francis and Routledge hybrid (Open Select) journals only. Eligible article types include: article, review, research article, review article, report, short communication, case report, note, original article, and guest editorials.
Please be aware that there is a cap on the number of publications that are covered by this deal, so it is operated on a first come, first served basis.
Authors publishing original research and review articles in Wiley's hybrid (OnlineOpen) or fully Open Access (Gold) journals. You must indicate your affiliation with the OU's Wiley Open Access Account in the payment question during manuscript submission. There is a cap on the number of publications that are covered by this deal, so it is operated on a first come, first served basis.
The following agreements allow OU affiliated authors to publish Open Access at a reduced cost. Please note that for any discounts listed below authors are responsible for sourcing the remainder of the publishing fee themselves; this may be through research grants, the UKRI Block Grant, or faculty budgets (where available).
Equinox offers anywhere between 20-55% discount on APC payments. Applicable to all article types.
MDPI offer a 10% APC discount. The discount applies to all accepted articles and cannot be used in conjunction with any other discount (e.g., discount vouchers, or society membership discounts).
Policy Press offer a 20% discount on APCs for OU authors, as the OU currently subscribes to their online content. They also offer 10% off open access book APCs.