Science & Technology

Open Access Funding for Researchers Submitting Articles Available July 1 From USU Libraries

By Erica Finch |

The Merrill-Cazier Library on USU's Logan campus.

LOGAN, Utah — The USU Libraries Open Access (OA) Funding Initiative, which helps students and faculty pay article processing charges (APCs) to publish in academic journals, will start a new funding round on July 1.

Open access is a crucial tool for ensuring USU research benefits both the academic community and society at large. Authors who share their work without barriers can amplify its reach and impact, increase global collaboration and drive faster innovation.

APC-supported journals require authors to pay a fee to the journal as a condition of publication. These APCs are intended to replace fees previously paid by readers and remove financial barriers to accessing research.

However, APCs have inadvertently created a new financial barrier for authors. While APCs vary by publisher and discipline, most authors agree that they’re expensive and difficult to pay. The average APC listed on an award application in 2023-24 was just over $2,500. The highest APC listed was $5,780.

“For many graduate and undergraduate students this is the only source of funding available,” said Trisha Atwood, associate professor in the Department of Watershed Sciences.

The USU Libraries OA Fund “is a crucial resource for early career scientists,” Atwood added.

Brennan Thompson, assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology and Health Sciences, points out that it’s not only student authors who feel the pinch of APCs.

“We publish a lot of research, and more and more journals are converting to open access publishing models,” Thompson said.

Researchers’ resources can be limited, Thompson said, so finding ways to publish in quality journals often requires various sources of funding.

In the 2023-24 fiscal year, USU Libraries helped over 70 faculty authors and 60 student authors pay APCs for OA publication. Awards ranged from $400 to $1,500 and were matched by college, department or grant funds.

The new funding round for the USU Libraries OA Funding Initiative is set to begin at 9 a.m. MDT July 1. Applicants must be affiliated with USU. Award amounts are capped at 50% of an APC, up to a total award of $1,500, and must be matched by college, department or grant funding. Awards are made on a rolling basis until all funds are depleted.

More information on eligibility criteria, the application process, and other OA supports available through USU Libraries can be found via the Open Access Support guide.

WRITER

Erica Finch
Scholarly Communication Librarian
University Libraries
435-797-1391
erica.finch@usu.edu

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