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Open Access at Aston: How to publish OA

As soon as your article has been accepted for publication, please log in to Pure and create a record for your publication (see these simple instructions).  Alternatively, you can email with your publication details so that we can do this for you.


Detailed explanations of the Green and Gold OA publishing processes are given below. Please note that additional requirements may need to be met if you have funding from one of the UK Research Councils, charities in COAF, the European Commission, and others. These requirements are summarised here.


An increasing number of publishers are allowing chapters and books to be made open access by depositing the author's accepted manuscript in an institutional repository. Please get in touch with us if you would like further information!

Green OA: what you need to do

Green OA publishing

Aston's OA Policy and Code of Practice (inc. Guidance), is that all journal and conference publications should meet Green status (if not Gold), in line with funder mandates for specific levels of discoverability and accessibility. This applies to all Aston authors - whether the corresponding author or as a co-author.

To be Green OA compliant you need to: 

  1. Log in to Pure and either import or create a new record for your publication. If you are creating a record, please ensure that the metadata includes the date of acceptance, article title, authors and journal name. The Open Access Specialists will check and enhance the metadata. 
  2. Upload the accepted manuscript of the article. This must be done within three months of acceptance to be eligible for the next REF. The Open Access Specialists will add the relevant copyright information and embargo period as required by your publisher. 
  3. However, where possible, we recommend that you deposit both the metadata and full-text version of the article as soon as possible after acceptance.


To get started, login via the Pure image below!


Follow the instructions below on how to deposit your manuscript. If your publication record has already been validated by Library Services it will be 'locked' for editing purposes.  Please contact for advice if you need to edit your publication record and/or have the full-text article added.

Useful Tools for Authors

  • SHERPA-RoMEO presents a summary of permissions normally given as part of each publisher's copyright transfer agreement.
  • SHERPA-FACT is a tool to help researchers check if journals comply with their funder's requirements for Open Access to research.
  • Creative Commons licence information

Flipping a journal to OA or starting an OA journal

Are you an editor for a traditionally published subscription journal? Or have you and like-minded colleagues ever thought about starting up an open access journal? If so, take a look at the following resources for some information on initial steps to get started!

Copyright and Your Intellectual Property Rights

Copyright Law will protect your rights in your own creative work and give credit for your research and innovations via attribution, see the Copyright and Intellectual Property LibGuide for detailed information.

Read and Publish/ Transformative deals & discounts

‚ÄčAs part of our transformative/ read and publish deals with a range of publishers, Aston corresponding authors have access to a range of free or reduced APCs for original research and review articles (invited reviews, editorials, book reviews etc. are not included). 

These include the following publishers:

  • SpringerInstitute of Physics, ACMWiley and Sage include free APCs in their hybrid titles for Aston corresponding (submitting) authors as part of our subscriptions. You should use your Aston affiliation and email address to be included. 
  • RSC have given us a small number of free APCs for Aston corresponding authors. You will be notifed at acceptance if your article is eligible.
  • Taylor & Francis have allocated us a number of APCs with a 75% discount (though many T&F medical titles aren't in this scheme). 
  • Portland Press offers Aston corresponding authors a 15% discount on APCs
  • BMC prepayment is available for RCUK funded authors only. Contact us to discuss access. 

Contact for further details on any of these schemes or author/article type eligibility.

Gold OA: what you need to do

 Gold OA publishing

This type of OA publishing requires the payment of an article processing charge (APC) to make the article open access as part of a fully gold OA journal or a hybrid journal (where paying for open access is optional). Gold OA articles should be published with a Creative Commons licence, with the author(s) retaining copyright. 


If your journal or publisher is not included in any of our Read and Publish/Transformative deals, there may be financial support available to help you pay the APC for your article. Please see Aston's Open Access Policy for eligibility criteria relating to our UKRI and Institutional OA* funds. 

  • If publication cost funds are already included in your research grant or can be reimbursed you should use that as a source. This applies primarily to European Commission funding (H2020 etc.)
  • Aston has funds from UKRI to pay APCs for articles arising from research directly funded by the UK Research Councils: AHRC, BBSRC, EPSRC, ESRC, MRC, NERC or STFC. Note that we will only pay OA costs and will not pay for page or colour charges.
  • There is a small institutional budget to pay APCs in fully open access journals only- *NOTE This fund is currently closed.


The Gold APC request process is:

  1. If you are submitting an article or have recently had an article accepted and would like to be considered for a Gold APC payment, please email with details. We will reply to you with relevant advice within two working days
  2. You will need to ensure that the appropriate Creative Commons licence is applied to the article. Gold OA journal articles are normally published under the Creative Commons Attribution Licence 3.0 or 4.0 (CC BY), and use of this licence is a condition of funding from RCUK, the Wellcome Trust & other members of COAF, as well as use of Aston's institutional budget. It is also the preference with EC FP7/ERC/Horizon 2020 funding.  
  3. All journal articles published as Gold via any APC route should also be deposited as soon as possible either after acceptance or immediately upon publication. Login to PURE and follow these simple instructions on how to self-archive/deposit.   
  4. For funder-specific compliance requirements in relation to depositing articles, accessibility embargoes and subject repositories, see the relevant details here.

Predatory Publishers

Unfortunately in open access publishing there are publishers who exploit the Gold open access route to publication. These are predatory publishers with no academic credibility and often have fabricated editorial staff and/or journal names that closely resemble well-known reputable ones. These publishers frequently solicit submissions via spam emails and may offer to waive APC fees initially before charging numerous additional fees (submission, page, review, expedited service, withdrawal, etc.). 

Examples of publications in predatory journals can be found here:

If you are considering publishing in a journal that is new to you, or that you think may not be entirely legitimate, please get in touch with us to discuss your concerns before agreeing to publish or pay any fees. You can also use Think, Check, Submit to help you choose which journals to publish in. 

Please note that Library Services will not pay any APCs for articles submitted to known predatory journals.