Glossary of open access terms
Accepted author manuscript (AAM) – also known as a post-print. The peer-reviewed, final version of an article prior to publication. This is not the same as the publisher’s PDF.
Article processing charge (APC) – a publisher’s fee for covering publishing costs such as those associated with editorial and peer-review processes. A consequence of payment of an APC is gold (immediate) open access to the research paper.
Date of acceptance – the date an article is accepted, after peer review, for publication by a journal. HEFCE require that an article must be deposited in an institutional or subject repository within 3 months of this date.
Deposit – adding research output, such as an article, to a repository.
Discoverable – the article can be found by readers and search engines, usually facilitated through a bibliographic or metadata record associated with the full text.
Embargo – a period during which access to scholarly work is restricted to those who have paid for access. Once the embargo period ends, an article can be deposited in a repository (if permitted by the publisher).
Gold open access – publishers make research articles immediately and freely available from the point of publication, and usually apply an article processing charge.
Green open access – the author makes a version of a research output freely available via an institutional or subject repository. Publishers stipulate the version of manuscript that can be self-archived and the length of embargo period following publication before the paper is made open access.
Institutional repository – an online archive of an institution’s scholarly outputs. The collection can include publications in peer-reviewed journals, books and book-sections, technical reports, working papers, monographs, conference presentations, audio and visual materials or any other research content that has some scholarly value. Imperial's institutional repository is Spiral.
Metadata – data that describes other data. For items in open access repositories, this usually consists of a full bibliographic reference, abstract, keywords and similar information.
Open access – the online availability of scholarly work via the internet, free of charge to individuals who wish to access and read it.
Open access licence – the licence outlines what a person may do with a third party copyright work. An example of an open licence is a Creative Commons (CC) licence, which combines 4 basic elements: the attribution, the derivatives, the commercial use, and the ‘share-alike’ principle.
Output – a piece of research content, including articles, books, chapters, technical reports, working papers, monographs, conference presentations, or audio and visual materials. It can also include research datasets.
Pre-print – the first draft of an article, before peer-review, possibly even before any contact with a publisher.
Publisher’s PDF – the final published version of an article, including the publisher’s copy-editing, proof corrections, layout, and typesetting.
Self-archiving – the process of depositing your research output to a repository along with bibliographic metadata. At Imperial you can do this via Symplectic. This process involves granting an open licence regarding access and reuse of your work.
Spiral – Imperial’s institutional repository.
Subject repository – an online archive of open access literature in particular fields e.g. PubMed Central and arXiv.
Symplectic – the Current Research Information System (CRIS) used by Imperial to manage research metadata and deposit related publications to Spiral.