The Open Access (OA) movement is based on the principle that the products of academic research should be freely accessible to everyone. And, behind this principle is the idea that the spirit of scholarly study is spreading knowledge in order to improve society for everyone. In reality, academic journals can be very expensive and huge portions of scholarship are inaccessible to the public. While it's fairly common for folks to apply this to peer-reviewed journal articles, OA can apply to documents like theses, conference proceedings, presentations, learning objects, research data and many others.
Open Access comes in a variety of flavours. There's gratis open access, which is freely available content. There's also libre open access, which is content that comes with rights for reuse. You'll also commonly hear about green, gold, and hybrid open access which can refer to the economic model and/or form of distribution of content.
That said, there are plenty of excellent descriptions of open access out there, so rather than reinventing the wheel, please check out these great resources:
Although we speak of open access literature, open access is not in fact limited to scholarly texts but can encompass every kind of digital content, from data to video to software.
Read More About OA:
- Budapest Open Access Initiative
- Peter Suber's Overview of Open Access
- Open Access Explained - Piled Higher and Deeper
Support to Authors
UNB Libraries’ Centre for Digital Scholarship is responsible for maintaining and enhancing UNB’s institutional repository, UNB Scholar. Librarians on both campuses will support faculty in depositing their scholarly works into UNB Scholar, and otherwise making the results of their research and scholarship open access.
Scholarly Communications Librarian, Mike Nason
Adapted from the CAUL/CBUA Scholarly Communications Committee Digital Scholarship Toolbox Gitbook.
- Peter Suber's Introduction to Open Access
- CAUL/CBUA SCC Digital Scholarship Toolbox
- Public Library of Science (PLoS)
- The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Research Coalition (SPARC)
- University of Waterloo's FAQ on OA
- "Open Access Explained (Video)"
- UNB Libraries Statement of Support for Open Access
- Backgrounder on OA at UNB Libraries