Open Access Initiatives

Texas A&M University Libraries are an active advocate of open access, believing that open access can help address both the price barriers and the permission barriers that undermine global access to the products of Texas A&M University’s scholarly and creative work, as well as helping alleviate the serious issue of providing Texas A&M scholars access to the world’s scholarly literature due to rising subscription costs.

 What Is Open Access?

Open Access refers to free and unrestricted availability of scientific or scholarly literature on the Internet. Open Access provides several benefits, including:

  • Societal impact
    Even the best ideas remain just that until they are shared, until they can be utilized by others. The more people that can access and build upon the latest research, the more valuable that research becomes and the more likely we are to benefit as a society. More eyes make for smaller problems.

  • Scholarly Impact 
    Open access publications are cited more often because of their higher availability and visibility.

  • Research Funding 
    Funders invest in research to advance human knowledge and ultimately improve lives. Open Access increases the return on that investment by ensuring the results of the research they fund can be read and built on by anyone.

TAMU Libraries Open Access Initiatives

The TAMU Libraries program seeks to provide the tools and services that remove barriers (e.g., price and permissions) to scholars publishing their work as open access, as well providing TAMU scholars access to the world’s scholarly literature. The Office of Scholarly Communications offers several tools and services to help researchers publish their work.

Additional Resources 

  • SPARC – The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition was developed by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL) to promote change toward open access in scholarly communication.
  • Create Change – Create Change was developed by SPARC and the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) to educate faculty and authors about the new model of scholarly communication.
  • Open Access Newsletter - Hosted by SPARC, Peter Suber’s monthly open access newsletter provides timely information about legislative and academic issues regarding open access. Back issues of the newsletter can be found here.
  • Open Access Overview - This overview by Peter Suber is a comprehensive look at the open access model of scholarly communication.
  • Scholarly Communication Toolkit - The Scholarly Communication Toolkit was put together by the American Library Association and presents the major issues in scholarly communication as they relate to libraries, authors and researchers.
  • Directory of Open Access Journals – The Directory of Open Access Journal lists thousands of journals in various academic fields that make their content freely available online.
  • Texas Digital Library'sOpen Journal Systems – An online management system for open access journals. Using this tool, you can begin an open access journal, or transition an existing print journal to open access.
  • SHERPA/RoMEO - The SHERPA group has compiled a list of many publishers' policies towards open access.
  • OpenDOAR - OpenDOAR is an online directory of academic open access repositories. Each repository in the directory is visited and verified as scholarly by project staff.
  • HowOpenIsIt? A Guide for Evaluating the Openness of Journals – Created by SPARC in conjunction with PLOS and the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA), the HowOpenIsIt? Open Access Guide standardizes Open Access terminology in an easily understandable, comprehensive resource.

Starting an Open Access Journal

If you are interested in starting an open access journal, you can request the service directly through the Texas Digital Library (TDL), or contact your subject librarian for assistance.