October 22-28, 2012 is Open Access Week, which raises awareness of open access publishing opportunities. Open access publishers allow you, as the author, to retain copyright ownership over your article. For most traditional publishers, the author must sign away most or all copyright ownership to the publisher. Open access journals have peer review standards just like traditional journals, but differ in the way that they are financially supported. Traditional journals charge subscription fees for the right to read (over $30,000 per year in one case) and keep the copyright ownership for the articles. Open access journals charge an article processing fee to the author, which can be similar to the fees charged for color, extra pages, etc. by traditional publishers. With the author paying up front, the author retains copyright ownership and everyone is free to read the article as soon as it is published.
Himmelfarb Library has institutional memberships for the following open access publishers, which provide a discount of the article processing fees for our GW authors.
BioMed Central: 15% discount; 243 peer-reviewed journals in many medical, public health and nursing disciplines. To date, 185 articles by GW authors have been published in BioMed Central journals, including 25 in 2012 alone!
Public Library of Science: 10% discount; Seven peer-reviewed journals, including PLOS One, which publishes research in all areas of science and medicine. To date, 190 articles by GW authors have been published in Public Library of Science journals, including 49 in 2012!
BMJ Case Reports: FREE for GW authors to publish case reports. Two case reports by GW faculty have been published in this new resource.
BioMed Central and Public Library of Science journals, and BMJ Case Reports are discoverable through MEDLINE, PubMed and other indexing databases, just like traditional journals. If you have questions about submitting an article or case report to one of these three publishers, please contact Steve Brown, Serials Librarian at firstname.lastname@example.org or 202-994-9756.
Many questionable open access publishers have sprouted up recently, so watch for our blog post later in the week that identifies some of these “predatory” publishers, to help you steer clear and stick to reputable ones.