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Dahlgren Memorial Library

Open Access Publishing and Resources

Guide to open access content and publishing, including NIH Public Access requirements

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Welcome to the open access research guide.
This guide has been created to assist Georgetown University Medical Center affiliates with understanding, finding, evaluating and publishing open access content. You'll also find sections to help with NIH open access policy compliance. Use the navigation tabs at the left to further explore the content.

What is open access?

Open access content provides the "the free, immediate, online availability of research articles, coupled with the rights to use these articles fully in the digital environment." (SPARC)

  • Open access content can be almost any digital item; for example, entire online journals, single articles, eBooks, eBook chapters, images and videos.
  • Open access content is free for readers; however,  the cost to publish often is shifted to the authors, with some open access publishers charging authors, institutions or funders a publication fee.
  • Although open access content can be accessed freely,  it does not mean that the authors have given up all rights to their content.  Much of the open access content is covered by a creative commons license which dictates how readers can use the content.  Creative commons licenses retain the authors' rights, as well as ensure that authors receive credit for their work.
  • Much of the open access content is in journals.  Journals can be entirely open access or a hybrid, whereby subscription fees are charged but authors are also given an option to pay a fee to have their specific article provided as open access.

Open access advocacy

Open access in the news

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Linda Van Keuren's picture
Linda Van Keuren
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Assistant Dean For Resources & Access Mgt
Dahlgren Memorial Library, GUMC
3900 Reservoir Rd, NW
Washington, DC 20057