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Open Access Publishing Fund


OA Publishing Fund

This guide describes the goals of our Open Access Publishing Fund, the application process and the policies that will determine the award of funds.

Goals of the OA Fund

The University Libraries, in collaboration with the Provost, have established  a fund to finance payment of article processing fees for Boston College authors who wish to publish in open access journals. Open access monograph publishing by high-quality, peer-reviewed scholarly presses will also be considered on a case-by-case basis. Open access funds demonstrate an institution’s concrete support for new and innovative research publishing models. The fund is administered through the University Libraries. 
Goals of the program

  • Support for Boston College affiliated authors who wish to publish open access
  • Support for transition to a more sustainable scholarly publishing model
  • Greater equality of access to information
  • Greater visibility and accessibility of Boston College scholarship
  • Encouragement of authors to retain rights to their work

Fund for OA Publishing Fees


Funding for this program is provided by the Provost.

Author eligibility

All Boston College faculty, researchers and currently enrolled students are eligible to apply for funding.

Journal eligibility

Peer-reviewed articles published in fully open access journals and accessible immediately on publication are eligible.

The Directory of Open Access Journals and the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association will be used to vet the journals’ quality and open access credentials, as will articles in the academic press about predatory practices.

The journal must have a publicly available standard article fee schedule. A policy of waiving fees in case of economic hardship is desirable.

Journals that require a supplemental payment for open access on an article-by-article basis, often called "hybrid" open access journals, are not eligible.*

Conditions of funding

Open access publishing funds are awarded on a first come, first served basis. Funds may be used for open access publishing and processing fees, including open access page charges. Funds may not be used for reprints, color illustration fees, non-OA page charges, permissions fees, web hosting for self-archiving, or other expenses not directly related to open access fees. The fund may be suspended if sufficient funding is not available.

  • Authors may not submit open access articles accepted by publishers who institute embargo periods.
  • Authors who have external funding which can be used for publishing fees are not eligible. If grant or departmental funds can be used to defray publishing fees, they must be used instead of the Open Access Publishing Funds.
  • The funding limit for each author will be $3000 in a 12 month period.
  • Authors may receive funding for no more than 3 articles in a 12 month period.
  • Authors who receive OA funding must also deposit the article in eScholarship@BC.
  • Submitted articles must be invoiced or published after December 1, 2013.


A small steering group manages the funding award process.The steering group includes members of the Libraries’ Scholarly Communication Committee and at least one faculty member.

Requests for funding must be submitted online using the Boston College OA Fund application form. Requests should be submitted as soon as the article is accepted for publication. They will be reviewed on a regular basis by the steering group. Every effort will be made to provide a decision within ten business days.

If the funding request is approved, the author should notify the steering group when the article is published or if the author withdraws it from consideration in that journal.

Reimbursement will be made to the author once the author has been invoiced for the submission fee. Authors must provide a copy of the publisher’s invoice to the steering group. Once an author is notified that a request has been approved, the author must provide the original invoice and evidence of payment to Kathryn Simoni, Office of the Provost, Waul House, for reimbursement. Reimbursement cannot be made without submission of the original invoice. Please mark your request for reimbursement with the words “Open Access Fund”.

The author must also provide a full bibliographic citation plus a copy of the funded article, either the author’s final version or the published version, for deposit in  eScholarship@BC.

Questions may be addressed to the steering group at any time.

Average article publishing charges


Lawson, Stuart (2015): Average APC price 2014. fig share.

Retrieved 14:40, Feb 19, 2015 (GMT)

*Why aren't hybrid journals eligible?

Hybrid journals require a supplemental payment for open access on an article-by-article basis. Authors may pay to have their own article openly available immediately. Many large journal publishing companies have instituted these fees, but have not reduced their traditional subscription fees. They are often accused of being paid twice to publish the same article. In addition, although these articles are available to read, they are not usually published under a license which allows reuse.

See Shieber SM (2009) Equity for Open-Access Journal Publishing. PLoS Biol 7(8): e1000165. doi:10.1371/journal.pbio.1000165

More about OA Funds

Members of the Steering Group

The members of the steering group are:


Michael James, Lynch School of Education

Thomas Seyfried, Biology Department, College of Arts and Sciences


Nina Bogdanovsky, Senior Reference Librarian/Bibliographer

Sarah Melton, Head, Digital Scholarship

Jane Morris, Head, Scholarly Communication and Research Services

John O'Connor, eScholarship Repository Librarian

Betsy Post, Head, Digital Library Programs

Sally Wyman, Head, Collection Development and Research Services

The steering group email address is