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Library - Research Support

Open Access

Our policy and approach to open access research outputs.

Open Access (OA) offers free and unrestricted access to research outputs. Anyone can read, download and reuse research (subject to any licence restrictions). You can choose to publish your own research so that it is OA.

Types of Open Access

There are several types of OA:

  • Green OA – where a version of a research output is made available free of charge to readers, often through an online repository and usually with an embargo period.
  • Gold OA – where published research outputs are made available immediately and free of charge to readers with opportunities to reuse the research according to any licence applied to the work. In return the author or their institution are usually (but not always) required to pay an article processing charge (APC) or book processing charge (BPC) to the publisher.
  • Diamond OA – neither author or readers pay any charge and research outputs are published, made available immediately and can be reused according to the licence applied to the work.
  • Bronze OA – where published research outputs are free to read and download but are not licenced for reuse. Publishers may withdraw access to research at any time.

Open Access at York St John University

York St John University supports the principle of OA and where possible will follow the Green or Diamond OA routes. Please note that if going down a Gold OA route, the Library and Learning Services team and the Research Office do not have funds for APCs and BPCs. Please contact your relevant academic school for funding information for Gold OA.

The University OA policy applies to all staff and research students who produce research outputs.

We ask staff to deposit all research outputs (including journal articles, conference proceedings, book chapters, physical artefacts, exhibitions and performances) into the University’s institutional repository, RaY, with bibliographic metadata and post prints/author accepted manuscripts of research outputs, subject to publisher copyright permissions.

Open Access Policy

REF and Open Access

UK higher education funding bodies believe that research outputs should be freely and widely available. For REF 2021, the final peer-reviewed manuscripts of articles and published conference proceedings had to be deposited in an institutional or subject Open Access (OA) repository and made publicly available within a prescribed time.

Initial decisions and issues for further consultation for REF 2028 has now been released and can be found in the Research Excellence Framework 2028 (PDF, 0.6MB) document. This document states that “a UKRI open access compliant publication will be considered to meet the REF 2028 open access requirements without additional action from the author and/or institution”. With this in mind, York St John's OA Policy has been updated to be compliant and in line with the UKRI OA policy. The policy will continue to be kept under review as the consultation on REF 2028 progresses. It is expected that there will be a REF OA consultation launched in Autumn 2023 with OA requirements for the next REF published in Spring 2024.

If York St John University researchers comply with the University’s OA policy, it is highly likely that your output(s) will be compliant with any future REF OA requirements.

Should any York St John researchers have any questions or concerns about outputs for the next REF, please email RaY (

York St John University Open Access Policy

UKRI Open Access Policy

Open Access Community Framework initiatives

As part of our commitment to supporting OA, Library and Learning Services has pledged money to two of JISC’s Open Access Community Framework initiatives. These community-driven framework initiatives enable multiple stakeholders to collectively fund OA content.

The two initiatives we have pledged money to support are:

International Journal of Strength and Conditioning: Open Access Community Framework 2022 to 2024

A peer-reviewed academic journal in the area of Sport Science, Sport Performance, and Strength and Conditioning. The IJSC is Diamond Open-Access, bringing scientific research to the entire community at zero-cost to the consumer and author. The support given through the framework initiative will enable a fully independent and sustainable operation for the IJSC. This will mean continued OA to the journal for all, as well as unlimited opportunity for submission and publication within the IJSC for all of UK institutions' academics and students.

Open UP ECR Monograph initiative: Open Access Community Framework 2022 to 2024

A collaborative project between Bristol University Press, Edinburgh University Press, Liverpool University Press, Manchester University Press, UCL Press and University of Wales Press to secure funding for a number of first books by UK-based (unfunded) early career researchers each year to support the expectation that the next REF exercise will require eligible monographs to be made available via approved open access (OA) routes. Funding through the JISC pledges will support Diamond OA Publication for 12 ECR books in each period, with the first batch of books due for publication in 2023. The initiative aims to support ECRs across the UK who would benefit significantly from their work being made OA.

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