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Open Access Scholarship

OA and OER

What is the difference between Open Access and Open Educational Resources?

Open Access is aimed at addressing the question of access to research and scholarship within the context of scholarly publishing. It does not address licensing and copyright questions.

Open Educational Resources addresses the question of rights (the 5 Rs) as they pertain to a given work (digital, print, multimedia) and applies to teaching and education materials rather than scholarly publications.

How are OA and OER similar?

There can be overlap between the two categories. For examples, some Open Access journals use open licensing. Both also belong to the larger community of open.

Common terms

Open Access is a dynamic and evolving field. These are commonly used terms. These and other terms can be found at the Glossary of open access terms published by the Imperial College of London.

OA models


Diamond OA

Immediate access, no fees for authors or readers. Non-commercial, nonprofit publishing. Learn more at the International Association of Advanced Materials (IAAM).

Gold OA

Immediate access. Authors pay APCs (see below).

Green OA

Preprint articles can be archived in institutional repositories, perhaps after an embargo period.

Additional terms


Article Processing Charge (APC)

Fees levied by the publisher to the author. See also A note about Transformative Agreements


A period of time during which the article is only accessible to paid subscribers.


Preprint articles are typically the final draft of an article before it undergoes peer and editorial review.

Predatory publishing

Does OA = Predatory?

No. Deceptive publishing predates OA, but the OA model created an opportunity for unethical publishers to engage in predatory publishing.

What is predatory publishing?

Predatory publishing seeks only to generate profit without regard for the harm it has on scholarly discourse.

Predatory publishing in context

Predatory publishing exists within the wider world of unethical publishing. Other forms include:

  • exclusionary pricing models
  • closed-access vanity publishing
  • selling of public domain content
  • deceptive formatting (ads that look like articles)


Berger, M., & Cirasella, J. (2015). Beyond Beall's list. College & Research Libraries News 76,(3), 132-45.

Swauger, S. (2017). Open access, power, and privilege. Retrieved from