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Biological Sciences: Open Access Publishing

Subjects: Biology, Zoology

Open Access and the next REF - Act on Acceptance

In order to be eligible for the REF, the final peer-reviewed version of journal articles and conference papers (with an ISSN) accepted since 1 April 2016 must be deposited in an open access repository within 3 months of acceptance for publication. This is the version sometimes known as the ‘Author-Accepted-Manuscript’ or AAM. 

The University developed a quick deposit system as part of its Act on Acceptance campaign. This began on 1st October 2015, in preparation for REF 2021, and to boost the wider accessibility of Oxford's research. 

What you need to do. All academic and research staff employed by the collegiate University should:

  • deposit all your newly-accepted journal articles and conference papers into ORA
  • do it through Symplectic Elements
  • do it within 3 months of the date of acceptance
  • start now. Go to Act on Acceptance to find out more and Deposit your work.

The ORA team check copyright & licensing conditions, create an ORA record and make the full-text available after the embargo period. 

If you have any questions please contact our email helpline:

Further information and updates are available on the Open Access Oxford website:

Funder requirements

Since April 2013 funding councils which are part of RCUK require articles published in peer reviewed journals or conference proceedings to be open access. Other funders such as the Wellcome Trust, a number of medical charities and European funders also have policies on publishing research in an open access format.

See our list of funding bodies for more information or visit the Sherpa Juliet web site which provides full details of requirements for each funder.

Further information for selected funders

Below are links to the open access policies of several bodies who are particularly active in funding research in the life sciences.

Oxford and open access

To find out about Oxford's policies with regard to Open Access and the payment of APCs please see Oxford Open Access.

For advice on Open Access for your subject please contact your subject librarian

Bodleian Libraries is also running general (non subject specific) workshops on Open Access.

Contact us


An ORCID iD is a unique researcher identifier, used worldwide, that you keep throughout your life and retain even if you move institution.

Click the green button to get an 'ORCID at Oxford' register for an ORCID at Oxford

You can create new or connect existing ORCIDs with the university this way. Use the How to register tab of this guide for step-by-step help.

ORCID is increasingly becoming the method of choice by funders and publishers globally to unambiguously link people to their publications and grants.

The Wellcome Trust and NIHR are examples of funders which require ORCIDs in grant applications.

Your ORCID record is owned and managed solely by you, not the University.

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