Frequently asked questions

You are here

General  |  Terminology  |  Open Access policy @ UHasselt

General:

  • Why make your work available in Open Access? What’s in it for you?
    “Why does Hasselt University choose for the 'green road'?”
  • Doesn’t Open Access stimulate plagiarism?
    An Open Access publication is subject to the same copyright laws as a conventional publication. The fact that an article is freely available on the Internet does not mean that one can just copy from it. In addition, it is much easier to recognize plagiarism if the source publication can be found via a search engine on the Internet.
  • Isn’t self archiving time consuming?
    Some scholars have reservations about the amount of time needed for self-archiving. However, according to a study by Carr and Harnad (2005), even researchers who self-archive often do not need to spend more than 40 minutes a year on the task. 
    As an author, you are often assisted by the library staff of your institution. In addition, self-archiving can also save you considerable time: online archives can often also generate up-to-date publication lists, which makes it a lot easier to prepare a CV or a promotion file.
  • Are there any costs associated with Open Access publishing?
    The publisher often charges publication costs or so-called 'article processing charges' (APCs) for the Open Access publishing of your article or book. We then speak of gold Open Access. Hasselt University does not provide a fund with which these APCs can be paid, nor are there any deals in Flanders with publishers regarding the financing of APCs. Before you pay the costs yourself, it is however worth checking whether your research funder cannot (partially) accommodate for them.

    To circumvent the sometimes high APCs, you can choose to publish in a journal with a subscription model, and before or after publication to include the author's version of your article in the Document Server (i.e. the institutional repository of Hasselt University), after which it becomes freely available to the rest of the world, whether or not after an embargo period. In this case we speak of green Open Access. You don't have to worry about copyright, because Hasselt University always checks whether and which embargo the publisher allows. All this is part of Hasselt University's Open Access policy.

    If the publisher does not allow the archiving of the author's version, then it is advisable to attach certain conditions to the transfer of your copyright. More info can be found here.

    Tip:
    If the above options are not possible and/or are not sufficient to meet the conditions of your funder, the Belgian Open Access legislation is a possible solution. This law gives you the right to make the author's version of your journal articles - provided they meet certain conditions - available for free in Open Access via our repository, and this after an embargo period of maximum 12 (for the human and social sciences) or 6 (for all other sciences) months. Interestingly, this law always overrules your publisher's embargo provisions. More info can be found here.

    If you wish to make use of the Belgian Open Access legislation for a publication, please report this to the University Library (eline.schoeters@uhasselt.be or hilde.cleeren@uhasselt.be) and upload the author’s version of your article in the Document Server. The latter is then placed under the appropriate embargo by the library.

  • I want to publish in Open Access: where can I find reliable publication channels?
    If you want to publish in a journal, consult the Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ).
    If you want to publish (in) a book, consult the Directory of Open Access Books (DOAB).
  • Where can I check the embargo provisions of a publisher or journal?
    A handy tool for this is Sherpa Romeo. Several help videos help you to correctly interpret all the information.
  • What are my options if the publisher of my publication imposes a longer embargo period than allowed by my funder?
    The Belgian Open Access legislation is a possible solution. This law gives you the right to make the author's version of your journal articles - provided they meet certain conditions - available for free in Open Access via our repository, and this after an embargo period of maximum 12 (for the human and social sciences) or 6 (for all other sciences) months. Interestingly, this law always overrules your publisher's embargo provisions. More info can be found here.

    If you wish to make use of the Belgian Open Access legislation for a publication, please report this to the University Library (eline.schoeters@uhasselt.be or hilde.cleeren@uhasselt.be) and upload the author’s version of your article in the Document Server. The latter is then placed under the appropriate embargo by the library.

Terminology:

  • What is the difference between the ‘green road’ and the ‘golden road’?
    “How can I publish in Open Access?”
  • What is an author's version?
    By the author's version we mean the last version of the text after peer review, but before the final layout of the publisher. This version is also known as the 'post-reviewed preprint', 'accepted version', 'postprint', 'post-refereed print' or 'author's accepted manuscript (AAM)'.
  • What are hybrid journals?
    Unlike full Open Access journals, hybrid journals are subscription based, but offer authors the option to publish their individual article in Open Access subject to payment of an article processing charge (APC). The articles published in Open Access in this way are freely accessible to readers, but the journal itself is still published behind a paywall. We call this "double dipping", since the journal makes double profit: on the one hand, the author pays a publication fee to place his/her article in Open Access, on the other hand, the reader/library pays a subscription fee to access the other articles in that same journal.
  • What do the terms preprint and postprint mean?
    The preprint is the manuscript that has not yet been subjected to peer-review and has not yet been accepted for publication. 
    The post-print is the peer-reviewed manuscript that has been accepted for publication (usually a Word or LaTeX file). It is substantively the same as the published version, but without the publisher's final layout and formatting.
  • What is the Belgian Open Access legislation?
    Belgian Open Access legislation
  • What is Plan S?
    Plan S

Open Access policy @ UHasselt

  • Why does Hasselt University choose for the ‘green road’?
    “Why does Hasselt University choose for the 'green road'?”
  • What is the UHasselt policy regarding 'gold Open Access'? Can I contact UHasselt for payment of APCs (article processing charges)?
    “What is the cost to publish in Open Access?”
  • Can UHasselt authors still publish in any journal?
    Of course. UHasselt authors are free to decide in which journal they wish to publish their research results. All that is expected of them is to upload the final author's version of their peer-reviewed publications to the institutional repository (Document Server@UHasselt).
  • How can you find out whether your journal has a policy compliant with depositing your manuscript in an institutional repository?
    To avoid any misunderstanding, the University Library checks the copyright policy and Open Access policy of the publisher for each uploaded text. Access to the author's version in the Document Server is adjusted accordingly. So this is actually something you don't need to worry about.
    If you still want to check this for yourself, you can check the policies of publishers and journals regarding Open Access at Sherpa Romeo. About two-thirds of the (scientific) journals allow self-archiving of the author's version.
  • What about copyright?
    Some authors fear copyright problems if they upload their work to repositories. This is incorrect. Even if you as an author do not have the exploitation rights to your work, many traditional publishers still allow self-archiving of the author's version. The Open Access policy of publishers and journals can be checked via the Sherpa Romeo database. In any case, the University Library checks the publisher's open access policy for each uploaded text and takes into account comments about the protection of intellectual rights. Access to the author's version in the Document Server will be adjusted accordingly.
  • What if there is no author’s version available?
    If you really cannot upload an authored version, please indicate this in the "Comments" field in the Document Server submission form.
  • What kind of support does the University Library offer?
    After the official publication by the publisher, the UHasselt author uploads his/her author's version into the Document Server. Only a very limited basic set of metadata has to be entered. The University Library carries out a quality check on this data and supplements it with data from the uploaded author's version and academic databases. The University Library also always tries to include the published version in the Document Server.
    The UHasselt author will receive an email confirming the successful inclusion of her/his work in the repository. Should there be any missing details, the University Library will contact the UHasselt author.
    As in the past, the University Library will continue to screen Hasselt University publications that are recorded in the Web of Science. If necessary, those publications are still entered in the Document Server, after which the author's version is requested from the researcher.
    The University Library checks the publisher's Open Access policy for each uploaded text and takes into account comments about the protection of intellectual rights. Access to the author's version in the Document Server will be adjusted accordingly.