Open Access Fund for Spring 2015: Now Closed


UPDATE (March 16, 2015): Due to a high volume of applications, we are unable to accept any more applications at this time. Please check back on the library’s blog for information about future OA Fund programs.

Apply to the Open Access Fund for Student and Early-Career Author

March 11th to April 8th, 2015 or when funds are depleted.


The Health Sciences Library is now accepting applications for its Open Access Fund for students and early career professionals. The award can be used to pay for the entire cost of the “author/article processing charge” (APC) for fully open access journals (see examples below). This policy for fully OA journals is new with the Spring round. For hybrid journals (see examples below), the award will pay up to $1000.

Open Access journals allow authors to distribute their intellectual property without any restrictions, and usually permit them to retain copyright ownership. Hybrid journals are not open access but allow authors to pay the APC in order to make their article openly accessible.  In contrast to the traditional journal model in which the author is restricted from distributing her work and the reader has to pay to access it (via subscriptions), in the OA model the author pays to publish his work and readers have no limitations to access it.

Despite costs to authors, there is growing evidence that many articles published as open access are more widely noticed and downloaded than articles published in subscription-based journals (see for example, Davis 2011).   For more information about the Open Access movement, please see the OA FAQs.

The HSL Open Access Fund or OAF is meant to encourage researchers who have little or no financial support to pay for any type of publication fee.  Generally speaking, these scholars tend to be students, residents, post-doctoral fellows, and early-career faculty; these individuals will receive priority therefore for an OAF award.

While the OAF can be used to pay the APC of an open access journal of the author’s choice, in order to avoid fraudulent journals, the library will restrict the range of acceptable journals to those that are known to be legitimate. They include most members of the Open Access Scholarly Publisher’s Association  or those known to comply with its Code of Conduct.  Examples of these publishers or journals are: Biomed Central, JMIR Publications,  PeerJ,  PLoS , and others.  All journals will be assessed by the OAF committee for legitimacy and for their requirements.  Ideally, journals should allow the authors to retain copyright to their articles and not merely permit their distribution within limits. 

Examples of publishers who offer fully OA journals:

Examples of publishers who publish either hybrid journals or both hybrid and fully OA journals:


  • affiliated with AMC
  • early-career author (see Funding Priorities below)
  • publishing in a reputable OA journal
  • article is accepted (and APC has not been paid) or submitted]. NOTE: We cannot consider applications for articles that are still under preparation.
  • no other funding source except personal funds
  • substantive contribution to the article (see ICJME recommendations)


Funding Priorities are as follows:

  1. Students
  2. Residents, Fellows, Post-Doctoral Fellows, Junior Faculty (within 5 years of the start of his/her career)
  3. Other faculty


  • The Health Sciences Library will award the entire cost per applicant of a fully open access journal’s author/article processing charge (APC). The award cannot be used to fund other fees such as “submission charges,” “review charges,” or “page charges.”
  • The maximum award per applicant for a hybrid journal is $1000 to be used only for the APC.  The award cannot be used to fund other fees such as “submission charges,” “review charges,” or “page charges.”
    • If the APC is less than $1000, the award amount will equal the APC amount – i.e. your award will also be less than $1000.
    • If the APC is more than $1000, the maximum award is $1000 and the author is responsible for paying the difference to the publisher.
      • Example: If the APC for a hybrid journal is $3,000, the library will pay $1,000 and the author is responsible for the remaining $2,000.
    • Payment details: Awards are paid once the library receives a copy of the publisher’s invoice. We cannot reimburse individuals and cannot issue checks.
    • Applications must be received by the specified date.
      • Applicants who meet all eligibility criteria will be considered on a first-come first-served basis within the application period.
      • Every application will be reviewed by the OAF committee for eligibility.
      • We cannot consider past recipients of the OAF for a new award.

Requirements for Applicants Who are Identified as Award Recipients:

  • Provide an invoice for the APC from the journal publisher
  • Upon publication, submit the article to the Health Sciences Library’s institutional repository, Digital Collections of Colorado with a signed Deposit Agreement (see link to the Agreement near the bottom).  Make sure you have the proper copyright permissions or you own copyright to your article.
  • Complete a short evaluation form which will be emailed later.

Get Started!

1. Check Eligibility (see above)
2. Check Rules (see above)
3. Apply right away:  We stop accepting applications on April 8th or earlier when funds are depleted.
4. Award recipients must comply with the Requirements (see above)


Please contact: Lilian Hoffecker 303-724-2124 , or Heidi Zuniga 303-724-2134, or Deirdre Adams-Buckley 303-724-2174 DEIRDRE.ADAMS-BUCKLEY@UCDENVER.EDU