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Open Access: DMU Open Access Guide for Researchers

REF 2021 Open Access Policy

For REF 2021, certain outputs have to be Open Access in order to be eligible for submission.  Download the leaflet below for details of how to meet the REF 2021 Open Access requirements.


And check our Frequently Asked Questions on REF Open Access.


Research England allow a small number of exceptions to the Open Access policy.  If you are unable to meet the requirements, check this list to see if an exception may be applicable.


The full REF guidance, including Open Access guidance, can be found on Research England's REF 2021 website 

Funder Open Access Policies

Most funders have an Open Access policy.  The paper below outlines the requirements for most of the funders that DMU receives funding from.


You can also check Sherpa Juliet to find your funder's policy.


If you are applying for research funding, always check if you can include costing for Gold Open Access in your funding bid.

Publisher Open Access Policies

To check that your journal allows you to meet Open Access requirements, you can use:

Sherpa Romeo which details publisher Open Access policies

Sherpa FACT which compares publisher Open Access policies with your funder's Open Access policy.


Alternatively, you can try to retain copyright for your article.  The DMU Author Rights and Copyright Guide offers suggestions for this.


Working with third parties

If you are working with a research partner, or including material for which someone else owns copyright (e.g. images), you will need to check that they agree to making the research outputs Open Access.

  • Does your research partner have their own Open Access policy?
  • Who will be responsible for paying any APCs?
  • Are you including any material that others own the copyright for?

About Open Access

Open Access (OA) refers to making scholarly research outputs freely available to all via the internet, thereby generating benefits for individual researchers, for research generally, for the economy and wider society.

For journal articles and published conference proceedings, there are two main routes into Open Access - gold or green:

NB. Please note that DMU currently has no central funds for Gold Open Access.

Where should I deposit my research publication or output?

DORA (De Montfort Open Research Archive) is the University's institutional publications repository. It enables publications to be made available through the Green Open Access route. It also includes the metadata (description) of non Open Access research outputs, so that individuals and groups both within and outside the University can view information about the University's research outputs

Which version of my article should I deposit?

Image reproduced from HEFCE's policy guide at​

The publisher of your article will specify which version you can upload. This could be:

Pre-print: This is your original draft, prior to peer review and the publisher’s corrections. Please note that pre-print versions do not normally meet funder requirements. 

Author's accepted manuscript: This is your corrected version of the draft, following the peer review process. Also known as the Accepted Manuscript (AM) or Post-Print.  

Publisher’s Version or Published Journal Article or Version of Record (VoR): This is the final published article, formatted in the publisher's style. It will meet all funder requirements.

What licence should I use?

Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that enables legal sharing and use of creativity and knowledge by providing a simple, standardised way of granting copyright permissions/licences to a piece of work. 

Check whether your funder and/or publisher specify a licence you need to use.

The image below explains the various licences and their components.

Contact Us

Support for Open Access is offered through Library & Learning Services and Research Services. 


Information on recording and depositing items to DORA can be found below.  If you need any further assistance you can contact the DORA team, based in Library & Learning Services:


Open Access Awareness sessions

We hold regular training sessions on Open Access.  Search for 'Open Access' in the My Development section of DMUhub.


DMU Open Access Policy

Depositing research data

DMU Figshare is DMU's repository for storing and sharing research data.