Open Access Movement

Open Access Movement

  • According the Budapest Open Access Initiative,, open access can be defined as information that is freely available on the public Internet.
  • A growing number of academic researchers, scientists, librarians, and others are involved in this movement of making research freely available on the Internet.
  • In the past, most peer-reviewed academic research was solely published in journals that required purchase.
  • Now there are thousands of peer-reviewed academic journals freely available.
  • Digital repositories are another type of information that is rapidly available to the public.
  • The repositories are most often from universities, foundations, research institutes, and other types of organizations.* They consist of historical archives, including photographs, datasets, unpublished research, and so forth.
  • As more of these formerly print-only resources are digitized, they are becoming freely available to the public on the Internet.* Luckily, there are directories and portals that make it easier for researchers to find these resources:

Open Access Journals

AJOL covers 340 peer-reviewed journals from 25 African countries. These journals cover the full range of academic disciplines, emphasizing health, education, agriculture, science and technology, the environment, and arts and culture.

DOAJ offers free, full-text scientific and scholarly peer-reviewed journals. As of the time of this writing, the DOAJ contains over 4,000 journal titles, and over 250,000 articles.

Provided by the University Library of Regensburg (Germany), the Electronic Journals Library contains over 43,000 titles, of which over 20,000 journals can be read free of charge.

Highwire Press facilitates access to almost two million full-text scholarly articles on medical/biomedical topics.

PloS consists of seven biomedical peer-reviews research journals. Researchers are urged to submit their articles to this open access database.

Open Access Repositories

OpenDOAR is a directory of thousands of institutional and subject-based archives and repositories from universities and other worldwide organizations.

AIster is a portal to worldwide open archive collections. It includes over 20 million records from 1108 institutions worldwide.

ROAR is a place where institutions can record details about their digital repositories, including what software they are using to hold the archives, subject matter of the archives, and more.

Open Courseware**

  • The growth of increased access to academic research has coincided with the trend, starting with MIT's Open Courseware program in 2002, of universities posting their course materials for free use by the public.
  • These programs provide free, searchable access to course materials for educators, students, and self-directed learners.
  • The following are some open access courseware programs:

For more open courseware, a list is provided by the Online Education Database,