UNC Charlotte Academic Policy and Procedure: Open Access Policy

I. Executive Summary

This policy affirms that peer-reviewed journal scholarship created by UNC Charlotte faculty will
be archived in Atkins Library’s institutional repository. Library staff will ingest material and
communicate with faculty to obtain any files necessary. The repository of scholarship will
preserve UNC Charlotte’s scholarly output while also providing openly accessible versions to
the world.

II. Policy and Procedure Statement

The Faculty of UNC Charlotte is committed to disseminating the fruits of its research and
scholarship as widely as possible. In keeping with that commitment, the Faculty adopts the
following policy: As a condition of employment, each Faculty member has granted to UNC
Charlotte a perpetual, non-exclusive, non-transferable, royalty-free license to use the work for
the University’s own non-commercial educational or research use.1 This license includes the
right to make the author’s final version of the article available to the public in an open-access
repository. The policy applies to all scholarly articles authored or co-authored while the person is
a member of the Faculty except for any articles completed before the adoption of this policy and
any articles for which the Faculty member entered into an incompatible licensing or assignment
agreement before the adoption of this policy. Faculty members may submit a waiver to exclude
a particular article from the repository or delay access for a specified period of time upon
express direction by Faculty members, including, but not limited, to publisher contractual

III. Definitions

  • Scholarly articles – Scholarly articles are published, peer-reviewed research articles. This does not include monographs, book chapters, dissertations, or theses.
  • Author’s final version – The version of the article after peer review and beforetypesetting (i.e. formatting and graphic design by the publisher). Also often called the “accepted manuscript,” “author accepted manuscript (AAM),” or “postprint.”
  • Waiver – A simple form declaring the need to opt out of archiving for a specific reason for a specific article. No evidence is necessary to complete this waiver.
  • Open-access repository – Niner Commons, an institutional repository of scholarly work made at UNC Charlotte, is managed by Atkins Library. It is globally accessible with no restrictions to view or download files (unless a waiver has been made).

IV. Policy and Procedure Contact(s)

V. History

  • Approved: April 24, 2024

VI. Related Policies, Procedures and Resources

VII. Frequently Asked Questions

  • What will I need to do? Will I need to track my works and submit them to UNC Charlotte’s repository?
    No. Faculty would not be expected to submit their own works. The library would conduct
    this process.
  • Will I need to pay APCs to make my work open access?
    No. An open access policy supports green open access, which opens up access to your work without your needing to pay an article processing charge. Instead of the journal itself publishing the work open access, a copy of the work is deposited into an open access repository.
  • Who else is doing this?
    Open access policies are very common and were largely adopted by universities ten years ago.
  • Is this legal?
    Yes. In North America, at least 179 other research institutions and organizations have open access policies. These policies are very common and journals comply with them. The Office of Legal Affairs has reviewed and approved our policy.
  • What types of scholarship would be covered by this policy?
    This policy would apply only to journal articles. It would not apply to books, performances, or other forms of scholarship.
  • Can I opt out?
    Yes, you will be able to opt out for any individual article you don’t want included through a simple form.
  • When would this happen?
    In order to give faculty enough time to consider and support this policy, we recommend an implementation date of December 15, 2025. Works published after that date would be subject to the policy. We would not retroactively apply the policy to previously published works.