Open Access Publishing Fund FAQs

U of I - OAPF Basics

The U of I - OAPF supports U of I authors in their efforts to publish in open access journals by paying article processing charges (APCs).
Between FY 2019 and FY 2023, funding for the U of I - OAPF has been provided by the the University of Idaho Library, Office of the Provost, Office of Research and Economic Development, and donors such as David and Julie Levine. During this time, the funding partners have allocated between $30,000 and $50,000 each fiscal year, totaling $180,000.
The fund is administered by a small group of people contributing a percentage of their time, centered in the U of I Library, with three main roles: OAPF Fund Manager, Fiscal Officer, and Advisory Committee. The Advisory Committee is composed of representatives from the Library Affairs Committee of the Faculty Senate. Additional support comes from liaison librarians as part of their conventional duties to their colleges.
An open access fund enacts the vision and land-grant mission of the U of I by making the innovative research conducted at the University as widely and easily accessible as possible. In turn, this accessibility is a catalyst for increased impact and visibility of University throughout the state, nation, and beyond. The U of I - OAPF also connects to Goal 1 - Innovate and Goal 2 - Engage in the Strategic Plan.
Yes, many other colleges and university have open access publishing funds. Visit the OA Publication Funds wiki to learn more about publishing funds in the United States and around the world.
Yes, a publicly available annual report will document all fund outcomes and metrics.


The fund will cover a maximum of $2,000.00 per article. Multi-authored works with more than one U of I author will be prorated by dividing the total requested article processing charges (APCs), up to the $2,000.00 per article maximum, by the number of elibile U of I authors. Each eligible U of I author can receive up to the prorated portion of the APC (subject to their individual author cap); non U of I authors are not included in this calculation. For example, if an article with an APC of $2,000.00 had four eligible U of I authors and one non-U of I author, the APC ($2,000.00) would be divided by the number of eligible U of I authors (4), resulting in each U of I author receiving $500.00 of funding towards their per fiscal year author cap and the entire APC being paid or reimbursed by the U of I - OAPF.
When the OAPF has been disbursed for a particular funding period and funding is unavailable to otherwise eligible authors, we recommend that faculty reach out to their college, department, or ORED to see if any other funding might be available. We also recommend contacting the journal or publisher directly to see if a discounted APC is available, since the fund has already disbursed its entire biannual allocation – this is sometimes successful with varying degrees of funding. Please feel free to contact us if you need confirmation that the fund has been exhausted for a particular funding period.
Yes, the funding cap is $2,000.00 per article and $3,000.00 per author/year. Based on funding availability, authors may apply for funding multiple times until their cap is met, funds are exhausted, or the fiscal year ends.
Yes, we strongly encourage researchers to request funding for open access publications from their funding agency if they can do so. Priority will be given to applications without other sources of funding available.
Not at this time. Other open access publication types, such as books, book chapters, and conference proceedings may be supported in the future.

Procedures and Process

When applications are received, the OAPF Fund Manager will use a standard rubric to evaluate applications against the eligibility criteria and approve or reject funding requests. The OAPF Fund Manager will then share funding decisions and a copy of the rubric with applicants via email.
Upon preliminary funding approval, the funded applicant will email the official invoice issued by the publisher (and receipt if a payment was made out-of-pocket) directly to the OAPF Fund Manager and the Library’s Fiscal Officer. The U of I - OAPF prefers to pay journals directly, thus minimizing out-of-pocket cost to the authors. However, in the case of publication deadlines, authors may opt to be reimbursed with proper documentation of the payment. Other possible payment options will be reviewed as needed, e.g paying out of departments with intra-institutional account transfers.

Open Access Basics

Open access (OA) models of publication provide readers with “free, immediate, online” access to content, such as scholarly research articles (SPARC, 2018). OA removes price barriers for readers and is compatible with peer review, copyright, preservation, and other qualities associated with traditional models of scholarly publication.
A hybrid journal is a journal that charges subscription fees to readers but offers authors the option to pay an APC to publish their article open access. In hybrid open access journals, those articles that are published open access are free for anyone, anywhere to read, but the remaining articles that are not open access are only available to subscribers. Many well-known subscription journals are now considered hybrid open access journals. Hybrid journals do not qualify for the U of I – OAPF.
Yes, open access journals are compatible with peer-review. The U of I - OAPF only accepts applications for articles that are published in peer-reviewed open access journals.
In addition to publishing in open access journals, there are other ways for U of I researchers to make their work freely available to readers. The U of I Library has three ongoing Read and Publish Agreements, giving U of I researchers the option to make their articles open access for no out-of-pocket cost (when publishing with Cambridge University Press and the Company of Biologists) or at a discounted rate (when publishing with Elsevier). Please visit our Transformative Publishing Agreements webpage to learn more. Additionally, authors often have the right to place specific versions of their articles in disciplinary repositories or institutional repositories, such as the U of I institutional repository. However, the scope of these rights is determined by publication agreements.