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Open Access and Scholarly Communications: Finding Author Support

Created by Health Science Librarians


AAAS (the American Association for the Advancement of Science) offers a 15% discount off of Article Processing Charges for UNC affiliated authors when they act as the Corresponding Author. While the UNC affiliated author does not need to be First Author, they must act as the point of contact for the publisher in relation to the article submitted. This applies for their OA title, Science Advances.

(last updated Jan 18, 2022)

American Chemical Society (ACS) AuthorChoice and Author Rewards

ACS AuthorChoice facilitates unrestricted open access to the final published article, the Version of Record, for a one-time fixed payment. Authors at UNC-Chapel Hill are eligible for publication fee discounts. ACS AuthorChoice provides a 25% discount for UNC authors, and an additional 50% off the already discounted price for ACS individual members at UNC-CH.  

(last updated Dec 7, 2021)

Biochemical Society (Biochemical Journal and Biochemical Society Transactions)

The Biochemical Society's Opt2Pay program offers authors the opportunity to pay to have their publications in Biochemical Journal and Biochemical Society Transactions made open access under a Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY), which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is cited appropriatelyAuthors at UNC-Chapel Hill are eligible for a $500 discount (off of $3500, approximately 15% discount) on publication fees. 

(last updated Oct 5, 2021)

BMJ Case Reports

BMJ offers Institutional Fellowships, giving all faculty, staff and students within your institution the freedom to submit as many cases as they like as well as access to and reuse of all the published material.  UNC participates in the Institutional Fellowship program with free case report submission, at no cost to UNC faculty, staff, fellows, residents, and students.   Please contact with your UNC contact email information to receive the UNC fellowship information for publication.

(last updated Sep 12, 2023)

British Journal of Cancer

The British Journal of Cancer's BJC OPEN initiative offers authors of accepted papers the choice to pay a fee in order for their articles to be made freely available online immediately upon publication. Authors at UNC-Chapel Hill are eligible for a 25% discount on publication fees. 
(last updated Sep 28, 2021)

Electrochemical Society

The Electrochemical Society offers UNC-CH authors unlimited article credits providing a 100% discount on publication fees. When you submit your paper, select Author Choice Open Access and indicate that you come from a subscribing institution. Journals eligible for open access include:

  • Journal of The Electrochemical Society
  • ECS Electrochemistry Letters
  • ECS Journal of Solid State Science and Technology
  • ECS Solid State Letters
  • Electrochemical and Solid-State Letters

Authors can choose between the CC-BY license, which permits unrestricted use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is cited appropriately, or the CC BY–NC–ND license, which places similar restrictions on usage as the publisher does in the traditional copyright arrangement. It limits use to non-commercial use (—NC), and restricts others from creating derivative works (—ND). 

(last updated Jul 30, 2020)

Frontiers (agreement no longer available)

Effective July 2023, UNC discontinued our institutional read/publish agreement with Frontiers journals. UNC will no longer be offering article processing fee waivers for Frontiers journals.

(last updated Nov 10, 2023)

International Journal of Developmental Botany

The International Journal of Developmental Botany offers UNC-CH authors a 25% discount on publication fees due to our institutional subscription. Payment of the open access fee (1500 Euro) covers deposition of accepted papers on behalf of author in the corresponding repository (PubMed Central, etc.) without any embargo. If the author is selecting open access for compliance with a funding agency's archiving conditions, the author must provide information about the funding agency, grant number and corresponding repository once the article has been accepted for publication.

(last updated Dec 2, 2019)

Nucleic Acids Research (Oxford University Press)

Until December 31, 2022, Nucleic Acids Research offered UNC-CH authors a 50% discount on article processing charges due to our institutional subscription. Effective January 1, 2023, this discount is no longer available.

(last updated Nov 10, 2023)

PLoS Journals

Article Processing Charge (APC) Waivers for all PLOS Journals

UNC-Chapel Hill researchers publishing in journals from PLOS will no longer need to pay article processing charges. The waiver is thanks to the University Libraries’ participation in several PLOS publishing partnerships.

The agreements pilot various ways for institutions to reduce the fee burden for open access publishing and to increase the amount of high-quality peer-reviewed research in open circulation.

PLOS operates as a nonprofit. Since its launch in 2001, it has pioneered open access alternatives to standard subscription journals in the areas of science and medicine.

Information for authors

The agreements with PLOS provide benefits for corresponding authors and, in some cases, contributing authors from UNC-Chapel Hill.

All 14 PLOS titles are covered by this agreement. They are:  

  1. PLOS ONE 

  2. PLOS Biology 

  3. PLOS Climate 

  4. PLOS Complex Systems

  5. PLOS Computational Biology 

  6. PLOS Digital Health 

  7. PLOS Genetics 

  8. PLOS Global Public Health 

  9. PLOS Medicine 

  10. PLOS Mental Health

  11. PLOS Neglected Tropical Diseases 

  12. PLOS Pathogens 

  13. PLOS Sustainability and Transformation 

  14. PLOS Water

Who is eligible?  

All UNC Chapel Hill faculty, staff and student corresponding authors, whose articles are accepted by a PLOS journal (after our agreement’s start date) are eligible for funding. Contributing authors to articles in PLOS Biology, PLOS Medicine and PLOS Sustainability and Transformation are eligible to receive a 25% discount.  

What does the annual fee cover? 

The CAP annual fee covers publishing costs for all UNC Chapel Hill corresponding authors. No article processing charges (APCs) will be charged by PLOS to UNC Chapel Hill corresponding authors. There are no limits on articles published.  

How do authors receive funding? 

If you are the corresponding author for an article submitted to a PLOS journal, indicate your UNC-Chapel Hill affiliation on the submission form. As part of the article submission process, authors need to designate UNC-Chapel Hill’s institutional account as responsible for publication fees. In the submission system, under “Additional Information,” in the “Institutional Account” section, for the question, “Are the publication fees covered by an institutional account held with PLOS?”, select “Yes.” From the drop-down, select “University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill – IB0222." PLOS and the University Libraries will take care of the rest. There will be no charge to you or to contributing authors.

If you are a contributing author to an article submitted to PLOS Biology, PLOS Medicine or PLOS Sustainability and Transformation, UNC-Chapel Hill’s participation will provide a 25% discount for article processing charges. (If the corresponding author is from a different partner institution, all charges will be covered.)  Contributing authors should communicate eligibility for a 25% discount to the corresponding author.  

What are the publishing terms? 

Manuscripts accepted by PLOS for publication will be published under Creative Commons license CC BY 4.0. 

Learn more through the PLOS publishing information page or FAQ. Questions? Contact

Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (PNAS)

Proceedings of the National Academy of Science (PNAS) allows UNC-CH authors to pay a surcharge of $4995 (off of $5495, approximately a 10% discount) to provide immediate open access to their article. PNAS automatically deposits the final, published version of all its content, regardless of funding, in PubMed Central (PMC) and makes it free at both PMC and PNAS just 6 months after publication.

(last updated Nov 10, 2023)

Sage Publishing

The University Libraries and SAGE Publishing have expanded opportunities for researchers at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to publish open access articles in SAGE journals at no cost to the researcher. This move comes following the conclusion of a successful pilot agreement.

Under the new agreement, part of the subscription fees that the Library will pay for SAGE content will cover the costs of open access publishing for UNC-Chapel Hill authors in SAGE publications.

Who is eligible to use this funding?

You must have had an article accepted for publishing in an eligible SAGE journal. The corresponding author must be a UNC-Chapel Hill affiliate.

Which SAGE journals are eligible?

All SAGE Choice and SAGE Gold Open Access journals are eligible. There is a short list of exceptions. The excepted journals do not participate in SAGE Choice and are not eligible for funding.

How can I access this funding?

Once your article has been accepted for publication by an eligible SAGE journal, you will receive an email from SAGE asking if you would like to publish as open access. Select “Yes” and select UNC-Chapel Hill Libraries as the payer.

Will all articles by UNC-Chapel Hill authors be funded?

Yes. The University Libraries’ agreement with SAGE covers all articles published by eligible UNC-Chapel Hill authors in eligible journals. There is no cap on the number of articles that will be covered.

How can I learn more or get help?

We are happy to answer your questions about this agreement with SAGE Publishing and to help you determine eligibility. Please send an email to

(last updated Nov 10, 2023)

Society for Endocrinology and European Society for Endocrinology

Select journals from the Society for Endocrinology and the European Society for Endocrinology offer UNC-CH authors a 50% discount on article processing charges due to our institutional subscriptions. These include:  

(last updated Apr 10, 2015)

UNC Scholarly Communications Office

The Scholarly Communications Officer provides guidance, policy development, and advocacy to faculty, students, and staff on the following issues:

  • Copyright and fair use

  • Authors’ rights

  • Privacy rights

  • Open access

  • Policy related to scholarly material

For more information, visit the Scholarly Communications Office webpage, or contact Scholarly Communications Officer Anne Gilliland, MSLS, JD