Open Access or OA is a digital publishing model in which a work is made freely available to the end user. The author of the work retains their copyright and right of attribution, but makes it freely available for download, copy and distribution. Authors may also elect to allow users of their work to modify the work or use it as the basis for a new work.
In the academic world, open access means free access to research results and research data, as well as use and adaptation of open educational resources or OERs. Open access benefits students by reducing the cost of course materials. Benefits to the research community include breaking down socio-economic barriers to access, wider distribution of research, and increased recognition for researchers.
The staff of the J.R. Van Pelt and John and Ruanne Opie Library (VPOL) are committed to open access scholarship, and the distribution of research outputs online and free of cost, as a way to increase the visibility, usage, and impact of publicly-funded research. Open access to scholarship means more efficient dissemination of research compared with traditional publishing models and contributes to the creation of a just and equal society by providing barrier-free access to scholarly content to the broadest possible community. We champion and practice open access scholarship at Michigan Technological University with the aim to benefit scholars, practitioners, policymakers, and the general public. We encourage the use of this statement as a model for use and endorsement by other members of the Michigan Tech community.