Scholarly Publishing

  • What are my options for publishing academic research?
  • Is Open Access the right choice for publishing my work?
  • Do you want to publish your scholarly research but retain copyright privileges?
  • How might publishing my research affect my digital identity?

Consider these questions as you review the examples below.

Before publishing your research there are a number of issues you may want to consider.  Your motives for publication could strongly affect where and how you choose to publish, such as:

  • Who is your target audience?
  • Is it more important that the work is widely read or that it is read in specific contexts, by the right people?
  • What professional benefits or financial rewards do you stand to gain from publication in a specific journal vs. an openly accessible publication, an institutional repository such as UBC’s cIRcle, a personal archive and/or e-portfolio, etc.?
  • How might your intellectual property rights be affected by publishing this way?

Two common forms of academic publishing are  Open Access and institutional repositories.


Open Access (OA) means immediate, permanent, free online access to the full text of all referred research journal articles”

Stevan Harnad, The Implementation of the Berlin Declaration on Open Access

Peter Suber describes Open Access publishing as putting peer-reviewed scientific and scholarly literature on the internet. Making it available free of charge and free of most copyright and licensing restrictions. Removing the barriers to serious research.”

There are many advantages to publishing through Open Access journals including:

  • fast turn-around – your work is published more quickly
  • high impact – your work is viewed and cited by more people
  • everyone gets equal access – you share knowledge for the public good
  • research is accelerated due to immediate access to new findings
  • give back – you support fellow students by making research more accessible

Often Universities host open access institutional repositories for students and professors work.  They are creating digital archives for scholarly work in informational or institutional repositories (IR), thereby making these materials accessible online.  UBC’s informational repository is called cIRcle.

cIRcleYou retain copyright authority over your work and others are required to acknowledge and cite you properly.  In fact, publishing your work in an IR can result in increased citation of your work when compared with works that are not openly accessible.  Your work is preserved in one permanent URL on the web, making access easier for:

  • Potential employers
  • ePortfolios
  • Conferences
  • Poster presentations
  • Personal Web pages



Check out Coming out of your silo: leveraging cIRcle to increase your academic impact to hear some UBC student perspectives on contributing to their informational repository.

Other institutions with IRs include:

Don’t feel trapped by traditional routes of publishing. Self publishing can not only help you keep control of your work but can turn into something much bigger. In this short 2.5 minute video, Pamela Verma, who was a medical student at UBC, shares her experience as a former editor-in-chief for the UBC Medical Journal.  Remember with the internet, there are more ways then ever to share your work.

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One response to “Scholarly Publishing”

  1. Erin Fields

    Scholarly publishing cycles are changing as we see more networked technologies being developed. There are academics who tweet, blog, and otherwise publish there content in a variety of ways other than a journal article or book. I think this gives great opportunity to the future reach of scholarship. Great post!

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