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Open Access

This guide is to help UNLV authors learn about open access, article processing charges (APCs), avoiding predatory publishers, and open access policies.

Open Access Funds

Three funds for supporting UNLV researchers

There are three funds to support researchers who wish to publish their work in open access journals. Each fund has different criteria and a different application form.

UNLV Open Article Fund

The UNLV Open Article Fund supports UNLV authors in the following types of academic positions:

  • Tenured and tenure-track faculty
  • Postdoctoral Scholars
  • Research faculty (as defined in UNLV Bylaws 18.3.4)
  • Instructors (Rank 1, UNLV Bylaws 16.3)

School of Medicine Library Open Article Fund

The School of Medicine Library Open Article Fund supports UNLV Authors in the following positions:

  • SOM faculty
  • Residents
  • Fellows

Graduate & Professional Student Association Open Access Fund

The GPSA fund supports UNLV graduate students.

GPSA Student Open Access Fund

What is the UNLV GPSA Student Open Access Fund?

The purpose of this GPSA Student Open Access Fund initiative serves as a means of helping facilitate our standard of very high research activity among graduate and professional students at UNLV. The scope of this initiative is open to all graduate and professional students, including disenfranchised groups within academia as well as any graduate students with a demonstrable financial need and inability to meet article publishing costs within a peer-reviewed open access journal.

Who Manages and Supports the GPSA Fund?

The GPSA provides financial support and the Libraries Scholarly Communication and Data Services Department and the GPSA collaborated to design the criteria, application process, and management of the fund.

How to Apply for Funds

To apply for funds, complete the online applicationYou will need to login with your UNLV ACE account to access the form. 

To apply, you will need:

  • Contact information, affiliation with UNLV, name of your advisor, name of your department's office administrator

  • Information about the article for which you are seeking funding such as your role on the article, title of article, journal title and url

  • Funding amount requested, and whether you have received funding from other sources for the publication

  • To confirm agreement with the following:

    • Final published work will be placed in Digital Scholarship@UNLV

    • Acknowledgment in the published article that, “The publication fees for this article were supported by the Graduate & Professional Student Association (GPSA)."

    • Neither you nor your co-authors have grant funding that supports article processing charges for this publication.

    • This research was completed in the capacity of your employment at UNLV or as a UNLV graduate student.

    • You have not yet paid the APC (we do not reimburse authors for payments already made).

Eligibility Requirements

Who can apply for funds?

The person requesting open access funds must:

  • Be a UNLV graduate or professional student
  • Not have received an award within the last 12 months

Additionally, first time applicants will get preference for funding when the remaining balance in the fund cannot support all outstanding applications. Requests for funding will be reviewed as they come in.

Which publications are eligible?                 

Journal criteria

This fund will support scholarly articles to be published in fully open access peer reviewed journals. The fund does not cover articles to be published in hybrid journals (where only some content is open access), books, book chapters, magazines, or other types of publications.

Finding a Fully Open Access Journal and Avoiding Predatory Journals

Most successful fund applications are for journals included in the Directory of Open Access Journals ( There are exceptions since newer journals, or established journals that have not yet applied for membership, may not be in the database. However, we now ask that authors do a preliminary check to see if the journal they intend to publish with is in the DOAJ.  If it isn't, you may continue with the application, but the journal will be reviewed closely by library staff to ensure that it does not display characteristics of a predatory journal. If needed, we will use the criteria from the Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA) to evaluate the journal further. You may also wish to review the OASPA information to see if the journal you are considering is following good practices for open access publishing.

Article Criteria

  • Articles with a status of ready for submission, submitted, or accepted are eligible. Articles already published and articles still being drafted are not eligible.
  • Additionally, articles based on grant funding where grant monies can support APCs are not eligible.

Additional Requirements

Role of Digital Scholarship@UNLV

Final articles must be added to Digital Scholarship@UNLV, the University’s open access repository. University Libraries Staff can assist with this process.


The article must acknowledge the Graduate and Professional Student Association with the following or similar text:

“The publication fees for this article were supported by the GPSA Open Access Article Fund.”

Award Limitations

  • The maximum amount per article is $2,000.
  • Due to limited funds, each author is limited to one award every 12 months.

Decision and Notification of Award

Decision Authority

Decision authority lies with the GPSA.

The Libraries Scholarly Communication and Data Services Department will assist the GSPA by reviewing the journal (and publisher) for which the funding is requested. Specifically, we check to see if:

A more thorough review of the journal is conducted if one or both of the above are not met.

Award Notification

The GPSA will notify the applicant of the decision.

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