Open Access

Open Access journals amplify the access to reliable and peer-reviewed information. Accessibility to reliable information allows to further develop knowledge and understanding in an easier way. Open access to information serves as a great tool for instruction and education, which allows to advance the development of science and technology. Making scientific publications open access broadens the reach of the audience as it breaks former restrictions and opens an opportunity for faster learning. Open Access journals can be perceived as an evolution within Academia.

The journal I have selected for this assignment is the Journal of Freshwater Ecology. This journal is from the United Kingdom and has been published since 1981. The publishers of this journal are Taylor and Francis Ltd. The scope of this journal centers in the field of aquatic science, agricultural and biological sciences, ecology, evolution, and behavior and systematics. This journal serves an international audience as well as a wide range of topics within Ecology. Within this journal you can find a variety of topics and studies that allows us to further understand the dynamics of freshwater ecosystems at different scales (e.g. physiological, biogeochemical, population and community diversity).  The manuscripts published in this journal center on manipulative experiments and field and case studies.

The Journal of Freshwater Ecology approach to open access is stated as follows:  “all articles published in this journal are free and permanently accessible online without subscription paywall or registration fee” The authors that decide to publish in this journal keep their copyright to the article and in fact, the publishers of the article have a “non-exclusive right to publish the Version of Record under a creative common license”. Any manuscript that is submitted for publication in this journal goes under a comprehensive peer-reviewed process that consists of an editor and 2 external experts in the topic that is being presented. The external reviewers are anonymous to the authors of the paper.

Publications in this journal are addressed as beneficial for your career as they aim to increase your visibility and discoverability.  The impact of this journal as an open access one is said to be “eight times” greater, given the accessibility that it provides through open access. Open access for this journal translates into higher readership which increases the potential for more citations of your work. Additionally, this journal claims to have a broader impact beyond Academia, given that the availability of your article online allows anyone to access it.

Open Access journals serve as a major tool of progress within the structure of Academic peer-review practices given the expansion of its accessibility.  However, it must be taken into account that the peer-review process must remain as a rigorous and comprehensive one to guarantee the integrity and accuracy of the work that is trying to get published. Overall, the expansion and availability of Open Access journals allows not only the scientific community, but the general public to be better informed and have access to revised information that will benefit the development of new projects, policies, and practices.


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