The term “free journals” and “open access” being used frequently by the publishers but at some points, these terms are very confusing for the authors. Free Journals should be used only for those journals which are free for article publication and does not charge any kind of fee from author to publish their research work. On the other hand, ‘open-access’ journal should be used only for those journals who are offering everyone to read and download articles freely without charging any kind of fee (neither access fee nor subscription fee).
When we combine both terms and say, “Free Open Access Journal” or its variant, It should mean that the journal is publishing the article without charging any fee from the author and offering their readers to read/download articles freely without any type of fee.
Before proceeding further to discuss both terms, ‘free journals’ and ‘open access journals’; let me introduce you few free open access refereed journals published by AIJR.
Free journals with open access by AIJR
(Free to Publish and Free to Read)
- Journal of Modern Materials (Materials Research Journal)
- Advanced Nano Research (Journal for Nanoscience Research)
Journal of Modeling and Simulation of Materials (Simulation Journal)
- Advanced Journal of Graduate Research (Specific Journal for Bachelor / Master Degree Student’s Research)
Besides Free Publication (Normal Publication), above journals are also offering rapid review through fast-track publication which is optional, and the author needs to send an additional email request to consider articles under the fast track. All submitted articles to journals published by AIJR undergoes peer review and upon acceptance made available immediately and permanently free for everyone to read and download.
Lets back to our discussion to differentiate in the terms “Free Journals” and “Open Access Journals”. Open Access is a standard term which simply means that the journal articles under open access will be available free to read, download and reuse as per license terms of the journal. This term has further been classified into, Gold, Green and Hybrid open access based on the embargo time to make the article freely available and archiving policy for the authors. Since the term “open access” is self-explanatory that article will be available freely, I think there is no need to use terms “Free Journal” for those journals whose only article available freely based on open access model. In fact, using the term ‘Free journal’ for those whose only published articles are available freely confuses authors with the free publication.
Open Access Journal with Low-cost publication
(Free to Read but not Free to Publish)
AIJR also offers low-cost ($50) publication under regular publication model in the following journals-
- Advanced Journal of Social Science (All fields related to Social Sciences & Humanities)
- International Annals of Science (All research fields of Science disciplines)
Many publishers list their journals under term Free Journal and by the free journal they meant open access journals which confuses many authors. Free Journals normally should be considered only those journals that offer free publication without charging any kind of fee from the author(s). We can find many blogpost complaints about journals who supposed to be free but after acceptance author suddenly received a bill to pay. I think those things happen due to publisher highlight those journals as a free journal instead of saying open access and the author might not read full terms and conditions for publishing and get trapped. I believe that journal publishers should use the proper term “Free Journal” for free publication and “Open Access” for free article availability to avoid confusion and trapping authors. Journal Publisher should use terms “Free Open access journals” or its other variant only when they are offering both, free publishing as well as free availability.
I suggest potential author(s) to read publisher,s terms carefully for using term 'free journals,, whether they meant the free availability of published articles or free publication of the articles.
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