Gold Open Access is where the final published version is made immediately available by the publisher to download, redistribute, and reuse from the date of publication after payment of an Article Processing Charge (APC). An APC is usually payable when the manuscript is editorially accepted and before publication and is charged to either the author, research funder, or institution. Gold Open Access can be in subscription journals or in journals that are entirely Open Access. Subscription journals which offer paid Gold Open Access option are known as ‘hybrid’ Open Access journals.
The University of California has transformative open access agreements with a broad range of academic publishers in place under which the UC libraries pay part or all of the APC when authors choose to publish open access. This support for Gold Open Access publishing is possible though repurposing of subscription funds and does not increase the cost for the institution.
In February 2022, the UC Academic Senate Committee on Library and Scholarly Communication (UCOLASC) issued a statement regarding Open Access publishing in which the Committee strongly recommends that all UC authors choose the open access publishing option. This follows UCOLASC's Declaration of Rights and Principles to Transform Scholarly Communication, endorsed by the Academic Council in 2019.
Article Processing Charge (APC) is the term we use in this guide. Publishers or authors may use terms such as Article Publishing Charge, Open Access Fee, Publishing Fee etc. They all refer to the payment an author or institution is making to a publisher in order to have an article published Open Access.