The Library

Research and PhD Support

Further advice and support

Open Access team

The Open Access team are based in the Library and are happy to help with any enquiries about HEFCE requirements, green or gold OA and use of Symplectic Elements and the Repository. Please use the contact details in the right hand column.

Academic Librarians

Academic Librarians support researchers in particular subject areas. Contact your Academic Librarian for an appointment if you would like an introduction to the Library's services and facilities, or for help and advice on finding and using resources for your research.

University Research Office

The University Research Office (URO) provides support for postgraduate researchers and academic staff pursuing research and scholarly activities.

People Development

At People Development you can access full details of the Staff and Student Research Development Programme and complete and manage your booking online. You will need book via iTrent and will need your Leeds Beckett login details to access this.

Open Access: FAQ

Why is Open Access important?

Open Access (OA) means that items of scholarly work are made available online, in a digital format, at no charge to the reader and with limited restrictions on re-use.

The OA movement is a worldwide effort to make scholarly work available online to everyone regardless of their ability to pay for access.

There are two types of Open Access, Green and Gold - see Green and Gold OA for more information

  • Publications submitted to the next REF must be OA. To ensure that your publication is eligible for the next REF, it must be uploaded to our repository once it has been accepted by the journal.
  • OA maximises research impact. With no barriers to access, your research is visible to everyone. This maximizes views and downloads, and makes it possible for other researchers to quickly learn about and build on your work to make further advances.
  • OA is free for researchers. You do not have to pay to make your research available through Green OA - i.e. in our repository. In some journals, Gold OA may be your only option and will make your research instantly available to anyone. You may need to pay an Article Processing charge but you can apply for funding from the University.
  • OA maximises the use of public funds. Traditional peer-reviewed research is the product of your time, labour and public funds – at no cost to the publisher. Access is then sold back to you via institutional subscriptions, at great profit to publishers. Unfortunately, these subscriptions rates are increasing and libraries can no longer afford to provide full access. OA ensures that the work you produce is accessible to everyone.

How can I make my publication Open Access?

You can make your research Open Access by following the Green or Gold route. 

In the first instance, you should self-archive your accepted manuscript in a repository, such as our Leeds Beckett institutional repository. This fulfills the HEFCE REF requirements and ensures your work is OA.

You may also pay an Article Processing Charge to make your published work OA.

Please fill in the form at the bottom of the screen to see which is best for you.

Should I choose Green or Gold Open Access?

New requirements from HEFCE require all publications to be self-archived in a repository at the point of acceptance (Green OA) in order to be eligible to be submitted to the next REF

Once your article has been accepted for publication in any journal you should update your Symplectic account and upload the relevant version. This is self-archiving in our institutional repository.

Some journals only allow Gold OA publishing. This means that once your article is published it will be immediately free for any to access on the publisher’s website (rather than under embargo in a repository).

The business model of such journals is often based on charging an Article Processing Charge (APC) to authors and/or institutions and/or funders - see our APC help guide for more information.

Even when an APC has been paid for Gold OA , you should still upload the published version to our repository as soon as it becomes available.

If you need any help in choosing your OA route then please get in touch.

Can I get funding from the University to cover the cost of an APC?

Yes. If you wish to publish in a gold OA journal and where you do not have funding from an external source, you can apply for funding to cover the cost of an APC by completing this form and returning to your Director of Research - download Open Access APC Funding Request form (Word.docx).

Please see our library guide to APCs for more information, or contact us.

Where can I get information on copyright?

The Copyright Clearance Service works with the Research Services team based in Libraries and Learning Innovation and can offer guidance to staff around copyright to their published work.

Open Access requirements: FAQ

What is the Open Access policy for the next REF?

From 1st April 2016 journal articles and conference proceedings (with an ISSN) must be deposited in an institutional repository at the point of acceptance, as mandated by HEFCE.

The output must be deposited within three months of the date of acceptance. Embargo periods and exceptions apply where necessary. This is Green Open Access.

If you have published via the Gold Open Access route (where you have paid an Article Processing Charge to make your publication immediately available for free on the journal website) then you should still update the record and upload the published version to Symplectic as soon as it becomes available..

For more information see these FAQ from HEFCE or contact us.


What is the Open Access policy at Leeds Beckett?

Academic staff should add the bibliographic data relating to all forms of their published outputs to their Symplectic Elements account.

The full text of the author's final version of journal articles and conference proceedings must be uploaded within three months of acceptance by the publisher. This applies both where the lead author is a Leeds Beckett member of staff, and also where a Leeds Beckett member of staff is the co-author of an article with colleagues working elsewhere.

For more help contact us.

What is my final accepted manuscript?

Your 'final accepted manuscript', sometimes referred to as your 'final author version', 'final author manuscript', or ‘final manuscript’ is the version of your work which:

  • has been accepted for publication
  • has been peer-reviewed
  • but has not yet had the publisher's layout and typesetting applied

This can often be a Word version of your publication. Most publishers allow this (and only this) version to be made available from an open access repository after any embargo period has passed. 

Your uploaded final accepted manuscript will be checked for any embargoes, copyright or publisher restrictions by the Research Services team.

The final accepted manuscript is the version that must be uploaded to the Leeds Beckett Repository at acceptance to be eligible for submission to the next REF. The final published PDF (the final version that appears on the Publisher's website) cannot be uploaded to for this purpose.

For more information, see our webpages on Open Access or contact us

Does my funder have an Open Access policy?

Many funding bodies now insist that scholarly work arising from their funding be made Open Access (OA). Funder policy information is available from SHERPA/JULIET and on our Open Access web page. Contact the University Research Office (URO) for specific advice.

Research management: FAQ

What is the difference between Symplectic Elements and the EPrints Open Access repository?

The research management infrastructure at Leeds Beckett comprises two separate but related software systems - Symplectic Elements research management system and EPrints Open Access repository.

Symplectic Elements is a database of bibliographic records and is used to generate the list of publications that appears on your online staff profile and to provide management reports for research activity across the University. It also allows files to be uploaded to EPrints - no files are stored in Elements itself.

EPrints Open Access repository manages the full text files uploaded from Elements, including embargo where applicable, and ensures that your research outputs are discoverable and accessible on the open Web. When a file is uploaded from Elements to EPrints it will also be available to download from your staff profile as a link on the respective record.

How do I add records to Symplectic Elements?

Log-in to Symplectic Elements with your standard network username and password.

If you are adding a Journal article or Conference proceeding that has been accepted for publication you should follow the instructions at Next REF requirements.

If you are adding a different type of output, click the Add new journal article icon next to the relevant publication type and add the required data.

You can also import RefMan (RIS) and BibTex files, standard formats used by research management software (e.g EndNote).

For more help contact

How do I upload files to the EPrints Open Access repository?

If you are adding a Journal article or Conference proceeding that has been accepted for publication you should follow the instructions at Next REF requirements.

Is copyright permission checked before making my research openly available from the EPrints Open Access repository?

Yes, all uploaded files go into a restricted work area to be checked by Library staff. Files will only be made openly accessible after formal publication and after any embargo period specified by the publisher has expired.

N.B. A metadata record will be made available prior to publication, in line with the Discovery requirements outlined by HEFCE 

What version of my work can I make available through the EPrints Open Access repository?

Most publishers will permit authors to self-archive their final accepted manuscript (AAM) of a journal paper, this is the version you should deposit, ideally as soon as it is accepted for publication.

The final accepted manuscript is the version that must be uploaded to Beckett Research Online at acceptance to be eligible for submission to the next REF. The final published PDF (the final version that appears on the Publisher's website) cannot be uploaded to for this purpose.

Staff profile: FAQ

How do I create an online staff profile?

In the first instance you should complete this online form and ensure your publication details are included in your Symplectic Elements account. The information you provide will be used to create your online profile.

How do I manage Selected Publications on my staff profile?

Symplectic Elements allows you to manage the list of selected publications that appears on your profile page:

Heart icon/Make favourite  Heart icon/Make favourite

This button can be used to identify “favourites”, which will feed through to Selected Publications listed on your staff profile. 

To select a publication for the Selected Publications part of your profile, select the heart icon Heart icon/Make favourite on the record in Elements. Deselect the icon to deselect the publication.

Eye icon/Make invisible Eye icon/Make invisible 

This button can be used to identify publications that will not be shown on your profile at all, either in Selected Publications or the full publications list.

If you do not want a publication to appear anywhere on your profile, you can make it invisible by selecting the eye icon Eye icon/Make invisible

Your page will normally be refreshed overnight to reflect any changes, or email if you would like the change to be reflected more quickly.

Are open access files available to download from my profile page?

Yes. When a file is uploaded from Elements to EPrints it will also be available to download from your staff profile as a link on the respective record.

My bibliographic records don't appear as I would expect, what can I do?

It is likely that some records will have multiple data sources that may be formatted differently. 

You can choose the preferred source you would like to be displayed on your profile under the Data Sources tab with the Unselected star icon. Alternatively you can create your own manual record if you wish to include additional data for example.

1) Click on the Data Sources tab for the relevant publication.
2) Click on the  set preferred icon, shaped like a star, next to the relevant record in that tab. When selected, the star will change colour from Unselected starwhite to Selected staryellow. This will select the preferred source and set of details to show on your profile.

Preferred publications

Your page will normally be refreshed overnight to reflect any changes, or email if you would like the change to be reflected more quickly.


What does 'ORCiD' stand for?

ORCiD is an acronym, short for Open Researcher and Contributor ID.

Which privacy setting should I use?

A core ORCiD principle is that you control the privacy settings of your own ORCiD record data through various opt-in and opt-out features. To that end, ORCiD allows you the right to control how your information is published on and shared via the ORCiD Registry.

In essence, it's a personal decision with respect to how open you want to be and to what extent you might use your ORCiD profile to disseminate your work. For more information, please see the ORCiD Privacy Settings support page.

Will ORCiD auto-populate with records from Symplectic?

ORCiD will not currently pull records from Symplectic automatically but you can upload a BibTeX file, which is easy to generate from the export button in Symplectic.

You can import to ORCiD via the 'Add Works' tab:

It is also possible to export works from your ORCiD record to a BibTeX file, which can then be uploaded to your Symplectic profile. More information is available via the ORCiD support website; if you need any help, please contact the Research Services team.

Why do I need an ORCiD?

ORCiD provides a persistent digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher. It is also a data source for Symplectic and will help automate identification of your outputs.

ORCiDs are now actually mandatory for some funders and publishers; for example, it is a requirement of funding from the Wellcome Trust. 25 publishers have also signed the Open Letter to require ORCiD in publication workflows and as a condition for submission, including Wiley and PLOS.

Where can I find more information and support?

The Knowledge Base pages on the ORCiD support website contain lots of useful information, step-by-step guides and helpful videos. You can also find more detailed information about ORCiD policies and principles on the main ORCiD website.

If you'd like any help with setting up your account, drop the Research Services team an email on or tweet us @BeckettResearch.

Meet the Research Services team

Amy Campbell, Jennifer Bayjoo & Lucy Clark

Contact us

0113 812 4731