Open Access

This page describes the ways in which authors and researchers at University of Houston can make open access a viable option for their pieces of scholarship, whether those works are funded or unfunded, in process or published. UH Libraries offers infrastructure for the free and open dissemination of all kinds of research outputs as well as opportunities for authors to defray the costs of publishing in certain open access journals. 

Make your research open access 

The Cougar ROAR platform allows UH researchers to make their scholarship and data openly available at no charge. 

Cougar ROAR consists of: 

  • Institutional repository for articles, posters, presentations, and other forms of scholarship 
  • Data repository for making data sets publicly available 

Both are free to use for all UH community members with a valid CougarNet account. 

Cougar ROAR submission guide 

Please email for questions and support. 

Open access for theses/dissertations 

All approved theses and dissertations at UH must be submitted for open access publication through Vireo, an application provided by the Texas Digital Library. 

See the thesis and dissertation policies from the Graduate School for more information. 

Students should talk to their advisor or thesis/dissertation committee chair about embargoes and other publication questions. Questions about Vireo can be directed to Taylor Davis-Van Atta at UH Libraries. 

Institutional Support for Open Access Publishing

Some of UH Libraries’ agreements include discounts on Article Processing Charges (APC) to help lower the financial barrier to open access publishing. APC, also called an “author’s fee,” is a sum that an author pays for the open access publication of their article. Some of these discounts are not necessarily applied automatically during the publishing process. Below are various publishing fee discounts available to the UH community. Corresponding UH authors should inform the publisher or note the reduced fee on the invoice. Please note that these discounts are obtained through vendor agreements and are subject to change. If you believe something may be missing from this list, or have questions regarding specific publisher APC agreements, please contact for verification. UH currently has no APC funding program or policy in place. If you have UH APC funding program questions, please contact Santi Thompson, Associate Dean for Research and Student Engagement (

BioMed Central and SpringerOpen 

UH authors are entitled to a 15% discount with BioMed Central. The BioMed Central (BMC) discount is part of UH Libraries’ membership in BMC. After editorial acceptance, there will be an option for authors to note their affiliation with UH in order to register for the discount. 

Per BMC, the member discount is applicable to BMC and Springer fully open access journals only, and does not apply to any Nature Research, Palgrave, or Springer Nature hybrid open access (Open Choice) journals. BioMed Central publishes over 250 peer-reviewed open access journals. View an A-Z  list of BioMed Central journals


UH authors are entitled to a 15% discount on APCs for Gold core Elsevier journals, and a 10% discount on APCs for Hybrid core Elsevier journal through UH’s participation with the Texas Library Coalition for United Action (TLCUA). Eligible titles include Elsevier-owned hybrid and fully gold journals, with the exception of Cell Press and The Lancet, and certain society titles. You can use Elsevier’s Journal Search Tool to find eligible titles. 

Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute (MDPI) 

UH authors are entitled to a 10% APC discount on all MDPI publications. View a list of MDPI journals. This discount is applied automatically upon paper acceptance. 

Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS)

As part of UH Libraries’ current-year site license, UH authors pay a discounted fee. See details on PNAS author center.