Open Access tools for administrators

To be eligible for REF 2021, all journal articles and conference papers (with an ISSN) accepted for publication after 1 April 2016 must be deposited in an eligible OA repository within 3 months of first online publication.

OA Monitor helps manage engagement and compliance with the REF Open Access Policy. It enables you to see:

  • which outputs fall within the policy
  • the deadline for deposit
  • which outputs have been deposited
  • the compliance status of each output

However, it can only check compliance against our own repository, and there are other circumstances in which outputs can be compliant (e.g. if it is available elsewhere or is Gold open access). It is therefore important that departments do not use myPublications alone as an indicator of OA compliance, and instead consider all potentially strong outputs. We will manually check each submitted output for open access compliance as part of our REF preparations.

OA Monitor is available only to users with departmental admin access. Email for support. Further information, including FAQs, are available on the REF OA Policy website.

REF OA website

How do I use OA Monitor?

Go to Research Admin > OA Monitor > Publications in OA policy.

This is an interactive list of all outputs within the policy. Filter the list using the options on the right. Some key filters are:

  • Repository item status: the current status of the manuscript in WRRO.
  • Compliance: REF compliant or non-compliant.
  • Publication status: exclude outputs not yet accepted or published.
  • Acceptance date: identify those missing an acceptance date, or within a specified period.
  • First deposit: show outputs with the most pressing deadline for deposit.

A typical record is shown below:

OAM record

The current repository status is displayed in a coloured box in the bottom right of each record:

  • Not deposited (red): the output has not been deposited in WRRO.
  • In review (live): the output has been successfully sent to WRRO and is being processed by the Library.
  • Live (green): the output is live on WRRO.

The current compliance status is displayed in a white box in the bottom right of each record:

  • Compliant: the output is fully compliant and can be submitted to the REF. To be deemed compliant, an output must have been deposited within 3 months of the date of first publication, with a file type of 'Author Accepted Manuscript' or 'Published', and an eligible embargo period.
  • Non-compliant: the output is currently non-compliant. Click on the box to see the reasons for non-compliance.

Any exceptions are displayed in a purple box at the bottom of the record:

  • In certain circumstances, an output can be submitted to the REF even though it does not comply with the OA Policy. Permitted exceptions are detailed on the REF OA pages alongside the action that authors need to take.
  • Exceptions will be recorded by Research Services and the Library in OA Monitor as appropriate.
  • Click the purple box for more details on the exception.
  • Only one exception can be applied to each output.

The timescales are displayed at the bottom left of each record:

  • Accepted: the date that the output was accepted for publication.
  • First deposit: the date that the output was deposited into WRRO. If it has not been deposited, it will show the time remaining for deposit.
  • Published: the date that the output was first published (the earliest of the online publication and publication dates).

Several actions are listed on the right of each record:

  • Send email to the Sheffield authors.
  • Add exception. See below for more information on exceptions.
  • Deposit the manuscript into WRRO.
  • Exclude from policy will remove this output from the policy. Use this for outputs that would not normally be submitted to the REF, such as book reviews and corrections.

The data can be exported into Excel for further analysis using the button at the top of the page.

Use case examples

View outputs that need to be deposited

  • Use the 'Repository item status' filter to view outputs that have not been deposited.
  • Use the 'First deposit' filter to view outputs with an imminent deadline.
  • Use the 'Send email' button to prompt the author(s) to deposit.

View non-compliant outputs

  • Use the 'Compliance' filter to show non-compliant outputs.
  • Click the Non-compliant box within the record to see the reason for non-compliance.

View exceptions

  • Use the 'Exceptions' filter to show non-compliant outputs.
  • Click on the purple box in the output record to see more details.

View outputs with missing dates

  • Outputs that do not have any dates are included out of caution.
  • Use the 'Acceptance date' and 'Publication date' filters to show only outputs that do not have a relevant date.
  • The dates of acceptance and publication are displayed within the record.
  • To add dates to a record, click the title and add/edit a manual record.

Identify users who may not be depositing their outputs

  • Go to Research Admin > OA Monitor > User engagement (depositing).
  • This report summarises the outputs for each researcher since 1 April 2016.