Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Monday, April 12, 2004

Publishers' restrictions hinder using journal articles as course materials for web

Michele Langlois et al, Restrictions impeding web-based courses: a survey of publisher's variation in authorising access to high quality on-line literature, BMC Medical Education 4,7 (2004). The authors report on the difficulty of securing access to scholarly articles for web-based instruction. Half of surveyed publishers charged additional costs for using electronic versions of articles in a course, even if the institution already maintained a subscription. More than half of the publishers would allow the institution "to reproduce exracts of published work at no fee." The article goes on further to discuss the increased use of the web for course materials. Finally, the authors conclude, "the permission request process has been expensive and has resulted in reduced access for students to the relevant literature. Variations in the responses from publishers suggest that for educational purposes common policies could be agreed and unnecessary restrictions removed in the future." (Source: BentleyBlog)