Open Access Policy

The Boston University opt-out open access policy was ratified by University Council on February 11, 2015. Read the full text of the policy. In brief, the policy grants permission to Boston University to make the accepted manuscripts of all BU faculty-authored scholarly articles openly available in OpenBU, BU’s institutional repository.

How the Policy Works

Under the policy, faculty members grant Boston University a non-exclusive license to the accepted manuscripts–with edits from peer review, before publisher copy-editing and formatting–of their scholarly articles. This allows BU to exercise all rights under copyright to those accepted manuscripts, as long as it is not for profit. Faculty members retain all their rights to their articles, subject to any subsequently signed copyright transfer agreements. The policy applies to scholarly articles (not books, book chapters, creative works, or popular articles) that were authored after the policy was adopted on February 11, 2015.

See the Open Access Policy FAQ for further details.

Submit an Article

Faculty can submit articles through My CV, a software system that assists faculty in collecting and maintaining their scholarly and professional contributions and facilitates the Faculty Annual Review (FAR). In addition, My CV helps faculty make their works openly available by identifying publications that fall under the open access policy and providing an easy way to submit articles directly to OpenBU from My CV.

More information about My CV can be found on the project website. BU Libraries provides user support for the Publications module in My CV via email (

BU Medical Campus faculty: Please submit your accepted manuscripts here. You are also welcome to email us the article, providing all the information requested on our submission web form.

More information about submitting articles is available in our Open Access Policy FAQ.

Opting Out

There are two types of opt-outs associated with the policy: open access and granting Boston University a nonexclusive license.

  • To opt out of open access, when you deposit your article, you’ll have an option to select an embargo period, or the period of time during which an article is not made openly available. You can choose to embargo your article indefinitely, which means that it will be preserved long-term in OpenBU, but it will not be publicly accessible.
  • To opt out of granting BU a nonexclusive license, you can request a waiver–either through My CV or, for BU Medical Campus faculty, our online submission form. The waiver is granted automatically.

More information about opting out is available in our Open Access Policy FAQ.

Author Addenda

For all future publication contracts, it’s a good idea to begin using an author addendum. BU Libraries, in consultation with the Office of the General Counsel, have prepared a BU-specific Author Addendum, which is based on similar documents used by our peer institutions that are familiar to many publishers. Please note that, whether or not you use the addendum, the policy remains in force. If there is a conflict between the policy and a publication contract you sign after its adoption (11 February 2015), the policy will generally prevail.

Frequently Asked Questions

Other Resources