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Scholarly Communication: Information and Resources for the UNI Community

Attention Authors!

The publication process fails to serve the needs of an inattentive author.

In order to manage their copyright assets throughout the process, it is vital that authors read and understand the agreements that they sign.  Authors should think about both current needs and future uses of their works and be certain that they retain rights sufficient to accommodate those needs.


  1. Scrutinize the Copyright Transfer Agreement
  2. Negotiate with the Publisher: Transferring copyright doesn't have to be all wrong
  3. Retain the Rights You Need: Value Your Intellectual Property

What to look for in publisher Copyright Agreement Forms:

  • Make the work accessible in UNI Scholarworks or another digital repository
  • Use part of the work as a basis for a future publication
  • Send copies of the work to colleagues
  • Share copies of the work with students
  • Comply with the NIH Public Access Policy or other funding agency policies
  • Present the work at conference or meeting and give copies of the work to attendees
  • Use a different or extended version of the work for a future publication
  • Make copies of the work for personal use and educational use
  • Use graphs, charts, and statistical data for a future publication
  • Use the work for educational use such as lecture notes or study guides
  • Comply with public access mandates
  • Deposit supplemental data from the work in an institutional or subject repository
  • Place a copy of the work on electronic reserves or use for student course-packets
  • Include the work in future derivative works
  • Make an oral presentation of the work
  • Include the work in a dissertation or thesis
  • Use the work in a compilation of works or collected works
  • Expand the work into a book form or book chapter
  • Retain patent and trademark rights of processes or procedures contained in the work

-Adapted from this list

Retain the Rights You Need

Publishers require only the author's permission to publish an article, not a wholesale transfer of copyright.

Resources for authors:

Toll Access publishers' contracts restrict an author's use of published work in teaching and research.  Contracts may prohibit placing the final version publisher's PDF:

  • On course websites
  • In a course packet
  • In scholarly presentations
  • On the author's personal webpage
  • And in digital archives like UNI's Scholarworks

Some publishers anticipate an author's legitimate need to distribute and repurpose his/her work and no longer require exclusive rights to publications.

About embargos:  Some publishers balance their interest in recouping publishing costs with the author's desire to disseminate their ideas broadly, placing an embargo, usually 6-12 months, on the author's ability to place the publisher's PDF in a digital archive.

Manage Your Identity

Author identification tools help researchers deal with problems such as having a common name, having published under more than one name, or having changed their names. They provide a persistent identifier that distinguishes individual authors  from other researchers.

Orcid (Open Researcher & Contributor ID)
"ORCID provides a persistent digital identifier that distinguishes you from every other researcher and, through integration in key research workflows such as manuscript and grant submission, supports automated linkages between you and your professional activities ensuring that your work is recognized."

Some publishers and funders require ORCID numbers when manuscripts or proposals are submitted. Register for free.

"ResearcherID provides a solution to the author ambiguity problem within the scholarly research community. Each member is assigned a unique identifier to enable researchers to manage their publication lists, track their times cited counts and h-index, identify potential collaborators and avoid author misidentification."

Register for free.

More information about authors' rights


This page was originally created by Ann Viera & Peter Fernandez at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, and is licensed for use under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Local changes were made to reflect the local institutional repository and the endorsement by the UNI Faculty Senate and the Iowa Board of Regents.