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Meeting the REF Requirements

The policy in brief

To ensure eligibility for the next Research Excellence Framework (REF) all journal articles and conference proceedings with an ISSN, accepted for publication from the 1 April 2016 must be:

  • Deposited in Nottingham ePrints (or approved subject repository) within 3 months of acceptance.  
  • Made open access within the stated maximum embargo period (12 months for REF panels A and B, 24 months for REF panels C and D)

The Authors Accepted Manuscript (AAM) must be deposited unless the item is gold open access, or the journal allows deposit of the Version of Record.

Outputs accepted for publication before the 1 April 2016 are outside the scope of HEFCE's open access policy for the next REF. 

Read more about this and other Open Access (OA) policies on our Policy page.


How to comply

Before you submit your article

Check the OA policy of the journal or conference proceeding you are intending to publish in for compliance with the REF requirements.

When you have had your article accepted

Deposit the AAM in Nottingham ePrints as soon as possible (within 3 months of acceptance).

You can do this by two methods:

  1. Use the ePrints Mediated Deposit Service
  2. Deposit the item yourself in Nottingham ePrints using the ePrints deposit guide.

When your article has been published

Contact the library at to update the ePrint record with publication details. 

If your journal or conference proceeding does not meet the REF requirements then please discuss this with the library when you are depositing your article.


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