UCB Libraries


Repositories and Self-Archiving

Table of Contents

What is a Repository?

A Repository is an online databases used by institutions & organizations to capture, preserve, and provide access to the intellectual output of a scholarly community. They gather and disseminate a variety of scholarly materials; this includes not only publications in peer-reviewed journals, but also products of education and research not published elsewhere such as data sets, preprints, postprints, syllabi, theses, and dissertations. They are open access, they can provide accessibility even after an article has been published in a subsription based journal. This is known as the green open access model.

Why Deposit?

Depositing, also known as self-archiving, in an institutional or subject repository has many benefits. It ensures the long-term digital preservation of your work. It can gather all of a scholar's work in one accessible online location, eliminating article requests. It makes work widely available and findable via Google, increasing research impact.

Depositing in CU Boulder's Institutional Repository

CU Scholar is the University of Colorado Boulder’s Institutional Repository. More information about the advantages of depositing and the procedures can be found in the CU Boulder Institutional Repository FAQ.

Copyright Issues

Most academic journals requie scholars to sign over their copyright on their work to the publisher. Each publisher has a different policy on what and when an article can be deposited, the terms are often spelled out in the author agreement. In order to avoid losing copyright and the ability to self-archive, the Library recommends publishing in Open Access journals or adding an author's addendum to their agreement with the publisher, these will often either maintain the author's copyright or reserve the right to self-archive.


Mandates & Funding Agency Policies

Several research funding agencies require that the resulting article be deposited. Currently scholars who recieve funding from the NIH are required to deposit their work in PubMed Central in compliance with the NIH's Public Access Policy. FRPAA legislation is currently pending and would expand the open access mandate to all federally funded research. Some universities, such as Harvard have adopted a campus-wide open access and self-archiving mandate.


Subject Repositories

Subject Repositories archive articles in one specific discipline bringing together open access material from many universities.


  • Subject Repository List

    List of over a hundred repositories listed by discipline.

  • ArXiv.org

    Contains over 500,000 e-prints in the fields of physics, mathematics, computer science, quantitative biology, statistics, and non-linear science. Maintained by Cornell University.

  • E-Print Network (U.S. Department of Energy)

    Provides access to numerous repositories in life sciences, engineering, environmental sciences, mathematics, physics, and other disciplines relevant to the Department of Energy.

  • PubMed Central

    National Institutes of Health’s publicly accessible repository of biomedical and life sciences journal literature.

  • Scirus

    Index of over 350 million open access journal articles, e-prints, technical reports and other material from science-related webpages, databases, courseware sites, and repositories.