Pay an Article Processing Charge (APC)

Some journals require an open access fee, also known as an Article Processing Charges (APC). The library can only pay these fees if we have received a block grant from a funder. We currently hold block grants for UKRI, Wellcome Trust, CRUK and BHF.

When the library can pay an APC

You should apply to the library if your article:

  • acknowledges funding from a University of Bristol held grant from one of the following funders:
    • UKRI
    • Wellcome Trust
    • CRUK
    • BHF
  • is peer reviewed original research. (We cannot pay for letters to the editor, commentary, editorials, book reviews, etc. We are only able to cover protocols for Wellcome Trust funded authors.)
  • will be in a journal that requires an Article Processing Charge (APC) for all articles to be made open access. (i.e. Appears in a search of the Directory of Open Access Journals)
  • will be published under a Creative Commons Attribution (CC-BY) Licence

Other funders

Horizon Europe (ERC), National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR) have their own methods of paying APCs and authors funded by these funders should contact them for details. If you are supported by another funder, email for advice.

Open access claims

Before you submit to the publisher, complete an open access claim form to log your claim.

Open Access Claim Form

If you have already submitted, you can still apply for funds, but be aware that the block grant may be spent, or your article may not be eligible for support.

The Open Access Team will check your request, let you know whether your claim has been accepted, and provide you with further instructions for how to pay when it is time to do so.

How to pay an APC

Different journals will require different methods of payment. When the Open Access Team approve your claim form, they will explain how to arrange payment.

Select a CC-BY licence

If you are asked which licence to apply to the article, select CC-BY.

Page and Colour Charges

Charges for additional pages, colour illustrations or other non-open access charges cannot be paid from the block grants. Funders usually do not allow you to pay them from your own grant. If your publisher asks you for these fees you need to ask for them to waive them or see if there is funding available within your department.

VAT Number

If you are asked for the university’s VAT number, it is: GB991261800

Alternative Open Access routes

If the library cannot pay your fees, then you should try the following open access routes:

Check to see if the library has an Open Access deal with the Journal

First check to see if you can use one of our Open Access deals. If so, you can make your work open access using this deal.

Ask your publisher for a waiver

If there isn't an Open Access deal then you should contact the journal and explain to them that, while you would like to publish there, you have no funds to pay their Article Processing Charges. You should ask them if they are willing to waive those fees for you.

Choose a different Journal

If the journal will not waive those fees, you should retract your article and choose another journal.

Additional Resources

Open access claim form

Make a claim for gold open access publication of UKRI, Wellcome Trust, CRUK or BHF funded papers.

Useful Resources

The Paying an Article Processing Charge checklist (PDF, 221kB)‌ can help you track the process.

The UKRI Open Access Policy Flowchart (PDF, 69kB)‌ shows how to use all three open access routes.

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