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Open Access

Open Access means free and unrestricted access to academic publications. The aim is to make academic information, especially the research that is financed with public funds, freely available to the general public.

Leading national and international scientific organisations, as well as numerous universities, are committed to Open Access. They have made this clear by signing the “Berlin Declaration on Open Access to Knowledge in the Sciences and Humanities” Funding organisations such as the German Research Foundation (DFG), the Volkswagen Foundation and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) also promote Open Access. Open Access is therefore increasingly becoming a guiding principle for academic publication.

Reutlingen University also advocates Open Access and, in its Open Access Policy, encourages its authors to publish their research results as open access. Reutlingen University also supports the expansion of Open Access with its own repository, where you can make a self-archived version of your academic work freely available.

How you can open access publish your work is described on the page Routes to Open Access Publication.

Advantages of Open Access
Benefits of Open Access (Danny Kingsley & Sarah Brown,,
  • Open access to academic information facilitates its continued use and relevance in society, politics and business.
  • The visibility of research achievement is increased, as is the citation frequency.
  • Access to research is optimised, encouraging and enabling (inter)national and interdisciplinary collaboration.
  • Publications are available on a long-term basis.

A detailed summary of the arguments for Open Access, as well as some reservations about OA, can be found at

The documentary “Paywall: The Business of Scholarship” presents the problems of the traditional subscription model: (approx. 1 hour).

Open Access Policy of Reutlingen University

PDF-Download (German)

Open Access improves the provision of information to the academic community, facilitates the transfer of research findings to industry and enables easy access to knowledge and information. Freely accessible Open Access publications are also open to innovative analysis and evaluation. Through the continued use of scientific findings, new research approaches and innovations are made possible.

Reutlingen University supports the expansion of Open Access through providing the relevant infrastructure, procedures and contacts. The University advocates that, for the benefit of science and society, research results be made universally accessible without restrictions.

  1. Reutlingen University encourages its authors to present research findings in peer-reviewed OA journals with relevant quality assurance measures and to publish monographs and anthologies with OA publishers or on OA platforms.
  2. Reutlingen University calls on its authors to deposit, where possible, academic papers in the University’s repository. The repository aims to provide a complete overview of Reutlingen University's publications.
  3. In the case of closed access publication, Reutlingen University recommends avoiding granting exclusive rights of use to the publisher and reserving at least a non-exclusive right to make the work available to the public, so that you are still able to deposit it in the Reutlingen University repository.
  4. The interests of researchers, partners and clients shall be safeguarded: the protection of data rights and copyright and the observance of rules of academic practice are a matter of course. Discipline-specific differences in publishing are also to be taken into account.

The University Library is the university-wide contact point for all questions relating to Open Access.

The Open Access Policy of Reutlingen University serves as a recommendation. Freedom of science also includes the free choice of publication. The promotion of Open Access does not restrict the academic freedom of researchers.

Adopted by the Presidium of Reutlingen University of Applied Sciences on 05.04.2017.

Open Educational Resources

In accordance with the Open Access philosophy of the Berlin Declaration, you can also publish your teaching and learning materials as Open Educational Resources (OER).

Reutlingen University promotes open access to educational materials and is a partner in the digital@BW OER Project, funded by the Baden-Württemberg Ministry of Science, Research and Arts. Teaching and learning materials of all kinds can be published under an open licence in the Central OER Repository (ZOERR) of the state universities in Baden-Württemberg.

Further information about OER in German, for example where you can find materials for use in your teaching, can be found in the RELAX course "Open Educational Resources und Creative Commons Lizenzen".

Reutlingen University's OER Policy

Open Educational Resources (OER) are “teaching, learning and research materials […] that reside in the public domain or have been released under an open licence that permits no-cost access, use, adaption and redistribution by others with no or limited restrictions” [].

The open licensing of OER enables the simple continued use and reworking of the material. This reduces the effort involved in creating teaching and learning materials and facilitates the adaption of these materials to the needs of the students. OER makes new collaborative and participative forms of teaching and learning possible and can make the teaching expertise of the University visible, both regionally and internationally.

1. Reutlingen University recommends its members to use, create and publish Open Educational Resources (OER). In line with Reutlingen University’s goals, OER can make a substantial contribution to the digitisation of teaching and the development of teaching and learning culture. OER also promote students’ personal responsibility and digital competence. When using, creating and publishing OER, the rules of good scientific practice, copyright regulations and the requirements of open licences must be observed.

2. Reutlingen University recommends its members to publish OER with a CC-BY licence or a CC-BY-SA licence. Other Creative Commons licences (e.g. restricting commercial use) or other open licences may be used if necessary or appropriate in that case. This particularly applies if the license terms (of the third party content used in the materials) so require.

3. Reutlingen University recommends that the teaching materials be published in a manner best able to increase to increase their visibility and reusability. The Central OER Repository (ZOERR) of the state universities in Baden-Württemberg is recommended as the preferred place of publication. A reference to teaching materials published elsewhere can also be made on the ZOERR.

The Learning Centre is the university-wide contact point for all questions on Open Educational Resources.

Policy decided by the Executive Board of Reutlingen University on 27.03.2019.

PDF of the public announcement (in German)

The Central OER Repository (ZOERR) of the state universities in Baden-Württemberg

The Central OER Repository (ZOERR) of the state universities in Baden-Württemberg (
… is the publication platform for the public teaching and learning materials of the universities in Baden-Württemberg.
… is open for OER from Germany and from all over the world.
... is a place to publish and reference OER.
… is open for materials from all universities and subject areas as well as content from professional training in a university context.
… will be permanently available.

Advantages of the ZOERR
The ZOERR showcases the teaching expertise of academics in Baden-Württemberg.
As a centralised location for OER, ZOERR enables synergy and cooperation beyond physical location.
Through quality assurance and citation, publishing Higher Education OER increases their importance and promotes the reputation of the authors.
The quality of teaching will be improved through examples of best practice

Who is the ZOERR for?

OER can be published by lecturers, university staff and even students, when supervised by a lecturer.
OER can be used by teachers from all areas of education, pupils, students, those interested in further education and others.
Thanks to corresponding metadata, the published content can also be found using the most common search engines. Significant OER are also indexed in the SWB Online Catalogue and can therefore also be found using the library catalogue.

Each university has its own portal: the OER materials of Reutlingen University can be found at From here you can also search for materials of other universities.

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