Open Access is a variety of publishing practices and principles that aim to make access to research barrier-free to the public. Open access typically applies to digital articles, books, and other reporting of research results that are available without a fee or a paywall, and may have licensing that allows for copying and reuse. The Open Access movement is growing, with many national funders worldwide requiring the research results they fund to be available Open Access.
Because a variety of publishers publish Open Access, there are a variety of practices. Many journals are peer reviewed and held to high academic standards. There are also Open Access preprint servers, which can make articles available prior to peer review. Some publishers fund their Open Access pursuits by charging authors Article processing charges, while others are funded by Societies or Universities.