General information

For users

For libraries

For publishers

What is DOAJ?

Directory of Open Access Journals is a service that indexes and provides access to quality-controlled Open Access Journals and their articles. The Directory aims to be comprehensive and cover all open access scientific and scholarly journals that use an appropriate quality control system, and it will not be limited to particular languages or subject areas. The aim of the Directory is to increase the visibility and ease of use of open access scientific and scholarly journals thereby promoting their increased usage and impact.

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How do we define 'Open Access Journal', 'Quality Control', 'Research Journal', 'Periodical'?

Open Access Journal:

We define open access journals as journals that use a funding model that does not charge readers or their institutions for access. From the BOAI definition[1] of "open access" we take the right of users to "read, download, copy, distribute, print, search, or link to the full texts of these articles" as mandatory for a journal to be included in the directory.


Quality Control:

The journal must exercise peer-review or editorial quality control to be included.

Research Journal:

Journals that report primary results of research or overviews of research results to a scholarly community.


A serial appearing or intended to appear indefinitely at regular intervals, generally more frequently than annually, each issue of which is numbered or dated consecutively and normally contains separate articles, stories, or other writings.

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The journal is then registered in DOAJ and classified by the DOAJ staff according to Library of Congress' classification schema. The journal is searchable and visible in DOAJ immediately.

Metadata and archiving

We strongly recommend that ALL journals provide us with article metadata in XML format or upload the data manually using our metadata uploader. DOAJ is OAI-PMH compliant and once the article is available in DOAJ it becomes automatically OAI harvestable. A script looking for articles to publish runs every 30 minutes.

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What is Open Archives Initiative, OAI, OAI-PMH?

OAI, Open Archives Initiative, supplies a common framework to web communities that allows them to gain access to content in a standard manner by means of metadata harvesting. Read the details of our OAI feature.

How is license information applied and displayed in DOAJ?

The current version of DOAJ allows publishers to supply license information at the JOURNAL level. Because some journals have different licenses from one article to another, we ask publishers to supply the license that best fits ALL of the content. We are working to give greater granularity to license information.

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How can I support/sponsor DOAJ?

Please read our Support DOAJ page for further information.

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Do you have any restrictions for the use of your site code and software?

The code used to generate the DOAJ web site is open source as are the various pieces of software used for the different features. The site or "work" is licensed under a CC-BY-SA license.

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How do I search in DOAJ and what information about a journal, or article, can I find in the directory?

The records in DOAJ contain the following fields:

Journal Title
The title of the journal.

The ISSN number of the journal. The electronic ISSN is also available if the journal has one.

The topic of the journal.

The entity responsible for publishing the journal.

Platform or host
The entity responsible for delivering the journal, often 'the Platform'.

Country of publication.

Language(s) of the full text articles and abstracts.

Keywords of the topic of the journal.

The license type for the journal.

Year of publication (articles)
The year that the article was published.

Use the Search to look for journals and article metadata in DOAJ. You may refine your search results by using the facets in the panel on the left, or by sorting and filtering using the fields at the top of the search results.

You can choose to search on any of the following fields:

  • All fields
  • Title
  • Keywords
  • Subject
  • Identifier (DOI, ISSN)
  • Abstract
  • Author
  • Year
  • Country
  • Language
  • Publisher
  • Journal title
  • Alternative title
  • Provider

If you write more than one word in your search query it will be treated as a phrase. To search on full article titles, use " " around the title, e.g. "Is social, cultural and recreational participation a luxury for people living in poverty? An analysis of policy intentions and measures"

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How do I browse issues and Tables of Contents?

For those journals where publishers have uploaded article metadata to us, Tables of Contents and issues are browsable by browse a journal's issues, click on the blue, hyperlinked journal title in search results.

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Can I use DOAJ with Javascript disabled?

If you disable all javascript, it will not be possible to search the DOAJ. If you can switch off certain components and allow others, then you can continue to use DOAJ. Search will not work with Javascript switched off completely because some of the code that is required is served by Google's Javascript library hosting so if disallowed, search will fail. Other javascript components are Addthis which is our feature that allows people to share items from within our site. Disabling this will simply disable the feature. Another component is Bootstrap ( which is the framework used to build the DOAJ website. This contains some Javascript for some of its features. Bootstrap was originally created by Twitter and made available to all but we're not aware of any data collected by them as part of us integrating it into the DOAJ site.

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What happened to Browse? How can I browse journals by Subject?

The updated Search functionality in DOAJ combines the traditional functions of search and browse into one. This is an updated way of finding information, in line with the process of filtering and drilling down to the results that are needed.

To browse for journals by subject:

    Starting at the Search page:
  • Select 'journal' from the 'Journals vs Articles' facet
  • From under the 'Subject' facet, choose the subject that you wish to browse
  • To see more Subjects than the 10 listed, change the number at the top of the list from '10' to the number of Subjects you would like to see.
Only journals corresponding to the chosen subject will show. You may make further refinements by selecting other facets.

We will be making further improvements to the Search function over the coming months.

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Can I find information about which countries have journals included in DOAJ?

Yes, by going to the Advanced Search page and selecting 'journal' at the top of the facet pane (left hand column). Then expand the Country facet to show all the journals published by a country. In 2014, we will be enhancing this feature with charts, graphs and by adding the ability to browse journals added to a country by year.

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Are there other ways to find Open Access content?

Yes, read more about Self-Archiving and Open Archives in the Southampton Self-Archiving FAQ.

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Why is the subject area I'm looking for not covered?

Because we have not indexed any journals in that subject area yet. Applications from publishers are always welcome. Please apply here for inclusion in DOAJ.

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Is there an RSS/ATOM feed in DOAJ?

We have an ATOM feed. The feed contains information on journals added in the last 30 days and includes the latest 100 items.

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How can I get journal metadata from DOAJ?

The DOAJ service supports the OAI protocol for metadata harvesting (OAI-PMH). Thus, any other compatible service can obtain records from DOAJ for inclusion in their collection. OAI is well established and easy to use. The base URL is: You can add most OAI verbs and other commands directly on to that. The OAI data is always up to date. A few examples:

Verb: Identify
Verb: ListMetadataFormats
Verb: ListRecords&from=2004-01-01&metadataPrefix=oai_dc

From these URLs you'll get both an idea of what OAI is and much of our metadata.

You can also download the list of records in DOAJ in a CSV (comma-separated) format which can then be imported into Excel or any equivalent analysis tool. The csv file is updated every 30 minutes. To retrieve the data:

  1. Download the file to your computer
  2. Open the file in a document processing program like Excel or OpenOffice.
  3. You can then choose which format you want the spreadsheet in.

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How do I get article level metadata from DOAJ?

The article level metadata can be harvested using OAI protocol.
The base URL is:
Use OAI verbs and other command options directly on that.

Verb: ListRecords&from=2004-07-01&metadataPrefix=oai_dc

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Do you have any restrictions for the use of your metadata?

The data in DOAJ is licensed to you under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License (CC BY-SA). The essence of copy of this license is explained on the creative commons web site. (You may also be interested in the fine print.) The rights of the site-generated metadata, such as the Atom feed, are listed in the feed.

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Do you have a logo I can use to show that my journal is indexed in DOAJ?

We do have a logo that you can use if you are indexed in DOAJ. Please use the Contact us form to request the logo and a member of our team will check that your journal qualifies.

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Why can't I find my journal in DOAJ?

It maybe that the journal has not yet applied to be in DOAJ, in which case, please use our Application form to apply for inclusion in DOAJ. It may also be that the journal doesn't match our selection criteria and has failed the application.

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As a publisher, how do I upload articles into DOAJ?

Once a journal has been added to DOAJ, article metadata may be uploaded for it. If the journal belongs to an existing account in DOAJ, then the publisher can log in to their account and upload metadata via the Publisher Area. If a new account has been created for the publisher, an email is sent to the email address registered in Question 10 of the application. The email contains a username and tells you how to choose a password. The link is valid for 14 days. Once you have logged in to your account, you may upload article metadata via the Publisher Area. For more information go to the For publishers page and read the 'Uploading Metadata' section there.

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I have uploaded article metadata to DOAJ but it has not appeared on the site. Has something gone wrong?

If you did not receive any error messages when you uploaded the metadata then it is unlikely that anything has gone wrong with the upload process. However, it is possible that the article you are looking for has been overwritten by another one. The URL for every article must be unique. We use the full text URL to match two versions of the same article. If you have provided the same URL for every article you have upoaded then only the last article uploaded will appear on the site.

Articles appear on the site within 60 minutes of a successful upload. After 60 minutes, the fastest way to check that your article is on the site is to search on the FULL ARTICLE TITLE with " " around it. e.g. "Is social, cultural and recreational participation a luxury for people living in poverty? An analysis of policy intentions and measures"

Articles are added to journal Tables of Contents over night so you will not see them there immediately.

If, after 24 hours, you still cannot find your article on the site, please contact us.

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How do I get a Creative Commons license on to my content?

Step 1:
  • Choose the appropriate CC license - refer to the below paragraph.
  • We recommend you apply the CC BY license which is the most user friendly, allowing for, among other things, long-term preservation and text- and data-mining..

How to choose the CC BY license:

Go to the Creative Commons (CC) web site ( and copy the CC BY Icon - you can also consult this: .

Put the CC BY icon on the homepage of your journal(s) and preferably on each article in your journal. Read how.

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How do I know which CC license to choose?

You can find information on the different types of licenses at the Creative Commons web site: and there is even a page to help you choose the correct license for your content:

Both are available in 24 different languages.

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How do I know if my license information is embedded in the metadata?

When applying for a journal to be included in DOAJ, one of the questions asks about whether or not you have machine-readable licensing information embedded in your article metadata. There are guidelines on the Creative Commons web site that tell you more about this. The information is usually embedded in HTML, XML or, less commonly, PDFs. The emphasis for DOAJ is not that the license is embedded but that there is a machine-readable version of it. Here are a couple of examples:

  1. Displayed in the HTML on an article abstract page
  2. Displayed at the bottom of the full text

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Do case reports count as original articles?

When applying for a journal to be included in DOAJ, you must include case reports in your count when a case report includes the retrospective analysis of more than 3 clinical cases. When more than three cases are involved, the article constitutes "research."

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We have no deposit restrictions on articles published in our journal. Why does the Application Form ask for information about deposit policies?

Funders, libararies and authors can all access deposit policy directories to get an overview of publishing channels that are compliant with, for instance, funder policies. This is one of our areas where we are encouraging Best Practice. A good example of a deposit policy directory

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