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What Can You Do?

Understand Your Author Rights
What can the author do and when?


Retain Your Copyright When Possible
Publication Agreements are Contracts – Can you negotiate?


Apply a Creative Commons License when possible
Ensure proper attribution and get credit for your work


Publish/Deposit Materials in Open Access Venues
Publish in Open Access Journals – See Directory of Open Access Journals (DOAJ)

Deposit versions of your work into KiltHub – The CMU Comprehensive Repository

Understanding Versions of Published Works

Many publishers recognize several 'versions' of a publication. Depending on the publisher, publication venue, and author agreement, an author who has transferred the copyright of their work may still retain certain rights to versions of their original work. it is important to understand the versions of a publication that may be recognized by a publisher, including:

  • Author's Original Manuscript (AOM)
  • Author's Accepted Manuscript (AAM)
  • Version of Record (VoR)


These terms and descriptions are for general purposes. You should always consult the author agreement and/or publisher's information to ensure which versions the publisher may reference. 

 Author's Original Manuscript (OM)
The Author's Original Manuscript (OM) is the first submitted version of a publication. This version is also known as the 'Original Manuscript' or 'Pre-Print.' This version of the publication is the version that has been first submitted. It would be in the original format submitted by the author, and would not have been reviewed or changed from a peer-review process. 

Author's Accepted Manuscript (AAM)
The Author's Accepted Manuscript (AAM) is the second version of a publication. This version is also known as the 'Post-Print' or 'Accepted Version.' This version of the publication is the version that has been through the peer-peer review process, and changes from the peer-review process have been incorporated into the draft. This version may also have suggested editorial changes requested by the journal's editors to be made as well. Intellectually, this version of the article will be identical to the final published version. This said, the Author's Accepted Manuscript (AAM) lacks the final changes or additions made by the publisher. This may include the final type-setting and branding found within the final version. This is the most common version publishers permit authors to share or post publicly after publication. It is important for authors to retain a copy of the Author's Accepted Manuscript (AAM).

Version of Record (VoR)
The Version of Record (VoR) is the final version of a publication. This version is also known as the 'Published Version' or the 'PDF Version.' This is the final version of the publication, and is the version that a reader would find online or in-print. While this version is intellectually identical to the Author's Accepted Manuscript Version (AAM), it contains the final typesetting and branding associated with the publication venue. This is the most restricted version of the publication, with most publishers not allowing an author to share or post this version of the publication without an associated cost or fee.