ACT on ACCEPTANCE: make the REF 2021


What is Act on Acceptance?

From 1st April 2018, changes to HEFCE’s open access policy require researchers to submit their work to City Research Online within 3 months of acceptance to be eligible for the next REF.

As soon as you know your research will be published in a peer-reviewed journal, or conference proceedings, Act on Acceptance and make your research open access.

What do you have to do?

  • Upload your publications to your Publications profile as soon as possible after they have been accepted for publication.
  • Make sure it’s the accepted manuscript and not the published version: the accepted version is peer-reviewed but not typeset for publication.

What happens next?

The Publications Team will check your deposits to make sure they are compliant with the HEFCE policy, and the publishers’ terms and conditions regarding copyright and embargo periods. Once these checks are complete, they will make them available in the City Research Online repository.

What if you need help?

If you need help with depositing papers, or have questions about the open access policy, you can consult the City Research Online and Publications library guides.

Alternatively, you can contact the Publications Team who will:

  • Answer enquiries by telephone and email.
  • Meet with you in one to one appointments.
  • Help you understand the HEFCE open access policy.
  • Help you upload your papers to your publications profile.

Visit to the IOE Library

I recently visited the IOE Library “The Newsam Library and Archives holds extensive collections of current and historical materials on education and related areas of social science. In addition to supporting the work of staff and students at the Institute of Education, the Library and Archives welcomes enquiries from all scholars, researchers and others in the community with an interest in education.” The Library has a blog.

I used to work at the IOE Library a while ago and I went to visit Nazlin Bhimani
who is Research Support & Special Collections Librarian at the IOE. The role involves providing research support to the students and staff in the Doctoral School and to researchers at the Institute for example on compulsory modules, workshops, 121 support, enquiries and lunchtime talks for staff. The Doctoral School Information and Literature Searching compulsory modules are currently face to face but will be moving online from October 2014.


At City University London Library, we use LibGuides for our subject guides, for example our Researcher guide and Social media guide.

Some of the IOE Researcher Library guides include: Researching and the Digital Researcher
An example of a digital literacy project is Digital Literacies as a Postgraduate Attribute project There has been a conference held at the IOE called Beyond the REF.

I found that the IOE Library looked physically very similar to when I worked there with the addition of some new IT/ group study rooms but what had changed the most was some of the job roles for example in the area of researcher support. I have found it very useful to visit and speak to colleagues in other Universities and share experiences with them.

Visit to Warwick University Library

I recently visited University of Warwick Library to look at their researcher support. It’s great to go out and meet other colleagues and see what they are doing.

Like many other Universities, Warwick University Library was restructured into 3 divisions (Client Services, Academic Services and Digital Services) in 2009. Client Services supports general enquiries, roaming and customer service; Academic Services supports teaching & learning, learning spaces, subjects and research and Digital includes Archives, e-access and cataloguing and the Institutional repository (WRAP). WRAP is 5 years old, large and has 53,000 items, 8,200 of which are full text. The entries in WRAP are quality control checked by Library staff to make them as accurate as possible.

The Library webpages have recently been redesigned

The Library research staff pages cover 3 main areas: Disseminate (open access), Collaborate (Research Exchange, Research Match etc) , Consult (getting published)

Warwick has learning spaces called grids eg the Teaching grid which is a collaborative space for academics and researchers who teach and Learning Grids which are flexible group study spaces on different sites with advisers. The Library manages these spaces and Library staff sometimes work in them.

The Research Exchange is a research community and network for Postgraduate and Early Career Researchers.
The Postgraduate Hub is a new work and study facility for all postgraduate taught and research students. is a new work and study facility for all postgraduate taught and research students.

Research Match (Currently being relaunched) enables researchers to find University of Warwick researchers with similar research interests, and start new interdisciplinary collaborations.

These booths are apparently the students’ favourite furniture.


Library Researcher Development takes place within the context of the wider University and the Library is willing to collaborate with other departments such as Careers & Skills and the Graduate School to have a presence in their skills programmes. I believe that Warwick’s variety of physical and online learning spaces and branding makes it successful.