How can I publish a research paper in the journal for free?

There’s an opportunity to submit your article to a free-to-publish journal where authors are not charged for paper submission and processing. Find out how to make your article visible for thousand of readers free of charge in our article.

Many free-to-publish and open-access journals and subscription journals from major publishers are “Free to author” by default. Some journals require an article processing charge (APC) but also have a policy allowing them to waive fees on request at the discretion of the editor. The Directory of Open Access Journals currently indexes 11,841 journals that don’t charge APCs to the authors (out of 16,138).

The best scientific journals without APC comprise EAI EUDL open access initiative, EAI Endorsed Transactions, Elsevier journals, IEEE journals, Wiley, Taylor&Francis Online, and Sage Publishing.

To be published in a free-to-publish journal will need your work to be worthy and respectable, meaning a lot of high-quality research work as well as patience to get accepted. It is highly advisable to check the journal’s credentials before opting to publish in it.

Publishers not taking a publication charge can make access to the published works limited. Others, in that case, can access only your abstract, having to pay for the full article access (the journal subscribers will get it for free). Those journals providing full access to the articles to all usually ask for the processing fee. 

NB: Reputed publishers always go for a peer-review process and only accept relevant quality that is level with their standards. The closer to the standard, the more likely the paper gets to not having to pay (or to pay less). 

Minimize the risk of rejection

After making a list of reputed peer-reviewed journals you could publish in, you will need to choose one and write/edit your paper according to its guidelines and author instructions. Always follow the submission guidelines properly and pimp your paper up at least up to the minimum standard expected – but more is more in this case.

Your contributions should be unique and valuable to the journal and its editors, so try to bear that in mind while writing or editing. A lack of unique points of view could end up in rejection, making you miss the opportunity to be published at no cost. The usual time to wait to get published might range between 3-12 months – it all depends on the journal. In the meantime, wait for the feedback. 

Tip: Don’t take the feedback too harshly, if not the best. Learn from what you could have done better. Also remember – once you submit your paper to one journal, you can not submit the same to any other journal. After being rejected, you can improve your work and submit to a different journal an even better paper this time. 

Another way to be published could be co-authoring with more experienced researchers. It may help you become a better researcher as well as a better writer. 

If your or your co-author’s work is presented at a conference, those usually don’t charge the authors for the publication (but at least one of the authors has to be presenting at the conference, usually meaning a charge for the conference registration).