We have noticed that people are often confused about which version of their article they should put in Cronfa. This isn’t surprising as articles have a lifecycle of their own. Typically you will have:
First draft / preprint – this may well not have page numbers and won’t have any of the journal formatting. This will be sent off to the journal and sent out to peer reviewers.
Author accepted manuscript or postprint – this is the version which has been passed by peer reviewers and may have had some changes due to their comments. It is this version which you need to deposit in RIS / Cronfa to be eligible for the REF. It will still typically be in Word format and won’t have had journal formatting such as Journal title, page numbers etc. added yet. This is not the same as “In press” or “online first” versions which have publisher formatting and shouldn’t be used without publisher permission.
Documents will be eligible for the REF if they contain things like track changes and corrections. However, this will be available to the wider world so make it look as professional as you have time for.
Published version or Version of Record – this will contain all the publisher’s formatting and is in appears as it will in the journal. In some cases you can deposit the published version – this will be where your article is “gold” open access. Usually you will have paid an article processing charge for this to apply.
You can find information on inputting versions to RIS in a previous post.
Which do you need to deposit to be eligible for the REF?
You will usually need to deposit at least the author accepted manuscript / postprint. The REF will require a version which is post peer-review. You may need an embargo period to satisfy your publisher – check Sherpa Romeo or contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
We hope this makes things clearer. However, there are journals which use different procedures and where formatting is applied earlier in the process so please do contact us if you are still unsure what to deposit.
Don’t forget that you need to start doing this by 1 April 2016 at the latest!