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Animal Cognition
Publishing model:
Open access

Animal Cognition - Animal Cognition is now fully open access!

We are excited to announce that Animal Cognition has now become a fully open access (OA) journal as of January 2024. This means that we will only be publishing articles as Open Access meaning content will be and freely available to readers worldwide, enabling the widest possible dissemination and reuse. 

Springer Nature is committed to ensuring our portfolios serve and meet the evolving needs of the research community and that quality research is read and disseminated as widely as possible. Transforming Animal Cognition to full OA reflects our ongoing commitment to driving the transition to open research, and providing researchers with OA publication venues that can amplify their research and enable compliance with funder and institutional OA requirements, while continuing to deliver a high level of author service. See our FAQs below for further information.

Transition to fully OA FAQ

What licence will OA articles be published under?

Animal Cognition will continue to publish OA articles under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) licence, and authors will retain copyright in their OA articles. CC BY is the most open licence available and considered the industry 'gold standard' for open access; it is also preferred by many funders and in some cases required in order to comply with OA policies. More information about CC licensing is available on our journal OA policies page

What will happen to content already published via the non-OA route?

Where content has already been published via the non-OA route in Animal Cognition prior to the flip to full OA in January 2024, access to these articles will continue to be governed by the same licence terms as at present; articles which were previously published as subscription will continue to be available for those access via institutions or personal subscriptions. If you wish to re-use an article that does not have a CC BY licence, you can make a request via the ‘reprints and permissions’ link on the article page.

What if I don't have OA funding available? Does that mean I can no longer submit to Animal Cognition?

Springer Nature has a number of OA agreements and memberships in place with consortia and institutions around the world. If your article is approved as eligible by your institution then it will be published OA and you will not be invoiced by Springer Nature, since the APC will be centrally invoiced to the OA agreement.

There are also many institutions and research funders that provide APC funding for OA authors. You can find more information on our OA funding support service pages, or contact our support service directly (

Springer Nature recognises that some authors may not have access to OA funds, and so has discount and waiver policies in place to ensure that no author is prevented from publishing in a fully OA journal because they are unable to fund the APC. You can apply for an APC discount or waiver during the Animal Cognition submission process. The APC waivers team will then confirm if you are eligible for a waiver or discount. For more information please see the APC waiver information on our journal OA policies page here

How will this change help authors comply with funder or institutional policies?

As a fully OA journal using a CC BY licence, authors publishing in Animal Cognition will be able to comply with any funder or institutional OA policy worldwide. A number of funders, including those in the cOAlition S group, require their authors to make their articles immediately available under a CC BY licence, and as such Animal Cognition articles will be fully compliant with Plan S principles, and there is no risk that authors might choose a non-compliant non-OA publication route. Equally, if authors are supported by funders or institutions that require them to make a version of their manuscript available in a repository, they will be able to share their openly licensed version of record (VOR) into a repository immediately on publication. 

Who can I contact with further questions?

If you have any questions about this transition our Open Research author support team is ready to assist (