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FAQs for University Press Scholarship Online

Why University Press Scholarship Online?

University Press Scholarship Online (UPSO) is an expansion of Oxford University Press’s highly successful Oxford Scholarship Online (OSO), which launched in 2003. In 2011, Oxford opened this platform to other university presses to offer their authors’ content in an online monograph product optimized for academic use. This high-profile and successful operation has hundreds of institutions purchasing or subscribing all over the world. UPSO operates a mature frontlist publishing platform for monographs online with deep penetration into the academic library market. We believe that joining with Oxford in an UPSO partnership will provide users around the world with access to our authors’ excellent scholarship.

What is the purpose of University Press Scholarship Online (UPSO)?

Oxford University Press’s primary aim in creating UPSO is to increase the dissemination of scholarship from university presses on a global scale.  UPSO represents an attempt by the world’s largest university press to stimulate the migration of important scholarly work in the humanities and social sciences to an online environment.

OUP believes it essential to maintain—and to build—the profile of specialized scholarly works in an online environment.  UPSO books will therefore be searchable online alongside journal articles and other online content and thus will be seamlessly integrated into a global body of academic resources.  Through the UPSO platform, authors and researchers will be able to enjoy the benefits of online functionality and access, while maintaining the key importance of the printed book.

Will print sales of my book be affected?  If so, how?

Research has shown that increasing access to, and the profile of, academic material online can often lead the researcher to the printed book, which is then browsed and often purchased.  Online and print editions at present meet different needs of scholars.

Accordingly, we view UPSO as a form of scholarship complementary to the printed book.  We do not anticipate that online availability will replace the printed book.  However, given the ever-increasing technological sophistication of students and scholars alike, Oxford University Press will be closely monitoring the print performance of books in UPSO. 

How did OUP arrive at the model for UPSO?

Determined to build a product that met the needs of its users, Oxford convened numerous research and focus groups, both in the United States and Europe, asking scholars and librarians what they wanted.  OUP attended major conferences the world over, soliciting similar input.  Drawing on Oxford’s experience of working collaboratively with scholarly societies, the UPSO model emerged from this research and these efforts, in direct response to input from future users.

As OUP develops UPSO in the coming months and years, they will continue to seek appropriate feedback and build this into the model for UPSO, ensuring that it remains agile and responsive to the changing needs and demands of its audience.

Who is the audience for UPSO?

UPSO is purchased exclusively by institutional libraries (not by individuals) but its success hinges on the degree to which it is used by scholars, students and other patrons of the subscribing libraries.  Toward that end, we encourage you to both experiment with UPSO should your institution subscribe to it (and perhaps to advocate to your librarians for a subscription should it not!) and also to spread the word to your colleagues and students about this service, should you find that it lives up to its promise.

Why do I need to create keywords and abstracts?

Abstracts and keywords are two of the defining features that make UPSO unique among online publishing ventures.  They enhance the way in which researchers can locate and browse materials, enabling users to search for information with much greater precision thereby increasing both the relevance and recall of search results.  While we fully realize that their generation can be time-consuming, we strongly believe that no one is better situated to create the most accurate and useful keywords and abstracts than the author.

How secure is content on UPSO?

UPSO uses well-defined access control for the main subscription site, with tools in place to track systematic abuse.

The books are only supplied chapter by chapter rather than as a whole, and the PDFs used for printing will be 128-bit encrypted and watermarked as having been printed from UPSO with permission.