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University Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Copyright Guide for Undergraduate Journals: SPARC Author Addenda

Learn the basics of copyright law, author's rights, the UIUC Undergraduate Journal Copyright Policy, and how to legally utilize other's work in your student article


"An author addendum is a proposed modification to a publisher's standard copyright transfer agreement. If accepted, it would allow the author to retain key rights, especially the right to authorize OA. Because an addendum is merely a proposed contract modification, a publisher may accept or reject it."[1]

Sample Addenda & Suggested Ammendments

Understanding Author Addenda

Founding Authors Alliance member Michael Carroll, from American University’s Washington College of Law, explains how addenda can help modify publishing contracts to help authors keep the rights necessary to make their work available.

What if the Publisher Rejects the Author Addendum?

  • Explain to the publisher why it is important for you to retain these rights in your own work.
  • Ask the publisher to articulate why the license rights provided under the Author Addendum are insufficient to allow publication.
  • Evaluate the adequacy of the publisher’s response in light of the reasonable and growing need for authors to retain certain key rights to their works.
  • Consider publishing with an organization that will facilitate the widest dissemination of their authors’ works, to help them fulfill their personal and professional goals as scholars.[2]

Attribution & Disclaimer

This LibGuide was borrowed with permission from Stephanie Brenenson, Graduate Studies / Scholarly Communication Librarian, at Florida International University. Content was adapted from Author's Rights and Copyrights: A Briefing Paper at 

Please note that this guide is not meant to be a substitute for legal advice.