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Showing posts from June, 2020

Building community networks and developing open educational resources to integrate bioinformatics into life science education - Elizabeth F. Ryder, et al; IUBMB

To address this challenge with respect to bioinformatics, the Network for the Integration of Bioinformatics into Life Science Education (NIBLSE), in partnership with Quantitative Undergraduate Biology Education and Synthesis (QUBES), developed incubators, a novel collaborative process for the development of open educational resources (OER).
https://iubmb.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/bmb.21387

Open textbook adoption and use: Implications for teachers and learners - Lisa Petrides, et al; Open Learning: The Journal of Open, Distance and e-Learning,

This article presents the findings of a research study conducted by the Institute for the Study of Knowledge Management of Education (ISKME) on CCOTP. The study examined the adoption and use patterns of teachers and learners as end users of open textbooks, finding that important initial drivers of use included reduced cost, dependable quality and ease of use, and that teachers and learners use open textbooks in ways that reflect their existing teaching and learning practices.
https://www.oerknowledgecloud.org/record19

Students save almost $500,000 through Pacific’s Open Educational Resources program - University of the Pacific

Pacific’s Open Educational Resources (OER) program continues to save students money on the cost of textbooks. The total savings for the previous three academic years (2017-2020) is $442,000. In the pilot year, OER saved Pacific students $110,000. By the second year, the total amount had more than doubled to $265,000. The total number of students benefiting from the OER program so far is 2,510, each saving an average of $176 in textbook costs.
https://www.pacific.edu/about-pacific/newsroom/2020/june-2020/oer-program.html

'Better Every Semester': How Faculty Use Open Educational Resources to Improve Courses - Rebecca Koenig, EdSurge

Much of the attention that open educational resources have earned focuses on their low cost. After all, a free or inexpensive alternative to a pricey commercial textbook can make a big difference for students at institutions like Salt Lake Community College, who are “mostly not affluent,” Hardy says. But OER advocates think open access course materials hold another kind of promise for students, too. Designed to be flexible and alterable, educators and students can continually test how well they work and improve them as necessary, “ensuring the course materials are better every semester than they were the semester before,” says David Wiley, chief academic officer of Lumen Learning, a company that sells low-cost open textbooks and courseware.
https://www.edsurge.com/news/2020-06-18-better-every-semester-how-faculty-use-open-educational-resources-to-improve-courses

OER Guide for Students in Post-Secondary and Higher Education - Commonwealth of Learning

This guide provides an introduction to Open Educational Resources (OER) for students in post-secondary and higher education. It is aimed at helping you, as students, to explore the value of good quality OER, and provides an introduction on how to find and use OER.
https://www.col.org/resources/oer-guide-students-post-secondary-and-higher-education

40 Iowa colleges, universities enter joint membership with Open Textbook Network - Business Record

Forty Iowa colleges and universities have combined for a joint membership with the Open Textbook Network, a consortium of colleges and universities working to advance open textbook initiatives, the Iowa Board of Regents announced. OTN, which has 120 members encompassing more than 1,100 campuses, provides institutions access to a repository of training materials and national experts to assist in identifying high-quality, free alternatives to traditional textbooks. The partnership will also provide access to future training and faculty development opportunities to expand the use of open education resources in Iowa.
https://businessrecord.com/Content/Default/All-Latest-News/Article/40-Iowa-colleges-universities-enter-joint-membership-with-Open-Textbook-Network-/-3/248/90388

Shasta College Professor Collaborates on World History Project

Shasta College is about to make history. Literally. Professor Jesse Lynch, a history instructor at Shasta College, is collaborating with the Open Educational Resource (OER) Project on their latest effort, the World History Project (https://whp.oerproject.com), to develop, evaluate, and apply a set of curriculum for his World Civilization classes. What makes this collaboration historic is that Professor Lynch’s work will eventually be made available to community colleges across the state and nation for free.
https://anewscafe.com/2020/06/11/redding/shasta-college-professor-collaborates-on-world-history-project/

Using Open Educational Resources (OER) for Teaching Writing - Keene University

Many of us are conscious about the rising costs of textbooks, and have worked hard to find economically sound, high quality course materials for our students. Now, with our teaching moving into more digital spaces, Open Educational Resources (OER) have more benefits than ever for instructors and students.
https://www.keene.edu/news/events/detail/12951/

Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) – Open Educational Resources for Business Programs

Business programs and faculty across B.C. and the Yukon are involved in creating, adapting, and adopting open educational resources (OER) for their courses. Building on this work, BCcampus will support institutions, stakeholders, and faculty to identify, develop and implement entire suites of freely available resources—including textbooks, test banks, business cases, instructor resources and other learning resources —to replace costly commercial products in Business Education.
https://bccampus.ca/projects/open-education/zed-cred-z-degrees/ztc-business-programs/

GNTC Removes Enrollment Obstacles For The Fall Semester - Chattanoogan

Georgia Northwestern Technical College is removing potential enrollment obstacles for the upcoming fall semester by offering a Free Application Week, offering Open Educational Resources for core classes and waiving the entrance exam.
https://www.chattanoogan.com/2020/6/9/410262/GNTC-Removes-Enrollment-Obstacles-For.aspx

THE COLLEGE COURSE MATERIALS MARKET IS BROKEN - U.S. PIRG

A new study from the U.S. Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) Education Fund, titled Fixing the Broken Textbook Market: 2nd Edition, is based on a survey conducted across 83 college campuses. It shows that despite the supposedly lower cost of digital access codes versus hard-copy textbooks, staggering numbers of students still struggle to afford basic class materials. If the coronavirus (COVID-19) forces colleges to conduct the fall semester remotely, and access codes become even more common, the financial burden will worsen.
https://uspirg.org/news/usp/college-course-materials-market-broken

Op-Ed | The pandemic presents an opportunity to rethink educational resources to better serve students - Rene Sing, AMNY

The current moment calls for a deep exploration of what educational resources should look like and do in the digital age, and open educational resources are one viable path forward worth exploring. The tall order of the day is to take advantage of this time of massive change to address the longstanding inequities of higher education. It is critical that we do so with students as speaking part actors. It is learning resilience through resilient learning.
https://www.amny.com/opinion/op-ed-the-pandemic-presents-an-opportunity-to-rethink-educational-resources-to-better-serve-students/

Northland’s Liberal Arts program recognized for educational excellence, affordability and career earning potential for grads - Crookston Times

Northland Community and Technical College has once again earned national praise for its combination of affordability and educational excellence. The college is also launching a new cost-saving initiative this fall to further its mission of reducing financial barriers that may prevent would-be students from achieving their academic goals. Called the Z-Degree, the program utilizes freely available open educational resources (OER) to eliminate textbook costs, saving students upwards of $2,000 over the course of their time at Northland.
https://www.crookstontimes.com/news/20200608/northland-community-and-technical-college-earns-top-25-national-rank

Leveraging OER for COVID-19 Response Efforts and International Partnerships-Jennryn Wetzler, Creative Commons

Currently, we face both a swell of support for open educational resources (OER) and devastating upheaval of our traditional education systems. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, over 1.5 billion youth are out of school, countless teachers and parents are pivoting to online teaching and education systems face immense financial strain. While OER is not a magic cure for the current education crisis, there are opportunities to work with open education efforts to build greater resiliency within our learning ecosystems and also support cross-national partnerships.
https://creativecommons.org/2020/06/01/leveraging-oer-for-covid-19-response-efforts-and-long-term-international-partnerships/

Baltimore City Community College providing free textbooks for all students enrolled in summer 2020 classes - WMAR

Baltimore City Community College (BCCC) announced Friday, free textbooks for all students enrolled for summer 2020 classes. Since March, BCCC moved all classes online to ensure uninterrupted instruction for students and looks to the free textbook initiative as another way to offer students greater access to college completion.
https://www.wmar2news.com/news/local-news/baltimore-city-community-college-providing-free-textbooks-for-all-students-enrolled-in-summer-2020-classes

CAFS switches to zero cost course materials for students - Gabriela Reyes, the Runner

The department of Child, Adolescent, and Family Studies (CAFS) at CSU Bakersfield is opting for an affordable learning solution, switching all CAFS courses to Open Educational Resources and Zero Cost Course Materials.  https://therunneronline.com/27123/news/cafs-switches-to-zero-cost-course-materials-for-students/

Grants Fund 6 OER Projects at U Wyoming - Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

The University of Wyoming Libraries recently funded six faculty proposals to develop alternatives to traditional textbooks. Most of the projects receiving an Alt-Textbook grant will result in open educational resources (OER) that mix text with other kinds of content. All will be ready in time for fall classes.
https://campustechnology.com/Articles/2020/05/28/Grants-Fund-6-OER-Projects-at-U-Wyoming.aspx

Turning Challenges into Opportunities with Open Educational Resources - JEANETTE WESTFALL, Tech Edvocate

Now, amid the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re finding that our students using OER are better equipped to learn from home, and many are continuing to succeed despite the difficult circumstances. As other districts adopt remote learning strategies during the pandemic and plan for the future of education in their area, they too can benefit from OER and the model we’re implementing to support personalized learning.
https://www.thetechedvocate.org/turning-challenges-into-opportunities-with-open-educational-resources/

What Exactly Is a ‘Free’ Textbook, and Other Questions About Open Resources - Beth McMurtrie, Teaching

A few months ago, we asked you to tell us about some of the teaching experiments taking place on your campuses, so that we could share the lessons you’ve learned. One popular project, we found, is to switch from traditional textbooks to open educational resources, or OER.
https://www.chronicle.com/article/What-Exactly-Is-a-Free-/247447

Sharman Publishes Open Textbook with Libraries, Global Campus Funding - University of Arkansas

Russell L. Sharman, assistant professor of practice for the J. William Fulbright College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Communication, was selected for Open Educational Course Materials Conversion Program funding in Spring 2019, a collaborative project between the Global Campus and University Libraries. He has now published an open textbook for COMM 1033: Basic Course In Arts: Film Lecture. Moving Pictures replaces a previously assigned textbook that retails for $106 for over 200 students who enroll in Sharman's sections of the course.  https://news.uark.edu/articles/53041/sharman-publishes-open-textbook-with-libraries-global-campus-funding

Diwa offers teachers free access to online resources - Manila Standard Lifestyle

Print and digital educational materials publisher Diwa Learning Systems, Inc. is giving educators free access to its online resources to aid in their creation of learning plans for students.
Diwa offers teachers free access to online resources Diwa Learning Town is a digital resource portal for educators.Previously exclusive to partner schools, Diwa Learning Town (DLT) is a digital resource portal for educators.
https://manilastandard.net/mobile/article/325004

panOpen and A Sociology Experiment Partner to Deliver Affordable, Open, and Interactive Courseware

panOpen, a courseware platform that provides the technology and support for educational institutions to adopt Open Educational Resources at scale, and A Sociology Experiment (ASE), a provider of high quality and low-cost sociology content, announced today a partnership that aims to improve sociology instruction in higher education by combining introductory works by outstanding sociology educators and the digital tools that faculty and students require for today’s blended and online classrooms. The works will be available in panOpen, under a Creative Commons CC-BY-NC License.
https://www.prweb.com/releases/panopen_and_a_sociology_experiment_partner_to_deliver_affordable_open_and_interactive_courseware/prweb17146057.htm

WMU Libraries' grants save students $184K in the spring semester - Western Michigan University

Six Open Textbook grant recipients successfully adopted and used an open textbook in their spring courses, saving 798 Western Michigan University students over $184,000 in textbooks costs. The grants, awarded in December 2019 by the University Libraries, provide support and incentive to instructors interested in adopting open textbooks—low or no-cost alternatives to traditional textbooks.https://wmich.edu/news/2020/05/59394

How to find thousands of free e-books aside from the library - KOMANDO.COM

If you’ve run out of things to watch and are tired of scrolling through social media, how about reading a book? Sure, you can buy actual paper books online and have them shipped, but how do you borrow them when most libraries are closed due to the pandemic? How about an e-book? You can easily purchase those online as well, or you can borrow a digital version of a book just like you would at a real brick-and-mortar library. Keep reading and we’ll tell you how to get e-books from your local public library and other ways get them for free.
https://www.komando.com/downloads/download-thousands-of-free-e-books/2166/

UW Libraries Names Alternative Textbook Grant Recipients - University of Wyoming

University of Wyoming Libraries recently awarded alternative textbook grants to six faculty members to implement open educational resources (OER) in their classes this fall. The alternative textbooks resulting from the grants are projected to save UW students more than $24,200 each semester.
http://www.uwyo.edu/uw/news/2020/05/uw-libraries-names-alternative-textbook-grant-recipients.html

Increasing Engagement of Online Students - Three Tips for Professors - University of Southern Indiana

Teaching online and looking for tips to increase student engagement?
1.) Consider offering multiple channels of communication to your online students.
2.) Leverage the instructional design services
3.) Take your online course to the next level with relevant and engaging content.
https://www.usi.edu/online-learning/news-media/increasing-engagement-of-online-students-three-tips-for-professors/

OER mainstreaming in Tonga - Commonwealth of Learning

COL, in collaboration with Tonga’s Ministry of Education and Training is mainstreaming OER at the Tonga Institute of Education (TIOE) and Tonga Institute of Higher Education (TIHE). The first phase of the mainstreaming process commenced in June 2017 with 34 teachers, including senior management of TIOE and TIHE, being trained in the use of OER in course development and instructional video production. https://www.col.org/programmes/oer-skills-development/oer-mainstreaming-tonga

Open Educational Resources Grant Program - Univerisity of Houston

An opportunity is available for University of Houston faculty to apply for a grant for the creation and implementation of open educational resources (OER). OER are teaching, learning, or research resources that are in the public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that permits the free use, adaptation, and redistribution of the resource by any person.
https://libraries.uh.edu/about/news/open-educational-resources-grant-program/

Boosting OER Discoverability: The UCT Open Content Finder - University of Cape Town

The newly launched University of Cape Town (UCT) Open Content Finder aims to assist lecturers and students in finding affordable, appropriate teaching and learning resources that can be used during remote teaching. Curated by the DOT4D project in the Centre of the Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT) in collaboration with UCT Libraries and the Department of Health Sciences Education, the directory aims to become a community-developed list of textbooks and other forms of open educational resources (OER) which may be of interest or are currently in use at UCT.
http://www.dot4d.uct.ac.za/news/launch-uct-open-content-finder

OER for Workforce Development - Meg Lloyd, Campus Technology

SkillsCommons provides a massive but navigable repository for the workforce development pipeline — supporting programs with affordable, openly licensed training and education materials. SkillsCommons is an enormous repository of free and open source workforce development training and education materials. By storing quality, vetted materials, it allows those working in workforce development programs to identify and use relevant open education resources (OER) — everything from individual assignments to entire learning programs — through open licensing agreements.
https://campustechnology.com/articles/2020/05/19/oer-for-workforce-development.aspx