Sunday, May 31, 2020

Open Educational Resources: the University of Edinburgh

The OER Service runs a wide range of workshops and events as part of the University's Digital Skills programme. Our up and coming events are listed below, and you can find a full list of workshops we offer here:  OER Service Digital Skills. If you would like us to come to your school or college to run a session tailored to your requirements, please contact us at

Saturday, May 30, 2020

VIVA Open: An OER Commons hosted website

VIVA Open is an OER Commons hosted website that serves as a repository for open educational resources (OER) adopted, adapted, and/or created by faculty and higher education professionals at Virginia institutions, most notably through VIVA's Course Redesign Grants. To support faculty in the development of OER, the site also contains the VIVA Open Collaborations Hub.

Friday, May 29, 2020

UBC OER Match Funding Available for UBCV Faculty Members - Will Engle, UBC

BC campus recently announced the first of two calls for proposals targeting the development of formative activities for open homework systems. The intent of these grants is to develop activities in which students can practice applying new concepts and skills that align with content within the selected open textbook. Successful proposals from faculty members at UBC Vancouver are eligible for match funding from the UBC OER Fund. The current BCcampus call is for post-secondary instructors and faculty in British Columbia to develop sets of content types in H5P that support open textbooks in the B.C. Open Textbook Collection.

Thursday, May 28, 2020

Opinion: Texas should seize this chance to reinvent its schools - David DeMatthews and Alan Shoho, Statesman News

To save money, policymakers and district administrators should rethink their purchasing of textbooks and single-use materials. Repeatedly purchasing costly textbooks and workbooks that become quickly outdated and are not translated into multiple languages should be reconsidered as a standard practice. The state can invest in purchasing all students a device and online learning materials that can be curated by educators or e-books and materials developed by textbook companies that come in multiple languages.

Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Updated: Free Math Resources for Schools During the COVID-19 Outbreak - Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

Education technology companies and organizations have stepped forward to help educators bring STEM and STEAM experiences to students in virtual ways during the COVID-19 closures. The following is a list of free resources in mathematics for PreK–12. This will be updated regularly as announcements are made. [some are relevant to lower division higher ed -ray]

Tuesday, May 26, 2020

Here is the next wave of online learning for higher education - Lark Park, CalMatters

A new frontier of online learning means redoubling efforts to address inequities. It means addressing the challenges not only posed by traditional classes, but by hands-on components like labs or education paths such as nursing or career tech. And it means finding ways for faculty to meaningfully connect online with students and each other in these difficult, isolating times.

Monday, May 25, 2020

Brittan Wilson Talks How OER Changes Practice - New America Podcast

Kristina's main takeaway from this conversation is the ways in which OER has changed Brittan as a practitioner and where she sees her role as a facilitator of learning and now gets to share and pay it forward to her own students, and other educators everywhere.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

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

Saturday, May 23, 2020

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.

Friday, May 22, 2020

BibliU Raises $10 Million to Scale Online Textbooks - Wade Tyler Millward, EdSurge

As colleges seek to provide alternatives to print textbooks, one digital book provider, BibliU, has launched about 100 pilots globally since the pandemic started, says CEO David Sherwood. “Academic libraries have huge physical collections,” says Sherwood, 28. “The crisis has really brought to the forefront the issue with that approach and how remote learners and distance learners have been missing out on those resources.”

Thursday, May 21, 2020

B&W survey shows 7 in 10 Lehigh students did not acquire required books due to cost in past year - JORDAN WOLMAN, Brown and White

The cost of college has skyrocketed over the past four decades, and only continues to climb higher. Meanwhile, the cost of textbooks lies beneath the radar, crammed inside the broader issue of college affordability. A July 2018 survey conducted by Morning Consult on behalf of Cengage, a digital education company, found that 85 percent of current and former students believed “textbook and course material expenses” were financially stressful, more so than other categories like food, housing, and health care, and second only to tuition costs.

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

UPIKE to implement new learning schedule, offer free textbooks to help students thrive - Lane Report

With the uncertainty of COVID-19 and its impact on higher education, the University of Pikeville announced bold measures to meet student needs this fall, including an eight-week block schedule and textbooks at no cost for undergraduate students.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020

Library resources shift amid COVID-19 - Julia Rudy, Coast Report Online

Many students rely on the library to have access to required textbooks for their classes and when the library closed students were unable to get access to the physical textbooks for the first time. While online textbooks have been made available for free from websites like RedShelf and VitalSource, OCC librarian Lori Cassidy said this service wouldn’t last forever.

Monday, May 18, 2020

CCCS Revolutionizing College Textbooks & Tackling Costs - Daily Sentinal

In 2011, CCCS pioneered the development and use of online course materials, referred to as Open Education Resources (OER), which has allowed their institutions to offer students free virtual textbooks for thousands of courses, referred to as zero textbook cost (ZTC) courses. The results of this groundbreaking work have been tremendous to students and to higher education providers across the nation.

Sunday, May 17, 2020

OER Adoption Grant - Villanova University

Purpose: The Open Educational Resources (OER) Faculty Adoption Grant is designed to encourage faculty to select free, openly licensed textbooks as primary course materials. The rising cost of commercial textbooks negatively impacts student success as some delay or forego purchasing or renting course materials. The adoption of OER is a strategy for lowering the overall cost of course materials, and ensures continuous student access to the required textbook from day one of the course.

Saturday, May 16, 2020

14 projects picked for Open Education Resources grants - Utimes Pitt

The Office of the Provost recently announced the third round of funding for Open Education Resources projects — one of Provost Ann Cudd’s priority initiatives. Fourteen projects were selected in spring 2020.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Pivoting to open education resources - Laura Czerniewicz, Michelle Willmers and Cheryl Hodgkinson-Williams, University World News

Open education resources, or OER, are part of a raft of solutions and practices encompassed within the concept of open education. These teaching and learning materials, which are openly shared on websites and repositories under Creative Commons licences, enable educators and students around the world (as well as anyone else who is interested) to legally reuse or adapt that content, provided that licensing conditions are adhered to.

Thursday, May 14, 2020

UNESCO Call to Support Learning and Knowledge Sharing through Open Educational Resources - India Education Diary Bureau Admin

 In response to the massive disruption of education due to the Covid-19 pandemic affecting 1.57 billion learners in 191 countries, UNESCO has issued a Call to support learning and knowledge sharing through Open Educational Resources (OER) worldwide.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Open Educational Resources (OER) Services - Brock University Library

Brock University Library can support faculty and instructors interested in using, adapting, or creating OERs in their courses or programs. Support for OER use is part of our broader commitment to helping faculty make course materials more affordable for students, which we also do through the course reserves service.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

Library of Congress Releases App with Mobile Access to Digital Collection - Dian Schaffhauser, THE Journal

"The Library of Congress collection can now fit in your pocket," said Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden, in a statement. "The Library started 220 years ago with 740 books and three maps. Today, that collection has grown to make us the largest library in the world and a storehouse of our national history. The LOC Collections app is a uniquely personal, easy new way to explore the nation's library."Users can currently find LOC Collections for iPhone and iPad at the Library's website or the iTunes store. An Android version of the app is planned for release later this year.

Monday, May 11, 2020

Shouldering the heavy burden of textbooks - Jordan Williams & Asia Randolph, W&M Libraries

William & Mary Libraries has launched a Textbook Affordability Initiative on campus to address the rising costs of textbooks.  “The cost of textbooks has increased more than 400 percent in the last 20 years,” said Asia Randolph, W&M Libraries graduate assistant.  “It’s rising at a much faster rate than inflation. For students who have to buy 4, 5 or 6 textbooks each semester – sometimes more – it becomes too much for their budgets to handle.”

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Globe offers free data for access to Phillipine Department of Education's online learning platform - Telecom Paper

Philippines operator Globe Telecom has announced it will offer free access to the Department of Education’s (DepEd) new online learning platform called ‘DepEd Commons’. Teachers and students under community quarantine can now visit the DepEd Commons platform without incurring data charges on their Globe or TM-powered smartphones.

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Chitral varsity’s website to facilitate students in online education - Dawn

Pakistan’s first ever open educational resources (OER) website to facilitate its students as well as people with learning disposition all over the globe during closure the educational institutions in the wake of coronavirus threat.

Friday, May 8, 2020

In the COVID-19 world, open source textbooks are the way of the future - Kylie Hiebert, National Post

For post-secondary schools, the coronavirus pandemic has spurred a paradigm shift in teaching and learning, as courses have migrated online. Because of this, universities now have the chance to save students huge sums of money by ramping up the creation and use of open educational resources (OER), particularly open textbooks.

Thursday, May 7, 2020


Carrie Diaz Eaton has devoted her teaching and research to breaking down barriers to education, particularly in math, science, and technology. A computational and mathematical biologist by discipline, the Bates associate professor of digital and computational studies works with colleagues worldwide to create and share open educational resources, or OER:— free, licensed materials that anyone can access, customize, or share. Diaz Eaton recently received a one-year, $380,213 grant from the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation to support those efforts.

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Cambridge University Press partners with Perlego on online textbooks - Ruth Comerford, the Bookseller

Perlego will host a range of content from the publisher on its platform, which also includes titles from Pearson, Wiley and Cengage. Giana Elyea, sales director for Trade and Higher Education at CUP, said: “We have been working hard to give students and lecturers access to the textbooks they need during the current crisis, both through our own website and by partnering with others. "It’s great to add Perlego to that list of partners and I’m delighted that they are able to make a selection of our textbooks freely available on their platform.”

Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Library resources shift amid COVID-19 - Julia Rudy, Coast Report Online

“Because of the coronavirus, many publishers and online textbook rental companies have made the online textbooks freely available for the semester,” Gratz said. Many students rely on the library to have access to required textbooks for their classes and when the library closed students were unable to get access to the physical textbooks for the first time. While online textbooks have been made available for free from websites like RedShelf and VitalSource, OCC librarian Lori Cassidy said this service wouldn’t last forever.

Monday, May 4, 2020

In a Time of Crisis, Students Need Open Educational Resources More Than Ever- Michelson, 2020 MM

The education sector has transformed dramatically over the last month as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. UNESCO estimates that over half of the world’s students are no longer attending in-person schooling due to social distancing guidelines. Here in the Golden State, the entire California Community College system has shifted to online instruction. Not only are students dealing with this abrupt pedagogical change, they are also facing real financial distress from lost wages, unemployment, and a looming pandemic triggered recession. Now more than ever, the educational space needs to step up their support for students and faculty.

Sunday, May 3, 2020

UPEI pilots a new open textbooks project - SPARROW MCGOWAN, University Affairs

The University of Prince Edward Island recently received provincial funding to pilot a new open education resources program. UPEI’s Robertson Library, in collaboration with the UPEI Student Union (UPEISU), received $25,000 in funding from the provincial government to pilot its OER development program through 2020. The program offers grants for the development of new open textbooks, adaption of existing open textbooks and creation of ancillary materials. It also includes a small honorarium for formal peer reviews.

Saturday, May 2, 2020

How to Get Free (or Cheap) New Ebooks - Eric Griffith, PC Magazine

However, we do want readers to read, even the latest releases from the big-name publishing houses. There are plenty of new, modern ebooks out there available for free or close. If you're willing to spend a nominal fee every month, there are plenty of ways to get an almost unlimited amount of text for reading, and a few are free.

Friday, May 1, 2020

A look at ‘Zero-Textbook-Cost’ alternatives for community colleges - Lazaro Carranza and Alyssa Douglas, Elk Grove Citizen

Several Cosumnes River College professors expressed interest in expanding the college’s zero-textbook-cost offerings.  “Whatever we can do to make school more affordable, do it” said Lesley Gale, an English professor at Cosumnes River College. Her director reached out to her department to see if any professors were interested in teaching their courses without the need of books. Gale agreed to be a participant by using open education resources.