Saturday, April 30, 2022

Owens professor receives national award - SARA ARTHURS, the Courier

Jen Hazel, professor of English at Owens Community College, was recently selected for the 2022 Dale P. Parnell Faculty Distinction Recognition by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC). Awarded to select individuals who make a difference in community college classrooms across the United States. "Speaking on behalf of the entire Owens community, I am thrilled for Jen and applaud the award committee’s recognition of what she has achieved,” said Owens President Dione D. Somerville. “Her passion is evident from her many committee activities, her efforts to increase student access to Open Education Resources (OER) and her commitment to providing rich and relevant learning experiences for all. Jen consistently goes above and beyond to find ways that each student can learn, and we are so fortunate to have her on our team.”

Friday, April 29, 2022

Lumen Learning Awarded Prestigious Grant to Improve Educational Outcomes for Underserved Students

Lumen Learning, a leading provider of teaching and learning materials, today announced it has been awarded a significant grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to further its work in creating and implementing equitable courseware. Today's announced grant will support Lumen Learning to create new courseware for Introduction to Statistics that can serve as an exemplar of courseware centered in equity that makes a meaningful difference in student success. To achieve this, Lumen has established partnerships with Minority Serving Institutions across the United States, allowing Lumen to work directly with their target student demographic in co-creating relevant courseware materials through student-led user testing centers.

Thursday, April 28, 2022

The Pathways Project presents at 2022 Foreign Language Open Educational Resources Conference - Boise State University

Pathways Project co-directors, Kelly Arispe and Amber Hoye from the Department of World Languages, presented a session titled “The Pathways Project: A Collection of Interpersonal Activities for French, German, Spanish (With More Languages to Come!).” The presentation explored an upcoming collection of interpersonal activities available via Pressbooks this spring. Each language title will contain over 60 interpersonal speaking activities across novice and intermediate proficiency levels for both face-to-face and online instruction. Arispe and Hoye showcased sample activities and provided participants with the information needed to get started using the free publications.

Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Free Resources to Help with Remote Learning in 2022 - Dian Schaffhauser, Campus Technology

(Updated April 6, 2022) As the pandemic continues bringing change to higher education through the academic year, faculty, instructional designers and IT professionals are being more selective about the technology they choose for instructing and engaging students. While hundreds of education companies, nonprofits and other organizations made their software and services free during the immediate switch to remote learning, many have become more thoughtful about how they help educators master online and blended instruction. We've sifted through their offerings to bring you this updated set of free resources to help with online, hybrid and face-to-face learning in 2022. (note: free, but not necessarily OER)

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

Policies and Practice Circle – 2nd round - European Network for Catalysing Open Resources in Education

ENCORE+ is building the European OER Ecosystem through a coordinated European approach which can enact the value of OER as a catalyst and multiplier. The circle events will address the need for a more comprehensive collaboration bringing together particular groups, networks and initiatives in order to move from a series of individual OER initiatives into a European OER Ecosystem. This Circle Event on Policies and Practice seeks to raise critical questions and generate discussion concerning the use and application of OERs in educational and business contexts.

Monday, April 25, 2022

The 101 on OERs: This new report spells out 6 key principles for adoption in higher ed - Chris Burt, University Business

A new report from the Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC) as part of a partnership with the National Consortium for Open Educational Resources (NCOER) offers powerful guidance and six key principles that colleges can use as a basis for how and when OERs should be scaled up to meet demand. They may not have a choice moving forward as half of U.S. states are requiring that institutions show their impacts, and the Department of Education also has put $15 million behind the effort.

Sunday, April 24, 2022

Frameworks Help Evaluate OER as Universities Seek Cost Savings for Students - Midwestern Higher Education Compact

Informed by institutional, state, and national leaders, a report from the Midwestern Higher Education Compact (MHEC) as part of a partnership with National Consortium for Open Educational Resources (NCOER) describes six principles to help define efforts to identify savings and returns from OER investments and offers two frameworks for making those calculations. Throughout the report are examples and artifacts of how others are approaching these determinations.

Saturday, April 23, 2022

Humanities Scholars Can Make Their Papers Open Access Now - Rebecca Lea Morris, Inside Higher Ed

While shifting to open access is harder in the humanities, scholars should seize existing opportunities to archive papers in personal or institutional repositories, Rebecca Lea Morris writes. The vast majority of humanities research papers are locked behind costly paywalls. That’s because most humanities scholars do not make their research papers open access, or freely available to readers. According to a 2020 study, fewer than 25 percent of papers published in the humanities are open access, compared with closer to 70 percent in the physical and mathematical sciences.

Friday, April 22, 2022

Libraries employees pursuing Open Education Network librarianship certificate - Penn State University

Two Penn State University Libraries employees have been accepted into the 2022 cohort of professionals seeking an Open Education Network (OEN) certificate in Open Librarianship. The OEN is a community dedicated to working together to make higher education more affordable, equitable and accessible. Participants admitted to the certificate in Open Librarianship connect and collaborate with librarians from around the country to implement sustainable and effective open education programs for their local context, culture and goals. These objectives fit well with Penn State’s own open initiatives, which aim to enable affordable access to education and reduce barriers to the sharing and use of knowledge and information.

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Creator Fest: OERTX Edition - Student Perspectives on the Potential of OER in the Classroom - Texas

Recording: Too often conversations about what affects students exclude them. OpenStax believes strongly in listening to our users — both educators and learners. That is why we're bringing students from across the country to Creator Fest: OERTX Edition. In this panel discussion, they will share their perspectives on when, why, and how educators and institutions should support the use of OER in the classroom. They will also share how OER has impacted their individual learning experiences and where they would like to see more open education practices across the college experience.

Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Are we there yet? A systematic literature review of Open Educational Resources in Africa: A combined content and bibliometric analysis- Ahmed Tlili, Plos One

Although several studies have been conducted to summarize the progress of open educational resources (OER) in specific regions, only a limited number of studies summarize OER in Africa. Therefore, this paper presents a systematic literature review to explore trends, themes, and patterns in this emerging area of study, using content and bibliometric analysis. Findings indicated three major strands of OER research in Africa.

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Faculty perceptions, awareness and use of open educational resources for teaching and learning in higher education: a cross-comparative analysis -Victoria I. MarĂ­n et al; Research and Practice in Technology Enhanced Learning

This paper explores faculty’s perspectives and use of open educational resources (OER) and their repositories across different countries by conducting a multiple case study to find similarities and differences between academics’ awareness, perceptions and use of OER, as well as examining related aspects of institutional policy and quality that may influence individual views. Data were collected through nine expert reports on each country studied (Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Japan, South Africa, South Korea, Spain and Turkey) and were analyzed through qualitative content analysis using thematic coding.

Monday, April 18, 2022

Open Learning Environments May Help More People Obtain a College Education - Steven Butschi, EdTech

Higher education institutions today must ask themselves a question: Are we digitally ready and flexible enough to support our students no matter what happens in the next five to 15 years? The answer for successful institutions will depend on whether or not they make every effort to create an open learning environment for their students. In 2022, we see three key shifts happening in the higher education space, all supporting open learning environments.

Sunday, April 17, 2022

Delhi University Likely To Set Up Centre To Offer Job-Oriented Courses At Campus Of Open Learning -

The University of Delhi is likely to set up a centre to offer job-oriented courses for students enrolled in its Campus of Open Learning. The discussion on a proposal about establishing the centre will be taken up at the academic council meeting on March 22, a media report said. This centre will house a media centre and will provide online and experiential learning courses to students, news agency PTI reported quoting Payal Mago, director, Campus of Open Learning.

Saturday, April 16, 2022

Veteran and PhD student Andrea Henshall has used MIT Open Learning to soar from the Air Force to multiple aeronautics degrees. - Katherine Ouellette, MIT Open Learning

Currently working on her doctoral degree with an MIT master’s already in her toolkit, she is quick to attribute her academic success to MIT’s open educational resources. “I kept coming back to MIT-produced open source learning,” she says. “MIT dominates in educational philanthropy when it comes to free high-quality learning sources.” To this day, Henshall recommends MIT OpenCourseWare (OCW) and MITx courses to students and her fellow veterans who are transitioning out of the service.

Friday, April 15, 2022

World Campus bachelor's program implements cost-free materials in core courses - Mike Dawson, Penn State University

An online bachelor’s degree program at Penn State has adopted free, open-source materials for its courses to help students save on their college costs. The bachelor of science in agribusiness management is the first degree program offered online at Penn State to exclusively use cost-free open-education resources, or OER, in its core courses, which are abbreviated AGBM in the University’s course scheduling system. The approximately 50 students enrolled in the major will not have to pay for textbooks, course packets, case studies or other course materials for the agribusiness management courses. The students can access the open resources, which the program faculty have selected from high-quality sources, through Canvas, the University’s learning management system.

Thursday, April 14, 2022

Affordable Materials Project -Caitlyn Foley, The Villanovan

Luckily, the AMP group has raised awareness of Open Educational Resources (OER)-textbooks. These textbooks are free for students to use due to Creative Commons licenses-and OER Adoption grants. These grants are given to faculty members who chose to use these openly licensed textbooks.  “The OER textbook is a very good primer for the course subject matter giving clear definitions, and several examples for each item covered, which enhances understanding while also giving practical application/use of the material covered,” an anonymous source said.  The grant helps in the University’s goal of meeting 100% of all demonstrated student financial needs. OER promotes equity in the classroom by giving all students direct access to required course materials.

Wednesday, April 13, 2022

OER Jumpstart Webinar - FREE and OPEN webinar on April 14, 2022 at 2:00 pm Eastern Time - MERLOT-SkillsCommons Team

TOPIC: Western Dakota Technical College has taken OER created by SkillsCommons ( which is focused on preparing industry experts learning to become excellent instructors.  Donna Hanks, the WDTC Instructional Technology and Design Specialist, will explain how and why she revised and remixed the openly licensed “Jumpstart to Successful Instruction” open courseware by adding assessments and learning activities to improve the learning impact. 

WHO SHOULD ATTEND:  Community college faculty and department chairs in career and technical education (CTE) programs, industry trainers and HR professionals,  high school CTE teachers and program directors, workforce development professionals, and faculty development professionals.   

FREE and OPEN webinar on April 14, 2022 at 2:00 pm Eastern Time  - Pre-Register at link below

Tuesday, April 12, 2022

Do textbooks have to be so expensive? - Gwendolyn Frei, Ripon Media

How Ripon College staff is trying to lessen the cost of textbooks for students. Paying for college textbooks is enough to put a dent in most students’ accounts but recently, Karlyn Schumacher, the Access Services Librarian at Ripon College, has been putting a lot of effort into easing the overall costs for students. “Students may be engaged with the material differently. Modifying the material is much different than reading a chapter of a textbook,” Schumacher said. “There’s a potential for some good impacts for students and seeing themselves as creators and scholars and not just consumers of information.”

Monday, April 11, 2022

BCC adds more courses with free/low-cost textbooks - Susan Thacker, Great Bend Tribune

Thanks to the internet, many expensive college textbooks are being replaced by digital materials, some of which are free. Barton Community College is ahead of schedule on its three-year to create courses that use free or low-cost educational materials, according to Lee Miller, Barton's director of Innovation & Compliance. Open Educational Resources, or OERs, are often freely available for teachers and students to use. They can also be shared, reused and adapted. Miller told the BCC Board of Trustees that Barton now offers 66 OER courses, having completed its three-year plan a semester early.

Sunday, April 10, 2022

10 for 10: OpenStax celebrating a decade of free textbooks with new set of titles - Rice University

OpenStax, Rice University’s educational technology initiative, is celebrating 10 years of publishing free, open textbooks by releasing 10 new titles this year. Since publishing its first textbook in 2012, OpenStax has partnered with more than 60 educational technology providers to support educators across disciplines with their teaching needs. Its open educational resources (OER) have saved more than 22 million students an estimated $1.7 billion. OpenStax recently expanded its textbook offerings and has several more books in development. The latest publications are Introduction to Anthropology and the Writing Guide with Handbook for English composition courses – bringing the current total count to 50. Upcoming topics include finance, political science, computer applications, contemporary math and world history.

Saturday, April 9, 2022

UNESCO, CENDLOS organize maiden OER sensitization workshop - Business Ghana

As part of the pre-implementation activities for the project, UNESCO in collaboration with CENDLOS held a two-day orientation workshop on the Open Education Resource (OER) repository platform from 1st March to 2nd March, 2022, at the Aknac hotel, East Legon in the Greater Accra Region. Participants were drawn from selected stakeholder groups including Ghana Institute of Journalism, Accra Technical University, Ghana Education Service, UNESCO, KNUST, UEW as well as the community of retired educationists.  Mr. Adwabour further stated that in order to build capacity for the adoption and mainstreaming of OER in Ghana, teachers will be trained in the usage of the platform in order to empower them to serve as coaches for their students. Contents on the platform will be relevant, of high quality and will be in a language that will be appropriate for all learners and end users.,-CENDLOS-organize-maiden-OER-sensitization-workshop

Friday, April 8, 2022

OpenStax opens applications for 2022-2023 Institutional Partner Program

OpenStax, Rice University’s educational technology initiative, is now accepting applications for colleges and universities to join its Institutional Partner Program for the 2022-2023 academic year. The deadline is May 2.  The OpenStax Institutional Partner Program provides institutions with free coaching and training on using open educational resources (OER). Schools have seen an average 150% increase in the number of students using OER in the first year after they adopt the program, which has saved students a combined $19.6 million and put more flexible course materials in the hands of educators.

Thursday, April 7, 2022

Pacific Expands Push For Open Source Curriculum, Offers Faculty Grants - Mike Francis, Pacific University

Student in classPacific University is putting its shoulder into a longtime effort to make more course material freely available to students. The Open Educational Resources initiative that’s led by the Pacific University Libraries and the College of Arts & Sciences is accepting faculty applications this spring for a round of grants to help fund the conversion of some textbook material into digital coursework that would be free to use, share, copy and repurpose. “I’m really excited by what’s been happening with OER in the last year or so at Pacific,” said Professor Isaac Gilman, dean of University Libraries, who said he’s been encouraging the use of open educational resources for more than a decade. “It’s been really exciting to see more people coming together and having an interest around this.”

Wednesday, April 6, 2022

Early learnings from replacing high-cost textbooks with open-source learning materials in some classrooms -Nick Fouriezos, Daily Yonder

Louisiana wants to have 60% of working age adults earn some type of degree or valuable credential by 2029. Half of adults in the state have only a high school education or less, so there’s a lot of work to do. Since implementing its Master Plan for Education in 2019, it has grown that group with a degree or credential from 44.2% in 2018 to 48.1% in 2021. A key part of its strategy is implementing Open Educational Resources (OER), instructional materials (whether text or media) that are openly licensed and freely accessible for teaching purposes.

Tuesday, April 5, 2022

Pittsfield: BCC professor wins award for bioscience image library - Jeannie Maschino, Berkshire Eagle

Berkshire Community College Professor of Life Sciences Fayette Reynolds has won second place in the Massachusetts Open Educational Resources Advisory Council’s inaugural OER Olympic Awards. Reynolds created BCC's Bioscience Image Library, which offers students and the general public free access to nearly 1,200 microscopic images of plants, animals, bacteria, fungi, and more. The images are particularly useful for students studying biology, botany, zoology, histology, and microbiology.

Monday, April 4, 2022

UNM partnering to improve access for water operators - Isaac Cruz, KRQE

The University of New Mexico is partnering with rural libraries around the country to improve access to training materials for certified water operators. The program will provide free textbooks and other materials water operators need to study for their certification or increase their operator level. These textbooks and study materials can be hard to find in rural communities. Officials say increasing the number of certified water operators will help ensure all communities have access to clean, safe drinking water.

Sunday, April 3, 2022

What They're Saying: Faculty and Students on Open Educational Resources- University of Nebraska Omaha

As UNO continues to find ways to make college more affordable for students, the Open Educational Resources (OER) program, which limits or eliminates the need for UNO students to purchase textbooks and other course materials for their classes, has been slowly gaining steam – and showing impressive results. Implementation of the OER program in UNO has saved students more than $2 million since it began. From the first grant cohort in Spring 2019 to January 2022, there have been 45 grants awarded with 54 faculty involved hailing from all colleges and 21 total departments. The grants awarded have totaled $84,000. There have been 12,705 students affected, saving an estimated $1.14 million

Saturday, April 2, 2022

Red Lake Nation College joins free digital textbook initiative - Bemidji Pioneer

Red Lake Nation College students will have access to free digital textbooks starting with the upcoming fall semester. The college is partnering with CourseBreaks, an initiative that provides textbooks and study aids for over 50 college courses including biology, psychology, business and English composition. By removing the cost of textbooks underwritten by sponsors, RLNC President Dan King hopes the partnership can reduce the financial burden that comes with purchasing textbooks, particularly for first-generation college students.

Friday, April 1, 2022

Texas Learn OER - Digital Higher Education Consortium of Texas

Texas Learn OER is a set of ten openly-licensed, self-paced modules for faculty, staff, and administrators in higher education. The training was developed by Carrie Gits, Head Librarian and Library Services OER Team Leader at Austin Community College, for the Digital Higher Education Consortium of Texas. Anyone can earn a certificate of completion for Texas Learn OER -- for free! Texas Learn OER was been recognized in 2021 with an OE Global Open Education Award for Excellence.