Thursday, November 30, 2023

Open Books, Open Minds - AAC&U

Open educational resources (OER)—freely licensed, remixable learning materials, from single lessons to full textbooks—lower the overall cost of attending college, improve student retention and success, and result in more equitable outcomes. When educators offer all students in a class free materials on day one, they can help level the academic playing field. Research shows that in certain contexts in which educators provide OER, student performance gaps shrink and withdrawal rates decline. More than 3,000 faculty across the United States have signed an open textbook statement of support sponsored by Student Public Interest Research Groups (Student PIRGs), pledging to consider cost in choosing course materials and to promote the use of high-quality open textbooks. But more faculty can take advantage of OER as they plan their courses. Even though 82 percent of faculty select materials for their courses, just 17 percent were “very aware” of OER in 2019–20, according to the report Digital Texts in the Time of COVID: Educational Resources in U.S. Higher Education, 2020 by Julia E. Seaman and Jeff Seaman.

Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Opening up to OER: Creating Open Education Awareness on a large campus -UT Libraries

Like many academic libraries, the University of Texas Libraries (UT) at UT-Austin is looking for ways to increase awareness of open educational resources (OER) on our campus. Our university does not have an OER mandate from our central campus administration, so the path towards greater awareness hasn’t been straightforward. We hope that sharing our nascent attempts to start this conversation on our campus, which have included starting a working group, offering faculty workshops, and fundraising for an OER librarian position, will help others begin to champion OER on their campuses.

Tuesday, November 28, 2023

The 5 Rs of Using OER - Nova Southeastern University

Within the bounds of Creative Commons licensing there are 5 key points to consider when using OERs:

Reuse - Content can be reused in its unaltered original format - the right to use the content in a wide range of ways (e.g., in a class, in a study group, on a website, in a video)
Retain - Copies of content can be retained for personal archives or reference - the right to make, own, and control copies of the content (e.g., download, duplicate, store, and manage)
Revise - Content can be modified or altered to suit specific needs - the right to adapt, adjust, modify, or alter the content itself (e.g., translate the content into another language)
Remix - Content can be adapted with other similar content to create something new- the right to combine the original or revised content with other material to create something new (e.g., incorporate the content into a mashup)
Redistribute - Content can be shared with anyone else in its original or altered format - the right to share copies of the original content, your revisions, or your remixes with others (e.g., give a copy of the content to a friend)

Monday, November 27, 2023

M State unveils new initiative offering courses with free or low-cost textbooks - Melissa Van Der Stad, InForum

Minnesota State Community and Technical College in Moorhead is joining other area high education institutions with an announcement aimed at making school more affordable and accessible. The two-year college announced a yearlong engagement with the Institute on Open Educational Resources, a program designed to offer free or nearly free textbooks and other instructional materials for students pursuing a degree. The college is one of 48 institutions across the country to participate in the 2023-2024 institute. “The initiative is expected to not only increase the affordability of M State — which already has one of the lowest tuition rates of any two-year college in Minnesota – but also bolster student equity, retention, completion and overall success rates," the school wrote in the release.

Sunday, November 26, 2023

Mays Imad Leads Grant-Funded Project for Equity-Minded and Trauma-Informed Teaching in Higher Education - Leo Gallagher, Bolly Inside

Connecticut College Associate Professor of Biology Mays Imad is leading a newly funded project titled “Toward an Equity-Minded and Trauma-Informed Teaching and Learning in Higher Education.” The project aims to create an open educational resource (OER) course for educators across disciplines and institutions. The project team includes Assistant Director of Student Counseling Services Bryana White, Director of the Joy Shechtman Mankoff Center for Teaching and Learning Michael Reder, and Assistant Professors of Psychology Hyun Joon Park and Nakia Hamlett. The project’s goals involve promoting equity and justice, understanding the stress-learning-brain connection, and designing culturally grounded mental health resources for students.

Saturday, November 25, 2023

OEN Offers Freely Available Resources in Open Pedagogy & Open Educational Practices - OEN

In October the Open Education Network (OEN) celebrated International Open Access Week 2023 with the release of two new openly licensed resources. Developed collaboratively by the OEN community and team, the Open Pedagogy Student Toolkit and Certificate in Open Educational Practices (public version) are now freely available to adopt, adapt, and share.

Friday, November 24, 2023

Free college textbooks to cost $2 million - Tom Joyce, The Center Square

The University of New Mexico will receive $2.1 million from the federal government for textbooks as part of the federal Open Textbook Grant due to the school's existing support for Open Educational Resources. UNM will use the grant funding to establish the New Mexico Open Educational Resources Consortium, aiming to help faculty across the state adopt open-access materials. This grant, one of five awarded by the U.S. Department of Education, will “transform the landscape of education in New Mexico,” according to the university.

Thursday, November 23, 2023

The State of Open Data 2023 Report - Digital Science

The State of Open Data 2023 deliberately takes a more analytical approach to the survey data than in previous years. With more data surfaced, the 2023 report provides unique and unparalleled insights into researchers’ attitudes towards and interactions with open data and data sharing.  The report digs into the survey responses and looks at differing trends when comparing respondents’ geographies and other demographic factors. Using these insights, we take a look towards the future and offer some recommendations to the academic community.

Wednesday, November 22, 2023

OER Dynamic Coalition Webinar for Indigenous languages

OER Dynamic Coalition Webinar for Indigenous languages
13 December 2023 - 4:00 pm - 13 December 2023 - 5:30 pm
UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France
Rooms :
Room VI
Type :
Cat VII – Seminar and training
Arrangement type :
Language(s) :

Tuesday, November 21, 2023

Open Educational Resources (OER) - Universities of Wisconsin

Open educational resources (OER) are high-quality, effective teaching and learning materials that provide no-cost or low-cost access for students. OER includes curriculum, maps, course materials, textbooks, streaming videos, multimedia applications, podcasts, and any other materials that have been designed for use in teaching and learning. According to UNESCO, “Open Educational Resources are teaching, learning or research materials that are in the public domain or released with an intellectual property license that allows for free use, adaptation, and distribution.” Like traditional textbooks, open textbooks are written by experts in the field and undergo a process of peer review and professional editing and development. Unlike the traditional publishing model, publishers and authors of open textbooks are paid for their labor upfront by a funding organization or grant, instead of relying on sales to pay back their investments.

Monday, November 20, 2023

Save Money on Textbooks Next Semester With No-Cost Course Materials List, University of Arkansas

The University Libraries and Associated Student Government have collaborated to create a list of courses utilizing no-cost materials in lieu of traditional textbooks. Students are encouraged to view this list prior to enrolling in courses for the spring 2024 semester.  "It is so important for the student body to be aware of these resources so they are able to make informed decisions as they register for classes," said Brooke Williard, director of open access resources for the Associated Student Government. "That is why I am so excited to advertise the 'No Cost Textbook Guide' for this upcoming spring registration."

Sunday, November 19, 2023

UMass Lowell unveils new low to no cost textbooks for students - Jocelyn Dean, UML Connector

The high cost of textbooks has become a major debate across UMass Lowell. Many financially concerned students face hardships at the beginning of each semester, worrying if they will be able to purchase their necessities. Paying hundreds of dollars for textbooks is not ideal, especially when not all of its content is used for their respective courses. Students are left frustrated and concerned as a result. So, because of this issue, UMass Lowell has been promoting open educational resources (OER) and low-cost textbooks. This can ease worries, but oftentimes, students do not know how much their books will cost until the first day of classes. However, the university is implementing new ways of resolving this issue. The OER Task Force members, including administrators, faculty and SGA (Student Government Association), have worked to create a new system when registering for classes for the upcoming spring semester.

Saturday, November 18, 2023


In this post we summarize the key point of our submission, namely:

AI training generally constitutes fair use
Copyright should protect AI outputs with significant human creative input
The substantial standard similarity should apply to Infringement by AI outputs
Creators should be able to express their preferences
Copyright cannot solve everything related to generative AI

Friday, November 17, 2023


When scholarship is made freely available, it allows researchers worldwide to engage with it, resulting in a much larger reach and impact. Over the past year, the University of Delaware Library, Museums and Press has increased its efforts to support initiatives around open access publishing. Open access, the practice of making articles, books and other original research freely and digitally accessible for anyone to read and reuse, has been a key focus in the commitment to expand access to cutting-edge research from the UD community and beyond.

Thursday, November 16, 2023

Open-access reformers launch next bold publishing plan - Layal Liverpool, Nature

The group behind the radical open-access initiative Plan S has announced its next big plan to shake up research publishing — and this one could be bolder than the first. It wants all versions of an article and its associated peer-review reports to be published openly from the outset, without authors paying any fees, and for authors, rather than publishers, to decide when and where to first publish their work. The group of influential funding agencies, called cOAlition S, has over the past five years already caused upheaval in the scholarly publishing world by pressuring more journals to allow immediate open-access publishing. Its new proposal, prepared by a working group of publishing specialists and released on 31 October, puts forward an even broader transformation in the dissemination of research.

Wednesday, November 15, 2023

AUAS interview: Why open access is important for applied sciences - Science Business

Research conducted at AUAS generates knowledge products and research data that should seamlessly integrate into education, research, professional practice, and society at large. Open access publishing, which is increasingly finding its place at universities of applied sciences, plays a pivotal role. What exactly is open access, and why is it of such significance? We had the pleasure of conversing with Anne Marie Meijer during Open Access Week to explore these questions. Anne Marie Meijer supports researchers in open access publishing, registration, and dissemination of articles, apps, datasets, and other products of applied research.

Tuesday, November 14, 2023

Free textbooks and other open educational resources gain popularity - Tony Feder, Physics Today

The prices of college textbooks have skyrocketed: From 2011 to 2018, they went up by 40.6% in the US, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Consumer Price Index. That can add up to as much as $1000 for a single semester. So it’s no surprise that freely available, openly licensed textbooks, lectures, simulations, problem sets, and more—known collectively as open educational resources (OERs)—are having a moment. Last year, for the first time, more than half of US college faculty reported “some level of awareness” of OERs, finds Bay View Analytics, a company that conducts research at the intersection of technology and education.

Monday, November 13, 2023

Student Survey Highlights The Burdens of Textbook Costs - Nick Karmia, the Courier

After a COD student spoke of boycotting and potentially dropping their classes for the requirement of purchasing expensive online textbooks, Student Leadership Council member Moises Plata wanted to see if a good chunk of the student body shared the same sentiment. From nursing, computer science and psychology majors, to those who are undecided, Plata surveyed nearly 170 students around campus about their personal experiences with using online textbooks as a whole. Collectively, survey responses indicated feelings of exploitation but also evidence that many students who’ve used online textbooks have found them ineffective. 

Sunday, November 12, 2023

Using Creative Commons Images in Professional Work - Susan Neuhaus, Creative Pro

If you’ve ever read Wikipedia or watched a TED Talk video, you’ve benefited from media that was shared under a Creative Commons license. You can find amazing content—images, 3D models, video, software, news, stories, databases, even whole academic courses—all available free. Creative Commons—CC for short—offers a very simple way for creators to grant blanket advance permission for others to use their creative work, all while setting conditions and affirming their intellectual property rights.

Saturday, November 11, 2023

How Does Facebook’s Platform Affect The Distribution Of Open Educational Resources? - Betty Davis, Ticker TV News

In today’s digital age, social media platforms have become powerful tools for sharing information and connecting people from all walks of life. Facebook, with its massive user base and extensive reach, has emerged as a prominent player in this realm. While primarily known for its role in connecting friends and family, Facebook’s impact extends far beyond personal relationships. One area where it has made a significant impact is the distribution of open educational resources (OERs). OERs are freely accessible learning materials that can be used, shared, and modified educators and learners worldwide. These resources include textbooks, lecture notes, videos, and interactive learning modules. The open nature of OERs allows for greater accessibility and affordability, making education more inclusive and equitable. Facebook’s platform has revolutionized the distribution of OERs providing a vast network for educators and learners to connect and share resources. With over 2.8 billion monthly active users, Facebook offers an unparalleled opportunity to reach a global audience. Educators can create dedicated groups or pages to share OERs, engage in discussions, and collaborate with like-minded individuals.

Friday, November 10, 2023

Why I am For Open Educational Resources - University of Regina

The CTL Open Education and Publishing Program invites you to attend a virtual session November 15 presented by Dr. Arzu Sardarli on "Why I am for Open Educational Resources" via Zoom. Dr. Sardarli will share from his own experiences before open textbooks were available, a time when access to educational resources was limited. His presentation will highlight the importance and value of adopting, adapting, and creating OERs, to the benefit of both students and instructors. Dr. Arzu Sardarli is a professor in physics and mathematics at First Nations University of Canada. Dr. Sardarli has worked extensively with the Open Education and Publishing Program. He and Ida Swan published an open textbook through the Pressbooks platform, entitled "Cree Dictionary of Mathematical Terms with Visual Examples".

Thursday, November 9, 2023

Texas A&M Provost Office Announces Initial Savings For Students Using Free Or Reduced Cost Textbooks And Related Materials - Bill Oliver, WTAW

The Texas A&M provost office has announced initial results of developing and accessing materials which reduces student costs of buying textbooks. The expansion of what is known as open educational resources…or O-E-R…was part of provost Alan Sams report during the October faculty senate meeting. Dr. Sams says students have saved more than $1 million dollars in textbook costs since this spring. That is after grants totaling $500,000 dollars were given to support O-E-R’s and underwrite the costs of developing free books, notes, and other materials.

Wednesday, November 8, 2023

Open educational resources (OER) - University of Queensland

Organisations providing OER guidance

Organisations that provide guidance on OERs include:

Tuesday, November 7, 2023

Publish Open Access - Iowa State University

Understand your options

You have options for making your work open access:
Publish with a publisher that supports open access, like the ISU Digital Press.
Share a copy of your publication in a pre-print server or repository, like the ISU Digital Repository.  
The Open Access Publishing guide has tips on how to navigate this process.
If you have additional questions or concerns about open access, please contact Abbey Elder, Open Access & Scholarly Communication Librarian.

Monday, November 6, 2023

Open Access at KU - University of Kansas

KU Faculty's Open Access Policy
Open Access refers to scholarly literature that is digital, online, free of charge and free of most copyright and reuse restrictions (Peter Suber). For more information about open access see the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) Open Access page. The first formal step taken by KU faculty toward an Open Access Policy was the Faculty Senate’s 2005 Resolution on Access to Scholarly Information (pdf), which encouraged deposit of scholarly works into KU ScholarWorks and signaled faculty’s interest in and support for open access. In 2009 and 2010, Faculty Senate passed the KU Faculty Open Access Policy, asserting faculty rights to make their published scholarly articles openly accessible. 

Sunday, November 5, 2023

What Is Open Access and Why Does It Matter? - Brown University Libraries

What is Open Access?
The open access movement has emerged in response to a number of factors: growing journal costs and disparities in access to scholarship, the emergence of the internet, as well as the growing number large scale problems that require large and diverse team engagement.

While open access generally refers to published scholarly journal articles, the open movement also encompasses:

open data
open educational resources
open science

Saturday, November 4, 2023

Universities in Sweden push open access-only approach to publishing - Jan Petter Myklebust, University World News

A recent report from a higher education working group recommending that a consortium of higher education and research institutions only sign agreements to publish in fully open access (OA) journals has been widely welcomed by stakeholders in Sweden and the European region. The ‘Beyond transformative agreements’ working group (the BTA group), convened in 2021 by the Association of Swedish Higher Education, was tasked with proposing a strategy for transitioning from transformative agreements to a financially sustainable system that stimulates the ongoing transition to a fully open publishing system.

Friday, November 3, 2023

Open Educational Resources: About Open Education Resources - UIC

In 2021, the average cost for full-time, undergraduate students at a four-year university for books and supplies per year was approximately $1240.00, with students spending the most (average of $1420) at public two-year colleges compared to $1220 per year at private four-year colleges (average of $450-$625 per semester). (2)

Because of high textbook costs (3)
63% of students skipped buying or renting a textbook
90% of students were worried forgoing these course materials would negatively impact their grade
19% chose classes based on their course materials cost
25% worked extra hours
11% skipped meals

Thursday, November 2, 2023

Open Access by the numbers - Iowa State University

Open Access is the free, immediate, online availability of research articles, coupled with the rights to use these articles fully in the digital environment. - Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) Open Access Week is Oct. 23-29, 2023, and the theme is Community Over Commercialization. Celebratewith the Iowa State University Library. The graphic above, Open Access by the Numbers, presents updated statistics about how your library supports open resources. Learn more about the wide variety of events planned during OAW 2023, and join the celebration.

Wednesday, November 1, 2023

Provost Directs Additional Funding To Curb Textbook Costs - Brandon V. Webb, Texas A&M

The affordability of attending college, especially when it comes to paying for high-priced textbooks, is squarely in the sights of Texas A&M University Provost Dr. Alan Sams. In one of his first acts as provost, Sams directed $500,000 in grant funding to support Open Educational Resources (OER) and underwrite the costs of developing free books, notes and other educational resources or revising courses to fit existing, openly available materials. The program is expected to reduce or eliminate textbook costs in 19 courses—saving Aggie students more than $1 million in just the first year. “Open” textbooks are openly-licensed, digital textbooks that can be read, downloaded and printed online at no or low cost, for anyone to use and share freely.