OER Digest – February 23rd, 2017

From Katie Steen (USPIRG) | Volume 25 | February 23rd, 2017

With help from Brady Yano (SPARC)


Your bi-weekly newsletter for open education updates, opportunities, and reminders

UMASS SURVEY: The UMass Amherst Libraries’ Scholarly Communication office recently surveyed undergraduate students enrolled in classes participating in the Open Education Initiative (OEI). The survey found that 59% of students do not buy assigned textbooks and want alternatives to high cost textbooks. Read more>>

STATE LEGISLATION UPDATE: A new bill proposed by Maryland state Sen. Jim Rosapepe titled the Textbook Cost Savings Act of 2017 would provide a $100,000 grant to promote the use of OER at the state system’s 12 institutions. The funding would support the Maryland Open Source Textbook Initiative, a program that has saved students over $1 million through the use of OER since 2013. Read more>>

OEC AWARDS: The Open Education Consortium announced the 2017 winners of the Open Education Awards for Excellence, an award recognizing the outstanding contributions in the Open Education community. These awards recognize distinctive Open Educational Resources, Open Projects & Initiatives, as well as exemplary leaders in Open Education worldwide.To see the full list of OER & Project Award winners, click here.

OER PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT: K12 educators now have access to professional development OER, aimed at training educators to better deliver a STEM education. The “Advancing Coherent and Equitable Systems of Science Education” (ACESSE) project is a partnership between the Council of State Science Supervisors and the University of Colorado Boulder and University of Washington schools of education and has been funded by a three-year, $1.5 million grant from the National Science Foundation. The training is aimed at increasing diversity in STEM fields by improving access to a quality K-12 STEM education that is more coherent and nationally aligned. Read more>>

GROWING COLLECTION: BCcampus has added five new open textbooks to their collection, bringing the Open Textbook Project collection to 173 materials. Read more>>



Conferences, jobs, and other OER-related opportunities

EVENT: Apply to attend the Open Education Ontario Summit taking place on March 27th. Deadline to apply is February 28th. http://onoersummit.com/

EVENT: OpenStax will be hosting an American Government webinar on Monday, February 27, 11-12 pm CST. https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/5351275093797681410

EVENT: Registration for #OER17: The Politics of Open is now open! The conference will take place April 5-6 in London, UK https://oer17.oerconf.org/#gref

JOB: Penn State Libraries are looking for an Open Education Librarian. Reviewal of applications will begin on February 28th. https://libraries.psu.edu/openeducationlibr

JOB: CU Boulder Libraries are looking for a Scholarly Communication Librarian. Applications are due March 5th. http://www.colorado.edu/libraries/jobs-opportunities/scholarly-communication-librarian

SURVEY: Please consider taking part in a new research collaboration between the Open Education Research Hub (OER Hub) and Forschungsinstitut für Bildungs- und Sozialökonomie (FIBS) funded by the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).  https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/OOFATOERDIGEST


A brief snapshot of those making change on the ground level, and those most impacted

FROM CONNECTICUT: “Undergraduate Student Government has worked extensively to expand access to open educational resources as well, according to Student Body President Daniel Byrd. USG financially supported the development of an open access chemistry textbook, he said. “USG paid and got credit for it in the book,” Byrd said. “About 2,000 students between last semester and this semester have used it.”” Read more>>

FROM BRITISH COLUMBIA: “Open textbooks not only help alleviate financial stress for students, but also often improve the quality of course content,” said Doering. “Since open textbooks allow instructors to customize materials for their course, they can move away from the more traditional method of teaching chapter-by-chapter, which results in a more engaging classroom experience.” Read more>>

FROM NEW JERSEY: “I am excited to report that the pilot phase of the Open and Affordable Textbook (OAT) grants has concluded,” said Lily Todorinova, the director of the OAT program and the school’s Undergraduate Experience Librarian. “Thanks to the generosity of the Office of Information Technology and the library, we were able to award 32 individual grants.” Read more>>



Elise Bordeau @MrsBordeau

Students engaging and talking about how to make textbooks more affordable on our campuses #mnstate #OER #februarydelegates @Students7United


Interesting Reads on Education and Open

7 Musts For Digital and OER Course Materials | eCampus News


7 Trends To Expect From Social Learning In 2017 | eLearning Industry


Are Elite Universities Committed to Openness? | New America


Are Textbooks In Or Out? The State of Open Educational Resources | opensource.com


Fewer text books = less expense for students at SLCC | KATC.com


Is the Average Cost of a Textbook $100? | Open Oregon


OER’s Road Ahead is Paved with Publisher Platforms | From the Bell Tower | LibraryJournal


SBCC Launches Textbook Affordability Program | The Channels


What Students Can Learn By Writing For Wikipedia | nprEd


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