OER Digest – June 28th, 2018

From Camille Thomas, SPARC | Volume 60 | June 28th, 2018

With updates from Nicole Allen and Ethan Senack


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


STATE POLICY UPDATES: Lawmakers in New Jersey approved approved a measure designed to expand the use of open textbooks.“The ever-increasing prices of college textbooks are simply becoming unreasonable,” Assemblywoman Nancy Pinkin (D-Middlesex) said in a news release. “By implementing open textbooks in college courses, students will save a significant amount of money as well as lower both the amount of and the stresses of debt after college.” California and Michigan both passed appropriations bills that include provisions around OER.


POLICY IN CANADA: Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT) in Calgary, Alberta, has officially adopted one of the first institutional OER policies in Canada. The policy is part of SAIT’s 2017-2020 Applied Education Plan. SIAT’s policy encourages adopting, creating and adapting OER as well as assigning Creative Commons licenses to all materials at the institution.


ISTE HIGHLIGHTS: OER was a popular topic at this week’s ISTE conference. Multiple sessions addressed the use of OER in K-12 education, and ISTE U announced a new course on OER for educators developed by iLearn Collaborative. Highlights include a panel entitled “The Textbook Is Extinct! Now What?” that led to a lively debate including discussion of OER that was written up in EdWeek, and the launch of #GoOpen Michigan’s OER site.


CONGRATULATIONS: Congratulations are in order!



Upcoming Events, Proposal and Registration Deadlines, Report-Backs  


APPLY NOW: Two more weeks to apply for OpenCon 2018. The conference will be held November 2-4 in Toronto, and is by application only. Apply here by July 13.



Quick snapshots of those making change on the ground level, and those impacted

FROM OHIO: “We are definitely leading the way among Ohio’s colleges and universities on textbook affordability,” said Dan Krane, a Wright State University professor who also serves as chairman of the university’s affordability and efficiency task force. Read More>


FROM VIRGINIA:  Central Virginia Community College is implementing three new programs to adopt OER. “We want to remove barriers for our students, and one of them is the cost of books,” said Muriel Mickles, CVCC vice president of academic and student affairs. CVCC estimated open educational resources have saved students about $250,000 since 2016.  Read More>


FROM ARIZONA: “At first, the task was daunting—much like my thought of trying to obtain my master’s degree,” David Williams, an educational technology masters student at Northern Arizona University said. “However, once we got started everything just fell into place.” Williams also worked with others in his program to write a book chapter on new developments in online learning, including OER. Read More>



Each edition, we’ll highlight an interesting, new, openly-licensed resource

Rebus Community released the Blueprint for Success series, which includes three books for College Success and First Year Experience. Resources for the series are available via Pressbooks.

Paul Kroeger, faculty at the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics recently released, Analyzing meaning: An introduction to semantics and pragmatics, an open linguistics textbook published by Language Science Press.



Interesting Discussions and Strategic Reads to Repost or Share

Great to Share >>

Evolution of Librarians: Open Education Leadership | WCET Frontiers



Affordability and Excellence | University of Georgia


Lakeshore Technical College combats skyrocketing textbook costs | Herald Times Reporter


Interesting to Consider >>


Charging for the Free (Op-Ed) | El Paso Herald Post



Meet Tennessessee’s New Director of HBCU Success | Education Dive


New Chief at the Chief State School Officers | Ed Week



Online Course Creation for Dummies | Inside Higher Ed



Have suggestions for the next edition? Let us know at oerdigest@gmail.com, or tweet us @OERdigest.

The OER Digest is a public newsletter distributed to a broad group of stakeholders across the higher education community. You can join the open Google Group or check out the distribution list here.

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