From Bilan Jama (CC USA) | Volume 112 | August 13th, 2020
THE OER DIGEST
Your bi-weekly newsletter for open education updates, opportunities, and reminders
NEW FACULTY SURVEY: Bay View Analytics has released a new survey in partnership with the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education’s Cooperative for Educational Technologies (WCET). The survey found that initiatives to raise awareness of OER are having a measurable impact on the number of faculty members using OER in their classrooms. Faculty members who are aware of one or more OER initiatives are much more likely to be adopters of OER. This is true regardless of the instructors’ type of institution, the level of course they teach, or where they are located in the U.S. “If you’re aware of an OER initiative, you’re much more aware of OER in general, much more likely to adopt, and if you haven’t adopted, you’re much more likely to say that you will adopt in the future,'” said Jeff Seaman, director at Bay View Analytics. A total of 4,399 faculty and 1,431 chairpersons responded to the survey, which took place in the fall of 2019. The results do not capture the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on OER awareness and decisions, but OER proponents told Inside Higher Ed that they have seen a notable increase in interest since March.
NEW PUBLICATION SERIES: The National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education has announced the creation of new publication series focused on OER and open educational practices. The widespread interest in the National Forum Open Licensing Toolkit, published in June 2019, and accompanying webinar, ‘Introduction to Open Educational Resources (OER) & Open Licensing’, prompted the National Forum to establish a series of guides and associated webinars focused on the topic of OER/OEP. The second guide in the series, ‘How to Choose an Open Licence’, has now been published.
Conferences, jobs, and other OER-related opportunities
CALL FOR PROPOSALS: The call for proposals is now open for #OpenEd20. The conference will be held virtually on November 9-13, 2020. Proposals are due September 1, 2020. Learn more and submit your proposal here.
CALL FOR ENTRIES: The Library Publishing Coalition (LPC) is seeking submissions for its 8th annual Library Publishing Directory. They are surveying the landscape of scholarly publishing in libraries across the globe, and invite you to share information about your library’s scholarly publishing activities. The call for entries will close on Monday, September 14, 2020. Learn more here.
CALL FOR PROPOSALS: The call for chapter proposals is now open for the forthcoming book from ACRL Press, Using Open Educational Resources to Promote Social Justice. Email an abstract (up to 500 words, submitted as a Word document) and author(s) CV to OERsocialjustice@protonmail.com. The deadline to submit is October 30, 2020.
STORIES FROM THE FIELD
Quick snapshots of those making change on the ground level, and those impacted
FROM ALBERTA: University of Alberta Libraries and other post-secondary institutions across the province are collaborating to provide students and instructors with the ability to access and create digital learning materials for free. The service, Open Education Alberta, is a platform that enables the adaptation, creation and use of open education resources (OERs) in post-secondary courses. As universities move to online learning in the wake of COVID-19, “Faculty [members] are already looking at ways to revisit how they’re going to deliver their courses for the fall, and OERs might solve some of the problems that they’re encountering in terms of student access to learning materials,” said project co-lead Cari Merkley, a librarian at Mount Royal University. Read more >>
FROM NEW JERSEY: Rutgers University Libraries have created a program that incentivizes faculty to use free or low-cost learning materials that save students money. The Open and Affordable Textbooks (OAT) program is projected to save over 16,400 students a total of more than $2.1 million in the cost of textbooks and other course materials over the next year.“With the ongoing pandemic putting financial pressures on so many families, it is more important than ever to do what we can to keep our students’ education affordable,” said Krisellen Maloney, vice president for information services and university librarian. “I’m proud that the Libraries can offer a program like OAT that not only helps relieve financial burdens for our students but can also help foster their academic success.” Read more >>
FROM TEXAS: DigiTex has launched Texas Learn OER, a set of ten peer-reviewed, openly licensed, self-paced modules for faculty, staff, and administrators. The modules include information on understanding OER; open licensing, including Creative Commons; finding and evaluating OER; accessibility; adapting, creating, and sharing OER; and OER in Texas. DigiTex has worked with Carrie Gits, Head Librarian and Library Services OER Team Leader at Austin Community College, to adapt for a wider audience modules she created for ACC as a part of her capstone project for the 2018-19 SPARC Open Education Leadership Program. Read more >>
HOT OFF THE PRESS
Each edition, we highlight an interesting, new, openly-licensed resource
A new memoir published on the CUNY Manifold platform My Slipper Floated Away has been released. My Slipper Floated Away is an anthology of fresh, compelling essays written by students at Lehman College in the Bronx. The writers are immigrants or the children of immigrants and/or POC.
Kwantlen Polytechnic University recently published Doing Research, an open textbook that highlights a modules-based approach to learning research skills that emphasizes the reflective nature of information discovery, the contextual basis for evaluating that information, and a recognition that information has value.
Great reads to repost or share and interesting discussions to consider
Great to Share >>
Back to School Resources for Distance Education | Educational Technology and Mobile Learning
Interesting to Consider >>
Colleges’ Pivot to Remote Education Has Some Upsides, Too | The Chronicle of Higher Education
The OER Digest is a public newsletter distributed to a broad group of stakeholders across the higher education community. Subscribe here.