From Ethan Senack, Creative Commons USA | Volume 48 | January 11th, 2018
With updates from Nicole Allen, Cheryl Cuillier, and Karen Lauritsen
THE OER DIGEST
Your bi-weekly newsletter for open education updates, opportunities, and reminders
CHEERS TO 2018: As we kick off the new year, the Digest team just wants to express a quick word of thanks to our readers. Send us your predictions, blogs, or other reflections for 2018 at firstname.lastname@example.org or @oerdigest and we might include them in the next edition!
HITTING A GROOVE: If the first couple weeks of this month are any indication, the OER community seems to be heading for a banner year. Check out some of the most recent headlines from articles featuring OER:
Inside Higher Ed: The Truth (About OER) Is Out There
Chronicle of Higher Education: Use of Free Textbooks Is Rising, but Barriers Remain
Inside Higher Ed: OER Adoptions on the Rise
BREAKING, FROM CA: California Governor Jerry Brown proposed a new, public, online community college for the state as a means to improve economic mobility and prepare the workforce for a changing job market. As part of the proposal, the college will leverage OER and “z-degree courses” to keep the cost of attendance as low as possible. More details are expected in coming weeks.
IN OTHER STATES: A host of legislators in Virginia, Washington, New York, Mississippi, and Indiana introduced bills around access to- and cost of- course materials this past week, including many provisions around OER. The Digest will be following these, and other bills, as they proceed.
BIG NUMBERS: So far in 2018, institutions are putting big numbers on the board – Pierce College announced last week that they crossed the $1 million mark in student savings from OER, and the University System of Maryland’s annual scorecard revealed $1.6 million in savings for their students. In a different vein, UMUC hit record enrollment last year after years of struggling to maintain existing levels – and they credit their switch to OER as a major factor in the improvement. They’ve also seen increased retention, and dropped their average ‘books and supplies’ cost to zero. Additionally, Wiki Education announced that their programs had added more than 7.68 million words of science content to the open online encyclopedia.
10 YEARS: January 22, 2018 marks the official 10 year anniversary of the publication of the Cape Town Open Education Declaration. Consider marking the occasion on the 22nd with a blog post on your predictions for the next 10 years or join in on social media with #CPT10.
NEW EFFORT: Late last year, the Open Textbook Network announced the creation of The Publishing Cooperative, a group of institutions working together to “establish publishing infrastructure, processes, and community to expand the development of open textbook publishing in higher education.” Their goal is publish two dozen CC-BY textbooks by 2020.
Upcoming Events, Proposal and Registration Deadlines, Report-Backs
REGISTER: Early bird registration is open for the Creative Commons 2018 Global Summit in Toronto, April 13-15th. Register here: https://summit.creativecommons.org/register2018/
REGISTER: The 2018 OE Global Conference take place in Delft, The Netherlands on April 24-26th. Register here: https://conference.oeconsortium.org/2018/registration/
REGISTER, TAKE 2: The Florida OER Summit takes place next month, February 7-8th, after it was postponed due to Hurricane Irma last year. Registration is open now, here: https://www.flvc.org/oersummit-registration
REGISTER: The Library Collective is hosting a conference February 28-March 2nd in Tennessee. Register here by February 1st: http://www.thelibrarycollective.org
STORIES FROM THE FIELD
Quick snapshots of those making change on the ground level, and those impacted
FROM PENNSYLVANIA K-12: “It really is a grassroots effort,” he says. “It’s not a top-down [situation], where we have to submit resources to the state level or the intermediate unit level to be approved. … Instead, it starts at the district level where teachers, who are the best evaluators of the content that they’re utilizing in the classroom, can begin that process.” Read More >
FROM PENNSYLVANIA HIGHER ED: The resolution cited the Office of Admissions and Financial Aid, which recommends students prepare to pay $772 for textbooks for the 2017-2018 school year. “That cost, that’s someone’s rent. That’s someone’s grocery money for the entire semester,” Patel said. “That impacts the students way more than people really see.” Read More >
HOT OFF THE PRESS
Each edition, we’ll highlight an interesting, new, openly-licensed resource
The Public Data Lab released under CC-BY A Field Guide on “Fake News” – exploring the best ways to identify and fake news and verify real stories. The authors are also attempting to build the guide out into a full textbook as well.
Interesting Discussions and Strategic Reads to Repost or Share
Great to Share >>
To combat soaring textbook costs, look to an open-source approach | The Globe and Mail
Interesting to Consider >>
How OER Can Help Low-Income School Districts | Kajeet.net
As Textbook Companies Try New Options, Many Students Say Price Is Biggest Factor | EdSurge
White Paper on Open Educational Resources | Ontario Council of University Libraries
Highlights From a Year of Tracking Future Trends in Education | EdSurge
Districts to watch in 2018 | Education Dive