Abstract: INTRODUCTION The Mary Couts Burnett Library at Texas Christian University (TCU) seeks to learn more about university faculty members’ perceptions and behaviors related to open educational resources (OER), and to identify one or more initiatives to increase adoption of OER at the university. METHODS The researchers sent a survey to all university faculty using Qualtrics™, and 104 persons responded. The survey used a combination of multiple-choice and free-text questions, and covered OER adoption and creation by faculty members, their perceptions of OER, and recommendations related to possible initiatives to increase OER interest. RESULTS Among respondents, almost half used OER either currently or in the past, while a fifth created their own OER. When comparing OER to traditional textbooks in terms of being scholarly, the majority indicated that OER and traditional textbooks were about the same level, but a quarter of faculty indicated that traditional textbooks were more scholarly. When asked about initiatives the library could pursue to increase faculty OER creation, the leading responses included financial support of faculty using OER, along with training opportunities. DISCUSSION The researchers were pleased to see that many faculty have used OER either currently or in the past, and that many had positive views surrounding OER. The researchers now have data that support the establishment of OER initiatives. CONCLUSION The survey informs the TCU Library and academic libraries in general. Two initiatives that libraries should consider are establishing an OER training program for faculty and developing a grant program to support faculty members who are adopting or creating OER. Libraries should collaborate with other units on campus such as the center for teaching excellence or the faculty senate.
“If writing a book seems like a daunting task, writing one in an open access format might seem even more so, since many of the details of editing and production that are usually handled by publishing houses now fall to authors. Nevertheless, books remain a popular format for librarians who want to contribute to the profession, and publishing is a necessity for faculty and librarians with faculty status. Librarians and others in higher education have increasingly critiqued the rising costs of textbooks as a contributing factor to student debt, and new library publishing services frequently emphasize open monograph and textbook publishing alongside other open access content. As champions of open access, librarians and others publishing in the field of LIS should consider publishing their own works in open platforms as a way to improve access to information, learn the systems more deeply, and model practice for their patrons.
In this session, the panelists will walk participants through the process of developing and producing an open access book, from the initial proposal through production and publication. The panel will include published authors of both traditional and open-platform texts and single-authored and collaborative books, as well as individuals with expertise in open publishing platforms and library-based publishing services. Presenters will discuss reasons for considering open access and will address some of the main concerns of creating an open access book, including finding a publisher and choosing a publishing platform, reconceptualizing editorial responsibilities, dealing with production elements like layout, addressing universal design and accessibility issues, and marketing the finished publication….”
session part of American Library Association virtual conference, June 23-29, 2021
BCcampus is hosting an open education challenge series for educators interested in learning more about open education practices (OEP). This series is a fun way to get a taste of OEP – over the course of 5 days we will release 2 challenges per day. A challenge is a micro activity that you can do in 10 minutes or less that will cover a small aspect of open education.
“Many students often opt not to purchase a textbook due to its financial burden or to avoid the situation of buying a textbook only to barely use it throughout the semester. Students’ access to textbooks can have a tremendous impact on their success in their classes, yet many students have to choose between purchasing textbooks and other necessities. Overall, success should not be determined by one’s financial status or access to textbooks.
CalPIRG’s push to implement an open-source textbook program in the UC system is grounded in alleviating a major financial hurdle in higher education by making textbooks free and readily accessible. Such efforts would thus aid California’s advancement toward a more equitable education system.
The university can lead this movement and live up to its standards of accessibility and diversity by implementing an open textbook program. The program could incentivize faculty to use open education resources in the classroom that make textbooks free and accessible to all UC students. We ultimately call on the regents to join us in helping to make academic success a reality for more students instead of a dream crushed by the weight of financial burdens.”
“The U.S. state of Texas has enacted the nation’s first law to increase transparency for automatic textbook billing programs. Sponsored by Representative Tan Parker and Senator Brandon Creighton, House Bill 1027 received bipartisan approval from the state legislature last month and was signed into law by Governor Greg Abbot last week.
Often marketed using the term “inclusive access,” automatic textbook billing is the practice of charging the cost of digital course materials to a student’s tuition and fee bill. While some of these programs are implemented on a voluntary “opt-in” basis, others are implemented without confirming a student’s consent, which can lead to unexpected charges and limited ability to seek cost-saving alternatives such as used books. Moreover, these programs effectively force students to accept the publisher’s terms of service, which can open the door to the extensive collection and processing of their personal data….”
“Publisher McGraw Hill will soon pass from one private-equity firm to another.
Platinum Equity announced an agreement this week to buy the company from Apollo Global Management, in a deal valued at about $4.5 billion, including debt, reports the Wall Street Journal.
McGraw Hill CEO Simon Allen will continue to lead the business, according to a statement released by the company.
The acquisition comes about a year after McGraw Hill terminated its efforts to merge with fellow publisher Cengage. That deal, which would have created the second largest U.S. textbook publisher, fell through after being subjected to a regulatory review process with the U.S. Department of Justice….”
Abstract: This article presents a case study for transitioning library-led open-educational resources (OER) initiatives away from labor-intensive activities to a model where library personnel focus on project management responsibilities. This shift from labour-intensive activities, such as workshops and training sessions, led to more collaborative partnerships with faculty and students to produce OER projects. In particular, we focus on labour implications for the various stakeholders involved and the sustainability of these initiatives. We describe several initiatives undertaken by the Ohio University Libraries to encourage open educational resource adoptions and projects, including a grant-funded initiative to provide support services for faculty creating OER. That funding, which was awarded to enhance undergraduate education, has been used to support the development of five OER projects that have directly involved students in the creation of those materials. We provide an overview of the various ways in which students have become involved in OER creation in partnership with faculty and librarians and discuss the impact these partnerships have had on student-faculty-librarian relationships and student engagement. Among these projects are an Hispanic linguistics open textbook created using only student-authored texts, student-generated test banks to accompany existing OER materials for a large-enrollment art history course, and several other projects in which hired student assistants are helping faculty to develop content for open textbooks. This article helps to address a gap in the literature by providing transparency regarding the personnel, costs, and workflow for Ohio University Libraries’ OER initiatives and addressing potential areas of concern surrounding student labour.
“The University of Cape Town (UCT) is calling for nominations for the 2021 UCT Open Textbook Award.
The award, which was launched in 2020, is an initiative of the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (DVC): Teaching and Learning, Associate Professor Lis Lange, and aims to incentivise innovation in teaching and learning, recognise the efforts of open textbook authors and promote the creation and reuse of open educational resources….”
“OpenStax, Rice University’s educational technology initiative, will welcome a dozen new colleges and universities serving diverse students across the United States to its Institutional Partner Program,
This OpenStax program has helped over 70 colleges and universities expand the use of open educational resources on their campuses, saving their students money and putting more flexible course materials into the hands of educators and learners….”
“With eTextbooks high on library and publisher agendas and the controversy over costs and access raging, OA textbooks could be a solution. What are the considerations for initiating, and sustaining an open access textbook directly linked to teaching at one institution, but open to all? The 2014-2018 Jisc Institution as eTextbook Publisher project funded OA textbook pilots and created a toolkit. Liverpool published 2 titles, in a partnership with the Library and Liverpool University Press. In this webinar we will revisit the project and look forward, considering resource and expertise requirements for a sustainable OA textbook model….”
“When University College London launched UCL Press, in 2015, the library services team wanted the open access university press to become the OA publisher of choice for authors, editors and readers around the world. Six years, 180 research monographs and more than four million downloads later, the press has, without a doubt, been embraced by many.
Paul Ayris, pro-vice provost and director of UCL Library Services, tells Research Information: ‘With only 180 books, we’ve reached more than 240 countries and territories across the world… as the UK’s first fully open access university press, we’ve seen the impact the press has had.’
Over this time, one of the top ten downloads has been an e-textbook on burns and plastic surgery produced by Deepak Kalaskar from Medical Sciences at UCL and director of the MSc course in burns, plastic and reconstructive surgery. According to Ayris, the book’s 70,000 downloads are proof that e-textbooks and open educational resources have a clear future at UCL, a point that’s only been underlined by the current pandemic.
‘UCL has now given us funding to produce an e-textbook service,’ he says. ‘We have 45,000 students at UCL and when the libraries physically closed and students couldn’t get access to physical copies… we saw that digital education and providing open educational materials was the way to go.’
‘I wouldn’t have said that 12 months ago, but I’m saying it now,’ he adds….”
“SPARC created the Automatic Textbook Billing Contract Library as a resource for advocates and institutions to understand the legal agreements behind automatic textbook billing. Known by brand names like “Inclusive Access” and “First Day,” these programs charge the cost of digital course materials directly to each student’s tuition and fee bill, often without confirming their consent. While vendors say this model provides access, many students think it limits their options. Colleges and universities have a responsibility to prioritize the needs of students—not vendors—and that starts with reading the fine print….”
“Fleming, scholarly communications librarian and coordinator of the UTC Library Affordable Course Materials Initiative, says those thoughts and actions evolved beyond ensuring internet access. A growing number of faculty were committed to making class resources and necessities more accessible to all students.
She says faculty are now more committed to finding ways to get students the best, most affordable resources. “We had a huge increase in interest that’s persisted about creating affordable materials for students,” Fleming adds. …”