About katejhess

Librarian, homeschooler, researcher into play and learning.

New York Times articles on Open Textbook savings

The New York Times just published an article, Putting a Dent in College Costs With Open Source Textbooks, that outlines just how much students whose professors assign open textbooks are saving. This is a great article to share with a colleague who wants to know more about “open source textbooks” or OERs. The author points out that “Textbook costs are particularly burdensome for students at two-year community colleges; the cost, more than $1,300, is about 40 percent of the average cost of tuition, according to the College Board.” Further, as those of us who teach and work in community colleges know, “[Lack of] textbooks can interfere with education. Some students, for instance, may delay buying the required text for a class, and fall behind; or they simply don’t buy it at all, putting themselves at a disadvantage.” Open licensed educational resources can be a great option for faculty who want to save students money, but who also want to have greater control and greater flexibility in the resources assigned to students for reading, viewing or listening. See Kirkwood’s OER guide for more information and resources!


The Textbook: Yay or Nay?

I just read a great blog post from “The Good Enough Professor”. She writes:

More and more, we need to teach students to learn. Textbooks, which repackage reality into easily assimilated clumps of information, too often prevent us from doing that. Students want to adroitly navigate the world of information–hence their zeal for finding workarounds. By abandoning textbooks, we can better work with that grain rather than against it.

To read more see the full post here.

We’d love to hear your response to this post. Please post comments below!

Ready for a summer project?

Summer is the perfect time to explore open education resources (OER) for a course you want to rework or improve. Maybe you’re unhappy with your current textbook, maybe you’re planning out a course you haven’t taught before, or maybe you just want customize your course resources to better match what your students need access to. No matter the reason, summer is a great time to get this work done! Librarians Kate Hess and Nicole Forsythe, as well as other colleagues across the college, are ready to help you. Give us a call or an email and we’ll be happy to consult with you on how to proceed with your specific information needs in finding and using OER for your course.

Also: if you plan on converting a whole course to OER, you may want to apply for a 1 credit hour stipend. See this document for details.


Upcoming Webinar explains OER and Open Licensing

Open Educational Resources and Creative Commons

  • Date: February 27, 2014 (3:30pmEST / 12:30pmPST)
  • Length: 60 minutes
  • Featured Speakers: Cable Green, Creative Commons
  • Description: Cable will give a basic overview of Creative Commons, Creative Commons license use in education, and Creative Common’s integral role in the Open Educational Resources (OER) movement. webinar about Creative Commons and Open Educational Resources (OER), designed for the IGEN Career Pathways Consortium, but open to other grantees as well. Please see the link for access to the Adobe Connect webinar room.