The idea was based in part by Tidewater Community College’s all-Open Educational Resources (OER) or “Z-Degree” program, a business degree that uses open educational materials. Tidewater and Northern Virginia Community College started using OER textbooks in 2013. Over the last three years, more than 100 faculty members at 16 community colleges have created more than 70 open courses.
Showing that textbook costs have been getting Congress's attention since at least 2005
Affordable College Textbook Act has been introduced in both the House and Senate - as of Jan 2016 in committee
Gerry Hanley has a vision. He wants to plant a big thermometer on California State University Web sites to show how much money students are saving by not having to buy traditionally published textbooks or ancillary resources. His rough estimate: As of a few years ago, learners at the 23-campus, 460,200-student university system were spending $300 million a year on course materials — about $651 per student per school year. His goal is to cut that in half, and he believes the result will be higher graduation rates and better quality of education
Funded by an eminent group of generous sponsors*, College Open Textbooks (COT) is a project of the Silicon Valley Education Foundation and the Open Doors Group. The COT Collaborative is collection of colleges, governmental agencies, education non-profits, and other education-related organizations that are focused on the mission of driving awareness, adoptions**, and affordability of open textbooks. Our focus is on community colleges and other 2-year institutions of higher education and the first two years (lower division) of 4-year institutions. Some of our activities also apply to K-12, upper division, graduate school, and life-long learning.
Overview of Pros & Cons of OER
- At pilot’s end, Mercy’s Mathematics Department chair announced that, starting in fall 2012, all 27 sections (695 students) in basic mathematics would use [OER].
- Between spring 2011 [no sections using OER] and fall 2012 [all sections using OER], the math pass rate increased from 48.40 percent to 68.90 percent.
- Algebra courses dropped their previously used licenses and costly math textbooks and resources, saving students a total of $125,000 the first year.
students assigned free, open textbooks do as well or better than their peers in terms of grades, course completion, and other measures of academic success. If traditional textbooks are not producing better outcomes, then what exactly are students paying for?
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