ISKME's Campus Administrator Quickstart Guide supports college administrators in California and beyond as they work to create the policy and practice environments needed to foster increased open educational resources (OER) use for online learning. On January 26, 2021, a panel of OER experts explored ISKME's findings concerning how community colleges are utilizing OER to support high-quality learning experiences in the online setting.
-The guide for administrators
CALIFORNIA’S OER INVESTMENT: After California passed its $115 million investment in developing Zero Textbook Cost degree pathways, some California colleges are making news for their goals to substantially shift away from traditional textbooks and adopt more OER. College of the Canyons aims to have at least one-third of their courses use OER within the next two years. James Glapa-Grossklag, a dean at the college, estimated that by offering the choice of OER in some courses, the community college saves students about $5 million in textbook costs per year. Compton Community College has made an even bolder goal and shared that by 2035 they plan for 100% of their courses to use OER. This would eliminate student spending on textbooks. OER DIGEST – SEPTEMBER 2, 2021, Volume 136, by Aishah Abdullah
The OER Digest is a bi-weekly newsletter for open education updates, opportunities, and reminders. The primary audience is the OER community in the United States and Canada, although subscribers come from all around the world. New editions are published every other Thursday.
The OER Digest is a joint project of SPARC, Creative Commons USA, and the Student PIRGs.
SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) addresses Open Education as follows:
Expanding educational opportunities is more possible now than it has ever been before. Through the Internet, learners can find information instantly on virtually any topic, teachers can share their knowledge with students on another continent almost as easily as in their own classroom, and educational materials can be disseminated to a worldwide audience at virtually no marginal cost.
However, our systems for sharing information in education have not caught up with the potential of 21st century technology. Instead, the educational materials market is held captive by legacy publishing models that actively restrict the dissemination and innovative use of resources in a world that craves educational opportunities. Textbook prices have continued to rise rapidly, leaving too many students without access to their required materials. Digital offerings from traditional publishers come laced with access restrictions and expiration dates with little savings in return, and print editions are too often out of date by the time they hit the shelves.
For too long, our educational systems have operated with a fundamental disconnect between practices left over from the analog world, and the vast potential of technology and the Internet to support more affordable, effective teaching and learning. The movement for Open Education seeks to close this gap.
Open Education encompasses resources, tools and practices that are free of legal, financial and technical barriers and can be fully used, shared and adapted in the digital environment.
The foundation of Open Education is Open Educational Resources (OER), which are teaching, learning, and research resources that are free of cost and access barriers, and which also carry legal permission for open use. Generally, this permission is granted by use of an open license (for example, Creative Commons licenses) which allows anyone to freely use, adapt and share the resource—anytime, anywhere. “Open” permissions are typically defined in terms of the “5R’s”: users are free to Retain, Reuse, Revise, Remix and Redistribute these educational materials.