Open Educational Resources (OER) are free online teaching and learning materials. They include textbooks, quizzes, videos, learning modules and more.
On the occasion of Open Education Week (the first week in March), we have created this guide to help raise awareness of an important issue affecting our students: textbook affordability and the existence of open-access alternatives.
Why use OER?
OER has been shown to increase student learning while breaking down barriers of affordability and accessibility. Feldstein et al. (2012) conducted a research study at Virginia State University, where OER were implemented across nine different courses in the business department. Researchers found that students in courses that used OER more frequently had better grades and lower failure and withdrawal rates than their counterparts in courses that did not use OER.
60% of students have delayed purchasing textbooks until they’ve received their financial aid.
OERs give faculty the ability to customize course materials, creating a tailored course packet or textbook instead of being bound to a traditional one-size-fits-all model. Customization gives faculty control over the quality of their course materials as well as the type and timing of updates to textbooks and other resources.
Adapted from Pennsylvania State University
Contact Daina Dickman, Scholarly Communication Librarian, or your subject librarian for information on OER materials for your classes and subject area.
What are Affordable Learning Solutions (AL$)?
What is AL$?
CSU's Affordable Learning Solutions (AL$) is a program that enables faculty to choose and provide more affordable, quality educational content for their students. By reducing CSU student course material expenses, more students acquire the educational resources they need to succeed at CSU. With AL$, faculty and students have greater access to quality free and lower-cost learning materials through a variety of programs and partnerships.