Open textbooks are “textbooks that have been funded, published, and licensed to be freely used, adapted, and distributed” (Open Textbook Network, 2016). Their publication and adoption is increasing across academic disciplines in higher education and open textbooks can offer students and instructors a number of benefits. The open licensing of these texts gives individual instructors the flexibility to augment, customize, and update the content. Open textbooks are freely accessible; they can present significant course materials cost savings for students. Because access is open, open textbooks are available to all students from the first day of the course and indefinitely thereafter, facilitating students’ use of open textbooks as resources for subsequent courses and beyond university study. Open textbooks can be used electronically, or printed in part or full, providing instructors and students with multiple format options and the ability to travel light.
In this session, Merinda McLure, Open Educational Resources (OER) Librarian, and Meg Brown-Sica, Libraries Assistant Dean for Scholarly Communications and Collection Development will address the what, why, and how of open textbooks in higher education currently. Dr. James Wilson, Assistant Professor, Mathematics will share his experiences and perspectives as a faculty member who has adopted open textbooks for course instruction. This workshop will be especially informative for faculty and instructors who teach, current graduate teaching assistants, and graduate students who hope to teach in the future. We will welcome questions and discussion throughout the session.
Goals and Target Audience:
Target audience: This session will be of interest to faculty and instructors who teach, to graduate teaching assistants, and to graduate students who hope to teach in the future.
1. Participants will gain an understanding of open textbooks and their current adoption in higher education.
2. Participants will have the opportunity to learn from the experience and insights of one faculty member who has used open textbooks in his course instruction.
3. Participants will depart with resources for their own further exploration of open textbooks and open educational resources (OER).