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Thursday, November 20 • 11:00am - 11:30am
The Open Textbook Initiative: Partners and Progress

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Textbook costs create a financial burden on college students that can impact their higher education access and academic success. Open textbooks can help alleviate the burden of textbook costs. Open textbooks are full, real textbooks that are licensed to be freely used, edited, and distributed. An increasing number of quality open textbooks are available for faculty to choose from. But adoptions of open textbooks by faculty have come slowly.

During our three years of experience with open textbooks at the University of Minnesota, we discovered several reasons why faculty don't adopt open textbooks, and then found solutions and strategies to help faculty overcome the barriers. From those solutions, the University of Minnesota has developed an initiative to help other institutions overcome those barriers. The initiative includes faculty and staff development models, textbook quality reviews, and a toolkit of resources that are freely available.

Wanting other institutions to benefit from the expertise and successful strategies we developed, we created a toolkit of materials and curricula (Creative Commons licensed of course) that can be used at other institutions to help their faculty adopt open textbooks. We then traveled to several partner institutions to provide faculty development and engagement, and also trained local staff how to continue the work after we leave.

This session will be an update on the initiative. We will discuss the lessons learned as we traveled to other institutions and worked within a number of different environments and contexts. We will provide information about the number of open textbook adoptions resulting from the initiative and the potential savings by students. We will attempt to involve staff from partner institutions to talk about the impact of the initiative on their campuses.

In addition, changes to the University of Minnesota's open textbook library (open.umn.edu) will be presented. After two years, the open textbook library has had 132,000 visits from around the world. Faculty from partner institutions have contributed reviews which help visitors better judge the quality of the materials. During this presentation, we will discuss changes to the open textbook library functionality and collection.

avatar for David Ernst

David Ernst

Executive Director, Open Education Network
Dr. David Ernst is graduate faculty, Chief Information Officer, and Director of the Center for Open Education in the College of Education and Human Development at the University of Minnesota. David is also the Executive Director of the Open Textbook Network, which works to improve... Read More →
avatar for Kristi Jensen

Kristi Jensen

eLearning Librarian, University of Minnesota
Kristi Jensen is the Program Development Lead for the eLearning Support Initiative at the University of Minnesota Libraries. She co-manages the Libraries' Partnership for Affordable Content grant program, is working with campus partners (the Center for Educational Innovation, Academic... Read More →

Thursday November 20, 2014 11:00am - 11:30am EST
Crystal Ballroom

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