Open Educational Resources Unit We put affordable learning first. You can too.

Call for proposals: Affordable Learning Grant

All OSU faculty are invited to apply for funding to adapt, adopt or author an open textbook.

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Open Educational Resources Unit services

The OERU provides a variety of services for faculty who are interested in adopting, adapting or authoring open educational resources.

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Student OER feedback

Student feedback is a critical part of making high quality education more affordable. We asked our students to take part in a survey focused on textbooks and affordability.

If you purchased textbooks for your courses, do you think it was worth it?

It's 50/50. Either we use the materials constantly, or we barely touch them. It's unfortunate that we don't know which class will fit into which category...

If you could get your textbooks for free, what would you do with the money instead?

I would save it for tuition, for rent, a car, groceries, everything. That money would go such a long way in other parts of my life.

What is something you’d like faculty to know about your access codes or textbooks?

Something I'd like faculty to know about my access codes or textbooks is understanding the shipping times it may take for some Ecampus students to receive them...

How many hours a week do you work to afford school?

I work 40 hours a week and I still cannot afford school. I have had to take out loans and I try to make monthly payments as much as possible...

Have any of your instructors had 0 cost textbooks or course materials?

Deanna Lloyd provided all reading materials within Canvas, and it was extremely beneficial...

Measuring Affordability

OSU is committed to being transparent about our efforts to improve the affordability of course learning materials and therefore access to an OSU education. We've developed a dashboard to track these statistics in real time.

View the Textbook Affordability Dashboard »

Affordability Matters badge

We created the Affordability Matters initiative to recognize faculty who are working to lower the cost of course materials.

Learn about Affordability Matters »

Featured stories

Textbooks are way too expensive. Oregon State is saving students millions.

College textbooks are way too expensive, and Oregon State — with its faculty leading the way — is on a mission to make college more affordable and accessible for students. With the support of the OSU Open Educational Resources Unit, an increasing number of OSU instructors are adopting, adapting and authoring no-cost and low-cost course materials.

OER at Work: Ditching traditional textbooks for a true ‘companion’ to learning

Cut down on chapter length. Get rid of drawn-out, technical explanations. Connect the text directly to the coursework. Oh, and make it free to every student who needs it. Those were a few of the goals Lara Letaw established when she set out to write a textbook on software engineering.

OER at Work: A book on keeping information private that’s available for all to read

In the introduction to the textbook she authored on digital security, Oregon State University associate professor Glencora Borradaile writes in part that they want the book “to be accessible to any curious person.” This means that the information within can ideally be understood even by those without a background in cryptography. But the desire for it to be “accessible” is twofold.

About Open Educational Resources

Open educational resources (OERs) aim to increase the world’s access to knowledge through open textbooks and reusable digital components. OER at Oregon State is a unit within the Division of Ecampus. OER are for all classes, including on-campus, online, and hybrid. Learn more »