Open Oregon State newsletter

Spring term  •  May 17, 2018

Oregon State University

This is a quarterly newsletter from Open Oregon State, a unit within OSU’s Division of Extended Campus that works with faculty like you to create no-cost course materials to be used in classes on-campus — in Corvallis, Bend and Newport — and online with OSU Ecampus.

Summer is the perfect time to tackle a new project that will help make college more accessible and affordable for your students. You can adopt, adapt or author an open textbook and develop other open educational resources (OER).

Discover how to get started and join your Oregon State colleagues in the open movement.

  Learn more  

Physics instructor’s OER project a major success

  K.C. Walsh

K.C. Walsh began implementing free, digital resources in his introductory physics courses four years ago, mostly to help ease his students’ financial burden but also to improve student success.

The results? Students are earning better grades, reporting higher levels of satisfaction, and there has been a significant decrease in the drop/fail/withdraw rate.

Also, last fall Walsh replaced a publisher’s textbook with an open source version, generating annual student savings of $70,000 in doing so. And it’s all thanks to data-driven research.

  Read the article  

You can help students save $30 million by 2030

  Affordable Learning Initiative chart

Here’s an ambitious goal: Save OSU students $30 million by 2030. Want to help us reach it?

The Affordable Learning Initiative — a partnership between Open Oregon State, the OSU Libraries and Press, and the OSU Beaver Store — aims to ensure that 100 percent of Oregon State students have no-cost or low-cost access to course materials on the first day of class.

Representatives from those three campus units gave a presentation earlier this month at the OSU Ecampus Faculty Forum. Faculty like you will lead the charge in helping the university achieve this goal. Learn how you can play a vital role in making it happen.


OSU faculty projects will add to virtual bookshelves

  Open textbooks

Dozens of Oregon State faculty members are in the process of authoring or adapting textbooks that will soon be freely available. Here’s a quick look at a few ongoing projects:

• Three biochemists in the College of Science — Ryan Mehl, Kari van Zee and Kelsey Kean — are developing an open textbook and related course content thanks to a grant from Open Oregon State. The textbook provides all materials for both students and the instructor for a successful course-based undergraduate research experience in chemical biology.

Andreas Schmittner is leading a team of faculty in the College of Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Sciences in creating a book that gives an introduction to climate science. Designed for undergraduate students of both science and non-science majors and for anyone interested in the topic, the book is quantitative and uses many graphs and numbers, but only a minimum amount of math is required.

• To fill a void, Yvette Gibson (Department of Animal and Rangeland Sciences) is authoring a comprehensive textbook that covers ecological fundamentals and multiple ecosystems. Her project also involves a set of OER interactive learning tools that are designed to foster engagement with the text and support course learning objectives.


Did you know?

Oregon State University faculty members who adopted, adapted and/or authored open textbooks and other no-cost course materials helped save OSU students more than $1.5 million last year alone.