Affordable Learning Grant

Call for Proposals

The Open Educational Resources Unit is pleased to announce that funding for faculty to adapt, adopt or author an open textbook is now available.

As many of you know, the cost of commercial textbooks, along with the cost of tuition and living expenses in general, keeps rising. An open textbook is a textbook licensed under an open copyright license, and made available online to be freely used by students, faculty, and members of the public.

Open textbooks and other open educational resources (OER) can be mixed and matched, edited and have new materials added to them. Open textbooks and course materials allow you to pick and choose and use only the parts you want or need. Open textbooks can also be printed at low-cost.

Using an open textbook is an important step in making learning more affordable and equitable, in retention and student success. Most importantly, using an open textbook means all of your student will have access to their text on the first day of class.

Grant Types

  • Adopt an existing open textbook or OER.
  • Adapt an existing open textbook or OER.
  • Author a new open textbook or OER.

Grant Funding Levels

Category Description Amount1 Explanation
4 Replaces any Bacc-Core required course materials with open access materials OR has the potential to impact over 300 student annually Up to $15,000 See eligibility criteria for high enrollment courses below
3 Department or program level replacement of a text used in multiple courses or sections. Between $10,000-$12,000 This is a commitment by an entire department or program to move to an open educational resource
2 Implements open access materials for any class under 300 students Up to $8,000 Either replaces a current textbook or supports the adaptation or authoring of an OER for a course
1 Updates to existing open textbook published by Oregon State University OR supports the adoption of an existing OER Up to $5,000 This is for current Oregon State faculty who have published an open textbooks and want to make changes to the current content OR who want to adopt an OER for a course

  1. Amount depends in part on the grant type (adopt, adapt, author).


All faculty (tenured, tenure-track, and instructors) who would normally teach a course using a conventional textbook (that students must purchase or rent in print or electronically) will be eligible to apply for a grant. Courses may be face-to-face, hybrid, or online.

Criteria for Successful Proposals

  • Oregon State faculty member is the sole or primary author.
  • Student savings during grant period compared to grant amount.
  • Quality considerations such as accessibility of proposed content, support for user experience and curriculum, and appeal for future adoption in other settings.
  • Inclusion of a quantitative or qualitative assessment plan.
  • Geared towards a specific field of study.
  • Connects with one of the institutional goals or one of the signature areas of distinction.
  • A statement of support from your Department Head, Assistant/Associate Dean and Dean.

All grantees will be required to:

  • Attend four required workshops and meeting with the OER unit director on a regular basis.
  • Work with their department to determine a mutually acceptable disbursement process.
  • Obtain written agreement to license the work of contributors and collaborators working on the project as CC BY 4.0 Int’l, submit permissions document, and give credit in the work.
  • Use only CC BY licensed works, public domain materials or their own originally authored works or works created by the OERU. The Author(s) must secure any necessary rights to existing content included in the final text and clearly mark this content in the submitted draft.
  • Provide complete citations and attributions for all images, graphs, charts or other media.
  • Relinquish the possibility of selling or transferring exclusive rights for grant-funded work in such a way that would limit the materials form being editable and freely available.
  • Submit a 1-page project evaluation at the time specified in the project timeline in Appendix 1.
  • Use the work in courses offered for at least 2 terms after the completion of the project.
  • Submit a written impact assessment at the end of the 2 terms specified above.
  • Submit the completed materials to the OSU Institutional Repository
  • Additional roles and responsibilities as outlined in Appendix 4.
  • Abide by Retention Schedule


Funding is provided from OERU to the Academic Unit, which has sole discretion in how the funds are distributed.

Funds will be processed as a Budget Change JV to a dedicated index within their department. These funds may be used for purposes such as course buy-out, professional travel, research support, etc. Advances may be available, with the schedule for disbursement and associated deliverables to be determined in consultation with the author.


The Open Educational Resources Unit will provide support to grantees. Examples of support include:

  • Assistance in locating appropriate openly licensed course materials
  • Building content in PressBooks to create a new Open Educational Resource
  • ADA compliance review
  • Media development
  • Workshops and professional development

Review and selection committee

A committee of representatives from Ecampus, teaching faculty, student body and the library will review applications, giving preference to applications that are expected to deliver the greatest cost savings to students (the number of students expected to enroll, multiplied by the average cost of the book being replaced).

Deadline for Proposals

Proposals are due at 5 p.m. P.T. If you are considering applying for one of the Affordable Learning Grants, contact Stefanie Buck to learn more.

Proposals are reviewed by a committee 3 times a year. Call for proposals will be posted in OSU Today.

RFP Proposals Due
03/24/23 05/19/23

To submit your proposal, please use the OER proposal template and email the completed form to Stefanie Buck.

Access OER proposal template


Funding for the Affordable Learning Grants is provided by Ecampus