On February 8, in an open letter to the Cavalier Daily about “Addressing high textbook costs,” Library Director of Information Policy Brandon Butler, Open Publishing Librarian Dave Ghamandi, and Director of Scholarly Repository Services Ellen Ramsey, responded to editorials raising concerns about textbook costs acting as a road block to academic success for many students.
The Library team offered support to alleviate the problem. While recognizing that faculty often provide students easy access to the Library’s electronic journal articles and e-books on UVACollab, they said the Library might also purchase “e-book versions of frequently-assigned textbooks” that would allow unlimited simultaneous access by students. They also suggested that the Library might supplement traditional electronic reserves by promoting “the adoption and creation of open resources—which are free to download, edit and share.”
Open Educational Resources, the writers said, is “a way to free teachers to experiment with teaching materials” and potentially spark “innovation in the field in the same way that open source software has led to an explosion of innovation in software.”