From Judy Thomas, Director of Faculty Programs:
The University of Virginia Library is joining the Open Textbook Network (OTN), an international alliance of colleges and universities dedicated to enhancing students’ access to free, openly licensed course content.
As an OTN member, the University of Virginia Library will begin working this fall with faculty to promote awareness of a rapidly growing body of open educational resources (OER), developed by colleges and universities in this country and abroad, and to help them use this material in their courses. Future plans for the implementation of an OER program at UVA include supporting new content created by faculty, with the possibility of publication through Aperio, the Library’s new publishing service.
The UVA library has been working closely for the past year with fellow Virginia institutions on OER initiatives through the Virginia Academic Library Consortium (VIVA). Membership in these groups signals our commitment to open education as a way to promote innovations in teaching and learning while also addressing growing concerns about coursework affordability.
According to John Unsworth, Dean of Libraries and University Librarian, “Peer-reviewed open-access educational resources (OER) represent one way the faculty and the Library can contribute to making a UVA education more affordable and therefore more inclusive. I encourage faculty members in all the disciplines to consider providing peer review through the Open Textbook Network, to consult with their Library liaisons for an update on existing open-access resources that might be appropriate for the courses they teach, and to consider working with the Library on creating new OERs where those seem needed.”
For information about our efforts to support the use of open educational resources, contact Judith Thomas.