In yesterday’s post, we discussed the case for open education at the University of San Francisco and summarized what Gleeson Library|Geschke has done thus far.
Today we’ll go into more detail regarding the OER Faculty Fund, a pilot program established in 2018. The first cycle of grant recipients were three faculty with very different projects.
- Bhavya Mohan and textbook analysis
Professor Mohan looked into using the open source statistics software R and completed a side-by-side comparison of the 16th and 17th editions of Principles of Marketing to conclude the content was the effectively the same, saving her students up to $150 each. She said that the grant was most helpful in offering recognition and encouragement; it also was immensely helpful to be able to pay for student assistance and free up her own time. For more about her work, see her faculty page.
- Jonathan Hunt and program analysis
Professor Hunt work with the bookstore to analyze the cost of textbooks for students taking classes with the Department of Rhetoric and Language. He concluded that adoption of no-cost text options by the Department of Rhetoric and Language for Core A courses could save University of San Francisco students over $250,000 per year. He has shared his report with his colleagues and is working to implement change across the department. For more about his work, see his faculty page.
- Giacomo Fiore and OER creation
Professor Fiore wrote a modular textbook for his music appreciation students. citing lack of resources for people with no music background. The 25 biographies are available on the Scholarship Repository at https://repository.usfca.edu/faculty_books_2019/13/. For more about his work, see his faculty page.
We were so happy to be able to fund these three very different projects because they served as models to people who were interested in OER but new to the movement.
Also, a special shout out to Professor Roberta D’Alois, who was already using an open education textbook and simply needed help getting print copies made they could print copies for students who wanted them.
We know that there are many on campus who are making similar efforts. If you know of a professor who should be recognized and celebrated for their committment to free or affordable educational materials for students, please contact Charlotte Roh, Scholarly Communications Librarian at croh2(at)usfca.edu.