Minnesota State Faculty Use OER to Save Students Over $1,000,000 on Textbooks

Open Educational Resources (OER) are learning materials that anyone can retain, reuse, revise, remix, or redistribute; all made possible through the use of Creative Commons licensing. In recent years, OER materials have been used as inexpensive replacements for expensive publisher textbooks, driven in no small part by dedicated open textbook organizations like OpenStax, BCcampus, and the Open Textbook Network.

There are many advantages to OER, but due to their potential for lowering the overall cost of a higher education through suppression of textbook costs, one popular measure for assessing their impact is through direct savings to students.

In Minnesota State, faculty everywhere have been adopting, creating, and improving upon OER. Educational Innovations at the Minnesota State system office surveyed faculty to get a sense of the collective financial impact of their OER efforts, and here is what we found!

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1. Open Image – ©opensource.com via Flickr CC-BY-SA
2. Icons made by Icon Pond from www.flaticon.com is licensed by CC 3.0 BY

Total Savings to Students: $1,083,767
Campuses Represented: 19
Students Benefitted: 8559
Faculty Reporting: 70

On behalf of Educational Innovations, thank you to all faculty who participated in this year’s open textbook cost savings survey. Your commitment to providing high quality and affordable learning materials for your students is making a difference.

If you have questions about OER or would like to learn more about opportunities to use OER on your campus, contact Kimberly Johnson at kimberly.johnson@minnstate.edu.

For questions related to the open textbook cost savings survey, contact Stephen Kelly at stephen.kelly@minnstate.edu.

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