Faculty from across the Minnesota State system have been participating in ten-week Open Educational Resources (OER) Learning Circle cohorts in an effort to reduce textbook and classroom material costs for students. On Friday, May 31, those faculty members gathered at the Minnesota State system office to share and celebrate all of their OER accomplishments during the Fall 2018 and Spring 2019 semesters at the 2nd annual OER Project Showcase.
The OER Project Showcase featured 39 faculty from 20 colleges and universities from across the state, highlighting projects that:
1. Re-design courses around free or low-cost materials for students
2. Develop support materials to accompany existing open textbooks
3. Author open textbooks for developmental education or transfer pathways courses
As faculty presented their work, it became apparent that they were very effectively integrating equity, inclusivity, and cultural diversity into the creation of their OER materials and the design of their OER courses. Examples of this include:
• Creation of reading writing materials using Arabic and American Indian literature
• Content focusing on rural Minnesota community life
• Integration of the use of design thinking and UDL (Universal Design for Learning) principles
• Practicing open pedagogy by engaging learners in the construction of their learning materials and the creation of materials relevant to the everyday lives of a diverse student body
• Modifying materials to address the needs of multilingual students
• Addressing issues of accessibility through varying modalities, html editor capabilities, and formatting guidelines
More to come! Minnesota State faculty may apply for an OER Learning Circle each semester and applications for fall are due September 9, 2019. For more information contact Karen Pikula at firstname.lastname@example.org.