University of Houston Libraries held a reception to celebrate the first winner cohort of the UH Alternative Textbook Incentive Program (ATIP). Faculty shared how they have implemented open educational resources (OER) at UH with the help of the grant.
UH faculty members applied for an award ranging from $500 to $2500 that would go toward implementation of an open or alternative textbook in a summer 2018, fall 2018, or spring 2019 course. 25 proposals were received. Awards were granted based on projected cost savings for students; frequency of course(s) taught; and feasibility of the successful implementation of the proposal.
2018 – 2019 ATIP winners are:
- Samuel Brower, Education
- Alexander Bruton, Spanish
- Teresa Edgar, Curriculum and Instruction
- Tomika Greer, Human Resource Development
- Terry Kirk and Sandra Lee, Nursing
- Dejun Tony Kong, Management
- Aditi Marwaha, Pharmacy
- David Mayerich, Electrical and Computer Engineering
- Abinadi Meza, Art
- Gopal Pandurangan, Computer Science
- Andrea Prosperetti and Amit Amritkar, Mechanical Engineering
- Arlene Ramirez and Agnes DeFranco, Hotel and Restaurant Management
- Nouhad Rizk, Computer Science
- Nathan Shepley, English
- Elizabeth Simas, Political Science
- Sandra Thompson, Law
ATIP is part of the University’s initiative to improve students’ academic experience by mitigating the high cost of textbooks. Faculty members are incentivized to adopt, adapt, or create an open textbook for use in their courses. Five of this year’s awarded projects were for creating open educational resources (OER), seven involve the adoption of OER and/or library materials, and three involve a combination thereof. Awards for the first cohort total $23,500. Projected student savings are based in part on enrollment and amount to approximately $231,074 in the first year of the award cycle.
Award winner Nathan Shepley has assigned selected parts of different textbooks for his students. “My students then access the book through MD Anderson Library’s catalog and read whichever version they like: a PDF copy or, if available, an online version,” Shepley said. “This process keeps me from assigning parts of a textbook that we don’t get around to in any detail. It keeps the students and me focused on textbook explanations that I still find relevant. Plus it lets me make cost-free changes to my assigned readings midway through a semester if the need arises.”
Ariana Santiago is the OER coordinator at UH Libraries. She leads the planning, implementation, and assessment of a UH OER program. Her research interests include undergraduate student success, critical pedagogy, and diversity, equity, and inclusion in libraries. She was recently named a Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) Open Education Leadership Program fellow.