Type: Public 4-Year, Research University
Annual Enrollment: 28,635
UMass Amherst has been working on OER since 2011, when the library launched an Open Education Initiative, which provides incentive grants to faculty to pursue low-cost/free OER or library materials. The OEI is run out of the Scholarly Communication office of the library. However, the library partners with the Center for Teaching Excellence and Faculty Development, Academic Innovation, as well as individual administrators. In addition to the OEI, the Scholarly Communication office engages in educational efforts on campus to increase awareness around OER among faculty, administrators, and students.
Campus Entities Most Active in Efforts Advancing OER:
Library Departments Active in Efforts Advancing OER:
Academic Subjects With Greatest OER Traction:
Mechanisms to Support OER Included in the Following:
OER Staff Location:
The Provost’s Office and the UMass Amherst Libraries launched the Open Education Initiative in the Spring of 2011. The Open Education Initiative is a faculty incentive program that encourages the use of existing openly-licensed, low-cost, or free information resources to support our students’ learning.
Now in its ninth cycle, the Open Education Initiative has generated a total savings of over $1.8 million for students in classes that utilize open educational resources or free library material. The Library partners with the Institute for Teaching Excellence and Faculty Development (TEFD), Instructional Innovation, and Provost's Office to support our efforts.
The Open Education Initiative at UMass Amherst aims to:
1) Encourage the development of alternatives to high-cost textbooks by supporting the adoption, adaptation, or creation of Open Educational Resources (OER) .
2) Provide support to faculty to implement these approaches.
3) Lower the cost of college for students in order to contribute to their retention, progression, and graduation.
Encourage faculty to engage in new pedagogical models for classroom instruction.
Duration: 03/2018 - 09/2019
Scope: Affordable course content, including cost-free course content and OER
Primary OER Strategy: OER Adoption
Secondary OER Strategies: OER Curation, OER Adaptation, OER Pedagogy, OER Publication, OER Awareness
Unit Housing the Program:
Source of Program Funding:
Total Program Funding to Date: $ 129,000
Total Student Savings to Date: $ 1,800,000
Incentives Offered by the Program:
Conditions: Recipients are encouraged to openly license and freely share resources created or adapted
Total amount of incentive grants awarded to date: $ 129,000
Total number of incentive grants awarded to date: 83
Typical amount of each grant: $ 1,500
This 2-day event is part of a multi-state collaboration for open education in the northeast region. Although this is a regional conference, everyone is welcome - last year we even had attendees from as far as Alaska!
The conference welcomes new and experienced OER (open educational resources) advocates offering the opportunity to learn and share effective practices in awareness building, implementation, collaboration, strategy, and research.
On Thursday, 5/31/18, you will participate in facilitated conference sessions and have a chance to collaborate with national OER leaders as well as colleagues from across the northeast - including faculty, staff, and administrators who have a shared interest in OER.
The 2nd day of the summit (Friday, 6/1/18) will feature a Day of Action. This will include focused OER workshops where you will leave with a plan to achieve the next steps in your OER work or initiative.
Key topics will include:
Assessment/Measurement (beyond cost savings)
Starting an OER initiative
Hands-on OER - Create/Remix/Publish
Supporting Faculty in OER Adoption
Sustainability and Scale
Challenges of OER
We hope that you will join us in Amherst to learn something new from the national leaders, network with colleagues, and hear about all of the exciting OER work that’s happening in the northeast!
Date: May 31, 2018 - June 1, 2018
Scope: OER (open course content)
This video examines how the high cost of textbooks is affecting students at UMass Amherst and how instructors are utilizing Open Educational Resources as a way to reduce costs for students and transform their teaching.
UMass Amherst Libraries. (2018). OER @ UMass Amherst
Digital Project Manager in Scholarly Communication