Open Textbook Roundtable - May 29, 2014

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  • Overview and Introductions -- Meg Goodine (INSTL)
  • Psychology Open Textbook project – Rajiv Jhangiani (Psychology) slides available here
  • Round table discussion - All
  • Next steps planning - All

Questions, comments, next steps:

  • adopting open textbooks and resources is one strand of a larger "open philosophy" that can encompass open research, open publishing, open pedagogy.
  • focus should be expanded to other types of resources beyond textbooks (as an example, see
  • proprietary ebooks maybe "wolves in sheep's clothing" –touting convenience and easy access but having serious drawbacks (often don't work on multiple devices, students have only limited access, cannot be resold, not as inexpensive as open)
  • publishers "extras" (testbanks, homework systems, etc.) are often the "gateway drugs" that perpetuate dependence on textbooks. (Psychology dept. is participating in a test bank "sprint" with other BC colleagues to co-create their own test questions to accompany OER modules)
  • there is a need to coordinate and support a network or community of practice to connect interested people --where they can find and share information about current projects and point other interested colleagues to. (Possibly the library and INSTL can work together to support this.)
  • having the local ability to print hard copies (currently at SFU) would be beneficial. Perhaps there is a way to make use of the existing inter-library loan delivery mechanism for this or have small numbers of pre-printed copies in the bookstore (the Physics project reported 11% of students said they would have liked a printed version--only one student actually ordered one)
  • faculty may need more guidance around copyright and Creative Commons licensing
  • some faculty already have resources they would like to share and are looking for a place to do this (Public Safety, Physics)
  • BC librarians are working on a poster and guides for OER use to be ready for June 2014 (see the BCcampus blog post and the BCOER wiki for more info)

Lessons from students and faculty:

  • access to resources across multiple devices and platforms is important to students
  • traditional bound textbooks are a luxury, while sometimes more desirable, they are a luxury that many cannot afford
  • ability to search quickly is a key advantage but students may need some guidance navigating and searching in different viewers
  • adopting open resources helps solidify rapport with your students (shows your concern for their circumstances)
  • Laura Flinn graciously shares these observations and links from the Physics Department's Open Textbook Pilot

Attendees: Ariana Arguello; Lesley Hemsworth; Wayne Podrouzek; Matthew Reid; Rajiv Jhangiani; Marti Alger; June Kaminski; Tally Wade; Todd Mundle; Caroline Daniels; Farhad Dastur; Mohamed Sheriff; Candy Ho; Donna Hrynkiw; Laura Flinn; Olivier Clarinval; Michael Nyenhuis; Diane Salter Menzo

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