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Student Impact

The high and ever-increasing costs of textbooks and assigned course readings are a growing concern for many students across The Claremont Colleges. As detailed in an August 2016 Bureau of Labor Statistics report, college textbook prices have risen 88% in the past decade, with individual textbooks often costing over $200 each.

Open Educational Resources (OERs) are educational materials and resources that are publicly accessible meaning that they are openly available for anyone to use and under some licenses to re-mix, improve and redistribute.

Students! Want to advocate for using an OER in your class?

Tools for Learning

You may already be familiar with open access journals and books. When a source is OER, it means that the creators of these resources are licensing the content so that it is publicly accessible and may be re-purposed by others for educational applications.

Examples of OERs may include:

    • Learning content: Full courses, course material, content modules, learning objects, collections, and journals.
    • Tools: Software to support the creation, delivery, use and improvement of open learning content including searching and organization of content, content and learning management systems, content development tools, and online learning communities.
    • Implementation resources: Intellectual property licenses to promote open publishing of materials, design-principles, and localization of content.
Using Open Textbooks

A growing body of textbooks are being made available online and are 100% free to use, print, or remix. Browse the collections of open textbooks included below (high quality and written by faculty). If you find a resource you’d like to use, add the hyperlink for that book to your Sakai or Canvas site.

  • Open Textbook Library via the University of Minnesota. All textbooks are under a Creative Commons license and are free to use and download. Many are peer reviewed by faculty members who have used these books in their classes.
  • OpenStax via Rice University. Freely licensed textbooks available to read online or download in multiple formats. Also includes some classroom resources.
  • Open SUNY Textbooks via the State University of New York (SUNY). Produced as part of an open access publishing initiative by SUNY Libraries, these books are written and peer reviewed by faculty, and they fall under a Creative Commons license.
  • InTechOpen Home to nearly 3,000 open books, InTech is the world’s largest science, technology, and medicine open access book publisher.  It encourages teachers to use their materials in the classroom.

Librarians can help faculty identify free or lower-cost textbooks, e-books, journal articles, or other materials to use in your courses as alternatives to expensive textbooks.

Want More Information?

For help with resources and information on finding affordable course materials for your class, contact your subject librarian.