January 20, 2017

Summary by

Jaya Kannan, Director, Office of Digital Learning
Zachariah Claybaugh, Digital Learning Initiatives Librarian, and
Chelsea Stone, Digital Projects & Resource Management Librarian

Summary of OER work at SHU - Jan 2016 to Jan 2017

Dr. Rupendra Paliwal, Provost and Vice-President for Academic Affairs has driven the OER initiative at Sacred Heart University (SHU) since spring 2016. Under his guidance, the Office of Digital Learning, the SHU library, and faculty leaders have partnered to build a strategy for effective OER integration. This work includes the creation of an OER taskforce with faculty representation from all the colleges, the running of several workshop sessions to build awareness about OER, conducting of expansive research to stay abreast of the OER movement in higher education, and the development of a plan of action to identify and adopt OER in teaching and learning.

In summer 2016, the SHU library compiled and published a list of OER textbooks by discipline and shared it globally on the University’s Digital Commons site. In the short span of six months between July 2016 and January 2017, this list has been downloaded 778 times by users from 46 countries, including the USA. An updated version of this textbook list was published on January 3, 2017.

A pilot study to identify OER textbooks and resources in Math, Biology, and Sociology (subjects with potential for impact on the maximum number of students) was launched in fall 2016. The first step identified OER textbooks for six courses in these three areas. Evaluation criteria were developed and applied to reviewing OER textbooks for two courses – College Algebra and Introduction to Sociology. The Mathematics and Sociology departments reviewed these OER textbooks favorably and presented their findings to the task force in December 2016. As a next step, these OER textbooks for Algebra and Sociology will be piloted for adoption in 2017. Faculty from several other disciplines such as Nursing and Economics have also begun actively reviewing OER materials for teaching. This is only the first step in the institutional plan to select and adopt meaningful OER materials in teaching and learning. This will not only lower cost and improve student access, but will also enhance digital pedagogical approaches for faculty. SHU has also demonstrated its commitment to OER integration by providing faculty participants with instructional design support and financial incentives for their effort and time.

Click on the image below for Open Educational Resources for faculty  - By Discipline 


‌Acknowledgment of OER image in the banner at the top of the page thanks to - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Global_Open_Educational_Resources_Logo.svg