A recently released report by the Student PIRGS, “Open Textbooks: The Billion Dollar Solution,” examines the potential savings for students when faculty move to open textbooks. By analyzing five pilot projects around the country, the researchers determined that a student saves $128 when a course uses an open textbook instead of a traditional publisher’s textbook. The institutions included in this study were UMass Amherst, Kansas State University, Tacoma Community College, University of Kansas, and University of Maryland.
The open textbook and open educational resources movement is gaining momentum around the country. Outreach College is leading the initiative at UHM with over 50 “zero textbook cost” courses on the summer session schedule. The Library and the EMC at Leeward are working with faculty in several divisions to identify quality OER and turn their courses into “zero textbook cost” courses. See OER@Leeward for more info.