Call for nominations: $1,000 Affordable Course Materials Award — deadline extended to March 23

by D'Arcy Hutchings, Instructional Design Librarian, Assistant Professor  |   

Have you adopted open educational resources (OER)* or otherwise lowered the cost of course materials or textbooks in this or a previous semester? Do you know of a colleague who has?

If so, be sure to nominate yourself or a colleague(s) for a $1,000 Consortium Library Affordable Course Materials Award. The goal is to present at least 10 awards. For collaborative projects, each contributing member is eligible to receive up to $1,000 each.

In an environment of rising costs in higher education for students, the need to find ways to alleviate financial burden is critical to student success. The cost of textbooks and course materials continue to increase. In addition to the financial benefits for students, affordable content encourages a level playing field in which all students have access to materials on the first day of class, regardless of their financial situation. Some affordable alternatives, namely OER, increase retention and GPA (Colvard, et al.) while increasing opportunities for creative pedagogical approaches.

Faculty are able to directly impact textbook costs for students by forgoing commercial textbooks in favor of OER, Consortium Library resources, freely available web-based materials, creating their own course materials, etc. The Library Advisory Committee and the UAA/APU Consortium Library support these efforts.

Please send a one-page description of the work accomplished by you or your colleagues to the chair of the Library Advisory Committee, Sam Cook (, by March 23, 2020.

The one-page description could include the following:

  • Details regarding the cost savings to students;
  • What materials were used (please provide us access to the materials if available);
  • A description of how the course was adapted or improved.

Are you interested in transitioning your course(s) to OER or other no-cost textbook alternatives? You might also consider applying for UAA Textbook Affordability's 2020 Textbook Transformation Fellows program, which provides faculty with funding, training and support as they make these transitions.

* Open educational resources (OER) "are teaching, learning, and research resources that are free of cost and access barriers, and which also carry legal permission for open use" (SPARC).

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