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Libraries to host workshop focused on lowering textbook costs

library room

WVU Libraries will host an Open Textbook Workshop and Textbook Review March 10 at 10 a.m. that will help instructors explore possible open textbook solutions to address  the growing cost of textbooks.

Over the past few years, 60% of students surveyed said they delayed purchasing textbooks until they received their financial aid and 70% chose not to purchase a required textbook because of cost, according to the Open Education Network, a group that studies how the high cost of course materials impede students’ academic success. 

Open textbooks can help alleviate the burden of textbook costs for students and provide faculty with content that can be customized for their courses. Open textbooks are complete and authoritative, adopted by many faculty across the country and licensed to be freely used, edited, and distributed.

Open Education Resources have provided access to learning materials and eliminated roadblocks for students during the pandemic.

“Please remember that students may be experiencing greater financial stress than usual if they’re not able to work due to the coronavirus,” Libraries Open Educational Resources Committee Chair Martha Yancey said. “You might want to consider investing your time in trying resources and tools that will continue to be free to you and your students after the crisis is over.”

The one-hour virtual session will help instructors learn more about open textbooks available in their field and how to incorporate them into their curriculum. WVU Librarians Hilary Fredette, Jing Qiu and Yancey will lead the workshop. 

After the workshop, there will be an opportunity to write a short review of an open textbook, which will benefit other faculty considering adopting open textbooks. A $200 stipend will be awarded for participation and a written review.

Complete an application by March 1. Capacity is limited and open textbooks are not available for all subjects. Preference is based on textbook subject availability.

Contact Yancey at 304-293-5039 or with questions or visit the open textbook webpage.