UNF Open Educational Resources (OER) Initiative
To support and incentivize faculty adoption of high-quality Open Educational Resources (OER) in place of traditional and expensive textbooks.
- Lower student costs by eliminating expensive instructional materials when possible.
- Support faculty experimentation with OERs.
- Assist faculty in finding and using academically equivalent OER content.
UNF’s OER Initiative is a joint project by the Center for Instruction and Research Technology (CIRT) and the Thomas G. Carpenter Library that seeks to lower college costs for UNF students by encouraging UNF faculty to adopt quality open resources in their courses. The Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition defines OER as “teaching, learning, and research resources that either reside in the public domain or carry a license that permits their free use, sharing and adaptation by all users. From textbooks to course materials, videos to software, journals to digital collections, the creation and sharing of open materials can reduce the cost of textbooks, expand access to knowledge, and support student success.” 
For additional information about OER please visit the Carpenter Library Guide.
Since 2006, the cost of college textbooks has increased 88 percent, compared with an increase of 21 percent for all items, according to the Consumer Price Index.  The cost of textbooks also puts college students at risk of falling behind. A 2016 survey of more than 20,000 Florida college students found that textbook prices caused 67 percent of them to not purchase a required textbook, 26 percent to drop a class and 20 percent to fail a course. 
In this initial call, we are seeking proposals focused on adoption of existing OER materials, such as peer-reviewed open texts and licensed content from the Library. In future years, we anticipate expanding the call to include proposals for authoring open texts/courseware. The application period was open from Oct. 23 to Nov. 27, 2017. Project timelines may vary but must be completed by August 1, 2018, with implementation no later than Spring 2019.
To encourage further participation in the OER Initiative, we will be accepting applications for an extension to the initial cohort through May 29, 2018. Project timelines for participants in this extension may vary but must be completed by January 7, 2019, with implementation no later than Fall 2019.
- Open to professors, associate professors, assistant professors, instructors, and lecturers.
- Special consideration given to faculty proposals with the potential for broad impact, including large enrollment and Gen Ed courses.
- Proposals must include a letter of support from department chair.
- Proposals must include a description of the impact of financial savings for students.
- Courses already using open access materials exclusively are not eligible.
- All required textbooks must be available at no cost and the cost of any other instructional materials may not exceed $25.
Support for Selected Proposals
Selected proposals that are considered likely to achieve the initiative’s proposal are eligible for a $1000 award.
Before starting the process of transforming their courses to use OER, awardees will complete the following training workshops:
- Kick-off Meeting/Introduction to Open Educational Resources (Face-to-face, date/time TBD)
- Copyright Overview (online)
- Introduction to Instructional Design (online)
Awardees will also have access to instructional design and curriculum alignment services from CIRT and library faculty for assistance in identifying resources.
Awardees will be required to:
- Attend a kickoff meeting on Friday June 8, from 1 - 2:30 pm to meet project staff, discuss open licensing, and outline technological, pedagogical, and research support.
- Submit a final project report that includes a narrative summarizing the challenges and accomplishments of the experience of finding/using OER materials, impact on teaching, impact on students, and lessons learned.
- Provide a copy of the revised syllabus or course outline used for the class and make available to other department faculty teaching the same course.
Funds will be distributed in 2 payments; 50% upon completion of training sessions, and 50% upon project completion and reporting. Selected proposals will be highlighted on an initiative website.
We are accepting applications through May 29, 2018. Project timelines may vary but must be completed by January 7, 2019, with implementation no later than Fall 2019. A letter of support from the academic chair is required.
To submit a proposal:
If your proposal is approved for funding, you will receive an email with further instructions for getting started on the project
Note: One proposal/one course per faculty member.