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Wednesday, November 2 • 10:55am - 11:20am
Anatomy of a System-Wide Open Education Initiative

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Many community colleges, universities, and even entire state systems have launched open educational resources (OER) initiatives. For most, the focus has been on saving students money by replacing expensive textbooks with openly licensed, "free" textbooks. Students have indeed saved millions of dollars already. Motivated by these first movers, the University System of New Hampshire (USNH) has launched a similar initiative, but rather than focusing on textbooks alone, the system has decided to support an Open Education initiative that includes OER, open pedagogy and open access. USNH enrolls 34,000 students, and consists of four public institutions: Granite State College, Keene State College, Plymouth State University, and the University of New Hampshire. To our knowledge, we are the first 4-year state university system in the country to implement an Open Education initiative. We believe that embracing and supporting all three components of open education provides a platform for transforming our educational experiences into truly student-centered learning opportunities. This presentation will explain how we built support for this initiative, and share results from the first phase of implementation.

The initiative will kick off at the sixth annual USNH Academic Technology Institute (ATI) in June 2016. Historically, the four-day conference focused on faculty professional development around specific academic technologies (hardware, software, etc.) and how they could be used by the 40 faculty ambassadors attending each institute. Over the last three years, we have shifted focus from the technology to the pedagogy. In 2014, Cable Green gave an invited keynote about Creative Commons licensing, the broken publishing model, and working and sharing openly. For most faculty and support staff there, this was an exciting and new way to think not only about content, but about teaching and learning as a whole. Enough energy and interest came out of ATI 2014 that we decided on an "Open Education" theme for ATI 2015; this again generated a considerable amount of excitement and awareness around Open Education, which led to the development of an OER pilot project with nine University of New Hampshire faculty. The pilot project saved students over $148,000 in the fall 2015 term alone. Using that and other supporting data from the pilot, we created a formal proposal to expand support for open education capacity across all four campuses in the upcoming year-long initiative. Funds were also requested for technical support, library resources, website development and maintenance, marketing, project management, administrative assistance, and program assessment. The system approved the proposed budget for $385,000 which is $285,000 above what had been budgeted for previous ATIs. The majority of the fifty faculty ambassadors participating in this initiative have chosen OER for their projects but there will also be a contingent of faculty working in the open pedagogy and open access areas. At OpenEd16, we will share faculty projects and success stories, but our primary focus will be on presenting the process by which we developed and implemented this system-wide initiative and on sharing preliminary results.

avatar for Robin DeRosa

Robin DeRosa

Director, Learning & Libraries, Plymouth State University
Robin DeRosa is the Director of Learning & Libraries at Plymouth State University in New Hampshire. As part of her duties, she directs the Open Learning & Teaching Collaborative, a dynamic hub for praxis around pedagogical innovation, open education, and integrated approaches to teaching... Read More →
avatar for Scott Robison

Scott Robison

Dir, Digital Learning And Design, Portland State University
I lead the eLearning Design team in the Office of Academic Innovation at Portland State University.I’m working to provide faculty support resources that encourage open education practices to empower accessible, learner-driven educational experiences.Twitter: @otterscotter

Wednesday November 2, 2016 10:55am - 11:20am EDT