eCampusOntario recently announced the newest recipients of funding for the adoption/adaptation of existing open textbooks and open educational resources.* We are excited to have two new projects and extend our congratulations to Bill Ju for his proposed text Neuroscience – Canadian 1st Edition Open Textbook and Sanja Hinić-Frlog for her project An Introductory Open Textbook for Animal Physiology.
In addition to the cost savings for students, one of the biggest advantages of choosing to adapt an existing open textbook or other open educational resources is it gives faculty the legal right to add to, modify, or delete the content of the textbook to fit their specific course needs . As the copyright holder has already granted permission by releasing their work using an open — or Creative Commons — license, instructors may use and reuse, share, copy, retain and modify the textbook without any hindrance. **
The Neuroscience – Canadian 1st Edition Open Textbook will provide over 1200 undergraduate students with online access to recent research advances in neuroscience at no cost. It will be the first modifiable open textbook within the discipline that provides the flexibility to address instructional content needs related to the rapidly changing technologies, theories and concepts in neurosciences.
An Introductory Open Textbook for Animal Physiology will also integrate several resources in a single comprehensive presentation in order to enhance the quality of learning within the UTM Introductory Animal Physiology course and serve as a model for other instructors in biology and other related discipline areas. Where currently there is no individual textbook that meets the instructional needs of the learners, some 500 students will benefit with this new, adaptable, single resource.
Professors appreciate the ability to customize and reuse content to improve the learning experience, while students benefit from cost savings as the resources are delivered digitally, with no fees to access or download. Both instructors and their teams have already begun work on their projects and we look forward to seeing the results in March 2018.
* Projects funded by The Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development
** Benefits of adapting open texts modified from B.C. Open Textbook Adaptation Guide by Lauri Aesoph is used under a CC-BY 4.0 International license.