Advocate for OER

OER is already starting to spread across campus. Some instructors have partially switched to open alternatives, while others have replaced their traditional textbooks entirely. USU Libraries' OER Team is dedicated to increasing awareness about OER and helping instructors find and adopt OER their courses.

What Can Students Do?

  • Take a class that uses OER. Browse our list of courses using OER.
  • Join or form a student body organization to advocate for textbook affordability solutions.
  • Ask professors if they know about or would be willing to use OER.
  • Provide suggestions. If you have an idea about how to increase OER use at USU, let us know!

What Can Instructors Do?

  • Adopt OER: Make your course more affordable by adopting open alternatives to traditional textbooks.
  • Adapt OER: Adapt an existing OER to help supplement or replace parts of course materials.
  • Create an OER: Create and publish your own OER to share with students and educators across the world.

OER Faculty Champions

Economic Champion: Jennifer Burbank

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I like OER because it's a great supplemental resource and great for students. It's accessible and economical for a Gen Ed course.

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Impact

Jennifer Burbank's Biology 1010 course has had the greatest financial impact of any OER course at USU, saving students over $120,000 in the past two years. For Jennifer, the biggest benefits of OER are accessibility and affordability. She also teaches Concurrent Enrollment Biology 1010 and remarked that OER is extremely helpful for high school students in rural areas who can't afford or readily access a traditional textbook. Jennifer Burbank’s courses have helped Utah State University students keep their education affordable and accessible.

Advocacy Champion: Melanie Chambers

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I've loved the flexibility of OER. Flexible for students to study with and for our faculty to innovate and possibly adapt.

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Impact

Melanie Chambers played a key role in standardizing an OER textbook across all USU 1730 courses and continues to advocate for OER in her department. She loves that students have immediate access to the book, especially since her course is only seven weeks long. Chambers believes that OER helps prepare incoming freshmen to use online materials in future courses and helps students find out what study methods work for them. Melanie is a top advocate for OER at Utah State University.

Innovation Champion: Carla Endres

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I like leveling the playing field and making it affordable for everyone.

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Impact

Dr. Carla Endres has used OER to innovate her teaching and further students’ education in creative ways. Her students, particularly non-traditional students, benefit from lower costs and seamless access to learning materials through her use of OER. Dr. Endres likes the fact that OER are sustainable and can be updated continuously to remain current and correct. She is a former member of the Affordable Learning Resources Committee, where she supported efforts to extend affordable learning to all USU students across USU's statewide campuses.