Drexel University Libraries joins Open Textbook Network
August 3, 2018
In June, the Drexel University Libraries joined over 600 academic institutions as one of the newest members of the Open Textbook Network (OTN), a global consortium of academic institutions that works to promote access, affordability and student success using open textbooks.
OTN members can take advantage of the Network’s resources, including access to practice guidelines and data collection tools, faculty workshops, leadership development activities and access to publishing resources. The OTN also maintains the Open Textbook Library, which points to comprehensive collection of free, peer-reviewed and openly licensed textbooks from hundreds of authors and publishers.
The Libraries initiated this membership with OTN on behalf of Drexel University, and Libraries staff will facilitate awareness of and access to open education resources on campus.
As a new member of OTN, the Drexel Libraries attended the fourth annual OTN Summer Institute & Summit, held July 23 – 27 in Chaska, Minnesota. The Summer Institute & Summit is an opportunity for OTN members from around the world to discuss and develop open education strategies.
Beth Ten Have, Director for Library Academic Partnerships, represented the Libraries at the conference. This year, the Summer Institute & Summit included sessions on facilitating workshops for faculty and staff to utilize open textbooks to improve student outcomes and reduce costs. Members also shared testimonials from students, faculty and staff to highlight the value of open education resources.
“One session included video testimonials from students. It was eye-opening to hear about the positive impact open education resources have had on some students,” Beth Ten Have said following the conference. “It was also inspiring to see how passionate faculty are about open textbooks. They use them in a course, and then they’re hooked. They see how students are more deeply engaged with the content, and it makes the teaching and learning process so fulfilling.”
Other sessions focused on problem-solving, developing strategies to bring open education programs to campus, community building and professional development for open education.
Attendees also took advantage of networking opportunities, discussing the issues they face when bringing open textbooks to their campuses.
“I had the chance to talk to librarians, faculty and instructional designers from all types of academic institutions—from large universities like Drexel to small liberal arts colleges—and to learn more about the programs they’re launching on their campuses,” said Ten Have. “The Libraries is excited to bring these conversations and resources to Drexel and to facilitate open access programing here on our own campus. We—with help from one of our Libraries Faculty Fellows held exploratory meetings with faculty and staff this past spring, and the next step is to facilitate open textbook workshops for Drexel faculty and staff. We’re planning to launch these sessions for the 2018/2019 fall quarter, and we will announce more details over the coming few weeks.”
For more information about open textbooks and the Libraries’ membership in the Open Textbook Network, contact firstname.lastname@example.org
About the Open Textbook Network
The Open Textbook Network (OTN) helps higher education institutions and systems advance the use of open textbooks and practices on their campuses. We maintain the Open Textbook Library, the premiere resource for peer-reviewed academic textbooks. All of our textbooks are free, openly licensed, and complete; their adoption creates a measurable, positive impact on student success.