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K-State Today

October 1, 2014

Pioneer in open textbook movement to speak at K-State Libraries

Submitted by Sarah McGreer Hoyt

Open Access Week keynote speaker Dr. David Ernst

Over the last two years, the Open/Alternative Textbook Initiative at K-State awarded $96,000 in stipends to enable faculty to replace traditional classroom textbooks in 20 courses with free online materials. Annual savings to students are estimated at approximately $800,000, thanks to those one-time investments funded by K-State Libraries and The Student Governing Association.

K-State Libraries will take part in international Open Access Week 2014, Oct 20-26, to recognize efforts like these that make scholarly research freely available online. The observation begins the week prior with keynote speaker David Ernst from 3-4:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 16, in Hale Library's Hemisphere Room.

Ernst, executive director of the University of Minnesota's Open Textbook Initiative, will describe how they help their faculty overcome barriers to adoption of open access classroom texts. Ernst also created the Open Textbook Library, a single source for faculty nationwide to find quality openly licensed textbooks.

Following Ernst's presentation, a panel of three K-State professors who have successfully adopted alternative textbook models will share their expertise:

• Robbie Bear, instructor, biology, adapted an OpenStax book for BIOL 198, Principles of Biology
• Ashley Rhodes, instructor, biology, developed an iBook for BIOL 340, Human Body
• Ann Knackendoffel, assistant professor, education, developed textbook modules on Canvas for EDSP 324, Exceptional Child in the Regular Classroom

"This is a great opportunity for faculty who are considering adopting an open or alternative textbook to learn about the types of materials that can be developed, the time and processes involved and to weigh the many benefits for their students," said Beth Turtle, scholarly communications librarian and a leader in K-State's Open/Alternative Textbook Initiative.

Turtle adds that she hopes the initiative will continue beyond the initial two years. There will be a call for proposals this fall; the amount available has yet to be determined.

For more information, visit lib.k-state.edu/open-textbook.