Innovative institutions of higher learning are increasingly incorporating Open Educational Resources (OER) in their curricula to improve instruction and lower students’ education costs.
OER brings together teaching, learning and resource materials in any medium that have been released under an open license. Open Educational Resources include textbooks, curricula, syllabi, lecture notes, assignments, tests, projects, audio, video and animation products. In 2017, APUS converted 222 courses to OER.
APUS Provost Dr. Vernon C. Smith articulated to Educause Review that Open Educational Resources represents an important trend in higher education. “We are no longer confined to textbooks or a physical format,” he said. OER not only significantly reduces the cost of textbooks, printing and shipping, but also increases the speed of accessing these educational materials.
“We can do it at the speed of light, which is the speed of electricity and the Internet,” Smith says. “And we can provide those [materials] to students, which of course reduces that cost for them, and that’s really a student success issue.”
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