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SCALE - Campus Initiatives

Campus Initiatives: Program Building Blocks

Through the South Carolina Affordable learning initiative, PASCAL seeks to increase the reach and scope of affordable learning programs across the state by providing expertise, professional development opportunities, and support for program infrastructure at member libraries.


Open & Affordable Initiatives in South Carolina

Many PASCAL member institutions have spearheaded institutional textbook affordability initiatives.  Campus initiatives vary in size and scope across the state and include activities such faculty stipends to encourage adoption or creation of OER, use of library licensed materials to reduce students’ costs, awareness campaigns, workshops for faculty, and recognition of faculty who are using OER.

Campus Affordable Learning Profiles provides an overview of programs at 12 institutions, including 2-year, 4-year, public, and private institutions. The profiles offer a glimpse of the wide variety of approaches to OER and affordable learning that have been implemented in South Carolina and may provide examples for other institutions seeking to begin their own initiatives.


Tips for Starting a Campus Initiative

Be Prepared:

  • Get acquainted with OER: If you’re new to open education and textbook affordability, the Open Education Resources on the SCALE website can help you get up to speed. It’s important to understand the differences between open and affordable resources such as library licensed materials and how open licenses work.
  • Prepare an elevator speech: Be prepared for when opportunities arise to chat with faculty or campus administrators. Develop a brief elevator speech on textbook affordability and the benefits of OER so you’ll be ready when an opportunity presents itself. Use our “Why Open Education” page as a starting point and create customized talking points for your campus.  

Find Your OER Champions:

Building a strong network is key to any successful campus initiative. Start by identifying faculty, staff, and campus administrators who are passionate about affordability and student success. These individuals can serve as champions for your initiative, advocating for the adoption of open and affordable materials across campus:

  • Faculty: Identify instructors who are using open and affordable course materials.
  • Staff: Instructional designers, student services staff, and others committed to student success can be invaluable allies in promoting OER and affordable materials.
  • Administrators: Seek out administrators who recognize the financial challenges faced by students and value affordability initiatives.
  • Student Government: Work with student organizations to raise awareness and advocate for increased adoption of OER and affordable materials.

Spread the Word:

  • Use our informational materials (or create your own): Raise awareness about the benefits of OER among faculty, students, and administrators with these promotional materials or create your own.
  • Create your own Affordable Learning LibGuide: PASCAL members can easily create their own guide using our Libguide template. If your institution uses LibGuides you can easily find and copy the template and customize it for your users.
  • Use social media: Use your library’s social media channels to highlight the benefits of OER and share posts from PASCAL to spread the word about upcoming SCALE webinars.

Empower Faculty:

  • Host a workshop or brown bag lunch: Organize an event for on finding, evaluating, and adapting OER for their courses. If you need assistance in setting up a faculty workshop, contact Ellan Jenkinson.
  • Recognize Faculty Adopters: Encourage faculty who are using open and affordable materials in their teaching to apply for the PAL Award or create your own campus award program. This could be as simple as creating a social a media post highlighting the faculty member.

Track and Measure Impact:

  • Track OER Adoptions: If you have faculty who are using OER or affordable materials, implement a simple tracking system to monitor OER adoption and assess cost savings for students. See our Measuring OER Impact guide for tips and templates you can use. Even a few OER adoptions can provide significant cost savings over time and help you communicate the value of OER to stakeholders.
  • Collect student and faculty feedback: Survey students and faculty to gauge perceptions of course materials costs and OER. Find survey examples in our Measuring OER Impact guide to help you get started.

By utilizing the strategies above and leveraging SCALE resources, you can grow your own campus textbook affordability initiative. Remember, building a successful program takes time, particularly when you have limited staff. Be patient, persistent, and celebrate your achievements along the way!

For additional assistance, please contract Ellan Jenkinson.

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