In honor of Open Education Week, the PALSave Team would like to extend gratitude to the numerous faculty members who have taken their time to write reviews of titles in the Open Textbook Library, which is the collection of open textbooks maintained by the Open Textbook Network. These titles offer a glimpse into the breadth of subjects in the Library. The reviews provided by PALNI-supported faculty will benefit others considering open textbooks.
Have a look!
The University of California System has canceled its multimillion-dollar subscription contract with Elsevier, an academic publisher.
Other institutions have canceled their “big deal” journal subscription contracts with major publishers before. But none in the U.S. have the financial and scholarly clout of the UC system — which accounts for nearly 10 percent of the nation’s publishing output.
From Kenneth C. Green in Digital Tweed/Inside Higher Ed:
It’s time to add OER – Open Education Resources – to a list of technologies (or technology resources) that might really be a catalyst for major change in higher education. Admittedly, it is still very early days here – the front end of the Gardner Hype Cycle fueled initially by the Peak of Inflated Expectations, followed by the Trough of Disillusionment, which leads into the Slope of Enlightenment, until we arrive at the Plateau of Productivity. (Remember the NY Times declaration that 2012 was the “Year of the MOOC?”) We’re a long way from the plateau with OER.
The basic OER arguments, offered with great passion by OER advocates and evangelists, are compelling. First, commercial textbooks are expensive. Second, OER offers a seemingly pragmatic strategy to provide “Day One” access to core course materials for students in critical gateway courses. And third, the absence of copyright and related clearance issues means that OER provides significant flexibility for faculty as they select and mix curricular materials from various sources for their syllabi.
Library publishing is both a growing area of interest in academic libraries and an increasingly visible subfield of scholarly publishing. This article introduces the field of library publishing—and the opportunities and values that make it unique—from the perspective of the Library Publishing Coalition (LPC). The LPC is an independent, community-led membership association of academic and research libraries and library consortia engaged in scholarly publishing, and it is the only professional association dedicated to this emerging area of librarianship. In its first five years, LPC has produced a robust set of resources to support library publishers, including the annual Library Publishing Forum, the annual Library Publishing Directory, and a variety of freely available professional development resources. It has also built a strong community of members and an extended network of affiliates. This paper presents and contextualizes these accomplishments and shares new developments and future directions for the Library Publishing Coalition.
Last year, when Congress authorized a second round of $5 million in federal funding for programs that support open educational resources, senators included explicit instructions to the Department of Education, which administers the grant program:
Conduct a new competitive process for grant applications in 2019.
Disperse funds among at least 20 proposals, rather than devoting $5 million to one program, as happened last fall.
But the department appears to have gone in a different direction. Earlier this year, it quietly awarded $2.5 million to each of two applicants from last year’s submission pile. This year’s winning programs are based at Chippewa Valley Technical College and Arizona State University, according to representatives of both institutions.
Whether you are starting to get interested in OER or you already have a team in place, this workshop will help your institution take the next step in affordable learning. Campus OER advocates and teams can use this an opportunity to ask questions of Open Textbook Network leadership and address barriers.
If you came in November, feel free to attend again! Your discussion will shape the content of the workshop, and you can also tell us what you hope to learn on the registration form.
See the invite below (which may be extended to your campus partners such administrators, instructional designers, bookstore managers, centers for teaching an learning, etc.).
From Lindsay Ellis in the Chronicle for Higher Education:
Debate over the future of scholarly publishing felt remote to Kathryn M. Jones, an associate professor of biology at Florida State University — that is, until she attended a Faculty Senate meeting last year.
There she learned that the library might renegotiate its $2-million subscription with the publishing behemoth Elsevier, which would limit her and her colleagues’ access to groundbreaking research. Horror sank in. Like other experimental scientists, Jones regularly skims articles published in subscription journals to plan future experiments. What would happen if she couldn’t access that body of important work with the click of a button?
From Melanie Schlosser and Catherine Mitchell in the LPC Blog:
“Academy-owned” seems to be the descriptor du jour in scholarly communications circles. We talk increasingly about academy-owned infrastructure, academy-owned publishing, academy-owned publications, etc. We find ourselves at meetings and conferences where we explore the challenges of supporting new forms of scholarly research, new modes of publication, new communities of readers — and there it is again — “academy-owned,” lurking in the conversation. We write grants whose very premise is that the academy will rise to claim its rightful place as the source, the maker, the distributor, the curator of its greatest asset — knowledge. There is definitely a movement afoot.
The goal of Plan S is simple — make all publicly funded research immediately available to the public. It’s a goal many universities, research funders and academics say they support. The problem is agreeing on how to get there, and who should pay for it.
A flurry of documents published by publishers, research funders, scholarly societies and academics earlier this month in response to a call for feedback on Plan S highlight just how little agreement there is about how to implement the European open-access initiative, which could impact scholarly publishing practices worldwide.