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Open Educational Resources (OER): Tools for Affordable Learning

This guide describes high-quality educational resources that can be used to decrease material costs for courses at WSU and in higher education more broadly.

Course Material Cost Reduction Initiative

Associated Students of Washington State University logo

In collaboration with the Associated Students of Washington State University (ASWSU), Interim President Dan Bernardo convened a task force in 2016 to explore the issue of rising costs of course materials, potential solutions and alternatives, as well as challenges. The taskforce delivered recommendations in response to ASWSU’s Course Materials Cost Reduction Initiative. Recommendations included:

  • Better communication with faculty about textbook prices, Bookie purchase best practices, and the value of OER
  • Increased use of OER
  • Standardization of quick response systems
  • Inclusion of course materials and textbooks as part of tuition and fees
  • Movement away from textbook bundles

Get Help with OER

If you are interested in doing an open education project, don't hesitate to reach out. WSU Libraries and Academic Outreach and Innovation are partnering up to provide support, including the following:

  • Finding OER
  • Fielding questions about Creative Commons licenses
  • Helping faculty integrate library-licensed resources into classes
  • Providing technical support for your project (captioning, file management, using tools, hosting, etc.)
  • Hosting OER

For more information, feel free to get in touch with:

  • Talea Anderson, Scholarly Communication Librarian, Center for Digital Scholarship and Curation at WSU Libraries,, 509-335-2266
  • Michael Caulfield, Director of Blended and Networked Learning, Academic Affairs, WSU Vancouver,, 360-546-9157
  • Theron Desrosier, Learning Design Consultant, Academic Outreach and Innovation,, 509-335-9245

Affordable Learning Grants

word cloud full of academic vocabularyFor instructors who are interested in adopting or creating OER for their classes, WSU has provided support in 2017-2019 via Affordable Learning Grants. The purpose of these grants is to reduce the cost of course materials while maintaining the quality of class content.

Please contact for more information.

Open Textbook Library Membership

Open Textbook Library logo









Open Education Network (OEN) is an initiative at the University of Minnesota intended to help faculty members quickly find and assess open textbooks in use at other institutions of higher education. OTN invites instructors to review textbooks and publish their comments on the OTN website. WSU is a member of Open Textbook Network and has hosted workshops for faculty where reviews are invited. 

WSU Libraries, PO Box 645610, Washington State University, Pullman WA 99164-5610, 509-335-9671, Contact Us