Open Educational Resources
Lake Tahoe Community College is excited to be part of the Open Educational Resources
initiative, working to adopt free or reasonably priced textbooks and other course
materials. Many of our faculty will be working this year to look at the OER option
so that students will have easier access to an affordable education. We hope that
in the near future, many of the courses offered at LTCC will come with quality textbooks
and learning materials that are free to access online and low cost to purchase as
a paper copy. This year, LTCC was granted an award to fund the research that will
help with the adoption of OER materials. This funding comes from AB 798, the California
congressional bill that supports OER.
How will Open Educational Resources affect students?
Instructors are working hard to identify OER materials that are of equal or higher
quality compared to the more expensive materials that are sold by regular publishers.
Typically, an instructor will put together a package of OER course materials that
are accessible online for free or at a greatly reduced price. Student who want a
paper version will be able to purchase the materials at the bookstore at a cost that
is much less than the traditional course materials. The library will also have copies
that students can check out and use in the library. OER materials could potentially
save students thousands of dollars during their academic career at LTCC.
Where will students access the digital OER materials?
There are several websites that host OER materials. Your instructor will include
information on the website to go to and will assist you in finding navigating to the
site. Some such sites are:
- Cool4Ed: California Open Online Library for Education, a great resource for information about
OER and how it is being implemented in California.
- MERLOT.org: A peer reviewed collection of OER materials from all subjects.
- Open Stax: A collection of OER textbooks.
- OER Commons: A collection of OER materials searchable by subject
- Oregon's OER: Courses in Oregon that have adopted OER materials
- OpenUMB: A nice search tool for finding resource
- Listserve Conversations: A collection of the successful conversations on finding OER materials by discipline.
- Barnes & Noble Courseware: Discounted online Courseware
Here are some courses that have adopted OER textbooks or Reduced Price textbooks
ASL 102: American Sign Language 2:
ASL 108: American Deaf Culture 1:
BIO 101: Principles of Biology 1: Biology
BIO 102: Principles of Biology 2: Biology
BIO 103: Principles of Biology 3: Biology
BIO 149: Ecology
BIO 201: Botany
BIO 203: Human Anatomy and Physiology 1:
BIO 204: Human Anatomy and Physiology 2:
BIO 205: Human Anatomy and Physiology 3:
JPN 201-203: Intermediate Japanese: Genki
MAT 201: Elementary Statistics: Introductory Statistics
MAT 203: Linear Algebra: Linear Algebra
MAT 204: Differential Equations: Elementary Differential Equations with Boundary Value Problems
MUSIC 104B: History of Rock Music
MUSIC 104C: World Music
MUSIC 104E: The Beatles
PHS 117: Oceanography: Introduction to Physical Oceanography
PHY 104-105-106: General Physics: College Physics
PSY 101: General Psychology: Psychology
PSY/ECE 102: Child and Adolescent Growth
PSY 107: Personality Psychology: Personality Theory in a Cultural Context
PSY 211: Research Methods and Design: Research Methods in Psychology
SOC 101: Introduction to Sociology: Introduction to Sociology 2e
SPA 101,102: Elementary Spanish: Spanish 101 Spanish 102
SPE 101: Public Speaking: The Public Speaking Project
SPE 104: Speech Communication: Communication in the Real World: An Introduction to Communication Studies
THE 105A: Introduction to Acting:
What faculty at LTCC are planning on adopting or have already adopted OER materials?
Below is a list of faculty who are actively researching OER materials in order to
make an education at LTCC more affordable. This list is sure to grow rapidly in the
Bob Albrecht, Psychology
Dan Arce, Mathematics
Bruce Armbrust, Mathematics
Lindsey Bertomen, Criminal Justice
Bruce Brant, Mathematics
Cathy Cox, Physics
Anthony Eckhardt, Economics
Kurt Festinger, Music
Gatalina Goralski, Spanish
Belinda Grant, Photography
Larry Green, Statistics and Mathematics
Naomi Green, Japanese
David Hamilton, Theater
Karla Johnston, Sign Language
JP Kelsey, Speech
Sue Kloss, Biology
Cindy Littell, Mathematics
Scott Lucas, Sociology
Beth Marinelli-Laster, Psychology
Michele Martinez, Early Childhood Education
Maria Mircheva, Mathematics
Karen Naegeli, Counsleing
Sara Pierce, Spanish
Frances Pistoresi, English
Steve Richardson, Mathematics
Madelyn Rios, Biology
Kathy Strain, Biology
Christina Tomolillo, Psychology
Scott Valentine, Geography
Wynn Walker, Statistics and Mathematics
Dan Wexelblatt, English
Mark Williams, Music
What is AB 798?
AB 798 is the Textbook Affordability Program. It's goal is to save college students money
by empowering professors and local campuses to adopt high quality, free and open educational
resources for courses materials. Assemblywoman Bonilla (sponsor of AB 798) recognized
that free and open educational resources can reduce the total cost of education for students
and their families in California's higher education institutions. LTCC's AB 798 proposal will
enable the promise of a more affordable education to its students to become a reality.
Funds from AB 798 are to be used for professional development so that faculty and
staff learn about open educational resources and how they will make college more affordable
for students. Funds cannot be used for the following:
- Direct compensation for faculty members who adopt open educational resources, except
as provided to compensate for professional development.
- The development of MOOC's or online courses that include non-matriculated students.
- The creation of new OER materials.
- The purchase of new equipment.
- Past curricular conversions to OER materials
What is the Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) Degree?
LTCC was recently awarded an implementation grant to create a pathway for math majors
they will walk into the college take their courses and receive their associates or
arts degree or their certificate without having to spend a dime on textbooks. The
main effort for is to move from the expensive textbooks and online homework systems
that are required in Elementary Algebra through Differential Equations to a free version
that is of as high or higher quality compared to the expensive versions. We have
a team fo 17 mathematics faculty from throughout California working on developing
the online homework system for this project. The math faculty at Lake Tahoe Community
College are also busily planning for the move to OER materials. In addition to the
math courses, we are moving to multiple pathways through the general education requirements
that students can take without them paying a dime for textbooks or ancillary materials.
The project began on January 1, 2018 and will be completed on December 31, 2018.
What Does It Take for a Course to Qualify as a Zero Textbook Cost Course?
The California senate bill SB 1359 that recently passed requires all California Community
Colleges to label all "Zero Cost" textbook courses in the schedule of classes. Other
than tuition, fees for the following course materials are not allow to be required
for these zero cost designated courses:
- Online homework systems
- Required supplementary readings
The following costs do not disqualify a course from being counted as a Zero Cost textbook
- Materials such as art supplies
- Food for a culinary course
- Fingerprinting for a child development course
- Calculators and other electronic devices
- Sporting equipment
- Equipment for a fire academy course
- Special clothing
If you have any questions about whether your course counts as a Zero Cost Textbook
Course, please contact Larry Green, the Open Educational Resources director.