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WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Department of Education announced yesterday their latest round of grants to support free, open textbook creation and adoption. The federal Open Textbook Pilot grant program continues to save students across the country millions of dollars off pricey course materials. The latest round of grants will save students an estimated $70 million.
After congressional input and a productive public comment period from librarians, student advocates, and faculty led to changes in the program, the Open Textbook Pilotis set up to have an even larger impact this year. Improvements to the program include, among other things, an increase in the number of grants and not implementing potentially restrictive grant-matching requirements.
The four grant winners this year were:
West Hills Lemoore College’s California Consortium for Equitable Change in Hispanic Serving Institutions Open Educational Resources.
Middlesex County College’s Open Textbook Collaborative Project with 17 other New Jersey institutions.
The Louisiana Board of Regents’ Interactive Dual Enrollment.
University of Texas at Arlington’s OERTransport: Enabling Transportation Planning Professional Advancement project.
The pilot was renewed in the federal budget that President Trump signed in late December, and the next call for applications for funding is expected to open later in 2021.
In response, U.S. PIRG Affordable Textbooks Campaign Director Cailyn Nagle issued the following statement:
“We’re excited that the Department of Education has been responsive to community feedback. Open textbooks are a proven win for students and universities. These openly licensed materials will save students money, improve student success and provide an excellent return on investment for institutions. It’s time to move the Open Textbook Pilot out of the pilot stage to become a permanently funded program.”
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