ED Accepting Proposals for Consortium OER Pilots
By Dian Schaffhauser 08/02/18
The U.S. Department of Education has finally made a move on its efforts to fund development of open educational resources. The agency issued a notice this week inviting proposals for an “open textbooks pilot program” with an Aug. 29, 2018 deadline. The program was mandated in an omnibus spending law, H.R. 1625, approved by Congress earlier this year. ED expected to issue between one and three awards.
The winning proposals will be eligible for between $1.5 million and $4.95 million. The latter amount is nearly the entire fund of $5 million stipulated for the pilot in an explanatory document that accompanied the spending bill.
The application has three “absolute priorities” and one “competitive preference” priority. The absolutes are these:
- The project must involve consortium with at least three institutions participating, along with representation from industry or workforce groups and nonprofit or community organizations;
- The proposal needs to fill current gaps in the OER “marketplace” and be able to scale beyond the consortium members; and
- The plan needs to address how the OER will promote degree completion.
For more information, visit the application on the Federal Register.
more on OER in this IMS blog
Pearson Is Selling Its US K-12 Business—Despite Posting a Profit and Digital Growth
By Tony Wan Feb 26, 2018
Pearson’s digital textbook transformation will likely face stiff competition. Earlier this month, McGraw-Hill, Barnes & Noble Education and Chegg teamed up for a new digital textbook rental program that the trio claims can help students save as much as 70 percent from buying print copies. In August, Cengage will launch a buffet-style offering where students pay $119.99 a semester to access all of the company’s digital higher-ed materials.
more on OER in this IMS blog
Hacking Multimedia for Effective Learning
THURSDAY, MAY 24, 2018 | 1:00 PM CENTRAL | 60 MINUTES
$247 PER CONNECTION THROUGH 05/10/18, $297 THEREAFTER
Upon completion of this seminar, you’ll be able to:
- Determine pedagogical deficiencies in multimedia found online
- Apply multimedia learning principles to improve learning
- Choose appropriate tools to reconstruct multimedia and tailor it to your course
- Explain the educational rationale for multimedia modifications
- Multimedia learning
- Online learning
- Enhancing videos and images
- Annotating videos and images
more on multimedia in this IMS blog
Chad, K., & Anderson, H. (2017). The new role of the library in teaching and learning outcomes
(p. ). Higher Education Library Technology. https://doi.org/10.13140/rg.2.2.14688.89606/1
p. 4 “Modern university libraries require remote access for large numbers of concurrent users, with fewer authentication steps and more flexible digital rights management (DRM) to satisfy student demand”. They found the most frequent problem was that core reading list titles were not available to libraries as e-books.
p. 5 Overcoming the “textbook taboo”
In the US, academic software firm bepress notes that, in response to increased student textbook costs: “Educators, institutions, and even state legislators are turning their attention toward Open Educational Resources (OER)” in order to save students money while increasing engagement and retention. As a result bepress has developed its infrastructure to host and share OER within and across institutions.21 The UMass Library Open Education Initiative estimates it has saved the institution over $1.3 million since its inception in 2011. 22 Other textbook initiatives include SUNY Open Textbooks, developed by the State University of New York Libraries, which has already published 18 textbooks, and OpenStax, developed by Rice University.
p.5. sceptics about OER rapid progress still see potential in working with publishers.
Knowledge Unlatched 23 is an example of this kind of collaboration: “We believe that by working together libraries and publishers can create a sustainable route to Open Access for scholarly books.” Groups of libraries contribute to fund publication though a crowdfunding platform. The consortium pays a fixed upfront fee for the publisher to publish the book online under a Creative Commons license.
p.6.Technology: from library systems to educational technology.The rise of the library centric reading list system
big increase in the number of universities in the UK, Australia and New Zealand deploying library reading lists solutions.The online reading list can be seen as a sort of course catalogue that gives the user a (sometimes week-by-week) course/module view on core resources and provides a link to print holdings information or the electronic full text. It differs significantly from the integrated library system (ILS) ‘course reserve’ module, notably by providing access to materials beyond the items in the library catalogue. Titles can be characterised, for example as ‘recommended’ or ‘essential’ reading and citations annotated.
Reading list software brings librarians and academics together into a system where they must cooperate to be effective. Indeed some librarians claim that the reading list system is a key library tool for transforming student learning.
Higher education institutions, particularly those in Australia, New Zealand and some other parts of Europe (including the UK) are more likely to operate a reading list model, supplying students with a (sometimes long) list of recommended titles.
p.8. E-book platforms (discusses only UK)
p.9. Data: library management information to learning analytics
“Strong digital leadership is a key feature of effective educational organisations and its absence can be a significant barrier to progress. The digital agenda is therefore a leadership issue”. 48 (Rebooting learning for the digital age: What next for technology-enhanced higher education? Sarah Davies, Joel Mullan, Paul Feldman. Higher Education Policy Institute (HEPI) Report 93. February 2017. )
A merging of LibTech and EdTech
The LITA discussion is under RE: [lita-l] Anyone Running Multiple Discovery Layers?
more on academic library in this IMS blog
Student Engagement with E-Texts: What the Data Tell Us
by Serdar Abaci, Joshua Quick and Anastasia Morrone Monday, October 9, 2017
- This case study of Indiana University’s e-text initiative reports on students’ actual use of and engagement with digital textbooks.
- In a typical semester, students read more in the first four weeks and less in later weeks except during major assessment times; in a typical week, most reading occurs between 5:00 p.m. and 2:00 a.m. from Monday to Thursday, indicating that students use e-texts mainly as a self-study resource.
- Highlighting was the markup feature most used by students, whereas use of the other interactive markup features (shared notes, questions, and answers) was minimal, perhaps because of students’ lack of awareness of these features.
- Research found that higher engagement with e-texts (reading and highlighting) correlated with higher course grades.
Although cost savings is often cited as a key advantage of electronic textbooks (aka, e-textbooks or simply e-texts), e-texts also provide powerful markup and interaction tools. For these tools to improve student learning, however, their adoption is critically important.
The Indiana University e-texts program, which began in 2009, has four primary goals:
- Drive down the cost of materials for students
- Provide high-quality materials of choice
- Enable new tools for teaching and learning
- Shape the terms of sustainable models that work for students, faculty, and authors
To date, student savings on textbooks amount to $21,673,338. However, we recognize that many students do not pay the full list price for paper textbooks when they purchase online, buy used copies, or recoup some of their costs when they resell their texts after the semester is over.
herefore, we divide the calculated savings by two and report that total as a more accurate representation of student savings. Consequently, we claim that students have saved about $11 million since IU’s e-texts program started in spring 2012.
In addition to printing through the e-text platform, students can purchase a print-on-demand (PoD) copy of an e-text for an additional fee.
One downside of e-texts is that students lease their textbook for a limited time instead of owning it. This lease generally lasts a semester or six months, and students lose their access afterwards. However, with IU’s e-text model, students get access to the textbook before the first day of class and maintain their access until they graduate from Indiana University. That is, students can go back to the e-texts after their course to review or reference the content in the book. This could be especially important if the e-text course is a prerequisite for another course.
more on etext and ebooks in this IMS blog
A Comprehensive Guide To Digital Badges
A Comprehensive Guide To Digital Badges
An introduction to digital badges and a brief history
Simply put, a digital badge is an indicator of accomplishment or skill that can be displayed, accessed, and verified online. These badges can be earned in a wide variety of environments, an increasing number of which are online.
The anatomy of digital badges
In addition to the image-based design we think of as a digital badge, badges have meta-data to communicate details of the badge to anyone wishing to verify it, or learn more about the context of the achievement it signifies.
The many functions of digital badges
Just like their real-world counterparts, digital badges serve a wide variety of purposes depending on the issuing body and the individual. For the most part, badges’ functions can be bucketed into one of five categories.
Badges are issued by individual organizations who set criteria for what constitutes earning a badge. They’re most often issued through an online credential or badging platform.
Criticism of digital badges
There are various arguments to be made against the implementation of digital badges, including the common issuance of seemingly “meaningless” badges.
The future of digital badges
With the rise of online education and the increasing availability of high quality massive open online courses, there will be an increasing need for verifiable digital badges and digital credentials.
more on badges in this IMS blog
digital resource sets available through MnPALS Plus
Two sets of open access, free digital resources that may be of interest to students and faculty have been added to SCSU’s online catalog (MnPALS Plus).
Open Textbook Library (a project of the University of Minnesota)
(appears in Collection drop-down menu as “Univ of Mn Open Textbook Library”)
“Open textbooks are textbooks that have been funded, published, and licensed to be freely used, adapted, and distributed. These books have been reviewed by faculty from a variety of colleges and universities to assess their quality. These books can be downloaded for no cost, or printed at low cost. All textbooks are either used at multiple higher education institutions; or affiliated with an institution, scholarly society, or professional organization.”
For more information, see https://open.umn.edu/opentextbooks/
“Ebooks Minnesota is an online ebook collection for all Minnesotans. The collection covers a wide variety of subjects for readers of all ages, and features content from our state’s independent publishers, including some of our best literature and nonfiction.”
For more information, see https://mndigital.org/projects/ebooks-minnesota
These resources are included in any search done in the online catalog. To view or search one of these collections specifically, go the the Advanced Search in MnPALS Plus and select the desired collection from the Collection dropdown. Users can add search terms, or just click “Find” without entering any search terms to see the entire collection.
USA Today career advice feature on October 13, 2017 entitled “Careers: 8 jobs that won’t exist in 2030,” https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/careers/2017/10/13/8-jobs-that-wont-exist-in-2030/104219994/ provoked the following reaction by the ALICE Board of Directors:
Ms. Joanne Lipman
October 20, 2017
Editor-in-Chief of USA Today
7950 Jones Branch Drive
McLean, VA 22108
In our roles as the Board of Directors of the Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE), we are writing to express our profound disappointment with the USA Today career advice feature on October 13, 2017 entitled “Careers: 8 jobs that won’t exist in 2030,” which declared that “librarian” is the number one career among the eight jobs that inaccurate statement on two fronts: first, that the profession is declining, and second, that this alleged will disappear in 2030. This is a false and decline is a result of libraries as warehouses of printed books.
The author of this article may not realize that a professional librarian position in the U.S. and many other countries requires a Master’s degree. According to a recent article in Library Journal, 86% of recent graduates from American Library Association (ALA) accredited schools have found jobs. Another recent report (released on September 28, 2017) by Pearson, Nesta, and Oxford University predicts growth in the information professions, including librarians, curators, and archivists. They are among the top ten jobs likely to experience increased demand in 2030. The report is summarized by Library Journal in its article entitled “The Job Outlook: In 2030, Librarians Will Be in Demand.” Furthermore, your own job posting section for librarian positions does not show the decline of our profession. A close reading of the job titles should have indicated to the author that librarians do more than simply check out books.
This article demonstrates a lack of understanding of librarians’ work as information professionals. My note: but so do lack understanding a lot of librarians, paraprofessionals and administrators in libraries. They are the one, who leave the impressions reflected in the article of US Today. Information professionals IS the keyword and, as during the hype around year 2000 with Barnes & Nobles, a great number of people working in libraries continue to behave as it is the Middle Ages and care of paper-based materials the one and only responsibility a “librarian” may have. The lack of understanding regarding the wide scope of “information professionals” is profound.
Libraries provide access to print and special collections of media, and subscription-based or free electronic resources. All of these must be curated, cataloged, or organized by professional librarians to make them accessible to their users. My note: beating your own drum is good, but when failing to recognize the existence of folksonomy and its impact, do not get upset when US Today reflects the impact
College and university librarians carry out research consultations and instruct student and faculty in finding, evaluating, and using information. My note: when faculty let them do it. And administration recognizes it. It is a shaky position, which does not exclude the 2030 scenario.
Public librarians connect patrons to community resources, lead programming for children and adults, and engage in community outreach and advocacy. Special librarians work for corporations, federal and state institutions, focusing on gathering competitive intelligence and making sure their organizations have access to the information they need to make sound business or strategic decisions.
The article also inaccurately presents libraries as dedicated solely to books:
More and more people are clearing out those paperbacks and downloading e-books on their Tablets and Kindles instead. The same goes for borrowing — as books fall out of favor, libraries are not as popular as they once were. That means you’ll have a tough time finding a job if you decide to become a librarian. Many schools and universities are already moving their libraries off the shelves and onto the Internet.
In addition to providing access to books, journals, newspapers, and other media, both electronically and in print, libraries provide access to technology, from computers, laptops, and iPads to 3D printers,
My note: are we? are we doing this at our library? Are the reference librarians allowing such blasphemous thoughts penetrate this library? And if they do, do they allow other professionals to collaborate with them, or “keep it for themselves?”
multimedia software, and recording studios.
My note: whaaat?
Many libraries have expanded their non-print collections and are circulating a wide variety of objects including tools, musical instruments, toys, wifi hotspots, and artwork. Libraries are highly valued as community centers and safe spaces that allow people to connect with information and with each other. Research shows that libraries are one of the most trusted and valued public institutions in the country.
The article further argues that librarians and libraries are not needed because printed books are falling out of favor. However, there is considerable counter-evidence that printed books are still in demand, including the articles cited below.
Cain, S. (2017, March 14). Ebook sales continue to fall as younger generations drive appetite for print. The Guardian. Retrieved from:
Jenkins, S. (2016, May 13). Books are back. Only the technodazzled thought they would go away. The Guardian. Retrieved from: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2016/may/13/books- ebook-publishers-paper
Milliot, J. (2017, January 20). The Bad News About E-books: Nielsen reports units fell 16% in 2016 compared to 2015. Publishers Weekly. Retrieved from:
We respectfully request an open response from you or from the author of the article. Sincerely,
Dietmar Wolfram (President), Heidi Julien (President-Elect), Louise Spiteri (Past President), Denice
Adkins (Secretary/Treasurer), Leanne Bowler (Director for Special Interest Groups), Cecilia Salvatore
(Director for Membership Services), Rong Tang (Director for External Relations)
Notes from the webinar: https://umn.webex.com/umn/j.php?MTID=m2f3186267dababf407f36d3c2060f34c
Virginia Connell. Concordia
seems that the “library portion” was only regarding information literacy. I am wondering if the metaliteracy (e.g. visual literacy – how to present) was included and/or is intended to be included
from Plamen Miltenoff to everyone:
I am also wondering if the book can be “templated” and offered to other campuses to be adapted
from Louann to everyone:
I think the value in this could be in faculty exposure –and potential faculty advocates spreading the word
Kathy Johnson from St John’s how much work does it entail. Difficult to quantify. Resize photographs.
Virginia Connell, if there is a WordPress person (myself) and content specialist, it is manageable.
was there already projects going on on the campus. Library-sponsored
Shane Nackerud: need for support when using WordPress,
Terri Fishel to everyone:
Would there be a way to develop a shared FAQ document with issues such as this for the group?