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Open Education at UTA: Home

In 2017, the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA) Libraries launched a program to increase awareness of the transformative power of open education. We believe open education reduces barriers, empowers learners, and connects the academy to the world that it serves. The Libraries provide support, including sponsoring a grant program, for faculty and staff interested in exploring open education through the practice of open pedagogy and/or through the adoption or creation of open educational resources (OER).

Open access publishing and textbook affordability is critical to the work of UTA Libraries and UTA at large. From our commitment to widespread adoption of OER to our support for the conversion of print journals to open access digital formats, we empower our faculty, students, and authors to see their vision become the new reality for academic publishing. View our growing catalog of OER authored by UTA educators or browse the repositories listed on our OER guide to find content appropriate for your courses.

Publishing Reimagined explains our approach to OER publishing.

UTA CARES Grants Reimagined Survey

The UTA CARES Grant Program will be reimagined in 2021 to expand support for OER usage across campus. Please share your suggestions for the UTA Libraries’ open education program here.

 

Virtual Events

Please note that attendees must join the Open Educational Resources Microsoft Team to view and use the chat function during virtual sessions. All sessions are hosted virtually via the Teams platform, and recordings are available in the UTA Workshops channel of the OER Team.

Introduction to Pressbooks

Tuesday, May 25, 1-2:30 p.m.

We’ll review examples of OER created using Pressbooks and discuss basic features of the platform, including importing and exporting content, cloning, adding images, formatting text, and embedding multimedia.

 

 

Making Accessible Choices: Universal Design in OER

Wednesday, May 26, 10-11:30 a.m.

Accessibility is the idea of developing resource or products in a way that is non-exclusionary, that enable access to the widest possible degree for all users. This idea encourages content creators, educators, and users alike to be vigilant in recognizing poorly designed resources, or elements within a resource, and understanding that there are always ways to improve upon the design so that resources may be better used by people with the broadest range of abilities. This presentation will address the implementation of universal design principles, the most common accessibility issues encountered in the creation of OER, and how advocating for accessibility and making good design choices can cumulatively add up to a much more enjoyable (and effective) user experience for all. It will be led by Brittany Griffiths, Publishing Specialist at UTA Libraries.

This session is required for all current UTA CARES Innovation Grant recipients.

 

Building Interactive Content in Pressbooks

Thursday, May 27, 10-11:30 a.m.

We’ll discuss options for developing interactive content (e.g., quizzes, hot spots) using H5P, integrating interactive components into open educational resources via Pressbooks, and connecting the assessment results to a Canvas gradebook.

This session is strongly encouraged for all current UTA CARES Innovation Grant recipients.

 

Keeping it Legit: Four Ways

Friday, May 28, 10-11:30 a.m.

UTA Libraries invite you to a discussion about different ways to deal with potential content for creating an OER. The conversation will focus on low-risk approaches, and no previous knowledge is required. It will be led by Emilie Algenio, Director of Publishing at UTA Libraries.

This session is required for all current UTA CARES Innovation Grant recipients.

 

Open Pedagogy

Thursday, June 10, 10-11:30 a.m.

This session will explore how OER can be used to support open pedagogy, or the practice of asking students to create, rather than simply consume educational content. We will define open pedagogy, discuss examples of student-led knowledge production, and learn how this practice promotes engagement and innovation. The presentation will be led by Jasmine Bridges, OER Coordinator at UTA Libraries.

This session is required for all current UTA CARES Innovation Grant recipients.

Office Hours

Drop in for virtual OER Office Hours Monday through Thursday via Teams for personalized guidance on finding, using, or creating OER for your courses. To make an appointment instead, please contact oer@uta.edu.

  • Monday: 10 - 11 a.m.
  • Tuesday: 10 - 11 a.m.
  • Wednesday: 1 - 2 p.m.
  • Thursday: 2 - 3 p.m.

Funding Opportunities

UTA Grants

Applications for UTA CARES Innovation Grants, Scale Grants, and Adoption Stipends are being accepted on an ongoing basis. Visit the UTA CARES Grant Program guide to apply or learn more.

Open Education Travel Scholarships

UTA Libraries provide financial support for members of the UTA community to enable participation in local, regional, and national OER conferences and events. Currently, only virtual events will be considered. Visit the travel scholarship guide to apply or learn more.

News and Announcements

UTA Receives $500,000+ for OER Development

A grant from the US Department of Education Open Textbooks Pilot Program will support creation of six open textbooks for transportation and planning. Read UTA Libraries press release.

UTA Faculty Present at Open Education Conferences

Twelve members of the UTA community presented at the Open Education and Open Education Global virtual conferences in Fall 2020, and UTA Libraries sponsored attendance for eight faculty through our open education travel scholarship program. Read more on our blog.

OER in The Shorthorn

"Open educational resources improve accessibility, provide free learning materials to students" by Shambhavi Rimal was published in The Shorthorn on October 7, 2020.

Statewide Repository for OER Launches in Texas

In Fall 2020, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board launched OERTX, a digital repository of OER created to ease resource discovery and provide curated content mapped to Texas courses and curricula.

UT System Task Force Encourages OER Use

The University of Texas System Affordable Learning Accelerator Task Force issued a statement in July 2020 "asking faculty and administrators across the UT System to strongly consider including OER as they plan Fall 2020 courses." The announcement noted, "COVID-19 has exacerbated the financial need and insecurity of students across the UT System. UT System students need Open Educational Resources now more than ever."

UTA Invests in OER

The investment, announced October 1, 2019, is intended to increase both the affordability of college and the success of UTA students. It is the largest award by a public academic institution in the state of Texas specifically supporting OER initiatives.

Updates on OER

Find Us on Microsoft Teams

We have a Microsoft Team for Open Educational Resources. Join us in Teams for chatter about OER, updates on community discussions, news, tips, and more.

 

Sign Up for Email List

Sign up to receive email updates about open education at UTA.

 

From Our Blog

Stuck Between a Rock and a Publisher: Impacting Affordability During a Pandemic by Katie Willeford

Open Education Week 2020 by Michelle Reed

The Semester You Learn to Walk (a lecture) by Ursula Abdala

Mythbusting 101: Reflecting on a Year of Open by Michelle Reed

Katie Gosa, 2017-18 Student Body President and psychology/history double major at UTA, presented on OER at TEDxUTA in April 2018.

Quick Links

Reporting Forms

UTA Libraries work closely with campus partners to ensure that UTA students have the information they need to make educated enrollment decisions and plan for the cost of their education. Per state law, students must be able to search the schedule of classes and filter by courses that use OER. If the total cost per student for all required resources in a course is $0, report the course as soon as possible each semester to ensure it is tagged in the schedule of classes. Use this form on this guide to report zero-cost resource adoptions.

This form is for OER creation and modification projects to be published with Mavs Open Press. It is used to communicate your readiness to formally move the publication process forward on your OER. Milestones include requesting a preliminary accessibility evaluation, setting preferences for cover design and print distribution, reporting the start of your pilot period, requesting a formal accessibility evaluation, requesting publication, and requesting new exports post-publication.

This form is for UTA CARES grant recipients only. A requirement of the UTA CARES Grant Program is to update UTA Libraries on a monthly basis for the duration of the project to report on your progress. Please submit your updates via this form by the first Tuesday of every month.

Pressbooks Requests

Use this form to request a free UTA Pressbooks account and access to the Mavs Open Press Sandbox. The Sandbox offers an environment where anyone at UTA can experiment with Pressbooks and learn about the platform. Feel free to add, remove, and edit content while you’re in the Sandbox. You may also use this form to request the addition of new team members to your Pressbook.

Use this form to request your own site with a unique URL on UTA’s Pressbooks platform. Please note that all resources supported by Mavs Open Press must be openly licensed, allowing for downstream users to remix and reuse the content. Sites should be requested only after the project name has been finalized, as the URL cannot be changed once it has been created.

Other Links

All contributors to OER published by Mavs Open Press should submit a copyright agreement.

Course materials published by Mavs Open Press can be viewed online or downloaded in multiple formats for offline viewing.

UTA Guides
Other Resources

 

Contents of this guide were shaped by the work of Dr. David Wiley, who reminds us that education is about sharing, and Dr. Robin DeRosa, who gave us the phrase, open education is "about reducing barriers to education, empowering learners, and connecting the academy to the world that it serves."