CCAC is pleased to acknowledge and express gratitude to our faculty for Open Educational Resources advocacy and innovation in course materials. Textbook Heroes are members of the CCAC Faculty whose use of open and affordable resources has lowered financial barriers and contributed to more equitable access to education for students.
Be a Hero!
SPH 101: Oral Communications
Approximate student savings per semester: $5400
Which OER? The Public Speaking Project
Why OER? To easily supplement my lectures and learning materials in an affordable and easy manner for students.
Student comments: Students have shared how easy it is to read the material for the class because they can connect to the book on any device.
English 101, Children's Literature
Approximate student savings per semester: $21,575
Which OER? English 101: Academic Writing: An Introduction (created by a team of CCAC English instructors) The Inside, Outside, and Upside Downs of Children's Literature: From Poets and Pop-Ups to Princesses and Porridge
Why OER? I become interested in OERs when I noticed how many students were having difficulty affording their textbooks. I then had an opportunity to collaboratively create an OER customized for English 101 students, and I was fascinated by the process!
Student comments:My students have really appreciated both cost-free textbooks and easy digital access. I love that, in the classroom, students can simply glance at their laptops, e-readers, or even phones to access the textbook: no one can say they "forgot" or "don't have" the book, as it's literally at our fingertips! My English 101 students told me that they really enjoyed having a book that was written specifically for them by their own professors. They appreciated that personalization, which would never happen with a traditional off-the-shelf textbook.
Approximate student savings per semester: $3960
Which OER? OpenStax Astronomy
Why OER? To make quality resources available to CCAC Students
Student comments: Thank you for making this course more affordable.
BIO 175: Microbiology
Approximate student savings per semester: $9156
Which OER? Self authored Microbiology Lab book
Why OER? After serving as a liaison on the OER development team last spring, I was very motivated to develop my own OER microbiology lab book.
I have taught microbiology for many years and had been collecting pictures and altered lab techniques. Also, the lab book we previously used was not as user friendly as I liked and was constantly adapting labs for our classroom.
Student comments: It's free. It is very succint!
DVS060-BC01 DVS060-BC02 DVS060-BC71
Approximate student savings per semester: $2926
Which OER? Amie Erickson and I compiled useful portions of two OERs in order to make our cohesive OER for DVS060. Erickson & Thomas
Why OER? The textbook I was using for DVS060 went to a new edition, increasing in price.
Student comments: So far I've only received one comment: "I don't have to buy the textbook? Great!"
ENG 101: Composition I
Approximate student savings per semester: $5950
Why OER? I was deeply concerned about textbook expense for students. I have used OER for the 2019-2020 academic year. I am using two OER resources now, but I am planning to augment them for the next school year.
Student comments: The students appreciate the savings and the fact we care about them.
DVS 101 & 103
Approximate student savings per semester: $7278
Which OER? Developmental Studies 101 (College Reading 2)-- currently in use Developmental Studies 103 (Advanced College Reading and Study Skills)-- future use
Why OER? I wanted to reduce the reoccurrence of students not having the textbook for various reasons, the main one being the high price of most textbooks. I wanted to offer a textbook that students could afford-- a free one!
Student comments: The students were excited that the OER was free.
CJC 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice, CJC 151 Criminal Justice Law, CJC 152 Criminal Justice Ethics
Approximate student savings per semester: $2360 fro CJC 101, for CJC 151 on all four campuses $37,200
Why OER? Save students money, but guarantee that they have the material needed for class. Eliminate any excuse for a student not to have read the required material for class.
Student comments: Students are not commenting, but are using the book. They point out discrepancies between the book, the class, or quiz.
SOC 101: Intro to Sociology
Approximate student savings per semester: $23,210
Which OER? OpenStax Sociolgy 2e
Why OER? Many of my students were not purchasing the textbook for class due to cost. I switched to a lower cost textbook but still had issues. With the OER every student has the book on Day 1. Students can better participate in classroom discussions and class time can involve discussions of the material.
Student comments: Many students have expressed appreciation for not having to purchase an expensive textbook. They seem to particularly like the app available for their phones.
ENG 101: Composition I
Approximate student savings per semester: $84,960 with John Fantin, Koryn Noah-Patrick, Jeannie Schulte, Joel Wilson and Ashleigh Fox
Why OER? It is possible to create a tailored textbook option for students that is not only better in terms of content, but it is also free for students to use.
I created the ENG101 textbook, along with other faculty at CCAC. We were supported by grant from the Achieving the Dream organization. We were able to adapt existing content and create new resources that are specifically tailored to CCAC students and the ENG101 curriculum.
BIO 161 and 162 - Anatomy & Physiology 1 & 2
Approximate student savings per semester: $130,887 with Joanna Kazmeirczak and Robert Ficco
Which OER? OpenStax Anatomy & Physiology and a CCAC created lab manual.
Why OER? Publisher's textbooks were more expensive than the class. We needed a change.
Student comments: Students were so relieved to not have to purchase a textbook or lab manual - it helps them use the funds to cover tuition or costs at home.
Approximate student savings per semester: $1150
Anatomy & Physiology BIO 161 and 161L
Approximate student savings per semester: $130,887 with Caroline Evans and Robert Ficco
Which OER? OpenStax Anatomy & Physiology Textbook and CCAC created Laboratory Manual
Why OER? Improving affordability and accessibility to course materials .
Student comments: "I have all my class materials on the first day - and can save money for day-to-day living expenses."
Supplemental: CIT 125 and supplemental OER for CIT 100, DAT 119/201/202
Approximate student savings per semester: >$1215
Which OER? Jupyter notebooks I've remixed from a colleague at another school, videos and websites posted by faculty at other schools, materials a colleague and I created and posted online, Python for Everybody by Charles Severance, DS100 from Berkeley
Why OER? Textbooks are incredibly expensive, and publishers' policies are getting more and more restrictive. People across the country and across the world are working together to make resources that are as good as or better than traditionally-published textbooks, and I think our students should benefit from that.
Student comments: The reception has generally been really positive.
Approximate student savings per semester: $84,960 with Elizabeth Throesch, John Fantin, Koryn Noah-Patrick, Jeannie Schulte, and Ashleigh Fox
Which OER? English 101: Academic Writing: An Introduction (created by a team of CCAC English instructors)
Why OER? I wanted to provide my students quality materials but not compound the cost of higher education.
Student comments: My students appreciated not having to pay money out of pocket for a text.
Except where otherwise noted, Open Educational Resources at CCAC by Community College of Allegheny County Libraries is licensed
under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.