Opening the textbook: Open education resources in U.S. higher education, 2015-16

Posted on September 2nd, 2016

A new report from the Babson Survey Research Group reviews the use of open educational resources (OER) by faculty in the United States. Over 3,000 higher education teaching faculty provided survey responses. Key findings showed that awareness of OER has increased—25 percent of faculty reported they were “Aware” or “Very Aware” of open educational resources, up from 20 percent last year. However, the use of open resources is low overall, with only 5.3 percent of courses using open textbooks. “There is potential for growth for OER, as many faculty report that they are willing to try these resources,” states Dr. Jeff Seaman, co-director of the Babson Survey Research Group. “However, while faculty cite costs to the student more than any other factor in selecting educational materials, concerns about the time and effort it takes to find and evaluate these materials remains a significant barrier to wider adoption.”