Get A Textbook-free Degree

With the high price of textbooks just killing students there are many initiative trying to reduce textbook costs or even make them free using public use licenses. Virginia Tidewater Community College is taking the approch by creating textbook free degrees.

They will be offering a degree programme this autumn that will not need scholars to buy textbooks.  The project is directed at reducing students’ cost from the climbing cost of textbooks.  The community university, that has more than thirty thousand scholars, is working with Lumen Learning, a Portland, Ore.-based company, to supply a textbook-free associate of science degree in business administration. Rather than standard textbooks, the programme will use “open” textbooks and other open instructional resources, known as OER.  These are readily accessible, brazenly approved materials.  TCC officers expounded these resources are in the general public domain or have been released under an intellectual property license that allows their free use and repurposing by others.

OER can be in the shape of text, but may also include videos and other sorts of displays, according to TCC.  Scholars  need only a browser to employ the material.

The courses are being built in Blackboard, the community university system’s learning managing system, which is available on an Android phone or tablet. Though other schools offer OER courses, TCC recounted it’s going to be the 1st commissioned U.S.  University  to supply a qualification in which scholars pay nothing for needed textbooks.  TCC guesstimates that a student who completes the degree through the textbook-free initiative might save 1/3 on the price of school. The Dept of  Work   Stats  reports that textbooks have gone up 812 p.c since 1978, and the average book today costs $175.  TCC’s textbook-free pilot project will start with the 2013-14 educational year.  “If we are successful, we’re going to see increased access and price for scholars ; faculty engaged in studying about and refining the utilization of OER ; and bigger faculty and student knowledge of learning outcomes,” Daniel T.  DeMarte, TCC vice chairman for educational affairs and chief educational officer, asserted in an announcement.  TCC will be offering one section each of twenty-one courses in which scholars won’t be needed to buy textbooks.  13  faculty members will teach the sections.  The courses will be delivered both on campus and on the web.  TCC guesses that a student who completes the advanced programme will save around $2,000.

Lumen Learning was set up by David Wiley, a frontrunner in the open education movement, and Kim Thanos, an education technology strategist.  DeMarte claimed he made a decision to hound the textbook-free initiative after hearing Wiley talk at the Virginia Community  Varsity  System chancellor’s yearly retreat last Aug.